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War Songs

2004-01-19

Category: philosophies

One of the things that puzzles me most about our current conflict in Iraq is the lack of songs about it. It seems like every war has had its music, either in favor, against, or just concerned for the soldiers. I haven't seen that this time.

We still sing songs from the Civil War era, such as The Battle Hymn of the Republic. Everyone recognizes when The Caisons Go Rolling Along. Then there was the recruiting potential when the Andrews Sisters told young men that foreign girls were partial to Rum and Coca-Cola. Even a Viet Nam era singer reminded Billy not to be a hero.

It seems that with all the emotion, especially against the war or in support of the troops, there should be a song or two to come out of it. Have I just missed it? Have these songs been flooding the airwaves but only when I'm not listening? Worse yet, has the movement of massive numbers of troops into a foreign country become such a non-event that no one feels the urge to note it in song?

When it comes down to it, I'm not really upset by the absence of the song itself, but by the absence of the sentimentality that such a song would show. Hopefully When Johnny Comes Marching Home Again we'll at least sing about that.


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