Obama wins 2009 Nobel Peace Prize + OK, He’s A Nice Guy, But … by Andy Worthington

Dandelion Salad

Updated: added Andy Worthington’s commentary and Obama’s reaction and Naomi Klein on Democracy Now!

US President Barack Obama has won the 2009 Nobel Peace Prize

Friday, 9 October 2009

The Nobel Committee said he was awarded it for “his extraordinary efforts to strengthen international diplomacy and co-operation between peoples”.

The committee highlighted Mr Obama’s efforts to strengthen international bodies and promote nuclear disarmament.


via BBC NEWS | Europe | Obama wins 2009 Nobel Peace Prize


Obama wins Nobel Peace Prize

October 09, 2009

Barack Obama has won the 2009 Nobel Peace Prize.
The judges said he won because of diplomatic efforts over nuclear weapons.

The American president was on a shortlist which was an unprecedented two hundred and five people long.He wins a gold medal, a diploma and one point four million dollars.


2009 Nobel Peace Prize Lecture by Barack Obama

Nobel Prize
Dec 17, 2009

Copyright © Nobel Media AB 2009
Credits: Norsk Rikskringkasting AS (production)

Watch Barack H. Obama deliver his Nobel Peace Prize Lecture during the Nobel Peace Prize Award Ceremony at the Oslo City Hall in Norway, 10 December 2009.


Update 1

Obama wins Nobel Peace Prize: He’s A Nice Guy, But …

by Andy Worthington
Featured Writer
Dandelion Salad
9 October 2009

Is it really appropriate for the Nobel Peace Prize — granted “for his extraordinary efforts to strengthen international diplomacy and cooperation between peoples” — to be given to a man who, as Commander-in-Chief, is still presiding over two wars, in which, as the announcement was made, civilians may well have been dying as the result of his orders?

Is it really appropriate for the Nobel Peace Prize to be given to a man who would rather look forward than backwards when it comes to decisions, taken at the highest levels of the previous administration, to turn America from a country that upheld the universal torture ban into a country that sought to redefine torture so that it could torture “high-value detainees” in a network of secret prisons around the world?

Is it really appropriate for the Nobel Peace Prize to be given to a man who, although he ordered the closure of Guantánamo and recognizes that it “set back the moral authority” that, in his opinion, “is America’s strongest currency in the world,” and also that it “became a symbol that helped al-Qaeda recruit terrorists to its cause,” endorses indefinite detention without charge or trial for some of the 221 prisoners still held in the prison?

Is it really appropriate for the Nobel Peace Prize to be given to a man who, through the Justice Department, is appealing a ruling extending the habeas corpus rights granted by the Supreme Court to the prisoners at Guantánamo to foreign prisoners seized in other countries and “rendered” to the US prison at Bagram airbase — where some of these men have been held for six years — even though the judge ruled that “the detainees themselves as well as the rationale for detention are essentially the same”?

Is it really appropriate to give the Nobel Peace Prize to a man who, although he revoked some of the Bush administration’s vilest executive orders and swore to uphold the universal torture ban, appears to be actively involved in the rendition of prisoners to the US prison at Bagram airbase?

Is it really appropriate for the Nobel Peace Prize to be given to a man who, although professing his admiration for the Geneva Conventions, has chosen to introduce Guantánamo-style reviews for the 600 or so Afghan prisoners held at Bagram, rather than the competent tribunals stipulated in Article 5 of the Geneva Conventions, and who, as a result, appears to be endorsing the Bush administration’s unilateral rewriting of the Conventions?

In conclusion, although I realize that less deserving men have been given the Nobel Peace Prize in previous years — Henry Kissinger, anyone? — and although I reiterate that Barack Obama seems to be a nice guy, and that his election victory last November lifted a cloud of tyranny from the United States, I also have to note another ironic subtext to the award: that it will, sadly, serve only to inflame the rabid wing of the Republican party, which is predisposed to believe a Democratic President is soft on national security issues, and who would only have respect for the Nobel Committee if it introduced a Nobel War Prize and handed it to Dick Cheney.

Andy Worthington is the author of The Guantánamo Files: The Stories of the 774 Detainees in America’s Illegal Prison (published by Pluto Press, distributed by Macmillan in the US, and available from Amazon — click on the following for the US and the UK). To receive new articles in your inbox, please subscribe to my RSS feed (and I can also be found on Facebook and Twitter). Also see my definitive Guantánamo prisoner list, published in March 2009, details about my film, “Outside the Law: Stories from Guantánamo” (launched in October 2009), and, if you appreciate my work, feel free to make a donation.


Update 2

President Obama On Winning the Nobel Peace Prize

The White House


Update 3

As US Continues Afghan, Iraq Occupations and Quashes Accountability for Gaza Assault, Critics Decry Awarding of Nobel Peace Prize to Obama

Democracy Now!
Oct. 9, 2009

President Obama has been awarded the 2009 Nobel Peace Prize, less than nine months after taking office. The award comes despite Obama’s continuation of the Iraq war and escalation of the US occupation of Afghanistan. We get reaction from author and journalist Naomi Klein and London-based author and commentator Tariq Ali. [includes rush transcript]

Real Video Stream

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via As US Continues Afghan, Iraq Occupations and Quashes Accountability for Gaza Assault, Critics Decry Awarding of Nobel Peace Prize to Obama


What Does Peace Mean? By Cindy Sheehan

On Guantánamo, Lawmakers Reveal They Are Still Dick Cheney’s Pawns by Andy Worthington

from the archives:

Al Gore and the Nobel Peace Prize by Jennifer

Nobel Hypocrisy – Peace Prize Awards to War Criminals by Stephen Lendman

32 thoughts on “Obama wins 2009 Nobel Peace Prize + OK, He’s A Nice Guy, But … by Andy Worthington

  1. Pingback: Afghanistan, President Obama, and Nobel Intentions by Steven Jonas, MD, MPH « Dandelion Salad

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  4. when kissenger got it ..it was irony. when obama got it its was absurdity . we have gone from the ironic to the absurd.

    • WHY am I being attacked by so many so-called liberal friends for my stnace on this issue? Why are they sticking up for the Dem horrible “healtn care reform” when , AHIP–who Obama thought he had made a deal with–have turned and bit him in the ass?

      Its like the snake and they know it. The woman who took in a wounded rattlesnake and nursed it back to health and when she set it free, it bit her. She asked how he could do taht to her and he replied, “You knew I was a snake!”.

  5. Pingback: Obama and the Nobel Prize: When War becomes Peace, When the Lie becomes the Truth by Michel Chossudovsky « Dandelion Salad

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  9. Pingback: “Visions” by Cindy Sheehan « Dandelion Salad

  10. And another thing (lol-sorry)…this just goes to show that Democrats have no consideration at all for what true liberals want and that the Democrats will push as far Right as neo-liberals will let them–they think, “what wil they do, vote gOP! LOL!”

    Nope. But I will never vote Dem again. Talk about your wasted votes!

    • I so agree, KDelphi. The so called liberals are being taken for granted and it’s our/their fault for allowing this to happen. Most “liberals” are silent when it comes to protesting or even writing letters to their Congresspeople about the various issues of the day. It’s time for a viable third party.

      • I wish our generation would be a little less selfish and think of what this country will look like in a few years if the dumbocrats are the best we can do…I am with you.

        May not vote for anyone who ever wins again, but, at least I wont have to come up with lame excuses, so I can “prove I’m not a racist” (I am VERY offended by that charge) was “brought up wrong” someone said that to me–my dad was a prof at Wayne State Univ for chissakes! What are you talking about??) or that I am too impatient.

        Well those 40 people in Pakistan were, i guess, too patient. I agree, and, I’m sorry, but I am angry over this…liberals need to just stop voting if they cant do any better.

        Get over Bush, people! Yeah, he was absolute crap but that doesnt make everyone else good.

        • And another thin g(sorry-lol my memory is shot)

          I love Norway–my grandmother was born there (I know that it is awarded in Sweden, someone said?), but, if they love what Obama is doing so well, maybe they should give up their very advanced social safety net to pay for this damn war-mongering that has so many people in the uS dying in the streets to pay for it–unable to afford ,housin g, food, health care…cmon , peeps!

          Obama is great to look at–unfortunately we have to oive with his “policies”–can someone tell me what those are? How they are different from Bush, besides the missile shield, and, maybe talking to (threatening Iran?

          Sorry, I am just ,mad….

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  13. I don’t think Obama deserved to win…yet. It’s a well done so far and keep going from the Nobel Committee. They want Obama to deliver on his promises and have awarded him ahead of actually achieveing anything!! I have written a blog post on the topic, ‘Will the real President Obama please stand up?’ if anyone wants to take a look http://wp.me/pCIZY-Y

    • So I guess they should just give everyone one, hoping that they will do the right thing.

      Whyare there so many excuses for his (lack of) behavior? Why does everyone want to “give” Obaam stuff? Doesnt he HAVE enough? He just seems to be so deserving to some people–well, not to me. I think he is a huge disappointment and I didnt even support him.Its not just what he hasnt done—but I am tired of trying to point this out to so-called liberals.

      The whole thing is absurd. WHY do you guys always want to find excuses for him? Is it his looks? His charm? (I dont really like tall, skinny guys, so I dont get that–my ex was one) He stopped the missile shield (so had e4veryone but Bush), he is “tough on Israel” (thats just bullshit), he is “not bombing Iran”–wtff???

  14. One more thing and then I will shut up–I, for one, am a sick of Obama having things handed to him when other people work harder, longer and give more to receive less support and attention. There are people dying every single day for the lives of others, for things that Obama could stop with the stroke of a pen…

  15. Pingback: The Nobel Peace Prize Goes To … + Ron Paul’s commentary « Dandelion Salad

  16. Nice guy? He plays one on TV. It’s a swell performance, but this president deserves an Oscar, not a Peace prize.

    Nice guys don’t appoint Rahm Emanuel to run the White House – Larry Summers and Tim Geithner to run the economy like a private piggy bank for the same Wall Street criminal enterprise that got us into this mess – Monsanto puppets to run the FDA and agriculture.
    Nice guys don’t escalate the dumbest of Bush’s dumb wars, in the face of all the very good reasons to get the hell out of not only Iraq but Afghanistan AND Pakistan … nice guys don’t lie to us and they don’t take their orders from the corporate/military establishment.
    Nice guys don’t sell out healthcare reform before it even comes up for discussion and aggressively keep the proposed bill within the range of what won’t irritate the Big Insurance or Big Pharma. Don’t have the votes? They never tried to get them – except for the Baucus-Obama insurance/pharma windfall bill.
    Nice guys sometimes at least suit up for the game – they don’t head for the locker room before it begins. Bipartisanship is the same old DLC mantra for the move-to-the-right sellout that keeps the corporations happy.

    Nice guy? The man is the latest in a long, too-damn-long line of corporate stooges.

    • I thihnk it is now safe to say that Obama’s “nice guy” persona has been brought to light as a peronality disorder.

      It s slickness of marketing to convince people that you are what you are not. It can be far deadlier (certainly harder to criticize openly) then dubya and company who will, at least , admit that they jusrt dont give a f*ck.

      We will pay for Bush forever in the form of lowered world expectations.

  17. Pingback: What Does Peace Mean? By Cindy Sheehan « Dandelion Salad

  18. Didn’t Eduardo Galeano say this was an upside down world. The worst people in the world obtain most of the wealth and recognition and the best often work in obscurity and poverty. Even people on the left who have broken through all the barriers that are thrown up and have obtained some recognition like Michael Moore, Noam Chomsky and Howard Zinn are totally ignored for the Nobel Peace Prize. And to his great credit, Noam Chomsky was humble enough to admit that the real heroes are people who labor tirelessly and whose names history will never record, but whose efforts are and were crucial in the struggle for a just and peaceful world.

  19. I could not sleep and was up at 6:00 AM or so when this was announced. After Kissinger, I guess we should not be surprised,. but, today, my reaction is the same—wha…?????

    • I agree. So now Nobel was for bombing civilian weddings with drones in far-flung nations of no threat to the ‘homeland’.

      There were indeed americans who sacrificed all to be effective peace activists. Maybe this is indeed an international response to the blabbering, gun-blasting, red-state, brain-dead ‘kill-em-all because the end is neigh’ right-wing fundamentalist, militarist, racist, backward, white-rash trailer-dwelling wall-mart-shopping, obese terroristic white-nationalist KKK tea-birthers with AR-15’s aimed at the President’s head… but then ‘the enemy of my enemy’ is hardly reason for peace-prizes.

      We need a new peace-prize, such as the “Amy Goodman/King Kucinich/Saint Sheehan award for world peace” (acronym: “AGOODKKISSH”).

      • Yes, I think the prize should be for those unsung by the mainstream, people who die everyday in the cause of peace. Obama should turn it down…sorry, but thats what I think.

        Give it to one of those who organized the civil disobedience in Chicago yesterday and sat in jail. Give it to one who was arrested at the G-20 in Pittsbugh–good gawd, give it to dandelion salad! Ok?

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