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20 Best Movie Quotes About War

warWar is a touchy subject nowadays.  Many people have strong feelings about the rightness or wrongness of war.  At the 30,000 foot level, it seems like a noble fight for freedom and national priorities.  On the front lines, it's a different story, more about inhumanity, brotherhood, and fear.  The movies have featured perspectives from both sides of the war on war.  For Memorial Day, here are 20 diverse movie quotes about the warfare that has been with us since the first days of mankind.

“Sweet Jesus, war does terrible things to people.”
Gangs of New York (2002) – Boss Tweed (Jim Broadbent)

War is too important to be left to politicians. They have neither the time, the training, nor the inclination for strategic thought.”
Dr. Strangelove (1964) – General Jack D. Ripper (Sterling Hayden)

“A brilliant man will find a way not to fight a war.”
Pearl Harbor (2001) – Admiral Yamamoto (Mako)

“At the next war let all the Kaisers, presidents and generals and diplomats go into a big field and fight it out first among themselves.”
All Quiet on the Western Front (1930) – Katczinsky (Louis Wolheim)

“Every man who wages war believes God is on his side. I'll warrant God should often wonder who is on his.”
Cromwell (1970) – Oliver Cromwell (Richard Harris)

“It is well to dream of glorious war in a snug armchair at home, but it is a very different thing to see it first hand.”
Barry Lyndon (1975) – Narrator (Michael Hordern)

“When I get home people will ask me, "Hey Hoot, why do you do it man?  Why? You some war junkie?"  You know what I'll say? I won't say a god damn word. Why?  They won't understand. They won't understand why we do it. They won't understand that it's about the men next to you, and that's it. That's all it is.”
Black Hawk Down (2001) – ‘Hoot’ (Eric Bana)

"Clothes are the enemy.  Without clothes, there would be no sickness, there'd be no war.  I ask you, sir, can you imagine two great armies on the battlefield, no uniforms, completely nude? No way of telling friend from foe, all brothers together."
The Seven Year Itch (1955) – Waitress (Doro Merande)

“War is young men dying and old men talking.”
Troy (2004) – Odysseus (Sean Bean)

“Heroes are something we create, something we need. It's a way for us to understand what is almost incomprehensible, how people could sacrifice so much for us, but for my dad and these men the risks they took, the wounds they suffered, they did that for their buddies, they may have fought for their country but they died for their friends.”
Flags of Our Fathers (2006) – James Bradley (Thomas McCarthy)

“Only the dead have seen the end of war.”
Black Hawk Down (2001) – Screen Title

“This is war, Peacock. Casualties are inevitable. You can not make an omelet without breaking some eggs, every cook will tell you that.”
Clue (1985) – Colonel Mustard (Martin Mull)

We who have seen war, will never stop seeing it. In the silence of the night, we will always hear the screams.”
We Were Soldiers (2002) – Joseph Galloway (Barry Pepper)

War is a sin, but sometimes, a necessary one.”
Elizabeth (1998) – Arundel (Edward Hardwicke)

War isn't hell at all. It's man at his best, the highest morality he's capable of. It's not war that's insane, you see. It's the morality of it. It's not greed or ambition that makes war: it's goodness. Wars are always fought for the best of reasons - for liberation or manifest destiny. Always against tyranny and always in the interest of humanity. So far this war, we've managed to butcher some ten million humans in the interest of humanity. Next war it seems we'll have to destroy all of man in order to preserve his damn dignity. It's not war that's unnatural to us, it's virtue. As long as valor remains a virtue, we shall have soldiers. So, I preach cowardice. Through cowardice, we shall all be saved.”
The Americanization of Emily (1964) – Lt. Commander Charles Madison (James Garner)

“Americans traditionally love to fight. All real Americans love the sting of battle. When you were kids, you all admired the champion marble shooter, the fastest runner, big league ball players, the toughest boxers. Americans love a winner and will not tolerate a loser. Americans play to win all the time.”
Patton (1970) – General George Patton (George C. Scott)

“You still think it's beautiful to die for your country. The first bombardment taught us better. When it comes to dying for country, it's better not to die at all.”
All Quiet on the Western Front (1930) – Paul Baumer (Lew Ayres)

“Imagine a whole lifetime full of hopes and dreams and ambitions being wiped out by a two-inch accident like a bullet.”
Sweet Bird of Youth (1962) – Chance Wayne (Paul Newman)

“In my humble opinion, in the nuclear world, the true enemy is war itself.”
Crimson Tide (1995) – Lieutenant Commander Ron Hunter (Denzel Washington)

“The ultimate ideal for a warrior is to lay down his sword.”
Hero (2002) – Nameless (Jet Li)

Check out: WAR article from Flags of Our Fathers

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