I selected the movie Black Hawk Down, because I really respect the soldiers who fight to keep all of us safe. Also, my mother told me that she had a personal connection with this movie because her mentor's son was one of the Army Rangers that participated in this battle. On October 3, 1993, a group of U.S. Elite Forces consisting of more than 100 Delta Force soldiers and Army Rangers, who were part of a larger United Nations peacekeeping force, were dropped into civil war-torn Mogadishu, Somalia. They are there in an effort to capture local crime lord Mohamed Farah Aidid's top lieutenants and Aidid himself if possible. The day was anything but routine in the opening salvo against an enemy we did not recognize: Al-Qaeda.
Years of civil war in Somalia had resulted in wide-spread famine by 1993. UN forces had moved in to try to stop the fighting and feed the hungry. When the UN withdrew from the area, Mohammed Farah Aidid, the strongest of Somalia’s warlords, took all the food. He used hunger as a weapon and gained control of Mogadishu. He then targeted UN peacekeepers and American troops.
It was not known on that day in October that Al-Qaeda had trained and equipped some of those atrocious thugs with RPG's purposely modified to shoot at OUR helicopters. When two of the mission's Black Hawk helicopters are shot down by enemy forces, the Americans remain in the area too long to retrieve their fallen soldiers and are surrounded by Somalian thugs. The fighting lasts 15-hour and is the longest ground battle involving American soldiers since the Vietnam War. When it was over, 70 soldiers were injured and 18 were dead, along with hundreds of Somalians. Our valiant troops went in and protected the lives of the pilots, fighting all day and through the night to bring every body home.
We restricted our troops in ways that we never should. They could not engage an enemy that was attacking unarmed civilians, but were required to wait...