Obama’s Peace Prize: The Olive Branch

If you’re shocked or confused by the Nobel committee’s decision to give Barack Obama the Nobel Peace Prize, don’t be. It makes perfect sense. They selected him because of his “extraordinary efforts to strengthen international diplomacy and cooperation between peoples.” In this sense, he has definitely accomplished something and shows promise that he will continue to do so for the next few years.

If you believe that Obama hasn’t done anything to deserve this honor, you’re completely missing the point of the prize. Saying that Obama hasn’t done anything to achieve peace is like saying Bush never did anything to combat terrorism. Sure, Bush ultimately wasn’t able to stop terrorism, but that’s because it can never be stopped. Peace, similarly, can never be fully attained. It’s the efforts towards attaining peace that really matter.

And in that sense, Obama is a champion.

He has accomplished a lot towards peace, no matter what people say.

What do you think the point of an olive branch is? It doesn’t actually do anything. It’s the symbolism that’s important.

Well, Bush spent eight years as the leader of the “greatest free nation” on the planet. What did he do with it? He beat the shit out of the rest of the world with the olive tree.

What has Obama done in the past eight months? He has *tried* to bring about peace, something that will never be truly accomplished. It’s like saying he hasn’t accomplished anything with universal heath care because the law hasn’t been passed.

I think it’s far more important that the international community start recognizing America as one of the leading voices for peace than waiting for Obama to, for example, solve the Israeli/Palestinian conflict.

They gave it to him for his “extraordinary efforts to strengthen international diplomacy and cooperation between peoples.”

He has, in fact, done this.

Bush’s speeches in front of the UN were too often contentious, provincial, and self-concerned. Every time he spoke he undid years of progress between our nation and the rest of the world. And that is how the world began to view America.

Obama may not have saved us from ourselves, but no one should expect him to do that. He has, however, thrust America back into its rightful place as one of the leading promoters of peace, which is far more than the war-mongering members of our society will ever achieve. The Nobel committee’s decision does not state that we have achieved peace. What it says is: yes we can.


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