Tag Archives: appreciating other cultures

Changing of the Guard at the Russian Tomb of the Unknown Soldier

To Americans, this style of marching may seem very strange, but it is the Russian military’s way of performing their ceremonial drill. Please don’t compare this to the Soldiers who guard the American Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, that is not the point, the point is seeing both and appreciating both for what they are- honoring those who have fallen defending their country and lost their identity.

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Relief of the Honor Gaurd at Chiang Kai-Shek Memorial Hall

Not only do the US military service honor guards do things a little differently, but learning to appreciate how other cultures perform their duties is a must for anyone on an honor guard. While some things may seem quite odd or even silly to do, there is a reason that military honor guard units around the world perform the way they do.

Relief of the Air Force Honor Huard, Chiang Kai-Shek Memorial Hall
Taipei, Feb. 17, 2013

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The Guards at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier are always US Army and have never and will never be any other service. But here we see the relief of the Navy Honor Guard at the Chiang Kai-Shek Memorial Hall in 2012. Notice how the positioning of the stationary guards and ceremony itself have changed.

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Changing of the Guard at the Imperial Palace in Tokyo, Japan

In Tokyo, Japan, the Imperial Palace is guarded by two members of the Japan Self Defense Force. The guard change is brief and understated.

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It’s Greek to Me…

Greece, one of the oldest civilizations on the planet has had a military for as long as its been around. As a matter of fact, today’s military movements come from the Greeks and Romans, but I digress. This video shows part of he ceremony of the Presidential Guard (Evzones – tsoliades) at the Greek Parliament guarding the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier.

The video shows what Americas might describe as a very strange marching style however, this is another article in the series of appreciating other cultures. These guards spend hours honing their ceremonial skills just like the American military honor guard members, they are just very different.

A note on the title of the video: the individual who posted it titled it, “Greece-Presidential palace,shame on guard.” However, this is wrong: the video is not at the Presidential Palace, it is a the Greek Parliament. The inclusion of “shame on guard” reflects the complete lack of understanding of the video poster as to what happens in real life. Accidents happen all the time because we are just human beings. If you would, please post under the video an request the title be changed to have “shame on guard” removed. There is no shame in slipping and falling.

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The whole ceremony

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Stately Changing of the Guard Stockholm, Sweden

Great uniforms and quite ceremonious, the Swedish Life Guards guard the Royal Palace in Stockholm. This is part of the changing of the guard. It’s good to see mounted kettle drums again!

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Swiss Guard Change at the Vatican

The changing of the guard at the Vatican is quite simple. The uniform of the Swiss Guard is quite bright! There are two videos here, one for winter and one for summer. In the summer video you will see that the guard going on duty needs a little more attention when it comes to marching. Well done though, in both videos.


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