Ninety Nine Red Balloons/Songs of Conflict

Ninety Red Balloons, a spunky, energetic tune, was a protest against the Cold War era. Hostility, tension and vengeance between Russia and the United States peaked during the Cold War era. The song protested against Russia and United States rage by a German band, Nena. Nena’s lead guitarist, Carlos Karges wrote the song after seeing a big ball of red flames in the sky at a Rolling Stones concert one night. The red flames resembled a bundle of big red balloons firing up the nighttime sky at the concert. Ninety Nine Red Balloons was released in Germany in 1983; The English version or translation was released in 1984.  At this time, no one ever imagined the validity of this song. Espionage technology was developing rapidly at a time when Internet, cell phones, even microwave ovens did not exist. The lyrics were a future warning of the incidences bringing us into a war era that we cannot seem to escape today.

“You and I in a little toy shop; Buy a bag of balloons with the money we got; Till one by one, they were all gone; Back at the base, bugs in the software; Flash the message something’s out there.”  At this time, the only ones who cared about bugs were the military. Absolutely no average person had a clue what software was. Today many people do not realize how the advancement of technology is taking away liberties.

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Ninety Red Balloons is a song predicting the worlds future by recognizing the past, or current events at the time it was written. Today, the current war affecting the entire world is about the shady arrangements the US made with Russia, although not officially admitted too.  “Call the troops out in a hurry; This is it boys, this is war; The president is on the line; 99 red balloons go by.”

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