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24 December 2010


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France's National Audiovisual Institute's website has it available online as a Video On Demand pay per view service.

Charles I

This is an excellent movie, saw it about a year ago.

I think due to my age, the grainy black and white filming, the apparent lack of script, plot or direction, this movie was more "real" to me than Restrepo.

Somehow the Vietnam war seemed like a war in a way that these last two are not, but I grew up with it as a child rather than cynic.

John Minnerath

Excellent find sir.


Just saw it, Generals indeed want to fight the last war.

Just where do they send our troops for R&R from Afghanistan?

Merry Christmas!!!

Patrick Lang


The war in "The Anderson Platoon" dosn't look to me anything like the war in "Restrepo." pl


Thank you.

I never even heard of this film, before you mentioned it.



“The Anderson Platoon” has even less context than “Restrepo”. I first saw it in 1968 at a theatre on the Ave next to the U in Seattle. The Netflix stream is a 1987 American remix of the French 1966 film and is confusing as hell and nothing like what I can remember of the first film.

The briefing officer mentions Operation Irving. Four Decades later, thanks to Google, I realized that it was filmed during the Battle of Bong Song. The First Cav’s second campaign right after Battle of Ia Drang; portrayed in “We Were Soldiers”. Yes, it is different than Afghanistan. The finest Army the US ever deployed using air assault against main force entrenched enemies.

Four years later in 1970 when I was stationed in LZ English next to Bong Song, the 2nd of the 503 was doing exactly the same thing as in “Restrepo”; pacification - interdicting enemy movement. As soon as the American troops withdrew, the communist retook Bong Song in 1972 Offensive. History repeated itself again in the Korengal Valley.

America then as now refuses to admit that it is fighting colonial wars of occupation that take a commitment of lives and wealth far beyond what we are willing to spend. In old age, the only goal of these wars I can see is to enrich the well connected.


I am afraid I agree. We'd like to get out, we tell ourselves, but the profit margin is just too high. Of course the lost blood, limbs and lives are not figured in the balance.

Patrick Lang

Basilisk & VV

All that is true especially about how profitable this all is, not in the traditional gross resource exploitation way but rather in the profits of the equipment makers and the cheaters (American, Iraqi and Afghan) on service contracts.

No, in my simpleminded gruntlike way I was focused on how well the troops in TAP are turned out, how they shave all the time, how they treat the villagers, the relationship between officers and men, the way the company commander briefs his men like they were adults and not high school kids in a locker room, how they get fed hot chow in the field from mermite cans flown in, how they grieve like men...

All of that means real soldiers in a good, well led unit to me.

It was the greatest privilege of my life to lead men like that. Both Balthazar and Claude would understand. pl

John Minnerath

When I looked at those two films, I didn't look at the profiteers and politicians, both corrupt and well meaning.
I looked at the men and what THEY were doing.
Men like those in "The Anderson Platoon" were my friends and comrades.
With a few exceptions that's how it was, we were well trained and disciplined.
Try as I might,I could not relate to the men and actions in "Restrepo".
They were supposed to be top of the line paratroopers.
I couldn't see it.
In some ways they seemed to me to be like the rejects in some repo depot we saw.



I went to a Reunion of the 173rd Airborne several decades ago. I was struck by the difference in demeanor and attitude of those who were in the initial deployment to Vietnam and those who served years later. None of the first to deploy had the cynicism or wariness of the later enlistees.

One of the costs that the politicians do not want to pay is keeping the troops in the field until the war is won. In Vietnam the war was fought ten times over. In Afghanistan, soldiers are on their fourth and fifth tours. The War on Terror is self selecting those who voluntarily return over and over again.

Patrick Lang


I have the impression that the soldiers in the "Restrepo" film are mostly on their first deployment. pl

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