Come you masters of war, you that build the big 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, then you hide from my eyes.
Then you turn and run farther when the fast bullets fly.

Like Judas of old, you lie and deceive.
A world war can't 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 that fasten all the triggers for the others to fire.
Then you sit back and watch while the death count gets higher.
You hide in your mansions while the young people's blood
Flows out of their bodies and is buried in the mud.

You've thrown the worst fear that could be hurled;
The fear to bring children into this 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,
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 will come soon.
I'll follow your casket through the pale afternoon.
And I'll watch while you're lowered into your death bed,
Then I'll stand over your grave till I'm sure that you're dead.

Lyrics submitted by bikiniekillgrrrl, edited by Mellow_Harsher

Masters of War song meanings
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  • +2
    My OpinionThis is for all you morons who have jumped on the anti-Bush and anti-Iraq War over the last few years:

    Yes, this song, written in 1963, can be applied to the war in Iraq and sadly, all the other wars that will be fought in the future. However, the conflict in Iraq was much more justifiable than the Vietnam War. Although I do not agree with how the war was managed and carried out, it was very much needed. Saddam Hussein was a terrible and ruthless dictator. He allowed women to be beaten, raped, and tortured while allowing the men who committed these horrible acts, his sons in particular, to go free with any punishment. Further, Hussein used chemical weapons against his own people in order to defeat his enemies and stay in power. As I have stated before, I do not agree with how Bush got us into the war, by lying and saying Iraq possessed weapons of mass destruction, but he was justified in trying to bring Democracy to the Middle East and bringing down the Hussein regime. It may look like our efforts were in vain at the moment; however, I believe that twenty years from now we will see the fruits of removing Saddam from power and bringing Democracy to an unstable Middle East.
    BMDNYCon June 02, 2010   Link
  • 0
    General CommentThis is a Bob Dylan cover
    Twinb1983on April 14, 2004   Link
  • 0
    General Comment"by Twinb1983 on 04-14-2004 @ 09:46:16 PM
    This is a Bob Dylan cover"

    Yes it is, but Pearl Jam does an excellent job on it.
    Stephen Flowon October 07, 2004   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI agree, I don't really know the Bob Dylan version, but this one kicks ass!
    Shadowbitchon May 26, 2005   Link
  • 0
    General Commentthe Benaroya Hall 2003 version (with two guitars & eddies voice on form) is fanastic - there is an older one by pearl jam from a Bob Dylan tribute concert in early ninties thats worth lookin at too. Bob Dylans version is on the album "The Freewheelin' Bob Dylan".it has several protest songs on it and if you like these lyrics you love that album.greatest poet ever is bob
    JordyWordyon July 21, 2005   Link
  • 0
    General Commentpearl jam does a great job with this song
    richie8092on March 09, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General CommentThis song is great. The last line always sticks with me. "And I'll stand over your grave till I'm sure that you're dead"
    T-Crashon April 10, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General CommentWhoah, this song is amazing. I've seen the early 90's version and Ed's voice is grand and creepy. The last verse is scary, but seriously what he's singing about (Bob Dylan) is just dazzling. Love the "But there's one thing I know, though I'm younger than you,
    Even Jesus would never forgive what you do."
    and the last line too. I think the meaning is obvious, it's an anti-war song. Once again PJ do a great cover.
    Given-To-Flyon September 11, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General Commentbob dylan is one of the greatest and so is pearl jam-i also think pearl jam does covers better than anybody,eddies voice is fantastic and mcready and gossard kick ass at guitar
    bob_longon September 15, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General CommentBD versions better but im gonna make my point on both this one and the Bob Dylan version:
    Anyone i play this song for that hasnt heard it before thinks its about Iraq... ITS ABOUT VIETNAM. So obviously Iraq truely is another vietnam.
    :)4thecameraon March 06, 2007   Link

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