Eurocorps’s cap emblem and badge
The Eurocorps emblem (and cap badge’s) has the form of a shield. Its shape and the dark blue background symbolize the European defence. The yellow stars symbolize the European Union, the sword symbolizes its armed forces, while the contours of the European continent represent both the boundaries of the European Union and the commitment for peace and security for the benefit of Europe and the Atlantic Alliance.
On 4th December 2000, Lieutenant General Juan Ortuño received the first common beret from Vice-Admiral Herteleer, Chief of Defence Staff of the Belgian Armed Forces and Chairman of the Eurocorps Common Committee.
From the start Eurocorps was created as a bilingual unit. The working languages in the Headquarters were French and German. All soldiers were supposed to understand and speak one language and to be able to understand the other. Once the Belgians joined, this system could still be maintained, but with the Spanish it became more difficult.
Once Eurocorps became involved in NATO operations, the English language naturally took its major role. For some time, French and German remained working languages and English obtained the role of exercise and operational language. This was a linguistic Babel Tower and a human resources’ nightmare.
The solution was found during the certification process to become High Readiness Force, which imposed English as a working language. The letter of Lieutenant General Holger Kammerhoff, Commanding General, changed Eurocorps’s language rules: From 22nd August 2002 on, English became the only working language.
On the other hand, the official languages of Eurocorps for its official external communication still include all framework nations’ national languages: French, German, Dutch, Spanish and, from 2016 on, also Polish.
The Sturm compound was built in the 1880s for German officers of the 105th Saxon Infantry Battalion. In 1919, after the Versailles Treaty, the class-full compound was given to the French Armed Forces. HQ Eurocorps used quartier Sturm from 1992 to 2007. Till the official creation of Eurocorps it was the home of the « Etat-Major de montée en puissance ». On 30 October 2007, after 15 years, HQ Eurocorps handed back the Sturm barrack to the French Military Authorities.
Aubert de Vincelles barracks
The Germans built the compound in 1912. After the Versailles Treaty was signed, it was called the “Guynemer” compound (to honour a French air force pilot shot down in 1917) and was taken over by the « 2ème Régiment d’Aviation de Chasse ». In 1993 the Eurocorps HQ took over the barracks, renovated the main building and built in total 8 additional office buildings.
The architect Edouard Schimpf upon request of the XV German Army Corps stationed in Strasbourg built the Lizé and Lyautey compounds between 1907 and 1909. Several changes of ownership followed, both by military associations and between Germany and France during the two world wars and their immediate aftermath. Finally, in the summer of 1993, the Eurocorps Headquarters Battalion (Bn QG) was created and they took over the Lizé compound. The newly constructed buildings were the catering service complex and the lodging buildings. Most of the existing military buildings were renovated.