The Chasseurs-Paras (parachute soldiers) is France's airborne soldiers, dropped behind enemy lines and destroy targets to path the routes for incoming support. The Chasseurs-Paras can tackle enemy infantry on their own, but their lone bazooka doesn't have much firepower against tanks.
Constant "Marin" Duclos was the first French soldier to execute a parachute jump on November 17, 1915. He performed 23 test and exhibition parachute drops without problems to publicize the system and overcome the prejudice aviators had for such life-saving equipment.
In 1935, Captain Geille of the French Air Force created the Avignon-Pujaut Paratroopers Schools after he trained in Moscow at the Soviet Airborne Academy. From this, the French military created two combat units called Groupes d’Infanterie de l’Air.
Following the Battle of France, General Charles de Gaulle formed the 1ère Compagnie d’Infanterie de l’Air in September 1940 from members of the Free French forces who had escaped to Britain. It was transformed into the Compagnie de Chasseurs Parachutistes in October 1941. By June 1942, these units were fighting in Crete and Cyrenaica alongside the British 1st SAS Regiment. As part of the SAS Brigade, two independent French SAS units were also created in addition to the other French Airborne units. They operated until 1945.
In May 1943, the 1er Régiment de Chasseurs Parachutistes was created from the 601e Groupe d'Infanterie de l'Air in Morocco and the 3ème and 4ème Bataillons d'Infanterie de l'Air (BIA) in England in the Special Air Service. The 2ème and 3ème Régiment de Chasseurs Parachutistes followed in July 1944.
During the Invasion of Normandy, French Airborne forces fought in Britanny, (Operation Dingson, Operation Samwest). The first Allied soldier to land in France was Free French SAS Captain Pierre Marienne who jumped into Britanny (Plumelec, Morbihan) on June 5 with 17 Free French paratroopers. The first Allied soldier killed in the liberation of France was Free French SAS Corporal Emile Bouétard of the 4th Bataillon d’Infanterie de l’Air, also in Britanny in Plumelec : June 6, 0 h 40. Captain Pierre Marienne was killed on July 12 in Plumelec. French SAS paratroopers also fought in the Loire Valley on September 1944, in Belgium on January, and in Netherlands on April 1945. The 1er Regiment Parachutiste de Choc carried out operations in Provence.
Pros & Cons
+Bazookas, they can deal with hostile armor.
+Although light themselves, they are able to go toe to toe with other light infantry except for Japanese.
+/-$10 vs $15 but they really lack the firepower of heavy infantry.
- Wikipedia: 1st Parachute Chasseur Regiment
- Teishin Shudan