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Bob Barnes

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Everybody gotta die sometime, Red.
~ Barnes giving his life motto to Sgt. O'Neil

Sgt. Bob Barnes is the primary antagonist of the 1986 film Platoon. He was a U.S. Army Sergeant who served in the Vietnam War. He was portrayed by actor Tom Berenger.

Service in the Vietnam War & Death

Barnes was in co-command of 2nd Platoon along with Sgt. Elias (Played by Willem DaFoe). Barnes was very harsh, uncaring and sarcastic towards his troops but he was very charismatic when it came to garnering their loyalty to him. Among his followers were Sgt. O'Neil, Lt. Wolfe, Bunny, and Junior Martin to name a few. When Chris Taylor was attacked by Red Ants he criticised him for being a "Simple son-of-a-bitch." When it came to giving a job to the new guys who were the fresh meat or who sided with Elias he gave them the job of cleaning out the sewage buckets from the bathrooms. When trying to get information out of Vietnamese Villagers to find out if they assisted the NVA or Viet Cong in any way recently, he had one of the soldiers shoot the village leader's wife and resorted to holding the leader's daughter at gunpoint and threatened to kill her if he didn't get his answers.

Elias interrupted and the two sergeants got into a fistfight and they on their superior's orders, took the villagers as prisoners and destroyed their village. Later when the NVA attacked he ran into Elias while they was fighting and he decided to shoot Elias dead. He told the troops to leave and he told Chris that Elias was dead but Chris saw through his lie and later when they were leaving Elias came out running from the ruins and then died from his wounds and exhaustion. Later that evening all drunk and smoking cigarettes he gave a monologue that if the war machine breaks down the men break down.

He tempted the men into killing him but no one dared except for Chris Taylor who knew he was responsible for Elias' death but Barnes held a knife to his face and cut Taylor's face to leave a scar as a reminder of who's in charge. Later when Junior's feet were badly burned from mosquito repellant Barnes threatened Junior with Court-Marshalling and putting a centipede in his crotch to see if he could walk after getting bitten. O'Neil then requested for 3 days of R&R but Barnes denied that opportunity because he needed every man in the platoon. At the night of the NVA attack Barnes was on a rampage killing NVA until Taylor ran into him and Barnes was about to kill him with an E-Tool shovel until an F-4 Phantom dropped a napalm bomb on the battlefield.

On the morning after the battle, a shell-shocked Chris Taylor picks up a Norinco Type 56 rifle and finds Barnes. Barnes asked Chris to get a medic, noticing the look in Taylor's eyes he then told Chris to "do it" and Taylor quickly killed him with three shots.

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