Senegalese Tirailleurs: These “Black-skinned Tirailleurs”

  • the author, Genevieve Sagno
  • role, BBC News Africa
  • tweet,
  • Reporting from London

photo credit, GEORGES GOBET/AFP via Getty Images

image caption,

The so-called ‘Senegalese’ skirmishers are African soldiers distinguished by their red chechia

Since the release of the film Tirailleurs” by Mathieu Vadepied in January 2023 brought to the screen by Omar Sy and Alassane Diong, we talk a lot about Senegalese tirailleurs.

The story of these African soldiers sent to the front to fight the enemy is not unknown, but little told.

“I have no explanation, I don’t know why or for what reasons we still don’t know this part of the story, I just know we don’t hear about it often. But I tell myself that we waste time wondering why and that today it is essential to show it, that’s all. We made this film for that,” Omar Sy, the actor and co-producer of the film, underlined in an interview.

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If “Tirailleurs” is a fiction set in 1917, the story of these men is very real.

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