Saturday, October 24, 2009

Barack Obama to Receive 2009 Nobel Peace Prize


U.S. President Barack Obama
Graphics (Toronto: October, 2009) © Joachim Romeo D'Costa

The Norwegian Nobel Committee recently named U.S. President Barack Obama the recipient of 2009 Nobel Peace Prize "for his extraordinary efforts to strengthen international diplomacy and cooperation between peoples." The announcement said that the Committee "has attached special importance to Obama's vision of and work for a world without nuclear weapons."

Many people were surprised at the selection of President Obama for this year's peace prize so early in his presidentship. President Obama himself was surprised. He said: "I do not feel that I deserve to be in the company of so many transformative figures that have been honored by this prize. I will accept this award as a call to action, a call for all nations to confront the challenges of the 21st century."

Some have criticized the Nobel Committee's selection of President Obama as the winner of the Peace Prize. U.S. Republican Party Chairman Michael Steele said that the President won this prize because of his "star power." There are many others, in USA and abroad, who supported the prize award decision.

One thing is true that President Obama's policies towards other countries is of more cooperation and participation rather than aggression and one-sided imposition of the USA's will on them. Moreover, President Obama is working hard for nuclear non-proliferation in this world. His shift in gear and direction is what is being appreciated worldwide. This prize also imposes a responsibility on the President to work harder for peace.

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