Sting: “Russians” (1985)




Born Gordon Sumner in 1951, Sting first rose to prominence in the late 1970s as the lead singer, bass player and songwriter of British new wave band The Police. He then embarked on a solo career, releasing his award-winning debut album The Dream of the Blue Turtles in 1985. Russians, the fourth single from this album, is based around a theme by Russian composer Sergei Prokofiev. Its lyrics express Sting’s grave fears about the reignited Cold War and nuclear threats of the early 1980s, mentioning nuclear physicist Robert Oppenheimer, Soviet leader Nikita Khrushchev and American president Ronald Reagan. The only hope of avoiding a nuclear catastrophe, Sting warns, is if “the Russians love their children too”. Russians reached the top 20 in several countries, including the United States, Britain, France and Australia.



In Europe and America
There’s a growing feeling of hysteria
Conditioned to respond to all the threats
In the rhetorical speeches of the Soviets
Mr Khrushchev said we will bury you
I don’t subscribe to this point of view
It would be such an ignorant thing to do
If the Russians love their children too

How can I save my little boy
From Oppenheimer’s deadly toy
There is no monopoly in common sense
On either side of the political fence
We share the same biology
Regardless of ideology
Believe me when I say to you
I hope the Russians love their children too

There is no historical precedent
To put the words in the mouth of the President
There’s no such thing as a winnable war
It’s a lie we don’t believe anymore
Mr Reagan says we will protect you
I don’t subscribe to this point of view
Believe me when I say to you
I hope the Russians love their children too

We share the same biology
Regardless of ideology
What might save us, me and you
Is if the Russians love their children too.


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