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In Annual 2004 40k, there is an entry for a kroot mercenary army...
It lists the various armies that can take them as allies.
Tau aren't there...
Surely that's wrong?!
'And Lo! In A Cloud Of Much Prettiness And All That,
Came Karnack! And Let It Be Known That He Said;
No, that is correct... The same thing is in the CA2003 and 2004 Kroot Mercenary lists.
IIRC, the reason is because officially the Kroot's are in a sort of agreement with the Tau to not work with others... Any Kroot the Tau work with are included in their lists.
The Mercenaries, however, work on their own... And in secrecy from the Tau, so as not to break their agreement, but still benefit from new technologies and new prey.
But whatever the reason really is, the Tau may not have a Kroot Merc army as allies.
Clarification: The CA2004 version explicitly states which armies may NOT under any circumstances use a Kroot Merc army as allies... And the Tau are on this list, officially prohibiting them from ever taking a Kroot Merc army as allies.
"The meat things seek to destroy ourselves. They hunt us as we hunt them but they are weak and uncertain. The inferior flesh will be entirely destroyed, all biomatter consumed. Ourselves will fight to the last, all weak flesh must be devoured."