Madonna calls for peace at Los Angeles concert
By Reuters, Daily Yahoo News, 15 September 2001
LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Pop diva Madonna led a prayer for peace Friday at a sold-old concert in Los Angeles, urging President Bush to show restraint in retaliating for Tuesday's attacks on the Pentagon and the World Trade Center.

``Last night, we had a moment's prayer for everybody who died on Tuesday,'' said the singer, who had opened the Staples Center show wearing a pleated skirt made from an American flag.

``Tonight I'd like to say a prayer for peace,'' she told the crowd of about 18,000 people. ``Violence begets violence, and I don't know about you, but I want to live a long and happy life, and I want my kids to live a long and happy life.''

Most of the crowd quieted down, but before the prayer minute was up, some people began chanting, ``USA! USA!'' She then urged the crowd, many of whom were waving American flags, to think globally rather than locally.

Madonna resumed her tour Thursday night at the Staples Center after postponed her show there Tuesday in the wake of the attacks in New York and Washington. Security was heightened Friday at the auditorium. The Tuesday show was scheduled to take place Saturday, making it the last stop of her tour.

Ticket-holders were asked to open their bags as they entered the building, which was staffed by extra officers and bomb-sniffing dogs.

``We're not doing this show because we want people to forget,'' she told the audience, which included such celebrities as actress Cameron Diaz and comedian Andy Dick. ``We're doing this because we want people to remember how precious life is.''

The concert featured an array of costumes, fantasy stage effects and elaborate choreography.

``It was horrible (on Tuesday), but I'd like to think of it as a wake-up call. There's terrorism every day all over the world,'' Madonna said, mentioning such countries as Israel, Sri Lanka and Afghanistan. REUTERS

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