Berlin

I saw it in a photo
It said all I need to know
It’s an image that has followed me
Wherever I may go
When I stare into your eyes
I can only guess at where you’ve been
Looking at the skyline of Berlin

The buildings are all shattered
As in a silent roar
The streets are all just rubble
The year is 1944
I guess I just don’t understand
This world we live in
Looking at the skyline of Berlin

When I look into your face
I can hear the dying cries
And the sadness of the world
Reflected in your deep blue eyes
The picture of a city
Flattened like a tin
Looking at the skyline of Berlin

You can talk about the blitz
And all those good people gone
You can claim you were fighting evil
You can ask which side I’m on
But all I see is horror
A war only death would win
Looking at the skyline of Berlin

“Berlin” first appeared on the 2005 CD, For the Moment.

The victims of the Nazis were very numerous, and it’s entirely appropriate that the suffering and mass killing of the victims of the Nazis has gotten a lot of attention since World War 2. But the victors of the war are the ones who decided what constitutes a war crime. Whether they think so or not, however, the mass bombing of German and Japanese cities (and Korean, Vietnamese, Iraqi, and others) is a war crime. Looking at a photo of the skyline of Berlin after the US and Britain were through with it was a chilling experience that I had while in Germany around 1999, and this song is basically just the result of looking at that photo.

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