Sunday, 11 October 2009

Nobel Peace Prize now in disrepute

I will start off by saying that in principle I am a fan of Barack Obama and that I fervently hope his Presidency will be a force for peace in our troubled world. But like many many other people I was dismayed and shocked to hear that he is the latest recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize. This is more especially so because of the fact that nominations for this accolade were made as long ago as last February - he was only sworn into office the month before! I mean he could have hardly warmed his chair in the Oval Office by then. I suspect that Obama has high aspirations when it comes to peace but what has he physically achieved in this field? Nothing so far as I can see, and that's no reflection on him. I can't believe that there aren't other worthy contenders for the Prize, people who have been around for a long time, who have doggedly pursued peace in some area of the globe but don't have the very high public profile of Obama.

This business of people getting rewarded like this for something that may have happened in the very short term is something that I feel increasingly annoyed about. I know that it was an entirely different type of award but I ranted before about the England cricket team getting MBEs in 2005 when they beat Australia by the narrowest of margins only for them to be thrashed by the Aussies when they went 'down under'. The whole thing is absolutely ridiculous and absolutely devalues the gaining of an MBE and now it's the same with Obama and the Nobel Peace Prize. What is the matter with the people who decide on who should get what in this awards game?

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