Saturday, October 10, 2009

Nobel Peace Prize for Words?

President Barack Obama has been chosen to be the recipient of the 2009 Nobel Peace Prize for "his extraordinary efforts to strengthen international diplomacy and cooperation between peoples" [1]. The press release of the Norwegian Nobel Committee says, "The Committee has attached special importance to Obama's vision of and work for a world without nuclear weapons."

In the preface of my book just printed (see the previous article at this blog site), I wrote, "For the realization of this [eternal peace all over the world], we should attach importance to the following words, the sources of which you might guess easily." Then I quoted Article 9 of the Constitution of Japan and Obama's Prague speech on nuclear weapons delivered on April 5, 2009.

On hearing the news of the Peace Prize yesterday evening, however, I wondered if the awarding to Obama was too early because there has been no fruit of his words yet. The New York Times reported the news of the Prize under the title "Surprise Nobel for Obama stirs praise and doubts" [2].

Questions about the earliness of awarding Obama was also raised during the Prize announcement. In answer to them, Norwegian Nobel Committee President Thorbjørn Jagland replied that the Committee wanted to demonstrate its support for the approaches Obama is taking towards global problems [3].

Today I got an e-mail message from the not-for-profit global campaigning organization Avaaz.org, which requested signing the petition for pressing Obama to turn hope into action [4]. They write, "Only by following through with courageous, transformative action for peace can Obama fulfill his promise – and only then will history judge that this Nobel Peace Prize is truly deserved." I completely agree with them and signed the petition.

  1. The Nobel Peace Prize for 2009, Nobelprize.org (October 9, 2009).
  2. Surprise Nobel for Obama stirs praise and doubts, New York Times (October 10, 2009).
  3. Time for Hope, Speed Read page for Nobel Peace Prize 2009 (October 9, 2009).
  4. Obama for peace: Turn hope into action

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