Monday, October 12, 2009

Nobel peace prize for President Obama

A few picks that called my attention this week about Obama's new achievement, with selected excerpts.

The Peace (Keepers) Prize (Thomas L. Friedman @
The Nobel committee did President Obama no favors by prematurely awarding him its peace prize. As he himself acknowledged, he has not done anything yet on the scale that would normally merit such an award — and it dismays me that the most important prize in the world has been devalued in this way.
 It is not the president’s fault, though, that the Europeans are so relieved at his style of leadership, in contrast to that of his predecessor, that they want to do all they can to validate and encourage it.
Barack Obama's premature Nobel peace prize - How the World Works (Andrew Leonard @
Fair enough. Obama has made a strong rhetorical case for global cooperation, and what we've seen so far from him suggests that he will not exert U.S. power in the world with the same unilateral my-way-or-the-highway arrogance that his predecessor was so fond of. That's not insignificant.
But coming right after a week in which Obama ducked meeting with the Dalai Lama and is considering a troop increase in Afghanistan, it seems a bit premature. Even worse, it seems like a huge distraction.
Obama's Nobel Peace Prize (Glenn Greenwald @
People who live in regions that have long been devastated by American weaponry don't have the luxury of being dazzled by pretty words and speeches. They apparently -- and rationally -- won't believe that America will actually change from a war-making nation into a peace-making one until there are tangible signs that this is happening. It's because that has so plainly not yet occurred that the Nobel Committee has made a mockery out of their own award.
Barack Obama's peace prize starts a fight (Catherine Philp @ Times Online):
The Nobel Peace Prize is a notoriously difficult award to predict, but yesterday's decision was clearly a political choice, with three of the past six peace awards going to Bush adversaries.
The award is also an example of what Nobel scholars call the growing aspirational trend of Nobel committees over the past three decades, by which awards are given not for what has been achieved but in support of the cause being fought for.
Pointless Nobel prize reveals how President Obama is lost in his own mystique - Times Online:
The Peace Prize has begun to distort and damage crucial negotiations. And Obama’s acceptance of the supposed honour is a misjudgment that will give power to his critics.
In the election last November, Obama won the world’s most impressive and valuable prize. The Nobel, in contrast, is as effusive and misplaced a compliment as the “my son” that Colonel Muammar Gaddafi bestowed on him last month. The only blessing of Obama’s acceptance is that he may have killed off the prize for good.

Powered by ScribeFire.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Before writing, please read carefully my policy for comments. Some comments may be deleted.

Please do not include links to commercial or unrelated sites in your comment or signature, or I'll flag it as SPAM.


Related Posts with Thumbnails