Croix de Guerre

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Croix de guerre or Oorlogskruis
Awarded by  France and  Belgium
EligibilityMilitary personnel only
Awarded forindividuals who distinguish themselves by acts of heroism in combat with enemy forces.
Campaign(s)World War I
World War II
Other wars not fought on French soil
DescriptionA bronze cross with swords
EstablishedApril 2, 1915

Croix de guerre 1914-1918 & 1939-1945 ribbons with palm

The Croix de guerre (English translation: Cross of War) is a military medal of both France and Belgium.

It was first created in 1915 in both countries. It consists of a square-cross medal on two crossed swords, hanging from a ribbon with various degree pins. The decoration was awarded during World War I, again in World War II, and in other conflicts. The Croix de guerre was also often awarded to foreign military forces allied to France and Belgium.

The Croix de guerre may be given to a unit or to individuals who for acts of heroism involving combat with enemy forces. The medal is also awarded to those who have been "mentioned in despatches". This means a heroic deed was performed meriting a citation from an individual's headquarters unit. The unit award of the Croix de guerre was issued to military commanders who performed heroic deeds in combat and were subsequently recognized by headquarters.