Masters Of War

Come you masters of war You that build all the guns You that build the death planes You that build all the bombs You that hide behind walls You that hide behind desks I just want you to know I can see through your masks. You that never done nothin' But build to destroy You play with my world Like it's your little toy You put a gun in my hand And you hide from my eyes And you turn and run farther When the fast bullets fly. Like Judas of old You lie and deceive A world war can be won You want me to believe But I see through your eyes And I see through your brain Like I see through the water That runs down my drain. You fasten all the triggers For the others to fire Then you set back and watch When the death count gets higher You hide in your mansion' As young people's blood Flows out of their bodies And is buried in the mud. You've thrown the worst fear That can ever be hurled Fear to bring children Into the world For threatening my baby Unborn and unnamed You ain't worth the blood That runs in your veins. How much do I know To talk out of turn You might say that I'm young You might say I'm unlearned But there's one thing I know Though I'm younger than you That even Jesus would never Forgive what you do. Let me ask you one question Is your money that good Will it buy you forgiveness Do you think that it could I think you will find When your death takes its toll All the money you made Will never buy back your soul. And I hope that you die And your death'll come soon I will follow your casket In the pale afternoon And I'll watch while you're lowered Down to your deathbed And I'll stand over your grave 'Til I'm sure that you're dead.------- Bob Dylan 1963

Monday, April 14, 2014

The Folly of War: Europe 1914, Ukraine 2014

Walter G. Moss is a professor emeritus of history at Eastern Michigan University. He is the author of A History of Russia, Vol. I and Vol II.
This year marks the centennial of the beginning of World War I. Some observers believe we humans are close to beginning another war—in Ukraine. Historian Stephen Cohen, a long-time critic of U.S. policy toward post-Soviet Russia, has stated, “I think that we are three steps from war with Russia, two steps from a Cuban missile crisis.” Perhaps Cohen is being too alarmist. A hundred years ago, however, when in late June Gavrilo Princip, a Bosnian of Serbian nationality, assassinated the Austrian archduke Franz Ferdinand, many Europeans did not think it would lead to war. But it did.
Soon before the Cuban missile crisis, which President Kennedy estimated had a one-half to one-third chance of leading to a Soviet-U.S. war, he benefitted from reading about the folly of starting WWI. According to Robert Kennedy in his book Thirteen Days, “A short time before, he [the president] had read Barbara Tuchman's book The Guns of August, and he talked about the miscalculations of the Germans, the Russians, the Austrians, the French and the British. They somehow seemed to tumble into war, he said, through stupidity, individual idiosyncrasies, misunderstandings, and personal complexes of inferiority and grandeur.” Although some of his military advisors urged the bombing of Soviet missile installations in Cuba, the president took the less risky step of imposing a naval blockade. War was averted.

1 comment:

TONY said...

The blundering theory of war holds good for many of them. I'm posting a long piece on the Franco-Prussian War in the next few days. It was a precursor in many ways for WW1 40 years later. Look out for it. Some good anecdotes in it too.