Friday, October 12, 2012
by Stephen Lendman
Call it a rite of fall. Nobel hypocrisy shows up annually. It came again this year. The only surprise was which disreputable honoree would win.
A surprise of sorts indeed. War criminals often become Peace Prize winners. This year a political/economic union won. Perhaps honoring Wall Street and neoliberal/war mongering organizations awaits. Or maybe Republicans and Democrats for causing so much harm globally.
Expect anything from Nobel Committee members. They represent wealth, power, privilege, imperial lawlessness, and war, not peace. Perhaps they believe war is peace. They’ll have to explain why scoundrels regularly win their highest award.
Their announcement said in part:
“The Norwegian Nobel Committee has decided that the Nobel Peace Prize for 2012 is to be awarded to the European Union (EU). The union and its forerunners have for over six decades contributed to the advancement of peace and reconciliation, democracy and human rights in Europe.”
“In the inter-war years, the Norwegian Nobel Committee made several awards to persons who were seeking reconciliation between Germany and France.”
“Since 1945, that reconciliation has become a reality. The dreadful suffering in World War II demonstrated the need for a new Europe. Over a seventy-year period, Germany and France had fought three wars.”
“Today war between Germany and France is unthinkable. This shows how, through well-aimed efforts and by building up mutual confidence, historical enemies can become close partners.”
“The Norwegian Nobel Committee wishes to focus on what it sees as the EU’s most important result: the successful struggle for peace and reconciliation and for democracy and human rights.”
“The stabilizing part played by the EU has helped to transform most of Europe from a continent of war to a continent of peace.”
Apparently Nobel Committee members never heard of NATO. Its member states infest the continent. The North Atlantic Alliance functions as an imperial tool.
It was always for offense, not defense. Post-WW II, Western states had no enemies. East/West war never threatened. Hitler ravaged Soviet Russia. It didn’t regain normalcy until long after Stalin.
NATO was formed as an alliance for war, not peace. Cold War hyperbole incited fear. An arms race followed. So did permanent wars with or without NATO. From Truman to Obama they raged. They still do. NATO’s dirty hands operate in multiple theaters.
It’s a killing machine. America runs it. Leading EU member states include Germany, France, Britain, Italy, Spain, the Netherlands, and Belgium. In total, 21 EU nations are NATO members.
They’re allied for war, not peace. They’re a dagger pointed at humanity’s heart. NATO has global ambitions. It includes ravaging countries everywhere.
Maybe Nobel Committee members don’t pay attention to what’s ongoing. Perhaps turning a blind eye colors their thinking.
Their tradition is long and inglorious. Consider past war criminal winners. Henry Kissinger may qualify as the worst of the lot. His resume includes:
- three to four million Southeast Asian Vietnam War deaths;
- the bloody overthrow of Chile’s Salvador Allende; Augusto Pinochet’s reign of terror;
- support for some of the worst global despots;
- Indonesia’s Surharto was one; Kissinger backed his bloody West Papua takeover; he also encouraged his East Timor genocide;
- support for Cambodia’s Khmer Rouge, its rise to power and reign of terror;
- backing of Pakistan’s overthrow of Bangladesh’s democratically elected government; a half million deaths followed;
- his 1974 National Security Study Memorandum 200 (NSSM 200) advocated genocide; he called it forced world population control; he wanted worthless eaters removed; he recommended eliminating 500 million people by 2000 and millions more annually; and
- numerous other global crimes against humanity were committed during his tenure as Nixon and Ford’s National Security Advisor and Secretary of State. He served as administration Svengali.
In 2001, UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan and the world body won. It was “for their work for a better organized and more peaceful world.”
Throughout his tenure, Annan violated the UN Charter’s mandate. It’s to “save succeeding generations from the scourge of war….”
Instead, he supported imperial lawlessness. He spurned peace. He never condemned or tried to end devastating Iraq sanctions. They killed around 1.5 innocent men, women and children. He stood by, watched, and did nothing.
He never denounced America’s lawless 2003 war. He was silent while Washington-led NATO ravaged Afghanistan. He supported the worst of Israeli crimes.
He said nothing about America’s failed attempts to oust Hugo Chavez or success removing Jean-Bertrand Aristide. Like NATO, he’s an imperial tool. He resurfaced in Syria.
His so-called peace plan was cover for regime change. He’s complicit in war crimes. He’s a world class scoundrel. His record is testimony to failure, betrayal, and criminality.
His sole achievement was spurning peace for war.
Three former Israeli prime ministers also got Nobel Peace Prizes. In 1978, Menachem Begin won. In 1994, so did Yitzhak Rabin and Shimon Peres.
All three are war criminals. They and other Israeli leaders reigned terror on Palestinian civilians for decades. Netanyahu continues their deplorable viciousness. He’s Israel’s worst ever leader. He’s a world class thug. Expect Nobel Committee members one day to honor him. It wouldn’t surprise.
In 2007, Al Gore won. He put politics over principle. He was pro-business, anti-union, pro-war, anti-peace, and no friend of the earth.
His “Earth in the Balance” book was more theater than advocacy. His so-called “green” credentials were used to further his pro-corporate/anti-populist/imperial agenda.
Numerous others like him comprise the Nobel Committee’s hall of shame. Four US presidents stand out. In 1906, Theodore Roosevelt won. He once said he’d “welcome almost any war, for I think this country needs one.”
He was honored for sponsoring the Spanish/American war and Philippines genocide. In May 1902, Senator George Hoar denounced him on the Senate floor, saying:
“You have sacrificed nearly ten thousand American lives – the flower of our youth. You have devastated provinces. You have slain uncounted thousands of the people you desire to benefit.”
“You have established re-concentration camps. Your generals are coming home from their harvest bringing sheaves with them, in the shape of other thousands of sick and wounded and insane to drag out miserable lives, wrecked in body and mind.”
“You make the American flag in the eyes of a numerous people the emblem of sacrilege in Christian churches, and of the burning of human dwellings, and of the horror of the water torture.”
Having done that and more, perhaps he deserved two Nobels. He wanted Pax Americana enforced through the barrel of a gun.
In 1919, Woodrow Wilson was honored. He broke his campaign pledge to keep “us out of war.” He wanted involvement in WW I. In April 1917, he established the Committee on Public Information (CPI or Creel Committee).
Its mission was enlisting public support for war and undermining opposition sentiment. It worked as planned. It turned pacifist Americans into raging German haters. The rest is history.
Wilson’s resume also includes the 1913 Federal Reserve Act. For nearly a century, it let bankers wage financial war on humanity.
In 2002, Jimmy Carter won. He got Argentine death squad leaders involved in training Nicaraguan contras. He supported Salvadoran fascists. He helped Khmer Rouge killers. He backed despots like South Korea’s Chun Doo Hwan.
He armed Suharto after his East Timor genocide. He began covert operations in Afghanistan. He enlisted mujahedeen fighters against Soviet Russia. He supported neoliberal harshness. In 2002, he won the award he wanted for years.
In 2009, Obama became the fourth US presidential recipient. He’s the worst of the lot by far. Nobel Committee members said it was for his “extraordinary efforts to strengthen international diplomacy and cooperation between peoples.”
“Obama’s vision of and work for a world without nuclear weapons.”
He “created a new climate in international politics.”
He supports efforts to strengthen “democracy and human rights.”
“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.”
He was less than nine months in office. He was learning his trade. His crimes of war, against humanity, and genocide were just beginning. His war cabinet assured it. One observer called it a “kettle of hawks.”
Neocons said McCain couldn’t have chosen better. He’ll continue where Bush left off. He did that and more. He’s still at it. Maybe he’ll become a double honoree.
Nobel Committee members reward warriors. They deplore peace. Their awards show what they value most. It reflects Alfred Nobel’s legacy.
He got rich inventing dynamite and manufacturing weapons. He was a 19th century war profiteer. Late in life he reinvented himself. He established awards bearing his name.
One was for peace he deplored. His business depended on war. There was plenty around then. There’s more than ever now. Nobel’s legacy legitimizes wars and leaders who wage them.
Honoring EU nations shouldn’t surprise. They’re waging hot wars and financial ones on humanity. Committee members recognized their achievement. Perhaps they’ll be encouraged to do more.
Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.