Friday, October 9, 2009

Barack Obama Prince of Peace

I woke up this morning to the news that President Obama has been awarded the 2009 Nobel Peace Prize. It seems I am not the only one who was absolutely stunned by the news. But I must say I am very pleased. The committee recognized Obama " for his extraordinary efforts to strengthen international diplomacy and cooperation between peoples. "

The announcement goes on to state:
Only very rarely has a person to the same extent as Obama captured the world's attention and given its people hope for a better future. His diplomacy is founded in the concept that those who are to lead the world must do so on the basis of values and attitudes that are shared by the majority of the world's population.

Obama beat out Colombian peace broker Piedad Cordoba, Afghan rights activist Sima Samar French-Colombian activist and ex-hostage Ingrid Betancourt for the prestigious $1.4 million award. I may be a bit biased, but I think he richly deserves the recognition, especially considering that he has only been in office for nine months. He has truly changed the world and given us all back a bit of hope.

I know that there will be those at home who will point out that he is short on actual accomplishments and those abroad, like the Taliban and mad Islamists who will have a little hissy fit over this. I bet there will be some teeth gnashing on Crawford, Texas too..... But as far as I am concerned, they can all go party with Rush Limbaugh. I'm pleased as punch.

The Nobel Committee has taken the measure of the man and and is placing a bet on his future. While Obama is the third sitting president to receive the peace prize, he is the only one to get it so early in his presidency. This award is the wind beneath his wings-- an encouragement to the President to follow through on his promises of world peace and nuclear disarmament. Morally, it matters and politically, it will help.

Hail the new American prince of peace. Who needs the Olympics when you can have the Nobel Peace Prize?


Susan said...

We've been talking about this in my house, and even ran into people talking about it in the grocery store. And we agree this prize was an opportunity missed by the president.

Here's what we think: he should have thanked the committee very much and graciously declined. He should have said that it was too early, that he'd like to be considered when his efforts have borne some fruit.

It would have been PR genius - not only acknowledging the honor, but using it to create more pressure on those who have been unwilling to work with him. It would have defused the humbugs who will use this as fodder for their Barack Obama Superstar arguments.

But, we also agreed, when somebody offers you a Nobel Prize, it's not easy to say no.

But we really wish he had.

JamaGenie said...

Sorry, but to have declined would've been a huge mistake. This is clearly not an award for Obama's accomplishments, past or future, but a collective cheer that America *finally* got rid of Bush and Cheney.

Bush never rose above being the petulant, spoiled rich kid from Crawford TX, but Obama was, is, and always will be a Citizen of the World. Precisely what the Leader of the Free World should be.

For America to move forward into the light of a post-Bush world, Obama *absolutely had to* accept the award. To have declined would've been a diplomatic disaster a la "Go It Alone" Bush.

Susan said...

I hear what you're saying, but I think by your reasoning, the Nobel should have been given to the American people, not our president.
And wouldn't that have been an interesting choice?
Now THAT would have been really amazing.
I think the man is intelligent enough to craft an explanation of his unwillingness to accept a prize based purely on hope and good intentions in a way that wouldn't have been a diplomatic incident.
We're going to have to agree to disagree, I guess.

pinkpackrat said...

Hi Susan and Jama--thanks to you both for making your points so well. I guess I will just add my two cents. I think he was awarded the prize for single handedly turning around the world ship of state and not for any one accomplishment, although there have been many in this short nine months.... Certainly, some of it was to underscore world relief that Bush was gone, but that is far from the main reason-- the main reason is that Obama is who he is-- a man with vision able to lead and inspire others who is working tirelessly for world peace. That's why they call it a peace prize. In addition, it's their prize and they can give it to whoever they want to. Five Norweigians make the decision and in my experience, it's not wise to argue with a Norweigian LOL