[Refering to Vietnam]
Day by day, I struggle to maintain not only my strength but my sanity. It's all a blur. I have no energy to write. I don't know what's right and what's wrong anymore. The morale of the men is low. A civil war in the platoon. Half the men with Elias, half with Barnes. There's a lot of suspicion and hate. I can't believe we're fighting each other when we should be fighting them.
[last lines][voiceover] I think now, looking back, we did not fight the enemy; we fought ourselves. And the enemy was in us. The war is over for me now, but it will always be there, the rest of my days as I'm sure Elias will be, fighting with Barnes for what Rhah called possession of my soul. There are times since, I've felt like the child born of those two fathers. But, be that as it may, those of us who did make it have an obligation to build again, to teach to others what we know, and to try with what's left of our lives to find a goodness and a meaning to this life.
[Manny has been killed and the platoon is looking for revenge]
It's the way the whole thing works. People like Elias get wasted. People like Barnes just go on making up the rules any way they want. So what do we do? Sit in the middle and suck on it. We just don't add up to dry shit, King.:Whoever said we did, man? All you got to do is make it out of here, and it's all gravy. Every day, the rest of your life, gravy.
[narrating] Well, here I am, anonymous, all right. With guys nobody really cares about. They come from the end of the line, most of them, small towns you never heard of: Pulaski, Tennessee; Brandon, Mississippi; Pork Bend, Utah; Wampum, Pennsylvania. Two years' high school's about it. Maybe if they're lucky, a job waiting for them back in a factory. But most of 'em got nothing. They're poor. They're the unwanted. Yet they're fighting for our society and our freedom. It's weird, isn't it? They're the bottom of the barrel, and they know it. Maybe that's why they call themselves grunts, 'cause a grunt can take it, can take anything. They're the best I've ever seen, Grandma. The heart and soul.
[narrating] Maybe I finally found it, way down here in the mud. Maybe from down here I can start up again. Be something I can be proud of without having to fake it, be a fake human being.
:You volunteered for this shit, man?:Sounds like it.
Die you, motherfuckers! Die!
[Francis and Taylor are laying on stretchers]Hey, Taylor, that you?