The French Foreign Legion (or Légion étrangère) was a unit of the military of France, established in the 19th century. The Foreign Legion allowed foreign nationals to serve in the French Armed Forces, and was depicted in popular culture as a place where a person could escape his past and begin his life anew.

Leonard McCoy likened his decision to join Starfleet following the end of his marriage to running away to join the French Foreign Legion. (TOS novel: The Better Man)

Following the tragedy at Talin IV, James T. Kirk (under the name Sam Jameson) likened his job with Interworld Construction to the Légion étrangère. (TOS novel: Prime Directive)

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