Mr. Aaren Yandrich
February 3, 2009
Reading a Text – “War Pigs” by Black Sabbath
Over the years, Black Sabbath has made more than just an influential impact on devoted
and dedicated fans of heavy metal and rock music.
After releasing their incredibly successful
, in 1969, the band was back in the studio preparing for the release of
their follow-up album initially titled
after their hit anti-war track.
However, the album
title was quickly changed to
due to the recording company’s fear that supporter’s of the
Vietnam War would reject the album.
“War Pigs” was recorded in response to the war in 1970
and promoted anti-violence.
The most obvious of questions when first hearing this song, is what
exactly are war pigs?
Also referred to as incendiary pigs, war pigs are speculated to have been
used in ancient warfare.
Supposedly, pigs were covered in flammable materials such as tar, set
on fire, and driven to the enemy’s war elephants.
The intention was that the elephants would be
terrified by the pig’s squeals and as a result would flee through the lines of their “own army.”
this song, war pigs are mentioned in the last verse.
Interpreting this last verse, the term war pigs
can be viewed in a different light.
The lines “Day of Judgment, God is calling, on their knees the
war pig’s crawling, begging mercy for their sins” insinuate politicians as the war pigs rather than
the actual animal.
Earlier in the song it reads, “Politicians hide themselves away, they only
started the war, why would they go out and fight?”
This is where the interpretation of war pigs
acting as politicians can be verified.
Frequently, people criticize politicians who have “started
Once war has broken out, politicians, including the President, appear to sit back and let