Cause and Effect in European Politics and Law

Efforts, estimation, appraisal or Nobel

Adelina Marini, October 20, 2009

During this year's Nobel prizes giving I remembered a wonderful movie - "Beautiful mind". If you don't remember, the story was about a brilliant mathematician who had a psychological disease and this was the reason why he was rejected from the scientific society and could not develop a career. Later on, many years later, he received the respect of his fellow professors in the university he worked in. And this respect was illustrated when every professor gave a beautiful pen to the most brilliant among them. But aside the personal story of the character of Russel Crowe, the whole film was about the constant striving and ambition to deserve the pen. And this ambition set a certain code - every professor should have been well dressed, well behaved and with a lot of work behind him.

I was very impressed by the movie because it made me believe that sooner or later a "beautiful mind" could be rewarded, in spite of his going out of the mainstream, of the code and in spite of his being different from the others and of his extravagance.

In this year's Nobel awards ceremonies my attention was attracted by the fact that the prize for physics was given to people that had made their discoveries more than 40 years ago. I accepted this normally because in the end of the day the things that can change our lives and the course of events need time to prove themselves. But although the peace prize award had always had a strong political element, this year the award committee set a new record.

The new American president has not still accomplished 1 year on the post and his efforts towards peace should first be discovered and then estimated. Indeed, these facts raise a lot of questions as to why he was chosen to receive the Nobel peace prize. But beyond those questions, giving this highest international appraisal for achievements in this field, this act creates a series of conditions which might prove pretty bad not only to the peace efforts around the world but to the prize itself. Think about it - how from now on each policy of Mr. Obama toward Afghanistan, Iraq, the Middle East or the Caucuses would be realised?

Among the laureates of the prize are people like the Dalai Lama and mother Theresa, whose contribution to peace is obvious. A Nobel peace prize laureate is also the late Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat, in whose rewarding politics had a serious contribution in a very important momentum of the efforts for peace between Palestinians and the Israelis. But, still, this was not that disputable. Other rewarded people are Martin Luther King Jr. who fought against racial discrimination and the former Finnish president Marti Ahtisaari for his efforts to secure peaceful independence of Kosovo from Serbia. But what can we say about Barack Obama? Furthermore, it is clear that Nobel prizes are given for achievements not for charisma, which definitely the American president possesses. And even on the website of the Nobel peace prizes the title this year looks somewhat ridiculous "From King to Obama".

For the sake of all the above said and for many other motives, I think that the Nobel peace prize has been vitiated. It has received a stain which cannot be cleaned easily in the future because, just imagine for a second, what a burden this is going to be for the laureate of the prize next year. What if he is a person that really deserves this award? It will pass by unnoticed and no one would even think whether the person really deserves it or not. Unfortunately, to the Nobel peace prizes happened exactly what was done to the Bulgaria's highest awards - the medal "Stara planina", given by the president of the republic Georgi Parvanov to so many people with disputable reputations, that now this award has no value at all.