Why Roger Waters Calls Joe Biden a ‘War Criminal’
Roger Waters has clarified some of the messaging presented on his current This Is Not a Drill Tour, which includes an image of President Joe Biden with the words "War Criminal" and "just getting started ..." projected to the audience.
He addressed the image during an interview with CNN’s Michael Smerconish, saying that President Biden is "fueling the fire in Ukraine."
He added: "That is a huge crime. Why won't the United States of America encourage Zelenskyy, the President [of Ukraine] to negotiate, obviating the need for this horrific, horrendous war that's killing — we don't know how many Ukrainians and Russians.
"This war is basically about the action and reaction of NATO pushing right up to the Russian border – which they promised they wouldn’t do when Gorbachev negotiated the withdrawal of the U.S.S.R. from the whole of Eastern Europe," he added. Waters later offered a comparison: "Try to figure out what the United States would do if the Chinese were putting nuclear armed missiles into Mexico and Canada."
Waters, who has also previously criticized former President Donald Trump, begins his current concerts with a typescript message displayed to the audience: "If you’re one of those 'I love Pink Floyd but I can’t stand Roger’s politics' people, you might do well to fuck off to the bar right now."
He says the message "sets a few things straight" at the top of the show, for both longtime fans and newer ones.
"I’ve only got one message: 'Two strangers passing in the street / By chance two passing glances meet / And I am you and what I see is me,'" he said to CNN, referencing lyrics from Pink Floyd's "Echoes." "That is my message and that was on Meddle, which was in 1970 – and basically my message hasn’t changed: I recognize your humanity but I recognize all the Russians and the Chinese and the Ukrainians and the Yemenis and the Palestinians."
As Waters elaborated, the text is not meant to deter people from attending his shows, but rather to encourage a sense of camaraderie amongst his audience members.
"There is such a great feeling of communication in that room between me and the audience," he said, "and between us combined, with all of our brothers and sisters all over the rest of the world, irrespective of who they are, where they live, their ethnicity, their religion, their nationality, or anything else — because if This Is Not a Drill has a message, it is that we have to communicate one with the other."
Worst Solo Albums
Why Pink Floyd’s David Gilmour and Roger Waters Are Still Fighting