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Mulehead Donating Member (93 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Oct-09-09 10:47 AM
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450. From Wikipedia:
The Nobel Peace Prize has sparked controversy throughout its history. The Norwegian Parliament, which appoints the Peace Prize Committee, has no say in the award issue. Critics argue that the same Parliament has pursued partisan military aims. A member of the Committee cannot at the same time be a member of the Parliament, and the Committee includes former members from all major parties, including those parties that oppose NATO membership.

Unlike the scientific and literary Nobel Prizes, usually issued in retrospect, often two or three decades after the awarded achievement, the Peace Prize has been awarded for more recent or immediate achievements taking the form of summary judgment being issued in the same year as or the year immediately following the political act. Some commentators have suggested that to award a peace prize on the basis of unquantifiable contemporary opinion is unjust or possibly erroneous, especially as many of the judges cannot themselves be said to be impartial observers. In pro-democracy struggles, it may be said that the 'real' peace-makers may not be recognized for their long-term or subtle approaches. However, others< have pointed to the uniqueness of the Peace Prize in that its high profile can often focus world attention on particular problems and possibly aid in the peace-efforts themselves.[br />
On closer inspection, the peace-laureates often have a lifetime's history of working at and promoting humanitarian issues, as in the examples of German medic Albert Schweitzer (1952 laureate), Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., an African-American civil rights activist (1964 laureate) and Aung San Suu Kyi, a Buddhist nonviolent pro-democracy activist (1991 laureate). Still others are selected for tireless efforts, as in the examples of Jimmy Carter and Mohamed ElBaradei. Others, even today, are quite controversial, due to the recipient's political activity, as in the case of Henry Kissinger (1973 laureate), Menachem Begin and Anwar Sadat (1978 laureates), Mikhail Gorbachev (1990 laureate), Yitzhak Rabin and Yasser Arafat (1994 laureates), or Barack Obama (2009 laureate)<10>.

A criticism of the peace-prize are the notable omissions, namely the failure to award individuals with widely recognized contributions to peace. The list includes Mahatma Gandhi, Herbert Hoover,Corazon Aquino, Pope John XXIII, Pope John Paul II, Dorothy Day, Csar Chvez, Oscar Romero, Jose Figueres Ferrer, Steve Biko, Raphael Lemkin, Abdul Sattar Edhi, and Irena Sendler. In particular, the omission of the Indian leader Gandhi has been widely discussed, including public statements by the various members of Nobel Committee.<11><12> It has been acknowledged by the committee that Gandhi was nominated in 1937, 1938, 1939, 1947 and, finally, a few days before he was murdered in January 1948.<13> The omission has been publicly regretted by later members of the Nobel Committee.<11> In 1948, the year of Gandhi's death, the Nobel Committee declined to award a prize on the ground that "there was no suitable living candidate" that year. Later, when the Dalai Lama was awarded the Peace Prize in 1989, the chairman of the committee said that this was "in part a tribute to the memory of Mahatma Gandhi".<14> Day has also been acknowledged as having been nominated for the Prize:<15> in fact some biographers have thought her pacifism too radical for the Nobel judges.<16>
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