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Vin Garbutt song


When oppressed becomes oppressor

A song from Vin Garbutt

When oppressed becomes oppressor and the best becomes the worst,
When the meek become the mighty and the blessed become the cursed,
When the flame of faith is failing and the light of love has died,
When the fruit of truth decays upon the tree of human pride.

 Send me your huddled masses cried America the free,
Then from Saigon to San Salvador
The streets were filled with refugees.

The Jew who braved the ghetto wearing David’s sacred sign,
In the promised land with stick in hand,
He beats the child of Palestine.

The Chinese peasant army faced the capitalist gun,
Then their long march to freedom
Ended in the Square of Tiannenmon.

The world expelled the man Saddam
From a defenceless Kuwait,
Then the torturers of Al Sabah sent hundreds to an unknown fate.

The Chetnik fought so bravely to fend off the fascist horde,
Then his sons went raping Muslim girls
On orders from a Serb warlord.

Will we ever learn from history,
The memory fades so fast
But we’re destined to repeat the sins
If we forget the past.

When oppressed becomes oppressor and the best becomes the worst,
When the meek become the mighty and the blessed become the cursed,
When the flame of faith is failing and the light of love has died,
When the fruit of truth decays upon the tree of human pride.

The Youtube video was recorded in Harrogate in 1996, but it has only come to my notice, thanks to Hans Fried. A rather clearer version (recorded, I think, at the same time) features on Vin’s album, Plugged, which can be downloaded from Amazon.

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