The announcement was made this morning that United States President Barack Obama, after less than nine months in office, has been selected to receive the Nobel Peace Prize.
But it’s not just Republicans who are questioning the Nobel committee’s decision. Lech Walesa, former Polish President, Solidarity leader and recipient of the 1983 Nobel Peace Prize said, “So soon? Too early. He has no contribution so far.”
Even White House officials
were amazed, reportedly asking if today is April Fool’s Day.
The award could pose political problems for Obama, both at home and abroad. With the international accolades now official, there’s less incentive for Obama to act in a fashion that continues to seek worldwide favor. And coming off an embarrassing visit to Copenhagen, traveling to Oslo to be congratulated by the international elite for things he hasn’t yet done could appear as selfish at a time when unemployment (and deficits) creep higher.
Perhaps the best thing Obama can do is politely decline the award, saying that, while honored, he has been president for only nine months and still has much to accomplish. Such a move not only would be hard for any party, political or otherwise, to criticize, it might also be the right thing to do.
Personally, I would be very impressed if he turned it down.