- Toomey's first speech to his men.
: (to the platoon
) My name is Toomey, Sergeant Merwin J. Toomey
. I'll be in charge of this platoon during your ten weeks of basic training here in beautiful Biloxi, Mississippi. After which, you'll be sent to some shit island in the middle of some turd pile in Northern Sicily. In either case, returning to your mamas and papas with your balls intact is highly improbable. I speak from experience, having served seventeen months in the North African campaign, where seventy-three percent of my comrades are buried. Having donated a small portion of my brains to this conflict, the other portion being protected by a heavy steel plate in my head. (knocks his own head and chuckles
- The bit where Toomey insists on the usage of "latrine":
Toomey: (to Epstein) You've got a problem 'cause you don't know Army terminology. The place where a US soldier goes to defecate, relieve himself, open his bowel, shit, fart, dump, crap, and unload is called the "latrine." The "la-trine," from the French.
- Toomey excuses Epstein from the hike, only to then say this gem:
Toomey: (to Epstein) You get a good night's sleep...just as soon as you've washed, scrubbed, and shined every john, urinal, and basin in the latrine. And if it doesn't sparkle when we get back, Wykowski and Selridge are gonna do two-hundred push-ups! That'll put you in good with the boys, Epstein.
- The lunch tray scene.
- Jerome tries to refuse food on religious grounds, and Toomey has this answer for him:
Toomey: This is July, Jerome. Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur are in September. I have an all-religious calendar in my barracks room. Don't you try that shit on me again.
- Toomey then calls Carney over with his tray and tells him to dump half of his food onto Jerome's tray.
- "What's your story, Epstein? Don't tell me today is La Cucaracha."
- Epstein hands Toomey a letter from his internist. Toomey's response?
Toomey: See, your trouble is you're not on Fifth Avenue now, Epstein; you're in Biloxi, Mississippi. (chuckles, then tears up the letter and puts it on Epstein's tray) Corporal, make sure that Private Epstein finishes everything on his tray, including that letter, hmm? (walks off)
- The hiking scene in the swamp:
Toomey: Oh God, you are PITIFUL! You are EMBARRASSING me in front of the lizards and the buzzards! A bunch of lard-asses I got here. What would you do if the Japanese Army was behind ya?!
Jerome: Surrender and get some sleep.
- "Selridge, you would need three promotions to get to be an asshole."
- Toomey then calls on Jerome to pick someone to see if the river's too deep to cross. Jerome groans in dismay and asks why him, and Toomey replies:
Toomey: Because you're the shithead who said "Let's surrender so I can get some sleep!" I hear everything, everyone, Jerome! Pick a volunteer!
- The part where Toomey orders Epstein to fix Eugene's gun and tosses it at him without asking Epstein to first put down his own gun, causing Epstein to drop his gun so he can catch Eugene's gun. The result? Epstein's gun hits the ground, goes off, and puts out a tire on Toomey's jeep.
Toomey: Deep shit, Epstein.
- Toomey's response to Epstein after the latter calls him out for his harsh treatment of his soldiers:
Toomey: You may be the first man to reach Berlin, Epstein, 'cause I'm sending you in before everyone! Men do not face enemy machine guns because they've been treated with kindness. I don't want them human; I want them obedient! I'm out there trying to save those boys' lives, you crawling bookworm. Stand in my way, and I'll PULVERIZE YA! Into chicken droppings!
- After two soldiers are caught in a sex act in the latrine, Toomey ends his speech to his platoon with this: