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Zupfgeigenhansel - Ich bin Soldat

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Published on Dec 23, 2008

Altes deutsches Antikriegslied, das unter dem Eindruck der Bismarckschen Einigungskriege in den 1870er Jahren von einem unbekannten Sozialdemokraten geschrieben wurde.

Written by an anonymous German pacifist during the 1870s in answer to the German wars of unification. Rough translation for those who don't understand German:

I am a soldier
but I don't like being one
when I was
they didn't ask me
they dragged me away
into a casern
where I was held captive
and hunted like an animal
I had to leave my home, my friends
and my sweetheart
thinking about it
makes me furious
I am a soldier
but only against my will
I don't love the blue uniform
I don't love this bloody warfare
a stick would suffice to defend myself
Oh tell me, what do you need soldiers for?
All peoples only love ease and peace
you destroy that
just out of imperiousness and to harm your people
I'm a soldier
have to march day and night
instead of holding down my work
I have to be on sentry duty
instead of being free
I have to salute
and see the arrogance of snotty youngsters
And when we go to war
I have to murder brothers
who have never harmed me in any way
but at least as a cripple
I can wear decorations and medals
and starving I will exclaim 'I was a soldier'
All you brothers
whether Germans or French
whether Hungarians or Danes
or from the Netherlands
whether your pants are green or red
blue or white
instead of lead shot
let's give each other the brother hand
let's march back to our home countries
and free our nations from the tryants
because only tyrants have to wage wars
a soldier of freedom, now that I want to be
a soldier of freedom, now that I want to be

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