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Black Hawk Down: Leave No Man Behind

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Ridley Scott’s film, Black Hawk Down, is a depiction of the Battle of Mogadishu, a raid integral to the United States' effort to capture Somali warlord Mohamed Farrah Aidi.The film introduces us to an elite group of Army Rangers, Delta Force soldiers and helicopter pilots. As the film progresses the plan to capture Aidi turns into a plan of desperation and survival. The grueling and arduous battle shows us the special camaraderie of the soldiers that experience the crucible of combat together as well as the heroism instilled in them.

The battle takes place in Somalia, Africa where, because of genocide, hundreds of thousands civilians have died of starvation. The U.S. takes action and tries to restore order after American soldiers and U.N. members are targeted by the Somalia militia. The film opens with the evidence of the destruction that the Somalia militia has brought to its people with the showing us famine, food deprived, starving, and lifeless Somalia civilians. The soldiers are beckoned into battle and immediately bombarded by rounds of fire from the militia and the soldiers instantly realize this is going to be a long and agonizing battle. As turmoil strikes and American soldiers begin to fall, the men begin to fight in the name of brotherhood—they fight to stand by their fellow soldiers in arms. This camaraderie in the film is symbolized by the soldiers’ efforts to make sure all of the men are accounted for whether they are alive, critically wounded, or even deceased. The soldiers’ motto becomes “leave no man behind.” The first man to be wounded is Private Todd Blackburn. As he begins his descent down a rope from the helicopter, known as a “hawk” in the film, they are attacked by a RPG, a missile, forcing the hawk to qu...

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...ergeant Evermanns final words were “Nobody asks to be a hero; it just sometimes turns out that way.” The meanings of these words are: the soldiers go into the battle without any understandable sense as to why or they are fighting for, but it is made evident that they are heroes.

Black Hawk Down is in fact a representation of the events that took place in Somalia in October of 1993 when U.S. soldiers drop into Somalia to capture two top lieutenants of a renegade warlord and find themselves in a desperate battle with a large force of heavily-armed Somalis. However, the central idea of the film is clearly the ideas of extreme heroism and camaraderie. Though all of the men in the film could not be saved, the love and commitment they have for each other makes up for it, and behind all of the gunfire, bloodshed, and dead bodies we see the two come together in this film.
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