(11-25-2004) Prisoner 46664 Brings Out the Stars -- The Guardian* - U2 Feedback

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Old 11-25-2004, 06:51 PM   #1
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(11-25-2004) Prisoner 46664 Brings Out the Stars -- The Guardian*

Prisoner 46664 Brings Out the Stars

Duncan Campbell
Friday November 26, 2004
The Guardian

There are not too many ex-prisoners whose arrival in a room brings 250 journalists to their feet in a standing ovation. And there are not too many 86-year-olds who can summon a supergroup of some of the world's best-known musicians to help them launch a book.
Yesterday the man who wore prison number 46664 for 27 years in a small cell on Robben Island found himself in the mirrored and chandeliered splendour of the Orchid Room of the Dorchester Hotel. Nelson Mandela may now be frail and slow on his feet but he is still able to weave his idiosyncratic spell over any gathering in the world.

The book he was helping to launch is entitled "46664 The Concert", a photographic record of last year's event at Great Point Stadium in Cape Town to raise money for his HIV/Aids awareness foundation. The line-up there included everyone from Beyonce to Queen, Ladysmith Black Mambazo to Bono. Yesterday a quintet of the performers who had taken part were on hand again to lend their support once more. And if they needed a backing Welsh baritone, Neil Kinnock was there, too.

Dressed in a black shirt with his prison number on it, Mr Mandela was his usual self-deprecating self. "I am glad you still come to hear an old man talk," he told the press conference. Addressing the gathering, which included musicians Annie Lennox, Yusuf Islam, Peter Gabriel, Brian May and Roger Taylor, he added: "All of you are true comrades in this fight.

"Not only the governments and the drug companies, but we, too, have a responsibility to act," he said. "We must do more to make treatment free for all in need." He urged people to buy the book to bring in the funds needed to spread the word about how to fight Aids.

Spotting his biographer, Anthony Sampson, in the audience, he said: "There is my old friend, I am so happy to see you. Are you writing another book?"

This weekend, the Guardian magazine publishes the results of a survey of the thoughts of 16-year-olds. They were asked who they most admired and Mr Mandela topped the list, ahead of David Beckham. A Guardian reader once suggested that the question "which living person do you most admire?" in the magazine's weekly questionnaire should include the rider "apart from Nelson Mandela" as so many people gave the same answer.

Not everyone has always been so admiring. In 1986, a Wyoming congressman called Dick Cheney voted against a resolution calling for Mr Mandela's release. Vice-president Cheney has since said: "I don't have any problems with the vote I cast."

But yesterday Mr Mandela was only interested in promoting a book and, through it, the latest in a long line of battles against the odds.

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Old 11-26-2004, 05:38 AM   #2
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I hope all of us will go out and buy this commemorative book of ONE of the most significant Rock concerts of all time - last year's "46664" concert to raise AIDS awareness in Cape Town, SA last November.

I know we are all overwhelmed by the amount and variety of mags and books hitting the stores right now involving U2, but I'm sure buying THIS book and supporting the fight against HIV/AIDS would be ONE book that U2 (especially Bono and the Edge) would ask us to buy.

Continued success and much Love and Respect for the "original of the species" - Nelson Mandela.




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Old 11-28-2004, 04:10 AM   #3
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I knew Cheney wasa sleazebag, but I never knew he was THAT much of sleazbag.
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