Obama's Nobel And Noble Moment

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[Black Star News Editorial]

President Barack Obama was bestowed the Nobel Peace Prize by the Nobel Committee because of the great possibilities that his election as U.S. President ushered and the promise that it provides to the world.

There is a good reason hundreds of thousands of Europeans appeared to see Obama when he visited Germany while he was still candidate Obama. There is a reason why millions of people allover the world celebrated when Obama was elected president of the United States.

More so, because he withstood assault by the right wing establishment that hijacked candidate John McCain's campaign and attempted to cast Obama as a candidate who, in addition to being Black, was either too sympathetic to the Muslim world and Arabs, was possibly secretly a Muslim who had terroristic sympathies, inclinations or associations, was possibly not even an American, and was most definitelyhostile to private enterprise and the "American way of life."

Millions of sensible Americans rejected that canard as did the rest of the world, as evidenced by the reaction after Obama's election. The president as a candidate talked about the need to engage America's adversaries, including those in the Muslim world, in dialogue, in order to end global conflict.

After his election, Obama made a major speech in Cairo affirming to the Muslim world that America was not the enemy of Islam but was fighting those who would abuse the religion for their objectives and employ terror acts to meet those goals.

He has been seen as a more even handed mediator in the Middle East crises and even in accepting the Nobel award today, again called for the creation of a Palestinian state alongside Israel. He was also humble in noting that he believed he belonged in the same company of some of the luminaries that have won the award.

Obama also recognizes the fact that we live in a real world. How will he address Iraq? How will he address the escalating war in Afghanistan where many of his top generals and many Republican politicians want him to send an additional 40,000 U.S. troops as recommended by General Stanley McChrystal, the top American commander there?

In fact some cynics contend that the Nobel committee wanted to tie Obama's hands. A Nobel Peace Prize recipient would not be willing to commit the U.S. to escalating the war, these skeptics contend.

There could be much truth to that assessment. Nevertheless the president had already indicated that he would not simply heed McChrystal's partisan Republican inspired recommendation.

And he is right, because the Afghan president, Karzai, currently presides over a very corrupt regime; that issue needs to be resolved because it determines to what extent Afghans will be able to secure the peace there for themselves. The Karzai government resembles the corrupt drug-dealing South Vietnamese government that the U.S. once sustained before it was overrun by Ho Chi Minh's forces.

On another level, the Nobel Committee also clearly was repudiating the racism that this president has had to endure --by the birthers and tea party lunatics-- simply for wanting to create a better America and a better world. In that regard, the award's justification is similar to Dr. Martin Luther King's honor; after enduring backlash and attacks from racists resisting a new dawn in the 1960s, Dr. King and the Civil Right Movement proved instrumental in forcing passage of the landmark 1966 bill.

Passage of a healthreform bill in the United States will also be this president's historic contribution.

He also has the determination to reduce the world's nuclear arsenal, check proliferation, and usher a treaty between Israel and Palestine.

There are many other American candidates that may have been more worthy of a Nobel Peace Prize award, including Bill Clinton, who eventually may get it, for his work with the Clinton Global Initiative.

President Obama's was also well deserved.


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