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Life Talk!

Obama wins 2009 Nobel Peace Prize

~MemoTheHun~

Germany

US President Barack Obama has been awarded the 2009 Nobel Peace Prize. 

The Nobel Committee said he won it for "his extraordinary efforts to strengthen international diplomacy and co-operation between peoples".

The committee highlighted Mr Obama's efforts to support international bodies and promote nuclear disarmament.

Mr Obama's spokesman said the president was "humbled" to have won the prize. He said he woke Mr Obama up when he called with the news early on Friday.

There were a record 205 nominations for this year's peace prize. Zimbabwean Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai and Chinese dissident Hu Jia had been among the favourites.

The laureate – chosen by a five-member committee – wins a gold medal, a diploma and 10m Swedish kronor ($1.4m).

 

"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," the Norwegian committee said in a statement.

"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."

Asked why the prize had been awarded to Mr Obama less than a year after he took office, Nobel Committee head Thorbjoern Jagland said: "It was because we would like to support what he is trying to achieve".

"It is a clear signal that we want to advocate the same as he has done," he said.

He specifically mentioned Mr Obama's work to strengthen international institutions and work towards a world free of nuclear arms.

'New climate'

Since taking office in January, President Obama has pursued an ambitious international agenda including a push for peace in the Middle East and negotiations over Iran's nuclear programme.

 

But critics say he has failed to make breakthroughs. Domestically, Mr Obama has been working to tackle an economic crisis and win support for healthcare reform.

Some said they saw the prize as a way of encouraging the US leader early in his presidency.

"It is an award that speaks to the promise of President Obama's message of hope," said Archbishop Desmond Tutu of South Africa, a former winner.

French President Nicolas Sarkozy said the award confirmed "America's return to the hearts of the people of the world".

The statement from the Nobel Committee said Mr Obama had "created a new climate in international politics".

"Multilateral diplomacy has regained a central position, with emphasis on the role that the United Nations and other international institutions can play," it said.

The committee added that the US was now playing a more constructive role in meeting "the great climatic challenges" facing the world, and that democracy and human rights would be strengthened.

Mr Obama is the first US president to win the prize since former US President Jimmy Carter in 2002. Former vice-president Al Gore shared the prize in 2007.<!-S qboxflr-> HAVE YOUR SAY <!-S qbox->

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Among earlier US leaders, Theodore Roosevelt won the prize in 1906 and Woodrow Wilson won it in 1919.

The Nobel prize was invented by the Swedish industrialist and inventor of dynamite Alfred Nobel, and was first awarded in 1901.

He designated the parliament in Norway, which at the time was united with Sweden, to elect the peace prize committee. Swedish academies are responsible for other prizes.

The prize-giving ceremony for the peace award is due to take place on 10 December in the Norwegian capital, Oslo.

01:34 PM Oct 09 2009 |

Go to the TOEFL® page >

~MemoTheHun~

Germany

In awarding President Obama the Nobel Peace Prize, the Norwegian committee is honouring his intentions more than his achievements.

After all he has been in office only just over eight months and he will presumably hope to serve eight years, so it is very early in his term to get this award.

The committee does not make any secret of its approach. It states that he is being given the prize "for his extraordinary efforts to strengthen international diplomacy and co-operation between peoples."

This is of course an implied criticism of former US president George W Bush and the neo-conservatives, who were often accused of trying to change the world in their image.

The committee "attached special importance to Obama's vision of and work for a world without nuclear weapons." But it also mentioned the UN, climate change and the "strengthening" of democracy and human rights.

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The reference to democracy will be noted – perhaps wryly, perhaps with some resentment – by the neo-conservatives, as the spread of democracy, especially in the wider Middle East as they called it, (incorporating Afghanistan) was one of their rallying cries. The Norwegian committee was not impressed and it will probably be a case of vice versa.

The risk for President Obama is that he might not be able to live up to this billing.

It is therefore perhaps worth looking at some of the problems he faces, his intentions in dealing with them and the likelihood of success.

Nuclear weapons: The president has spoken of his wish to see a world without nuclear weapons. A new Security Council resolution (1887) has added momentum to next year's conference reviewing the Nuclear Non-Proliferation treaty, which will focus attention. He also wants the US Senate to ratify the test ban treaty.

But how far is the US really prepared to go? It hopes to get a new agreement with Russia in December to reduce deployed warheads to below the 2,200 already agreed. But having even hundreds of warheads is not living in a nuclear weapons-free world. And as long as others (Russia, China, Britain, France, India, Pakistan, Israel) have them, so will the US. Some progress is likely but nuclear weapons will remain.

Climate change: President Obama has changed the hostile approach adopted by President Bush. But much depends on the US Senate and Obama's intentions are conditional on congressional acceptance. Intention is there but realisation is problematic.

Human rights: The committee did not spell it out but the proposed closure of Guantanamo Bay and the end to torture by all US agencies must have been in its mind. Guantanamo is supposed to be closed by early next year. Likely to be achieved, though.

Iraq: The president has said that US combat operations in Iraq will stop by the end of August next year though US troops will remain there to train Iraqis and fight al-Qaeda. Intentions are therefore there but are not yet achieved, though might well be.

Iran: There is at least the start of a negotiation on Iran's nuclear work following Obama's "extended hand". But nobody can tell how far and fast this will go. The threat of conflict between Iran and Israel remains. Meanwhile, there are still no meaningful talks between Israel and the Palestinians.

Afghanistan: The most difficult current problem for the president. He is facing demands for an increase in US forces there, which would mean more war, hardly encouraging for a peace prize winner. Remains in crisis.

All these problems illustrate the intentions of the president, but also how far he has to go.

The Nobel Peace Prize committee has taken a bold step.

01:42 PM Oct 09 2009 |

spontan

spontan

Germany

yes rosella the time will show!!!!

maybe has the commitee not read the newspaper 2 days before!<!-breadcrumb->

Is the U.S. Preparing to Bomb Iran?Is the U.S. Stepping Up Preparations for a Possible Attack on Iran's Nuclear Facilities?By JONATHAN KARL
Oct. 6, 2009

Is the U.S. stepping up preparations for a possible attack on Iran's nuclear facilities?

Photo: Iran's Leader: Obama Wrong to Say Nuke Site Hidden: Iran's president says Obama made a big mistake in accusing Iran of hiding nuclear site Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, who has been sparring with President Obama over whether Iran is developing the technology to build nuclear weapons.(ABC News Photo Illustration)

The Pentagon is always making plans, but based on a little-noticed funding request recently sent to Congress, the answer to that question appears to be yes.

First, some background: Back in October 2007, ABC News reported that the Pentagon had asked Congress for $88 million in the emergency Iraq/Afghanistan war funding request to develop a gargantuan bunker-busting bomb called the Massive Ordnance Penetrator (MOP). It's a 30,000-pound bomb designed to hit targets buried 200 feet below ground. Back then, the Pentagon cited an "urgent operational need" for the new weapon.

02:43 PM Oct 09 2009 |

~MemoTheHun~

Germany

I think Ahmedinejad deserves the nobel prize. ;)

02:58 PM Oct 09 2009 |

fabs1

fabs1

United Kingdom

Given the fools that get the Nobe Peace Prize, i,e, Baradei and Arafat, it doesn't suprise me that this ass get it as well.

 

I think Ahmedinejad deserves the nobel prize. ;)

Why not? Stealing elections, running a dictatorship, arming terrorist groups, threatening to wipe a country off the map, forcing through an illegal nuclear program, denying the genocide of 6 million Jews.

Given how low the standards of the UN and world community have sunk in the past decade, why not give Ahmadinejad the Nobel Prize for peace?

 

The world's worst leaders get the prize for relenting slightly from their usual barbarity. Western leaders get the peace prize for naively giving everything away to these sort of people.

The record in history speaks for itself.

04:38 PM Oct 09 2009 |

him22

him22

Romania

As a Christian, i've learned ever since i was a child that "the one who takes the sword, by sword will be killed" (Jesus' words) and "thou shall not kill" (one of the ten commendments). I've never heard about anybody to deserve the Nobel prize for peace. There's no such reality like peace. We, people, we only have this cheap word, but we don't know what peace is like..

06:41 PM Oct 09 2009 |

dodydody

dodydody

Egypt

Did Obama do any thing to achieve peace?Innocent

N.B:

it's an innocent question.

11:30 PM Oct 09 2009 |

Mr. Pmosh

Mr. Pmosh

Dominican Republic

He totally deserves the prize

All my support and good wishes to  Obama!!!!!!!!!!!

01:42 AM Oct 10 2009 |

gkisseberth

Colombia

They used to give that prize to people who actually DID something. 

03:06 AM Oct 10 2009 |

Jinn_daniels

India

U should give d persn d award whn he deservs it n nt give d award n wait 2 c if he really dservd it or nt..:p

08:46 AM Oct 10 2009 |

Jinn_daniels

India

U should give d persn d award whn he deservs it n nt give d award n wait 2 c if he really dservd it or nt..:p

08:46 AM Oct 10 2009 |