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Killing an Arab

From Academic Kids

"Killing an Arab" was the first UK single by The Cure, from their album Three Imaginary Boys (1979). Robert Smith, the song writer, has said that the song "was a short poetic attempt at condensing my impression of the key moments in L'Étranger (The Outsider) by Albert Camus" (Cure News number 11, October 1991). The lyrics describe a shooting on a beach, in which the Arab of the title is killed by the singer.

The song has a history of controversy, since it has often been viewed as promoting violence against Arabs. The Cure's first greatest hits collection, Standing on a Beach (1986), was packaged with a sticker advising against racist usage of the song. The song saw controversy again during the Gulf War and following September 11th [1] (http://www.chartattack.com/damn/2001/10/2907.cfm).

This song lends two of its lines to the titles of one of The Cure's compilation albums, "Standing on a Beach" (the LP) and "Staring at the Sea" (the CD and video version, which contain a couple more songs).

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