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Switzerland: Armed and Peaceful

Switzerland may be known for its high-quality chocolates and precision timepieces, but there is more to this landlocked country than sweets and watches.

Switzerland's 7.5 million citizens have managed to avoid the wars and conflicts of other nations. In fact, the country has vowed that it will never get involved in an armed conflict. However, for its own defense, Switzerland still has a strong military with an arsenal of the most technologically advanced equipment available.

Known as the Swiss Armed Forces, Switzerland's military consists of a regular army and air force and a militia made up of everyday citizens with a willingness to fight for their homeland. The backbone of the Swiss army is the country's able-bodied male citizens between the ages of 19 and 31 who are required to serve as part-time soldiers. Women also serve voluntarily in the military.

In many countries, getting troops ready for action can take weeks or months. The Swiss, however, require all males to keep a rifle, ammunition, and a uniform in their homes. As a result, within 12 hours, the entire Swiss army can be ready to take on any task. Furthermore, Switzerland has enough room in bomb shelters for every citizen, and the country's bridges and tunnels have explosives on them so they can be destroyed in case of invasion. Though Switzerland is neutral, its proximity to many major wars in the past has taught the nation to be prepared.

Switzerland may remain on the outside of the world's military conflicts, but this tiny country isn't all about peace. The Swiss are ready to defend themselves should the need arise.

     
  1.

Which of the following is a true statement about Switzerland?

       
    (A) It's only famous for its chocolates and watches.
    (B) It has been involved in many major wars in the past.
    (C) Like male citizens, females are forced to serve in the army.
    (D)

Over five million people make their home in the country.

       
  2.

The official name of the army in Switzerland is _____.

       
    (A) the Army of Switzerland
    (B) the Swiss Army
    (C) the Armed Switzerland
    (D)

the Swiss Armed Forces

       
  3.

How long does it take to mobilize the Swiss army?

       
    (A)

Less than a day.

    (B) 24 hours.
    (C) Two weeks.
    (D) Less than three weeks but more than two.
       
 
 
 
 
 

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Comprehension 1

 

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