Dear Fellow Europeanists:
Modern Europe 2nd quiz will take place on 14th October (this coming Tuesday).
Format: MCQ/ Fill in the blanks
Topics: Russian Revolution, Lenin, Stalin, Hitler (up to Hitler’s Genocide)
I really really want all of us to do well. To achieve this, take your revision seriously and you shall get your booty 🙂
On a lighter note, a brief info about The Platoon (anti Vietnam War Movie). There are two other great anti-war movies, The Full Metal Jacket (directed by Stanley Kubrick) and Apocalypse Now 
*I have copies of Platoon and Full Metal Jacket*
As a footnote, my alma mater, Univ. of California-Santa Barbara is ranked 27th in the US; and 36th in the world according to 2008 World Top Varsities ranking
My best wishes for the quiz and belated aid mubarak
Platoon is a 1986 Vietnam war film, written and directed by Oliver Stoneand starring Charlie Sheen, Tom Berenger, Willem Dafoe, Forest Whitaker, Kevin Dillon, Keith David, John C. McGinley, and Johnny Depp (You recognize him huh? Among his earliest movie’s debuts) It is the first of Stone’s Vietnam War trilogy, followed by Born on the Fourth of July (1989) and Heaven & Earth (1993).
The story is drawn from Stone’s experiences as a U.S. Infantryman in Vietnam and was written by him upon his return as a counter to the vision of the war portrayed in John Wayne’s The Green Berets. The film won the Academy Award for Best Picture of 1986. In 2007, the American Film Institute placed Platoon at #86 in their “100 Years…100 Movies” poll. British television channel Channel 4 voted Platoon as the 6th greatest war film ever made, behind Full Metal Jacket and ahead of A Bridge Too Far.
Chris Taylor (Charlie Sheen) is a young American who has abandoned college for combat duty in Vietnam. The year is 1967. Upon arrival, he sees dead soldiers in body bags being loaded into his plane. Taylor and several other replacements have been assigned to Bravo Company, 25th Infantry division, “somewhere near the Cambodian border.” Worn down by the exhausting work and poor living conditions, his enthusiasm for the war wanes and he develops an admiration for the more experienced soldiers, despite their reluctance to extend their friendship.
One night while on patrol, his sleeping unit is set upon by a squad of North Vietnamese Army soldiers. Gardner, a fellow new recruit, is killed, and another soldier is maimed. Despite having passed the watch duty to Junior, a more experienced soldier who fell asleep, Taylor is blamed for the casualties. The platoon’s most seasoned sergeants, the compassionate Sergeant Elias (Willem Dafoe) and harsh Staff Sergeant Barnes (Tom Berenger), argue. Taylor discovers a light wound to his neck, and he is sent to the field hospital for treatment.
Taylor returns from the hospital and gains acceptance from a tight-knit group in his unit that socialises, dances, and consumes drugs in an underground clubhouse. Next door, more conservative members of the unit drink beer and play cards. As the patrols continue, Taylor becomes a more seasoned soldier, no longer standing out amongst the others. During one patrol, a soldier goes missing. His mutilated body is found tied to a post close by. The platoon reaches a nearby village, where a food and weapons cache is discovered. Despite the villagers’ denials, Barnes believes they are aiding Viet Cong soldiers and shoots an elderly woman in the head. The other soldiers explore the village. In one house, Taylor discovers a disabled boy and his mother hiding in a ditch beneath the floor. He harasses and taunts the boy, and Bunny (Kevin Dillon) beats the boy to death. Outside, Sergeant Elias arrives and gets into a fistfight with Barnes over the incidents. Lieutenant Wolfe (Mark Moses) ends the fight, and orders the men to burn the village. As the men leave a group of the soldiers drag a Vietnamese child to the bushes with the intentions of raping her. Taylor sees the attack and stops the group from raping the girl.
Upon returning to base, Elias reports Barnes’ actions to Captain Harris (Dale Dye), who cannot afford to remove Barnes due to a lack of personnel. Taylor speaks of this as “a civil war in the platoon. Half with Elias, half with Barnes.” On their next patrol the platoon is ambushed and becomes pinned down in a firefight. Elias, with Taylor and two other soldiers, goes to intercept flanking enemy troops. Barnes orders the rest of the platoon to retreat to be airlifted from the area, and goes back into the jungle to find Elias’ group. After sending Taylor and the two soldiers back, Barnes finds Elias. Barnes fires three rounds into Elias’ chest and leaves him for dead. Barnes reaches the helicopter, telling the others that Elias is dead. After they take off, a severely wounded Elias emerges from the jungle, running from a large group of NVA soldiers. As the helicopter circles overhead, he dies after being shot several more times by the NVA.
At the base, Taylor attempts to talk his group into killing Barnes in retaliation. While drinking, Barnes overhears this, and enters the room, daring them to kill him. No one takes up the offer, but as Barnes leaves, Taylor attacks him. Barnes manages to get the upper hand, and holds a knife to Taylor’s face. However, one of the men in the group talks Barnes out of killing Taylor, so he leaves, but not before cutting him under the eye.
The platoon is later sent back to the ambush area in order to build and maintain heavy defensive positions against potential attack. That night a large attack occurs, and the defensive lines are broken. Captain Harris orders the Air Force pilots to “expend all remaining” inside his perimeter. During the chaos, Barnes and Taylor come face-to-face. As Barnes is about to kill Taylor with a shovel, the two are knocked unconscious by a last-ditch American napalm attack. A wounded Taylor regains consciousness the next morning and finds Barnes, who is also wounded. Taylor aims a rifle at Barnes, who dares him to pull the trigger. Taylor shoots Barnes three times in the chest, killing him. He then collapses and awaits medical attention. As he is loaded onto the helicopter, Taylor is reminded that because he has been wounded twice, he can go home. The helicopter flies away and Taylor weeps as he stares down at the destruction.
(This information is excerpted from Wikipedia)
A young recruit in Vietnam faces a moral crisis when confronted with the horrors of war and the duality of man.