I grew up in the Military Industrial Complex. I have great respect for many aspects of the military. I’ve been to multiple Army/Navy games. I proudly cheer for the Midshipmen on Saturdays in the fall.
But the military can be big government, some of the biggest. And often decisions on war are made in Washington with little thought beyond the “great game.” In the the playing of the game people (usually powerless) die and are maimed and shattered psychologically. War is, as they say, hell.
Notice that in this song Bob Dylan doesn’t attack the soldiers in the trenches. He doesn’t demonize the guy with a rifle in his hand. He instead casts a cold spotlight onto the war policy makers and other elements of the war machine.