Manner of Speaking

Speeches from Film: Band of Brothers

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Two posts ago, I looked at Kenneth Branagh’s St. Crispin’s Day speech in the film Henry V. That speech — particularly the line “We few, we happy few, we band of brothers” — was the inspiration for the title of a book and the subsequent television mini-series that it spawned: Band of Brothers.

The mini-series was based on the real-life World War II experiences of E Company (“Easy Company”) of the 2nd Battalion, 506th Parachute Infantry Regiment assigned to the 101st Airborne Division of the U.S. Army. It followed the men of E Company from their training to Normandy to Germany and the end of the war.

The series had many poignant moments, but one of the most moving was the speech below by a German General to his defeated troops. It was a speech that resonated not only with the German soldiers but also with the American soldiers listening. The German General eloquently conveyed in a few words the sentiments shared by all who fought, regardless of the uniform that they wore.

Here are some reasons why I liked the speech:

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