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World Obama Receives Nobel Prize


Jun 1, 2004
Obama Receives Nobel Prize for Promoting Multilateralism

President Obama became the third American President to receive the Nobel Peace Prize during his presidency and the fourth American President to receive the prize. Woodrow Wilson and Theodore Roosevelt were the other two Presidents who received the prize during their presidency while Jimmy Carter got the award after his presidency. However, Obama has not even finished one year of presidency. Therefore, he received the award earlier than the other presidents.

Many people feel that this prize is not for appreciating Obama’s work, but is a slap at President Bush. The Nobel Peace Prize Committee thoroughly disliked Bush. It showed its dislike for Bush by awarding Jimmy Carter and Al Gore, because their philosophy is completely opposite to Bush’s philosophy.

There is no doubt that the Nobel Peace Prize Committee wanted to promote multilateralism. President Obama wants to change the unilateralist policies of Bush. Bush not only alienated the rest of the world, but also antagonized America’s European allies. Bush was probably the most hated American president. Most of the Europeans really hated Bush. The Nobel Peace Prize Committee reflects the liberal section of Europe’s intellectuals. It will not be an exaggeration to say that the committee represents the mainstream European sentiment.

While most people in the world are very happy that Obama got the award, yet America is divided over this issue. Many Republicans, the rightists, and some of the leftists are criticizing the decision. Republicans are saying that Obama does not deserve the award because his policies have not worked yet and he has not achieved anything. Some are even saying that he was given the award because he is black. Some of the leftists feel that Obama is backing up from the campaign promises or he has not yet put to practice the genuine leftist policies.

I feel that the committee wants to promote multilateralism because otherwise, Bush’s unilateralist policies could have led to disaster. The future of mankind and the planet was doomed by those policies. Bush openly provoked the Muslims by equating his policies to the crusades. America was perceived as anti-Islamic by most of the Muslims in the world. Bush was completely opposed to doing anything to protect the environment. If such policy is continued, that will spell disaster for the planet. Bush advocated an alliance of America, India, and Israel against Islam and China. This policy would definitely lead to a third world war which would have spelled disaster for mankind. Such a war is unwinnable.

America’s European allies completely disagreed with Bush’s unilateralist policies. President Obama has categorically rejected and condemned Bush’s policies. He wants to consult the European allies as well as the global community. He has realized that America can no longer control the world and needs help to solve the problems faced by America and the rest of the world. He sincerely wants to do something to save the global climate and environment. He wants to change America’s anti-Islamic image. Most of the world is reacting very favorably to Obama’s policies, including most of the Islamic countries. Except for the fundamentalist Muslims, most of the Muslims are reacting positively to his overtures.

Obama has realized that the unipolar world led by America is history now and the world has become multipolar. He is trying to convince the Americans to accept the change peacefully. If his policies do not work and America goes back to the rightist Republican policies of Bush, that will only lead to a third world war which America cannot win. This can only lead to disaster for America and the rest of the world. By awarding the Nobel Peace Prize to Obama, the committee wants to prevent that scenario.

(The author is Chairman, WashingtonState Network for Human Rights & also heads Central Washington Coalition for Social Justice.)