Leo Cawley, Vietnam veteran:
There is almost no human activity that is as intensely social as modern warfare… When a military unit loses its internal cohesion and starts to fight as individuals there is such a radical and unfavourable change in the casualty ratio that it is almost always decisive… Every general staff in the world since 1914 has known that the bravery of individual soldiers in modern war is about as essential as whether they are handsome.
…the slaughter in Star Wars, quite apart from the destruction of an entire populated planet, is unrelieved for two hours, and at times stacks the corpses halfway up the screen. Losing track of the huge bodycount, I thought at first that the film might be some weird, unintentional parable of the US involvement in Vietnam, with the plucky hero from the backward planet and his scratch force of reject robots and gook-like extraterrestrials fighting bravely against the evil and all-destructive super-technology of the Galactic Empire. Whatever the truth, it’s strange that the film gets a U certificate — two hours of Star Wars must be one of the most efficient means of weaning your pre-teen child from any fear of, or sensitivity towards, the death of others.