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Pete Seeger - Talking Ben Tre Blues lyrics

Tell you all a story from across the sea
'Bout a little town they call Ben Tre
Set on a river bank, peaceful as you please
Till it got caught between two ideologies
Con-front-ation! ... Western civilization at stake.

Down by the river came a-marching along
The local chapter of the Viet Cong
Went into towns with their flags a-wavin'
It was easy to see that the town needed savin'
...they walked into town like they lived there...

Our boys saw what was going on
So they called up the general on the telephone
Said, "Which ones are the enemy? We can't tell?
Said, "I don't know either. Blow 'em all to hell."
"...don't mater much anyway - once you've seen one you've seen 'em all."

The general watched the fighting about all day
Said, "We've got to save that town some way.
It's time for a humanitarian act,
We'll call in a full scale bombing attack."
...Napalm...big bombs...real prety...just like the 4th of July.

The houses burned the whole day long,
Boy, we really cooked them Viet Cong!
And we burned about two thousand others
But they were just old folks, children and mothers.
...good thing we saved 'em...some of them kids might've grown up to be Communists!

When the smoke cleared away, the town was clean,
No Viet Cong were to be seen.
Just 30,000 grateful friends, glad we did right,
Each one looking for a place to spend the night.
...not much to do when your house is burned down
...guess they stood around singing...the Star Spangled Banner