Barack Obama wins the 2009 Nobel Peace Prize


Via the Telegraph:

From the moment that President Barack Obama – who has won the Nobel peace prize – entered the Oval Office, he made clear that resolving the conflict in the Middle East would be a key priority of his foreign policy.

His very first phone call was to Mahmoud Abbas, the Palestinian leader, and his speech in Cairo sought to cast America as an even-handed peacemaker in the Holy Land. Soon afterwards, Mr Obama also pledged to negotiate a new treaty on nuclear disarmament with Russia.

So far, however, Mr Obama has no concrete achievement to his credit. The Israelis and Palestinians are no closer to a settlement today than when he took office nine months ago. On the contrary, recent violence in Jerusalem raises the possibility of a new Palestinian uprising: an event that would force the "peace process" into reverse.

Although America and Russia have begun talks on a new disarmament agreement, no treaty has been concluded.

The only possible explanation for the judges’ decision to reward Mr Obama is that they are betting on his future achievements. They think he might secure an epoch-making settlement between the Israelis and the Palestinians as well as a sweeping disarmament treaty with Russia. Having previously given the Nobel Peace Prize to leaders who have made real agreements to resolve real conflicts, the judges now appear to be rewarding effort and possible future accomplishment.

This is quite unexpected.


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