By Patrick B. Craine and Steve Jalsevac
OSLO, Norway, October 9, 2009 (LifeSiteNews.com) – Early this morning, the Nobel Committee awarded U.S. President Barack Obama the 2009 Nobel Peace Prize, prompting shock both from journalists and pro-life leaders.
The award, the Committee says, was given to President Obama “for his extraordinary efforts to strengthen international diplomacy and cooperation between peoples.” The Committee says that they have “attached special importance to Obama's vision of and work for a world without nuclear weapons.”
They credit him, further, with having “created a new climate in international politics.” “Only 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,” they say.
Pundits point out that the Nobel committee's rush to give Obama the award is likely unprecedented since he had only been in office for 12 days before the February nomination deadline for the prize. “The prize seems to be more for Obama's promise than for his performance,” comments Jennifer Loven of the Associated Press. “Work on the president's ambitious agenda, both at home and abroad, is barely underway, much less finished. He has no standout moment of victory that would seem to warrant a verdict as sweeping as that issued by the Nobel committee.”
A much blunter, typically British commentary was given by Michael Binyon of the UK Times on Line(see brief video) .” Binyon states, “The award to Obama is arguably one the most absurd awards that the Nobel Committee has ever made.” He continues that giving the peace prize to the U.S. President “will be met with widespread incredulity, consternation in many capitals and probably deep embarrassment by the President himself.”
Binyon charges that there is a crass political agenda for the award stating, “Rarely has an award had such an obvious political and partisan intent.” The Times journalist explains the outcome of such a situation: “Instead, the prize risks looking preposterous in its claims, patronising in its intentions and demeaning in its attempt to build up a man who has barely begun his period in office, let alone achieved any tangible outcome for peace.”
On the lighter side, Tommy De Seno of Fox News addressed the situation with humor in his article, How to Win the Nobel Peace Prize In 12 Days in which he reviews the president's first 12 days in office.
De Seno's article ends with: ”January 31: Took the day off. February 1: Skipped church. Threw a Super Bowl party. So there you have it. The short path to the Nobel Peace Prize: Party, go to meetings, skip church, release federal funding to pay for abortions in foreign countries, party some more. Good grief.”
On the issue of Obama and peace, it is being stressed, for example, that the president is currently engaged in two wars – in Afghanistan and Iraq – and, though he has indicated a desire to withdraw from Iraq, he's done little thus far.
Further, the news comes as the President is embroiled in national controversy over the federal funding of abortion in his health care reform. Pro-life leaders have long warned of Obama's radical abortion agenda.
This is not the first time that the Nobel committee has shown its preference for leading abortion advocates. Among others, In 2007 it awarded a shared Nobel prize to former US vice-president Al Gore. The world's pro-life leaders responded that Gore's strong support for world de-population and abortion made him especially unsuitable for the Nobel Prize.
When Mother Teresa of Calcutta received the award in 1979, as Catholic.org points out, she stated in her reception speech, “I feel the greatest destroyer of peace today is abortion, because it is a direct war, a direct killing – direct murder by the mother herself. … Because if a mother can kill her own child – what is left for me to kill you and you kill me – there is nothing between.”
Obama has denied repeatedly that his reform would fund abortion, but as FactCheck.org stated in August, “as for the House bill as it stands now, it's a matter of fact that it would allow both a 'public plan' and newly subsidized private plans to cover all abortions.”
Language that would ensure the plan does not fund abortions has been repeatedly voted down in the House and the Senate. The U.S. Bishops released a letter yesterday expressing their “disappointment” that the problem of abortion funding has not yet been addressed in the bill, and insisting that they will “vigorously” oppose the legislation until the problem has been addressed.
Joe Scheidler of the Pro-Life Action League called Obama's receiving the award “tokenism,” agreeing with others that he has not done anything to merit the prize. “It cheapens the award to the point that it means nothing, it's just a token,” he said. “He hasn't done a thing except talk. … So it demeans the prize to the point that it has no significance. And it's a shame because it belittles all those people that went before.”
Agreeing with Mother Teresa that abortion is “the greatest destroyer of peace today,” he said, “That's right. That's right. And this man is one of biggest promoters of abortion. Consequently, … it's just an aberration.
“I am utterly shocked,” said Judie Brown of American Life League. “It just seems to me this is one of the most political moves ever made and that it justifies the fact that Obama can be pro-abortion, in favour of killing millions of people, and still be recognized as a leader of peace, which is simply ridiculous.”
“In awarding the prize to Obama, the Nobel Committee is announcing that abortion is the cornerstone of a hellish 'peace',” she said, “- the damning silence of 51 million aborted children in the United States alone. The Nobel Committee has bestowed the 'Peace Prize' on a man dedicated to war in the womb.”
Last year, after it was announced that Canada's highest civic award was to be awarded to the nation's leading abortionist, Henry Morgentaler, ten previous recipients of the award eventually returned their medals to the Governor General of Canada. In their comments, it was indicated that the award had become debased by the presentation of the same high recognition to a prolific abortionist.
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