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Metallica To The U.S. Military: Stop Using Our Music for Torture

Theo Wargo, Getty Images

The U.S. Navy Seal that shot terrorist mastermind Osama Bin Laden (known only as “the Shooter”) tells Esquire Magazine that heavy metal band Metallica was insistent that interrogators cease using the band’s music to “soften” terror suspects up prior to their interrogations.

As he explains: “When we first started the war in Iraq, we were using Metallica music to soften people up before we interrogated them. Metallica got wind of this and they said, ‘Hey, please don’t use our music because we don’t want to promote violence.’ I thought, ‘Dude, you have an album called ‘Kill ‘Em All.”

In a 2008 interview with Germany-language TV network 3SAT, Metallica vocalist-guitarist James Hetfield was asked about the reported use of his band’s music on Guantanamo Bay prisoners. He told the network that the group was conflicted concerning the use of their music before ultimately deciding that they did not want to be associated with the war.

“Part of me is proud because they chose Metallica,” Hetfield said at the time. “And then part of me is kind of bummed about it that people worry about us being attached to some political statement because of that. We’ve got nothing to do with this and we’re trying to be as apolitical as possible, ’cause I think politics and music, at least for us, don’t mix.”

As per the band’s wishes, the U.S Navy ceased using Metallica’s music to psychologically intimidate detainees. Now, if we can just turn their attention towards Justin Bieber…

Next: Top Metallica Songs

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