Exploring The Desolation Within Hurt’s “Wars”

I think that it is especially relevant to discuss this song, which was released more than one decade ago yet encapsulates the war against Ukraine. The song takes many reflections into the cost of war, which is not different from 2022, where nobody wants this war to happen; not the Ukrainians, nor the Russians, nor the rest of the global community.

What is interesting about this song is most of the perspective is by a missile, particularly with the lyrics “I can fly higher than an aeroplane/And I have the voice of a thousand hurricanes/My darling.”

The song appears to be addressed to a young woman, more specifically one who is naive about the world.

The narrator of the song asks a series of questions to the audience concerning the gravity of war. He takes into account the physical and financial cost of engaging in needless conflict. Another perspective of the song is the engineering who helped created the engines of war with the lyric “How many weapons did I help create?/And how many lives will it devastate?/My darling.”

Although the lyrical and musical tone of the song is somber and misanthropic, it does showcase how powerful a message can be if it is only spoken in a series of rhetorical questions. If it were translated in either Ukrainian or Russian, it would be an equally powerful rendition.

Sources

  • Baksi, Catherine. “Russian soldiers surrendering to Ukrainian army told to shout codeword ‘million’.” The Times. 2022.
  • Hurt. “Wars.” Goodbye To The Machine. 2009.
  • Lederer, Edith M. “UN: Nearly two-thirds of Ukraine’s children have fled homes.” ABC News. 2022.

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