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chuckusvn at gmail.com
Fri Nov 14 23:03:58 ICT 2014
>From USA Today, 25 September 2014. Apologies if this has already
circulated among the LWG. I don't remember seeing if before. CS
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'Most Interesting Man' hunts landmines
Nicole Gaudiano <http://www.usatoday.com/staff/7077/nicole-gaudiano/>, USA
TODAY 6:39 p.m. EDT September 25, 2014
*(Photo: Michael Loccisano, Getty Images)*
WASHINGTON -- TV's "most interesting man in the world," known in Dos Equis
beer commercials for achieving the wildly impossible, probably could
eliminate landmines by himself -- using only his beard.
But actor Jonathan Goldsmith, who has played the cultural icon for nearly
nine years, is looking for help from others. He's raising funds for
landmine removal in Cambodia, where accidents involving buried explosives
have spiked this year, through a contest to be his guest for a day in
Vermont. He won't be in character, but he'll make it interesting.
"We're going to spend a day doing some things -- off-road driving and some
other little events, one being falconry," said Goldsmith, who turns 76 on
Goldsmith has volunteered for the Mines Advisory Group since visiting the
non-profit group's operations in Vietnam last year. MAG has worked in more
than 35 countries and shared the Nobel Peace Prize in 1997. The contest
will benefit the organization.
"It's a terribly important charity," said Goldsmith of Manchester, Vt.
"Accidents are up. Funding is down. Kids are getting hurt. I want to do
whatever I can to help and bring attention to it."
In the popular Dos Equis ads -- an Internet meme -- Goldsmith's dashing,
cigar-smoking character can be found dog-sledding to a black-tie party,
saving a firefighter from a burning building or releasing a growling bear
from a trap. A narrator claims, "He's trained canaries in the art of
falconry" or "He can speak Russian ... in French."
Goldsmith often ends the ads relaxing in a lounge while surrounded by young
women. He delivers his classic sign-off, "Stay thirsty, my friends," in a
deep Spanish-accented voice inspired by his late friend, the actor and
director Fernando Lamas.
Through his advocacy for landmine removal, Goldsmith fills a void left by
other celebrity advocates, most notably the late Princess Diana, said Jamie
Hathaway, a MAG consultant. "Ironically, when much of the world has lost
interest in the movement, comes the 'most interesting man in the world' to
help us out," said Hathaway, a friend of Goldsmith's who got him involved
In April, Goldsmith joined Sen. Patrick Leahy, D-Vt., for a reception and
photo exhibit honoring the group's 25 years of work. Leahy, a decades-long
proponent of landmine removal efforts, said Goldsmith has "invested his
time, his talent and the intangible capital of his star power to bring
attention to these vital missions."
The United States is the biggest donor to mine removal efforts. This week,
the Obama administration moved closer to compliance with a global treaty
banning landmines, announcing the United States will not use mines outside
the Korean Peninsula. The United States is among 34 United Nations members
that haven't signed the treaty.
Casualties from mines and other explosives totaled 3,628 in 2012, according
to the Landmine and Cluster Munition Monitor, an initiative of the
International Campaign to Ban Landmines. That's the lowest total since the
monitor began recording casualties in 1999.
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