Brad's sitting near the tall grass when he spots a confused Marine wandering: he looks one way and stumbles a few paces, then turns around and starts off in another direction. It's wrong and weird and he's concerned. "How's it going?" The guy looks at him but doesn't quite focus. "They shot one of my Marines in the stomach. Out there. We returned fire. Blew a donkey's head off. We didn't see ... much else." The guy keeps up his weird to-and-fro wandering, and Brad calls out to him again. "Buddy, do you need anything? Food, water..." The guy just stares past him, at something awful. "It's all good, Bro." He wanders away. Evan talks in the book about a certain look that Brad sometimes gets, this helpless and wounded look when he can't make the pieces fit. When the world can't quite manage to work itself out the way his methodical brain says it should, and it hurts him. Skarsgård nails it.
Command meeting with Godfather: "Expect a fight. Expect casualties when we push through Nasiriyah. Taskforce Tarawa's been in that city for 36 hours getting chopped up pretty good while we sit here with the Regimental Combat Team, nursing our thumbs with our assholes." He is impressed with himself, for a second. Sixta is very serious, even though Godfather's not really saying anything. Sixta wouldn't know the difference. "Gentlemen, what does Ferrando think? We have allowed the enemy to dictate the tempo of our movements. If it were up to Ferrando we would not have stopped at the bridge this afternoon. We'd be through that city. But the good news is once we clear the Euphrates... General Mattis informs me that we are going to be in the game, gentlemen. And when we play, we -- not the enemy -- are going to dictate the tempo. Once we're over the river, we're going to detach from the RCT, push north and flank or destroy anyone who tries to stop us."
He dismisses them, and Encino Man (Bravo) approaches Patterson (Alpha). "He didn't say anything about the grooming standard. Is he giving us a pass on our men not shaving?" Horrified, Patterson clicks into the patented Nate Fick thousand-yard-stare of not slapping this idiot upside the head. "I'd interpret what he said to mean facial hair is not going to be our focus for the next 24 hours." Encino Man nods and runs off; Patterson stares after him. This cannot be all there is to war.
Time for a speech! Espera lies under the truck with Evan, sharing a cigarette and some thoughts. "Fifty percent of Americans are obese. You know what obese means, right? Fat as a motherfucker. All these other countries, nobody's fat. Think about that shit, Dog. How does a motherfucker get fat?" (This speech was even better in the book; the line is something like Do you know how hard it is to get that fat?) "You gotta sit on a couch, do nothing but eat and watch TV all day. White trash, poor Mexicans and blacks... All obese as motherfuckers. The white man has created a system with so much excess that even poor motherfuckers are fat. A few years ago, Dog, I refused a diploma from my community college... I didn't want no piece of paper from the white master saying I was qualified for his world. Then I joined the corps. Figured you can't beat 'em, join 'em. See, that's what this is all about, Dog. The US should just go into all these fucked-up countries, Iraq, Africa, set up American government and infrastructure. McDonald's, Starbucks, MTV. And then just hand it all over. How else are we going to make these hungry motherfuckers want to stop killing everybody? Put a McDonald's on every fucking corner. If we've got to blow up the corner, then build the McDonald's? So be it." Poke got forced out of the Battalion when the original RS articles were published. Doesn't mean he's wrong.