Noble peace prize became controversial for last two years. Doubts surfaced over whether noble peace prize awardees really deserve it. It is believed in some quarters that the prize became politically motivated.
Last year the peace prize was awarded to the US President Barack Obama. The prize was awarded to Obama only eleven days after he assumed office. This had raised many eyebrows questioning the motive behind awarding to an eleven days old presidency of Obama.
By the time Obama accepted the prize, he announced troops’ surge in Afghanistan by 30,000 more troops. Generally, the peace prize was announced to those individuals who worked for world peace in their lifetime. However, Obama did not have a chance even to think about peace in his eleven-year-old presidency. Moreover, while accepting the noble peace prize, Obama said wars were necessary to establish peace referring to the US’ attacks on Afghanistan and Iraq. He endorsed pre-emptive invasions in his acceptance speech. He went on to say that, the American military action underwrites global peace.
After Obama assuming power, more troops were killed in Afghanistan in short period. Several civilians were also killed on both sides of the border of Pakistan and Afghanistan. The US government brought immense pressure on Pakistan government to launch internal war on Border States where Taliban and al-Qaeda fighters were believed to be hiding. The US launched several drone attacks on Pakistan villages without informing Pakistan government killing several innocent civilians. Now, with the Wikileaks’ revelations, it is understood that the Afghanistan war will last another 10 to 15 years. Does the peace need decades of bombing, torture and killing?
This year, the peace prize was announced to the famous Chinese dissident Liu Xiaobo. After this announcement, China severed relations with Norway and put on hold the trade negotiations. While announcing the award the noble committee said that China had to fulfil international obligations on human rights record, as it had become a global player economically and politically.
The US and the EU have been critical of China for the same reason in addition to trade imbalances and Yuan value. Concerns were expressed over whether the noble committee was representing the concerns of western countries over China’s international obligations.
China launched an international campaign against awarding peace prize to a person jailed by the Chinese government. It had written letters to several envoys and foreign ministries warning consequences. The campaign worked and eighteen countries decided to keep away from award ceremony.
The credibility of the noble peace prize has been weakened due to Obama last year, who is still waging wars. It has lost further credibility with this year’s choice prompting 18 countries to boycott it rising political overtones.