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This song is about the Falklands War, which was going on when Dire Straits lead singer Mark Knopfler wrote the song. The Falklands War was a conflict between Argentina and England over islands off the coast of Argentina that each country claims rights to. The islands are British territories, but in 1982 Argentina tried to reclaim one of the islands. Britain reclaimed their territories, but lost 258 soldiers in the conflict.
In 2007, a new version of this track featuring Mark Knopfler was released to commemorate the 25th anniversary of the Falklands War. Proceeds from the sale of the single went to a program that brought British veterans back to the site of the war in an effort to help them deal with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder.
This is played in the Brad Pitt/ Robert Redford film Spy Game when Robert Redford's character meets Pitt's character in Germany after the Vietnam War. The song begins as Brad Pitt is flown out of Vietnam, the link being the fact that this is a song about comrades in war. (thanks, Mark - Guildford, England)
Compared to the music video for "Money For Nothing
," which was very modern for the time, very colorful and also very '80s, the video for "Brothers In Arms" is quite the opposite. It features sketchings of an ocean, a pendulum, soldiers, an island and the band playing as well as real footage of landscape and the band. This keeps the colors in black, white and gray with the exception of the end that is a colored sunset.
Metallica covered this song when they played Neil Young's Bridge School Benefit on October 27, 2007. (thanks, Line - Viborg, Denmark, for above 2)
The former Dead Kennedys frontman on the past, present and future of the band, what music makes us "pliant and stupid," and what he learned from Alice Cooper.