In one of the oddest decisions since the Nobel Peace Prize was awarded to President for making a speech about hope and change, the European Union has been awarded the prize this year for ‘six decades of advancing peace and reconciliation in Europe’. This is an extraordinary achievement for an organization formed in 1993, nineteen years ago.
Still, it has to be admitted that this attempt to unify Europe has worked apart from an economic crisis and a bit of fraying around the edges as those old fashioned nationalists begin to make some serious inroads. The German Chancellor, Angela Merkel is very happy about it as well she should be. German leaders were notable for two previous attempts to ‘unify Europe’ in the last century.
But lets not knock it:
The European Union has been awarded the Nobel Peace Prize for six decades of work in advancing peace in Europe. The committee said the EU had helped to transform Europe "from a continent of war to a continent of peace."
The award comes as the EU faces the biggest crisis of its history, with recession and social unrest rocking many of its member states. …
… Announcing the award, Nobel committee president Thorbjoern Jagland acknowledged the EU's current financial problems and social unrest. But he said the committee wanted to concentrate on the body's work over six decades of advancing "peace and reconciliation, democracy and human rights."
Mr Jagland highlighted the EU's work in sealing the reconciliation between France and Germany in the decades after World War II. And he praised the organisation for incorporating Spain, Portugal and Greece after their authoritarian regimes collapsed in the 1970s.
It seems a little curious that the prize for securing peace between Germany and France did not go to the Allied Powers who managed to separate them and stop the fighting in 1945. Admittedly, that was an action in a war, but the 2009 prize was given to a wartime President who still is one.
Possibly Russia, or at least the old Soviet Union should feel somewhat aggrieved by the award. It has to be considered after all. That had Germany and France still had any instincts to have a go again, the major power out in the East of them must have surely put a dampener on them.
Perhaps in the future we may yet see Ahmadinejad presented with the Nobel for his efforts to secure nuclear weapons and unify every nation within reach of them. After all, there has been a long standing desire for peace and unity in the Middle East, Northern Africa, Southern Europe, …