This song is inspired by the warrior creed of the ancient Chinese military commander and author Sun Tzu and the use of drums and flags in ancient war. Singer and co-lead guitarist Dave Mustaine explained to Rolling Stone that it, "is a song about to The Art of War by Sun Tzu, and talks about if you were in battle back in ancient times, when you went to war and could not hear the commands from your commanding officer, what they would do is use flags. So you see the flag, and, 'Uh oh, we've got to retreat. Can't hear him, but I see the retreat flag.' Y'know, that is if you're looking backward and you don't get your f--king head cut off."
Some interesting sound effects can be heard in the background following Chris Broderick's flamenco-spiced acoustic solo. Mustaine explained to Rolling Stone: "At the end of Chris' solo, he goes [sings the melody], I said, 'Now we need to have some clinking sounds. I saw this Coke commercial where they threw ice cubes into a glass.' Andy [Sneap,producer], said, 'I'm not f--king putting ice cubes in a glass!' So we used a teeny little triangle bell and some other cool stuff in the background, and it works!"