Does Obama deserve the Nobel Peace Prize?

October 9, 2009

U.S. President Barack Obama has won the 2009 Nobel Peace Prize. The Norwegian Nobel Committee said Obama had been awarded the prize for his calls to reduce the world’s stockpiles of nuclear weapons and work towards restarting the stalled Middle East peace process.

The committee praised Obama for “his extraordinary efforts to strengthen international diplomacy and cooperation between peoples.”

“Very rarely has a person to the same extent as Obama captured the world’s attention and given its people hope for a better future.”

The laureate wins a gold medal, a diploma and 10 million Swedish crowns (1.4 million dollars or 878,000 pounds).

Obama was one of a record 205 nominees for this year’s prize and the decision has come as a surprise to many. Zimbabwe’s Prime Minister, Morgan Tsvangirai, had been tipped as one of the favourites.

Despite his ambitious international agenda, Obama is yet to make a significant breakthrough in the Middle East or effectively deal with the threat of Iran’s nuclear programme and his country is currently fighting wars in Afghanistan and Iraq.

Has Obama done enough to justify winning the Nobel Peace Prize? If not, who do you think should have won?


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i have totally lost all respect for this honored prize

Posted by charles | Report as abusive

Speaking as an American who is teaching in China, I have hated having to try to come up with some sort of answer when my Chinese students ask why President Obama thought he should go visit the Olympic Games Committee and then why he has now received the Nobel Peace Prize after doing nothing! I honestly don’t know what to say! If Obama had refused to accept the prize, he would have my respect and admiration. Now, I am so appalled at Obama’s arrogance I might just have to vote Republican in 2012.

Posted by Bob | Report as abusive

The fact that Obama ran and won the United States presidency spreading a messege of goodness ( Raplph Bunche) not just in the United States but the World. I f you dont understand this concept read more about Bunche and Martin Luther King. All of this which was seen unlikely in a atmosphere of hate and bias during the election and since. This is a Man who takes the high rode almost each and every time. But who is not a Whimp.( Vs the kind of shenagans other people do to punish thier adversaries historically)
I think its really sad that people are not rejoicing over this pic. It tells me more about anglophiles opinon.

It is a complete mockery of the institution of Nobel that Obama win the prize for his “promises”

King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia was the front runner for the award..but now it wouldnt surprise me if anyone won it anymore..I have lost all respect for the Nobel Prize.

Posted by Hamza | Report as abusive

I reserve my judgment because I don’t know who his competition was. There may been only weak competitors for this award ?
Nevertheless I think for Obama’s to win this award was a bit premature. Just because he may be inspiring or give hope is empty without concrete actions. If he would wind down the killings in Afghanistan and have opened a path to peace in the Middle East that would have been an achievement, yet to date he hasn’t done anything in action.
And action speaks louder than words.

Posted by ddavid | Report as abusive

oslo gives the gift of laugher with the biggest joke this year – Americans have laughed all day and will continue for days on end. the obama joke will be a while living it down

Posted by Jack Kennedy | Report as abusive

He is a great man! to JD: “…giving our country away to the rest of the world…” WHAT ARE YOU TALKING ABOUT!!! First of all he represents the interests of the USA, but doing that he bears in mind other counries’ interests. And this earns a lot of RESPECT to his personality! He is the first president in the world who cares about the peace in the world! And this is not just a sort of bla bla bla – he proves this with his deals!!!!

Posted by Timo | Report as abusive

Hey folks!!. . much has been said and written but do we really know the eligibility and qualifications for the award?.. NO. .I don’t think there is any pre-requisite in terms of a time frame as in what period actually the work has been done rather it is about the effects that it has shown in the various parts of the world and people living in them.. Who all were in the nominations list by the way???. .

Posted by Gaurav | Report as abusive

The last joke is on all of you who have not recognised this gift from God. Why do you always have to think of “past” reasons for a Nobel prize (wakey wakey Bush & Co have gone forever – hallellujah!) Why not listen to what Obama said… that he takes it not personally, but as a sign of contribution TOWARDS changing the world. If you know anything about energy, it is ALL HAPPENING RIGHT NOW. If you still believe you are only a solid block of bones and flesh, so be it – IGNORANCE IS BLISS !!!!

Posted by Carole | Report as abusive

Obama himself was doubtful. So that should at least make others sure or they are still unsure?

Posted by Osama | Report as abusive

In my opinion, I think it’s a bit too early. It can make or mar him.

I think and feel that Mr. Barack Obama deserves the nobel peace price for his great vision and contribution towards recognizing humanity and its virtues.Its a miracle and only a messiah can bring the white and the black together as one race and family called America.I feel it could be abraham lincolns rebirth of obama.I truly respect him as a statesmen and world messiah transforming the world towards a future of peace and harmony.He is not egoistic..truly a humble man of great wisdom.There is honesty and sincerity in his speech during the presidential election.I may live in one corner of this world but I felt secured and protected of he being the president of the great america.

Posted by kumaresan | Report as abusive

The award should not given for hope but for results. Sadly I think he will never be able to deliver because of 9/11 and need to extract revenge on the people who committed this act on the American people. This will keep pulling him into war along with air strikes that result in the death of people who are innocent, it follows that he is a bad choice because people will die by Obama,s hand.

Posted by bosco | Report as abusive

What is it with you Americans ?
You vote a guy into office by a substantial majority, then you refuse to back him ?
Pres. Obama has at least got the world thinking about peace…which is a darn sight more than Pres. Bush ever did. Give the guy some credit.

Posted by John-UK | Report as abusive

US is doing fabulous job in protecting human rights in middle east, Afganistan, Pakistan etc. By that measure The President deserved it and Nobel Prize committee has done a great job in recognising the potential early.

Posted by Rajthalwala | Report as abusive

I can’t believe some folks are actually upset he won after GW made us the laughing stock of the world? Would you rather that be the case? Geez!!

Call it the “He’s not GW and he’s back on the right track” award for all we should care. So be happy and not mad!!

Please, nearly every problem he currently faces comes from “you know who in the White House” not to mention the Wall Street thugs. They’re not alone either, deadbeats and speculators who decided they should walk away from their fiduciary mortgage obligation just because face value fell below what they paid over the short-term are at fault too. It’s not all Wall Street’s fault given most lie on their applications while the lenders looked the other way…

So a big “that’s one for President Obama and the USA” after the Olympic committee slapped all of us in the face.

Posted by Steve Zee | Report as abusive

It’s a surprising but excellent choice. It recognizes that Obama does indeed represent both change and diplomacy. The wind it will put in Obama’s sails will help him with his agenda during difficult times, as he pursues a peaceful solution in the Middle East, nuclear disarmament, and other major objectives that will help create a more stable world.

Posted by Stardust | Report as abusive

Obama hasn’t done anything but cause confusion. For that he should get a prize, but the Nobel? And why don’t YOU people quit bringing Bush’s name up and say what has he ever done. For heavens sake the Dems won….get a life and move on. But as for the Nobel….anyone else could have gotten it for what they have done, but Obama ?

Posted by Nina | Report as abusive

Here’s the 10 Top Reasons why Barack Obama is very deserving of his Nobel Peace Prize Award, gleaned from global news sources: s-barack-obama-has-a-nobel-peace-prize/

That Americans cannot see why Obama is the perfect winner of this award at this moment in history, a moment defined by the change he has inspired all over the world, is testament to the ignorance most Americans have about the world around them. An ignorance not shared, most fortunately, by Obama himself.

Posted by Andrew Tilling | Report as abusive

I cannot believe all you nay-sayers. Those of us who live in neighbouring countries only WISH we could have a leader who was worthy of a nomination, let alone a win. Be grateful for what you’ve got – a leader who is a visionary, willing to stand up and stick his neck out for what is good and right. You should be proud!

Posted by Sharla | Report as abusive

In the United States we have a huge problem, and this problem undermines the political process. Americans dont know if the president is operating independently or if he is being manipulated by a very powerful private interest. This private interest may want a one world currency and to achieve this it must destroy any element that stands in its way. The problem is not just economics but the cause of bad economics. The Cause is who ever manages the money supply which is the Federal Reserve. Right now we have a system that has cause thousands of jobs, that is allowing people to loose their home and everything they have ever worked for. The Federal Reserve system is presently under scrutiny, and congressman want to audit its actions. No one institution should be allowed to manage money under secrecy. Yet President Barrack Obama chooses to give the Federal Reserve even more power, despite the fact that it was their policy that cause the recent recession, and the lost to so many. With this threat from private interest on our freedom and the freedom of people around the world, why bother to give the President any peace prize when he is, in fact, want to give the Federal Reserve even more sweeping powers.

Posted by antonio alejandro | Report as abusive

I am sure he has done enough killings and sabottaging other people.

Posted by Willom | Report as abusive

The prize is for those to take action to promote peace, and he certainly has done the work to do that. His words, policies, and actions are serving to reverse the anti-peace directions of the recent past. Please note that it’s ‘promote peace’, not accomplish peace, which is beyond a single person’s ability – that takes like individual, groups, countries on all sides. President Obama has brought the opportunities to the forefront in the best traditions of an international leader. If the world wants peace, the path is there, thanks to President Obama.

Posted by JohnT | Report as abusive

President Obama deserves the Nobel Prize because of his approach to the world and this country. As a life long Republican, I do not offer this blog as a left wing twit, or is that Twitter? The award is fitting because we now have a president that is different, not racially, he is a human, and we need this ‘Human’ to do his job. Not complain about every little thing that he proposes. My point is that his Presidency is unique, and will be our President no longer than eight years. To all of the Political Centrists in this country, make the most of these eight years, because the next four will most likely be from the far left or worse, the far right.

Posted by Merlin D. DuVall | Report as abusive

Brilliant, he deserves it, met up with a guy from Russia, the Russian people like what he did with the ant missile missiles, the Russian Govenrnment liked it and they do not seem to want to take any political gain out of this.

To the contrary, they probably helped Iran to get the inspectors of the UN in again, which, other then his trigger easy environmental vandal predecessor his movement seems to want to join again.

Lot of reasons already for this reward, Mr Obama, keep up the spirit!

Posted by Jens Bos | Report as abusive

Yesterday I mentioned to a co-worker that Obama had won the Nobel Peace Prize. He had not heard the news and his response was the same as mine when I first heard of it; “Why did they give it to him? He hasn’t done anything!” Not quite true: he’s made a number of speeches apologizing to the world for what we, as Americans have accomplished and aspired to achieve. If undermining our country and making it easier for our enemies to defeat us is worthy of the NPP, then he certainly deserves it.

Posted by counterviews | Report as abusive

Obama certainely has chosen a different path that could lead to some peace in the world, but at this moment this prize seems a bit PREMATURE. It looks more like an encouragement for his intentions rather than a award for his achievements.

Someone rightly said that at this moment it looks more like “for not being Bush” rather than “for being Obama”. He is definitely in a better path than Bush. But in my opinion this was better if it would have been waited for few more years.

Posted by Vivek | Report as abusive

The guys in Norway decide who gets it and set down rules and not any of you moaners and whingers, he got it for his exemplary vision for world peace and for being different from the warmongering and criminal Bush. I salute President Obama and if anything the pressure is on him to make sure that he comes through.

Posted by Nduka Tolefe | Report as abusive

Obama hasn’t done anything but talk. When was the last time we gave a Nobel Prize for a good scientific concept that hasn’t borne any fruit?

Posted by chris | Report as abusive

Barack is not only speaking differently but he is acting differently from previous administrations. This is a worldwide endorsement of him, his energy and his efforts. Many people around the world are with you Barack, keep doing the right thing, God protect you from your enemies at home and abroad.

Posted by DanH | Report as abusive

For those not well informed about American events, please consider these:
1) President Obama retained the SAME defense secretary as that of President George Bush: Robert Gates. Gates is a war hawk and a chief architect of the Iraq and Afghanistan wars. Was Obama’s action sincerely for peace?
2) President Obama reduced troop levels in Iraq but INCREASED troop levels in Afghanistan. Was Obama’s sleight of hand sincerely for peace?
3) President Obama deceptively defends the Afghanistan war as being “essential” for U.S. security. He is the only Nobel Peace Price laureate, to my knowledge, to gets awarded while actively prosecuting a war.
We should set up a “Nobel Prize for STUPIDITY.” And we should award it to the committee which selected Obama for the Nobel Peace Prize.

Posted by Sergio M. | Report as abusive

He certainly does. It is hope, aspiration, spirit and outlook from a leader of a great nation that the rest of the world cherish first and foremost.The idea of co-operation,sharing and being humble is appreciated by most except the arrogant/ignorant few.

Posted by Tin M Than | Report as abusive

for any movement its easier to gain speed, achieve milestones but difficult to change tracks.

obama has accomplished just that – he has changed the whole direction of thought; instead of confrontation, US now looks at cooperation, instead of war it looks for peace, instead of arrogance it can now boast of understanding, instead of despair it now offers hope, the world is more at comfort with its biggest superpower and deal with it.

stalwarts have spent their lifetimes in achieving the change of thoughts. but with obama it got accomplished in 9 months !!

he deserves more than just a noble peace prize.

Posted by navinn seksaria | Report as abusive

whether he deserves it or not is irrelevant. He won it. What he does with this honor will reveal his character to a greater degree. I pray the revelation is a joyous one.

husnu mobarak was deserved the nobel peace prise….

Posted by fatih kahramanoglu | Report as abusive

Clearly, this is a vote of confidence by the Nobel Committee that Obama is a smart as we all hope he is.

Posted by Ed Goodrich | Report as abusive

I hear Obama hopes, someday, to direct a movie about himself. Best Picture?

Posted by Andy Kant | Report as abusive

Some people just dont understand what has happened with this Prize being awarded to Obama.It is nothing but an attempt to persuade others that this is a great man.When in reality he is just another man .The differnce between this man and many others suggested for this nomination was what the others had acoomplished over the past year or years.This man was nominated and given this award based on what the committe hopes to achieve from his selection,not from his past achievments.This is another attempt to persuade America and the World to follow a man based on his word, not his previous accomplishments.He should not have been suggested for this award,He held the office of the President for a very brief period (11 days) before being considered.To most Americans this is insane.We want an American deserving of this prize to win but when it comes in such a political manner it makes us look like the laughing stock of the World.When our President travels the World distributing negative thoughts about America and an apology on every continent,we tend to feel disgust .If the Noble committe wants to gain any respect in the world give the prize to truly deserving good honorable people from all parts of the world.Persons who have dedicated their lives to helping others and making this world a better place for all.Not those who have suggested it.

Posted by Norrisp | Report as abusive

I am disappointed, I think George deserved it more than anybody else.
He worked so hard while 8 years in office to bring “peace” to Iraq and Afghanistan.

Posted by Nick | Report as abusive

No way. He deserves to be impeached.

Posted by jason | Report as abusive

This reminds me of the “.com” companies of the 90′s with the “new paradigm” of establishing stock price bassed on potential rather than solid earnings.

Posted by drmwvr | Report as abusive

Obama is a great change from the days of manipulation, war and deceit, Bush was very good at these playing on peoples insecurities and low self esteem by starting unnecessary wars and destruction. Obama deserves this prize and those who dont like it can take a flying jump, the folks in Norway dont have to justify their decisions to anybody.

Posted by Nduka Tolefe | Report as abusive

Right wing Republicans are a bunch of whingers and loosers, very vile indeed.It says a lot about people who voted Bush into two terms of office.

Posted by Nduka Tolefe | Report as abusive


Posted by p.s. | Report as abusive

Barak Obama has invited us to shift our world from conflict to partnership. He is a visionary and a leader, not a magician. If we don’t support his invitation and his vision and do the work with him, we’re all in the soup. He was given the Nobel prise for his committed thoughtful passionate commitment to peace and a new world. Instead of mocking and sneering let’s use that energy to join him and each other and do the work.

Posted by Noel Canin | Report as abusive

Yes he deserves the award, if you do some research, you would find that there are lesser deserving winners chosen by a means that only the judges understand, however, the President deserves the award because he has most of the world listening to his logic, and he has influenced many others. Our past Presidents were politicians that had to adhere to their party’s mandate, or exceptionally stupid. This is a learning period for this country’s citizens; we should take notes and learn, not put our heads in the sand and mumble about how any person other than our choice of elected official, is wrong and sinfully inept.
He deserves the award because he is a respected person the world over. The Republicans should take these years to regroup and choose a person to run in eight years that can win on his humanistic and intellectual merits instead of religious commitments.

Posted by Merlin D. DuVall | Report as abusive

I could not resist, but will resist responding in kind. Yes, Mr. Obama kept some of the Bush technical people, for two reasons, first because they were experienced and knowledgeable, but to offer an olive branch to the Republicans. The House and Senate have many Republicans that he needs to work with. As an example of the difference between Bush and Obama, Mr. Bush gave a lot of money to the Financial Groups without stipulations on what it could be used for, that was a trillion dollars down the drain. Mr. Obama gave the same amount to the same groups and banks with stipulations as to how it could be used and some banks have paid the money back already.
I worked 28 years for the same company in Southern California, the president of the company, whom I worked for, had a Chinese Controller who he kept in close contact with she was a positive asset to the company. A Chinese Salesman bought the company and gave the same Controller a free rain over the money, and together they ran the company in the ground.
That is the difference between the two Presidents; Mr. Obama is in control, and Mr. Bush allowed his advisors to be in control. That, in its self does not make Mr. Bush a bad President, but he should have been in control, not in their control.

Posted by Merlin D.DuVall | Report as abusive

Well said Merlin D. DuVall. To p.s nobody knows the criteria for choosing Nobel prize winners but if you look around the world since Obama was elected you would notice a form of conformity from Zimbabwe, Sudan, Iran, Russia (an important country in world affairs), Burma e.t.c more cooperation and humility from the world countries is what you need to prevent terrorism and not by spreading unnecessary fear and arrogance, there is a more receptive world out there to the USA since he came to power and that is more important to being a warmonger, Rome wasn’t built in ten months but at least he is trying to get positive things done, Republicans rule by trying to instil fear into peoples lives and by hate yet they paint themselves to be God fearing people but yet do the opposite of what the Bible requires of every civilised person. The economic mess in the USA is not Obama’s doing either, he has done the only reasonable thing to avoid a depression and that is spend now and pay later maybe you guys should have stopped Bush’s wars and saved yourselves the embarassment of making Osama bin laden’s prophesy of slowly bleeding your economy dry, an exit strategy is on the cards but has to be done slowly rather than in an abrupt way. Obama is a good president and deserves every bit of the Nobel prize.

Posted by Nduka Tolefe | Report as abusive

Maybe they got confused and meant to honor Bill Clinton?

Posted by matt s | Report as abusive