Obama Should Refuse Nobel Peace Prize

President Barack Obama should follow the example set by North Vietnamese  negotiator Le Duc Tho in 1973 and refuse the Nobel Peace Prize.  Many are criticizing the decision to award Obama the Peace Prize.  This isn’t the first controversial decision by the Nobel committee.

It is inconceivable that the Commander in Chief  of a nation whose  troops are actively engaged in armed combat should be awarded a peace prize.  I happen to support the U.S. role in both conflicts, but recognize that involvement in war is inconsistent with receiving the Nobel Prize.

If Obama has made an “extraordinary effort” for peace, why are Americans still dying in Iraq and Afghanistan?  How is the practice of Americans killing Muslims in Iraq and Afghanistan an example of “reaching out” to the Muslim world?   Is the Nobel Prize Committee demonstrating racism  by seemingly suggesting that  the killing of Muslims is insignificant?

Whether or not the American role in Iraq and Afghanistan is justified or not, that role is not a role of peace, but of war.  Peaceful resolution of these conflicts may not be possible,  but  peaceful resolution of conflicts is what the Peace Prize should be about.

The Nobel Committee awarded the 1973 Peace Prize to Tho and Henry Kissinger for the work on the Paris Peace Agreement designed to  end U.S. involvement in the Vietnam War.     Tho refused to accept the award because he realized his nation had not abandoned its goal of uniting Vietnam by force if necessary.    Kissinger initially accepted it but subsequently attempted unsuccessfully to return it.

Tho and Kissinger at least had done something  that  could qualify  them for consideration.  Obama has done nothing but talk.

Obama has  not ended any war as President Theodore Roosevelt had  when Roosevelt received the Nobel Peace Prize in 1906 for helping negotiate an  end to the Russo-Japanese War.  Many questioned the decision to give the award to Roosevelt because American military forces were dealing with a violent rebellion in the Philippines.

Whether or not the American role in Iraq and Afghanistan is justified or not, that role is not a role of peace, but of war.  Peaceful resolution of these conflicts may not be possible,  but  peaceful resolution of conflicts is what the Peace Prize should be about.

President Obama should  not accept a Peace Prize so long as these conflicts are going on.

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