In my post
about Psalm CXXXVII, I said:
I think it’s important to remember that it isn’t just songs about not singing songs that war produces, but people who actually want to kill babies.
I just read something that suggests another point of view on
this. I’m reading Wolf
Hall, a novel about the life of Thomas Cromwell, who
was an important figure in the government of Henry VIII.
The troups of the Emperor Charles haven’t been paid in long
enough to make them angry, so they run through the streets of
Rome, raping and pillaging and doing a certain amount of killing
people who are in the way of the raping and pillaging. But
Cromwell, who has been a soldier, is sceptical of some of the
propaganda describing what they’re doing (written by people in
Thomas More says that the imperial troops, for their enjoyment, are
roasting live babies on spits. O, he would! says Thomas
Cromwell. Listen, soldiers don’t do that. They’re too busy
carrying away everything they can turn into ready money.
So another thing war produces is people who tell lies about
what’s going on, so that people will believe there are babies
being killed and run out and kill or fund the killing of the