Mawda Was Her Name

from by David Rovics

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Recorded for Historic Times.

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Their country was invaded and destroyed
Then they had a baby boy
They sold everything they owned
So they might escape the war zone
They took the Baltic Route, north and west
It was the one the smugglers said was best
They got as far as Germany
Which is where they had another baby

It's a deadly thing, what some call immigration
England was their final destination
In a crowded van, driving to the port
On past Flanders' fields, yet another life cut short
Cops on every side, the vehicle surrounded
When the loud crack sounded
Mama held her daughter, tight in place
Then she saw the bullet hit her face
And Mawda was her name

There are many ways to stop a van
Many ways to do it – they can
Make a roadblock, for one
If you're under fire, you can use your gun
But all the bullets flew in one direction
At first they denied it, but at closer inspection
The cop was aiming for the driver's head
But he missed and hit the girl instead
And Mawda was her name

And if the driver had been hit, how many more
Numbers would be added to the score
Of those who only wanted to raise a family
But then died on the shores of Turkey
Or somewhere in the desert, or tortured in a prison
Or on the bottom of the ocean
At a Baghdad checkpoint, or at a traffic stop
Or shot down by a Belgian cop
And Mawda was her name

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from Historic Times, released May 1, 2019

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David Rovics Portland, Oregon

"Absolutely brilliant. David Rovics says exactly what needs to be said."
Ian McMillan, BBC

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