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Obama’s Nobel-prize revelations

The winner explained to the world why the US will be using force
15 декабря, 00:00

It is common knowledge that US President Barack Obama is an excellent orator. But he seems to have surpassed himself in the Nobel speech he delivered on December 10 in Oslo, where he was handed the Nobel Peace Prize. The point is that he skillfully used his eloquence to justify war, although winners of this prize have hitherto been trying to avoid reflecting on death. Incidentally, this point of view is shared by both European and US publications which point out that a peace prize has been awarded to Obama as supreme commander-in-chief of a state that is waging two wars at a time.

In particular, The New York Times notes editorially: “What struck us most is how often Mr. Obama used the war in Afghanistan to make his points. He said that even as the United States confronts ‘a vicious adversary that abides by no rules,’ this country must remain ‘a standard-bearer in the conduct of war.’ …he reserved the right to act unilaterally in a world where threats are ‘more diffuse and missions more complex’.”

The Times of London believes that “President Obama turned the Nobel Peace Prize ceremony into a professorial address yesterday, a lecture theatre for expounding to the world why and when the United States was prepared to use force…He was, therefore, intent on using the Nobel speech to discuss the costs of armed conflict and to examine ‘the relationship between war and peace, and our effort to replace one with the other’.”

In his speech, Obama also mentioned Iran and North Korea, making it clear that he would like to enlist international support for increased sanctions. Germany’s Die Welt considers that in his Oslo speech US President Barack Obama erased the boundaries between the Old Europe, which traditionally relies on dialogue and negotiations, and Anglo-Saxon traditions to act firmly and sometimes cynically, thus relying on realpolitik.

Many US commentators were pleased to note that Obama had debunked the “imaginary moral superiority” of Europeans who always leave the dirty job of making peace to Americans. America found a “sense of pride” in this speech, a pride which no political quarrels on health care reform or climate change could have returned, Switzerland’s Le Temps says.

Obama believes it is possible to avoid the use of force and war, but there is also another possibility – to wage wars in accordance with rules, when the goal is durable peace and humankind should never forget this goal. Time alone will show whether the US president will abide by the war ideology he proclaimed in Oslo.

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