Arcade Fire lead singer Win Butler is praising fellow rocker Bono not just for his infamous political philanthropy, but for "engaging" with former president George W. Bush in a discussion of American AIDS relief policy.
Although the U2 singer's collaborations with Bush had been criticized by fans and bandmates alike, Butler applauded Bono's dedication in a new NME piece. "As much as people slag Bono, I will forever give him credit for engaging with George W. Bush when he was president," Butler said. "Even though it was a deeply unpopular move, even in his own band ... Bono was engaged in the work, even when the situation wasn't ideal."
Bono made public appearances with Bush in 2002, when the president unveiled a $5 billion AIDS package at the White House, and in 2006, where he praised Bush's African relief efforts at the National Prayer Breakfast.
Butler also praised the Bush administration's HIV relief policies, saying that "the HIV medications in Africa, every aspect of the U.S. foreign policy -- it was a hell of a lot more than any other president before had done."
Arcade Fire's 10-stop string of North America dates in anticipation of their upcoming album, The Suburbs (out August 3). Their August 5 show in New York City will be broadcast online -- click here for details.
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