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We Didn't Start The Fire- By: Filip Cuoco

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FC: We Didn't Start The Fire By:Filip Luigi Cuoco

1: Billy Joel's hit song, "We Didn't Start the Fire," talked about major events happening in the world during the 1950's and the 1960's. All the words in the lyrics have some sort of significance in the song, like the lyrics "Hemingway, Eichmann, "Stranger in a Strange Land", Dylan, Berlin, Bay of Pigs Invasion" Every person, place or thing in those lyrics had major significance during that time. Later in this book you will find out why.

2: Ernest Hemingway Ernest Hemingway was a famous American author, who wrote many good books, and even won the Nobel Prize. He was born on July 21,1899 in Illinois. Ernest Hemingway was famous for his books, which he wrote mainly in the 1920’s and the 1950’s. One of his famous books was called the “The Sun Also Rises,” it was also one of his first books, which he published in 1926. Hemingway had multiple marriages and divorces, he got married, then he got divorced, and then he married again. He married his last wife in 1946, her name was Mary. In 1954 Hemingway was awarded the Nobel Prize in literature. Ernest Hemingway was often sick or injured, he had suffered from many illnesses, and was injured in three plane crashes. Hemingway died on June 2, 1961, after committing suicide, he shot himself with his shotgun.

3: Adolf Eichmann Adolf Eichmann was a German military officer; he was born on March 19, 1906 in Solingen, Germany. He joined the Nazi party in April 1932, while his family lived in Linz, Austria. He quickly moved up the ranks in the SS. He was soon assigned in command of the operations to murder Jews. He also belonged to the Gestapo, a kind of secret service. He was given many medals for his work, one of them was the "Merit Cross." However when the war ended, he was considered a war criminal, and was sent off to a prison camp. However he didn't stay there very long, he escaped in 1946. He lived in the Middle East for a while, before moving to Argentina in 1958.

4: After WWII many German war criminals escaped their poorly guarded prison camps, and sought refuge in shelters and monastaries providid by the Catholic Church. Then they would go to South America by ship. A very popular place for war criminals was Argentina, since it had a large German community, and a government that provided shelter. Shortly after that, in May of 1960, an Israeli intelligence agency, known as Mossad, went to Argentina, and a few days later they had kidnapped Eichmann, and brought him back to Tel Aviv, Israel. There he was prosecuted, and found guilty of genocide, and mass murder. He died in Tel Aviv on May 31, 1962, he had been hanged.

5: Berlin Wall The Berlin Wall was constructed overnight from pre-built concrete blocks on August 31, 1961, right after Nikita Khrushchev signed papers for its construction. It cut off East Berlin from its western counterpart.The wall stopped trade, and emigration to the West side. | Although western citizens were allowed to visit the Eastern side of Berlin, they required special permission. Of those 5,00 people who tried to escape only a handful managed to escape. Life in East Berlin wasn't easy, finding a job was difficult, and many families were split apart. The construction of a wall in Berlin could have been predicted, since a few years earlier a blockade was set up. The blockade was similar to the Berlin Wall, except it was less serious. During the times of the Berlin Blockade, the Berlin Airlift took place to support people with food and supplies. However the Berlin Wall cut off supply shipments from the West. The wall was a massive barrier; it streched on for 140 km, and was upgraded over four times. Towards the end of the liberation of East Berlin, the Hungarian government opened its borders, allowing people to cross. Shortly after, on November 9, 1989 people were allowed to cross the Berlin Wall. Streets were filled with joy, as the Berlin Wall was taken apart, piece by piece.

6: Bob Dylan

7: Bob Dylan Bob Dylan was a singer and song-writer born on May 24, 1941 in Duluth, Minnesota. He became famous in the 1960’s, as he dropped out of college to move to New York, to visit his idol, Woody Guthrie, who had been hospitalized. In 1961 he wrote a song called “The Song to Woody,” and he received an exclusive interview with “The New York Times.” Two years later, in 1963 he released his first album known as “The Freewillin’ Dylan.” It soon became a hit, and in 1963 he released his second album, “The Times they are Changin’.” His second album was written as part of a protest movement. This is also why I think Billy Joel chose to put him in his song, because he was a protester who fought for his beliefs. A few years later he booed a Folk Fest in Newport, but in 1966 he had a gap in his career as he had sustained very serious injuries in a motorcycle accident. It took him one full year to recover. Bob Dylan was also in a movie called “Billy the Kid,” he both played a role, and wrote the soundtrack of the movie. When he was done with his movie, he began touring across America throughout the 1980’s. Bob Dylan won many awards, like “Album of the Year,” but in 1997 his album “Time Out of Mind” won three Grammy Awards! So Bob Dylan was a singer, a song writer, a protester, a bike rider, an actor, but before I forget, he was also an author. In 2004 he published a three book memoir. So Bob Dylan has done a lot of things, and he is still actively going on tours today.

8: "Bay of Pigs Invasion"

9: The Bay of Pigs Invasion The “Bay of Pigs Invasion” was an invasion launched on April 17, 1961 to kick out Fidel Castro and his Government. The invasion was originally supposed to be launched on April 11, but it was postponed by President John F. Kennedy. The invasion was carried out by 1300 CIA trained Cuban exiles. They were armed with US weapons, and had US air support. Castro and his army were rushing to prepare for the invasion. They and the rest of the world had heard news that an invasion was planned. Castro was worried, but he got some weapons and air defenses from Russia. The exiles landed in southern Cuba, in “Bahia de Cochinos” or Bay of Pigs. They did so with the help of six freight ships, the freight ships were chosen because nobody would suspect an army arriving on them. The US had also provided 9 landing craft for the landing. Once they landed, they were headed for Havana, but after a few days they had been defeated. They had lost 90 exiles, and the rest were captured. The invasion had failed, but Castro was worried that another invasion would be planned. However nothing happened, the exiles who survived were kept as prisoners. Cuba was under the control of Fidel Castro.

10: So after all, you can finally see how all these people, a and events are relevant to the song, They have one thing in common, they all had major events during a certain time period. When Billy Joel wrote this song, he condensed a decade worth of history, into a few minutes of a song. With all the events being said or sang in chronological order.

11: QUIZ! 1. Who won the Nobel Prize for Literature? 2. What was the purpose of the Berlin Wall? Explain, How would you your life be like if you lived on the Eastern side, or the Western side of Berlin? 3. What was the main objective of the Cuban Exiles after they landed? A. To destroy the Cuban Army B. To Capture Fidel Castro C. To get to Havana 4. Bob Dylan's album “The Freewillin’ Dylan.” was written as part of a protest. (TRUE or FALSE) 5. How did Adolf Eichman die, explain why his death was intended.

12: Bibliography "Hemingway, Ernest." Compton's by Britannica. Britannica Online for Kids. Encyclopdia Britannica, 2011. Web. 5 June 2011. . Biography.com. "Adolf Eichmann Biography." Biography.com. A&E Television, 2010. Web. 4 May 2011. . DailySoft. "Berlin Wall History: Facts." Dailysoft.com. DailySoft, 2010. Web. 12 May 2011. . DailySoft. "Berlin Wall History: Timeline." Dailysoft.com. DailySoft, 2010. Web. 12 May 2011. . Biography.com. "Bob Dylan Biography." Biography.com. A&E Television, 2010. Web. 28 May 2011. .

13: Picture Bibliography Flames: http://i602.photobucket.com/albums/tt106/mary_am09/back%20grounds/flames-1.jpg Billy Joel Album Cover: http://images.uulyrics.com/cover/b/billy-joel/album-billy-joel-greatest-hits-vol-3.jpg Ernest Hemingway: http://www.superhappiness.com/ernest-hemingway.jpg Adolf Eichmann: http://tmp.aktualne.centrum.sk/soumar/img/1026/16/10261621-adolf-eichmann-nacista.jpg Bob Dylan: http://chinageeks.org/wp-content/uploads/2010/04/bobdylan.jpg Bay of Pigs (Fidel & Che): http://bepevy20.com/cubanfilmproject/images/che_fidel.jpg | Oracle. "The Bay of Pigs Invasion." Library.thinkquest.com. Oracle Thinkquest, 1997. Web. 16 May 2011. . HistoryNet. "Cold War: Bay of Pigs Invasion." Historynet.com. Walder History Group, 12 June 2006. Web. 7 May 2011. .

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  • Title: We Didn't Start The Fire- By: Filip Cuoco
  • Tags: filip billy joel
  • Published: over 8 years ago