August 5, 2021
The CBS Post

THE VOICE OF CBS

Trump and the Nobel Dilemma

There is no question about the Nobel Peace Prize carrying with it a great deal of political influence; but choosing a candidate on that basis does not truly respect the nature of the prize and is a disservice to previous deserving recipients.

The lack of moral clarity in terms of who ideally deserves to win the Nobel Peace Prize coupled with this year’s infamous nomination for Donald Trump has raised questions about what are the values that the prize recognizes.

The Nobel Peace Prize went from being awarded to those who “have done the most or the best work for fraternity between nations, for the abolition or reduction of standing armies and for the holding and promotion of peace congresses” to those who tried to achieve peace but failed. The 2009 Peace Prize, awarded to Obama after spending 12 days in the Oval Office for “extraordinary efforts to strengthen international diplomacy and cooperation between people” whilst in his term prosecuting two wars begun by his predecessor, or the 2016 Peace Prize, awarded to Juan Manuel Santos despite rejection of Farc peace deal, are instances of the Nobel Prize being awarded not on merit but on political viewpoints.

Proponents arguing for the revival of the tradition of giving the prize to no one at all are more principally consistent with their demands. These instances beg the question of whether the Peace Prize should be awarded to incentivize efforts towards peace even if it comes at the cost of honoring enablers of genocide or those of questionable virtues like Trump.

Trump has repeatedly questioned the legitimacy of the Nobel Prize Committee from time to time. Last year, he predicted that he would win the Nobel Prize “for a lot of things if they gave out fairly, which they don’t.” In April this year, he again claimed that he was a “lock” to win the Nobel Prize in Medicine because of his work in prescribing the drug hydroxychloroquine. His lack of medical association didn’t deter him. He said, “The fact that I’m not a doctor makes my ability to prescribe drugs more impressive.” He went on to declare, “I did peace and I didn’t get the Peace Prize. If I don’t get the Medicine Prize, then the whole Nobel business is rigged.”

What he conveniently chose to ignore were the efforts of overworked medical researchers that have tirelessly contributed to the cause. However, this series of scathing attacks haven’t reduced Trump’s aspiration to win a Nobel Prize. In fact, it has pushed Trump to do what he does best – Lobby. Trump has been nominated by a far right Norwegian lawmaker Tybring-Gjedde for the Nobel Peace Prize, iterating his efforts in the Middle East. He
had earlier nominated Trump in 2018 for his efforts to resolve the North Korea- South Korea conflict. It becomes imperative to uncover the lobbying at bay when it comes to the UAE-Israel deal that has allowed Trump to portray himself as the poster boy of ‘World Peace’.

According to verified news sources, Trump has promised to sell F35s to the UAE to effectuate the deal. This occurred just before the elections, a perfect timing to satisfy the Israeli lobby. The ramifications of the sale of fighter jets could be catastrophic. The UAE has consistently been rated poorly in upholding democratic principles. Moreover, it is not the part of any democratic defense group like NATO which makes it even more difficult to fixate accountability.

There is no question about the Nobel Peace Prize carrying with it a great deal of political influence; but choosing a candidate on that basis does not truly respect the nature of the prize and is a disservice to previous deserving recipients. It has thus begun losing its legitimacy for being viewed as a political tool for the sole motive to further ideology and propaganda.

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