Remember those old “United Colors of Benetton” ads from the 90s? If not, I forgive you for not being as old as I am.  Suffice it to say, they were quite colorful and had an international flair…much like today’s “SOF Pic of the Day.”

Instead of models, these are soldiers shown during a rehearsal for a Bastille Day parade on the Champs-Elysées in Paris. That beats the hell out of their last assignment.

The men are from Task Force Takuba (TFT or TF Takuba). This was a European task force that advised and assisted the Malian armed forces from March 2020 until June 2022.

French in Mali
French soldiers and their military working dog in the Gao region of Mali. Image from Wikimedia Commons.

Task Force Takuba: Europe’s Answer to the Sahel Crisis

Task Force Takuba (TFT) emerged as a beacon of European military cooperation, focusing its attention on aiding the Malian Armed Forces in navigating the increasingly complex Sahel security landscape. With the Sahel region being a hotbed of terrorist activity, especially in the Liptako area that sprawls across Burkina Faso, Niger, and Mali, there was an imperative need for an international response.