LONDON (AFP) - US pop star Madonna made a rare foray into politics, calling for her home country to withdraw its troops from Iraq during an interview with British radio.
"I just don't want American troops to be in Iraq, period," she said on BBC Radio.
"My feelings are 'can we just all get out?'," said the 46-year-old star, who lives mainly in London with British film director husband Guy Ritchie, who said she believes the US-led war will not help in the fight against terrorism.
"Global terror is everywhere. Global terror is down the street, around the block," she said.
"Global terror is in California. There's global terror everywhere and it's absurd to think you can get it by going to one country and dropping tons of bombs on innocent people."
Madonna's best known belief is her adherence to the Kabbalah, a faith based on the study of Hebrew texts which has become increasingly popular in recent years, notably among music and film stars.
On other subjects, the singer said the recent US presidential election had illustrated how US society was "becoming very divided".
"People are becoming very polarized," she said. "We have people who don't want to think, and who just want to guard what is theirs, and they're selfish and limited in their thinking and they're very fearful in their choices."
Madonna said that her personal choice for the presidency would have been Wesley Clark, the former four star general who was well beaten to the Democratic nomination by John Kerry.
"I thought very carefully about it. I thought Wesley Clark had the best leadership qualities," she said.
"If he had the same political experience as Kerry he could have bridged that gap." yahoo
*Sigh* After these inspiring comments I feel some remorse about voting for Bush. I just didn't realize that I was being selfish and limited in my thinking. Not to mention fearful in my choices. I was wrong, Madonna, I mean, Esther, you have taught me the meaning of wisdom, of unselfishness, of making brave choices like making our soldiers drop everything and leave Iraq now. Thank you Esther.
Oh, the irony, the hypocrisy of Madonna demanding political conformity and labeling those who disagree with her as unthinking. What if I want to rebel against your choices Esther?
She said: "The stance of a rebel is 'I don't care what you think'. But if it's just for the sake of upsetting the apple cart, you're not really helping people.
"You turn the apple cart over and then what? Then everyone's looking at an apple cart that's turned over and they're like, well, now what do I do?"
The 45-year-old mother-of-two said her days of shedding her clothes on stage or in front of the camera are also over.
Madonna wants to shed her old image
"I thought I was liberating mankind but, like I said, I wasn't really offering an alternative.
"To a certain extent I was saying 'Look, you know, why do men only get the job of objectifying women in a sexual way? I want to do it too.'
"There was an element of that, but there was also an element of being an exhibitionist and saying 'look at me'. It wasn't that altruistic. I can admit that."
Madonna - who was named after her mother - said she now wanted to be called Esther as part of her following of the Kabbalah religious teachings.
"My mother died when she was very young of cancer, and I wanted to attach myself to another name," she said.
"This is in no way a negation of who my mother is. I wanted to attach myself to the energy of a different name." bbc
I'm sure everything would be ok if everyone converted to Kabballah?