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In military traditions of various times and places, there have been numerous methods of performing salutes, using hand gestures, cannon or rifle shots, hoisting of flags, removal of headgear, or other means of showing respect or deference. In the Commonwealth of Nations (formerly the British Commonwealth), only officers are saluted, and the salute is to the commission they carry from their respective commanders-in-chief representing the Monarch, not the officers themselves. The French salute is almost identical to the British Army's. The customary salute in the Polish Armed Forces is the two-fingers salute, a variation of the British military salute with only two fingers extended. In the Russian military, the right hand, palm down, is brought to the right temple, almost, but not quite, touching; the head has to be covered. In the Swedish armed forces, the salute is identical to that of the U.S. armed forces and the British Royal Navy. In the Hellenic Army salute the palm is facing down and the fingers point to the coat of arms. In the United States Navy, United States Marine Corps, United States Coast Guard, and United States Public Health Service Commissioned Corps, as well as in all branches of the British Armed Forces, Polish Armed Forces, Canadian Forces, Turkish Armed Forces, Swedish Armed Forces, Norwegian Armed Forces, and Hellenic Armed Forces, Russian and all former Soviet republic forces, hand salutes are only given when a cover (protection for the head, usually a hat) is worn. by wikipedia
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