What Is an Airborne Infantry?


Quick Answer

Airborne infantry consists of soldiers who fit into the light-infantry category and are trained to deploy from aircraft by means of parachute or by helicopter insertion. These soldiers can deploy almost anywhere in a short period of time when quick reaction and the element of surprise are crucial.

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Full Answer

The idea of airborne infantry dates back to 1917, when British Prime Minister Winston Churchill wanted to create an airborne assault force that could jump behind German lines in WWI. During WWII, the German military developed a paratrooper force named the "Fallschirmjager," which was used during the invasion of Denmark and Norway in Operation Weserubung. As of 2014, nations such as England, France, the United States, Canada, Germany and Russia maintain airborne and air-assault units that are capable of deploying anywhere in the world in 24 hours or less.

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