F.E.B. Organization and Training

Problems arose for Brazilian officers with the formation of F.E.B., they were faced with thousands of men ready to fight a war “different” from the model for which they had been previously trained and with no knowledge of weapons.

In the forties, the Brazilian Army still had a French training and were equipped with German, Italian and French weapons, to fight alongside the U.S. units involved quite a few problems. There were insufficient stenographers, chemists, electricians, radio operators, truck drivers and strong men able to cope with the rigors of the European climate. The Brazilian Army had only one type of uniform, entirely unsuitable for the cold Italian winters and more important, too similar to the German uniform.

The declaration of war

The declaration of war on the Axis countries was communicated by the Brazilian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, August 21 1942. The document, sent to the German, Italian and Japanese embassies, stressed the pacifist position of Brazil, who was forced to go to war due to two events: the aggression of the Axis countries towards the United States and the destruction of Brazilian merchant ships by German and Italian submarines. In January 1943, following a meeting between American President Roosevelt and Brazilian President Vargas, it was decided, for the first time , the intervention of the Brazilian military forces in the conflict on the side of the Allies. With an infantry division of 25,334 men, supported by a small air squadron, the contingent Força Expedicionaria Brasiliera (FEB) was born.