• Sweden edition
 
Nobel Foundation rejects Peace Prize criticism

Nobel Foundation rejects Peace Prize criticism

Published: 08 Mar 2012 14:04 GMT+01:00
Updated: 08 Mar 2012 14:04 GMT+01:00

"Despite that many lively discussions have been held on whether the chosen Peace Prize laureates fulfilled the prescribed provisions, the Foundation does not consider that the prize decisions made by the Norwegian Nobel Committee have entailed any such deviation," it said in a statement.

Swedish authorities had asked the foundation to look into claims from Fredrik Heffermehl, a lawyer and author of the book "The Nobel Peace Prize: What Nobel Really Wanted," that the Norwegian Nobel Committee had gone far astray from the wishes expressed in prize creator Alfred Nobel's 1895 last will and testament.

Heffermehl claims that the five-member prize committee had deviated from Nobel's wishes by honouring human rights activists, such as Chinese dissident Liu Xiaobo in 2010, environmentalists such as Al Gore and the IPCC in 2007, and humanitarian workers like Mother Teresa in 1979.

The pick of US President Barack Obama for the 2009 prize, after he had spent just a few months in office, also met widespread criticism.

Heffermehl was outraged by the opinion expressed by the Nobel Foundation and supported by the Norwegian Nobel Committee Thursday.

"The Nobel Committee confirms again ... that it has made this into its own prize (with) its own content inserted into the arbitrarily self-chosen term 'peace' and again shows no interest in Nobel and what he wanted with the prize," he said in a statement.

In his will, Nobel stipulated that the Peace Prize should go to the person or organisation that has "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."

"The Norwegian prize committee appears to still think it is their task to

hand out a prize for 'peace' in general despite the fact that Nobel, according

to his will, created a prize for 'champions of peace'," Heffermehl said.

The Stockholm-based Nobel Foundation meanwhile stressed that Nobel had wanted the different prize committees to be independent in their decisions, and pointed out that in all the prize categories there was room for interpretation and debate about which areas should be included.

It will in the end officially be up to the Stockholm county administration (Länsstyrelsen) to determine if the Norwegian Nobel Committee has followed the rules or not, but it has already rejected a similar complaint filed by Heffermehl in 2008, and is likely to fall in line with the Nobel Foundation's opinion.

"If the Stockholm county administration rejects Heffermehl's arguments again, I hope this case will be closed for good," said the head of the Nobel Institute in Oslo, Geir Lundestad.

"We are optimistic because we have not done anything wrong. Quite the

contrary," he told AFP.

AFP/The Local (news@thelocal.se)

Your comments about this article

14:51 March 8, 2012 by Reason abd Realism
The Norwegian Nobel committee is guilty of watering down the significance of the peace prize by handing it out to people like Obama who had done identically nothing before he received it (and many will say he has done nothing to promote peace since). How can these imbeciles look in the mirror and honestly say they did the right thing?

And tellingly, the co-recipient with Al Gore (for climate change) pointed out during his own acceptance speech in Norway that it is a travesty that Mahatma Ghandi never received a peace prize for all the blodshed he prevented.

Bravo to Heffermehl for trying to smarten them up. Sounds like the old boys club will ignore him, and continue to treat the prize like a sort of popularity contest, which is unfortunate with regard to the memory the more deserving recipients.
15:13 March 8, 2012 by acidcritic
The Nobel Foundation is commiting too many errors. They awarded the peace price to Henry Kissinger, one of the most tenebrous or gloomy personages of the history. As an adviser of Johson, it was Kissinger who began Vietnam war. After 4 years of continuos downfalls, and after 3 million vietnameze and more than 150.000 of americans dead, Kissinger entered in panic and stoped the war. The Nobel Prize Comitee forgot the first part of the history and awarded the "peace" prize to Kissinger. There are many indications that with Obama they are going to repeat the acto. The Nobel Comitee in literature is also doing lots of mistakes. Why 6 million readers- the 6 million swedes-, can decide what is good for the other 6 billion of people who live on Earth?
15:16 March 8, 2012 by karex
I agree. They have done nothing but devalue the prize - if anyone can get it these days, who cares about a dumb prize then?
15:17 March 8, 2012 by apelsin000
Nobel pisssss prize, LoL, cool!
16:07 March 8, 2012 by Atlas
Nobel Peace Prize...The best joke to come from Norway.
19:13 March 8, 2012 by johan rebel
The simple truth is that Heffermehl is outraged that the Nobel Peace Prize has not been awarded to his personal hero Mordechai Vanunu. This vindictive fanatic is trying to get even with the Norwegian Committee in every which way he can, to the point where he has made it his full-time career. The poor man is consumed by hatred, I wonder if he ever sleeps at night without having Nobel Committee nightmares.
19:32 March 8, 2012 by OUIJA
Nobody is trying to get even with nobody. The Nobel Peace Prize is a disgrace to the memory of Alfred Nobel.

If you believe that recipients like Kissinger, Arafat, Obama,the infamous Al Gore,Menchú and Wangari deserved the award, you have never read the testament of Alfred Nobel. The Norwegian Nobel Committee converted the prize into a mockery.

If possible, the granting of the prize should be given back to Sweden, but, if they would handled it in the same pathetic way the handle the Literature Prize, it woudl be better to stop giving the Prize and to invent something else, like they invented the "Economic Prize in the Memory of Alfred Nobel", just to ride on the back of the big horse.
21:03 March 8, 2012 by Rebel
So how's that prize to Obama working out for world peace?
21:43 March 8, 2012 by OUIJA
Perfect. After Iran, he will be nominated again. It would not be the first and the last time someone wins that spurious prize twice.
21:45 March 8, 2012 by Iraniboy
@Rebel

It is working very well. He is busy these days speculating on how to attack Iran!!!

Peace price to Obama, Arafat and Peres in particular who all have a track record of talking about importance of killing and war is just a joke! I hereby announce the next nominee Mr Khomenei.
00:45 March 9, 2012 by threadbare
Anyone familiar with the life and times of Alfred Nobel and with his will as written, would find it difficult to agree with the selection of most laureates during recent decades. Regrettably what has become an industry, from all appearances, has likewise become so politically motivated. It is truly fortunate that the "scientific" awards have thus far avoided these pitfalls.
01:35 March 9, 2012 by blursd
In about the last thirty years the Nobel Peace Prize has descended from a legitimate recognition of efforts towards promoting actual world peace to a political statement tool out of Oslo.

Among the more obviously questionable recipients are Henry Kissinger - who was responsible influencing the large scale use of force on numerous occasions, Yassar Arafat - who spent the better part of three decades coordinating terror attacks across Europe and the Middle East, Al Gore - for filming a pseudo documentary on Global Warming to amounted to little more than a self panegyric and incredibly flawed logic, AND ... Barack Obama - for doing ... well, nothing.

And that's just the short list ... You have so many people in the world HAVE MADE incredible contributions to promoting peace and understanding who aren't even considered, because it wouldn't make enough of what the Norwegian Committee would consider a "statement." The Peace Prize wasn't created to make a "statement" but to recognize meaningful progress towards ACTUAL PEACE.
13:13 March 9, 2012 by Borilla
Apparently Heffermehl (and perhaps most of those commenting on this page) is just upset that he doesn't get to pick the recipient. There do seem to be some religious, geographic and color prejudices showing here.
15:24 March 9, 2012 by Reason abd Realism
@ Borilla

Often TL blogs are so racist that they read like KKK manifestos, but there is little or nothing racist in the comments written here up to now.

Recipients that are white (Gore and his private jet), Arab (Arafat), Jewish (Kissinger and Perez), Black (Obama) are all being criticized here, not because of their race, but because they do not deserve the prize. And more specifically it is the Nobel committee that is being criticized.

If you are going to play the 'race' card, do that when it is justified by the comments that are being made. The issue here is the lamentable selection record of Peace Prize winners in recent years.

It would not matter if Herremehl is angry that his favortie choices have been ignored if the Norwegain Nobel committee had made equivalent or more suitable choices. The problem is that the Nobel Committee's choices have not made sense in many cases.
16:44 March 9, 2012 by Britt-Marie7
What a horrible decision to for example elect Obama who at that time had done nothing to promote piece or otherwise. Maybe just his good looks???

I don't think that they know what they are doing, they are getting away from Nobel's wishes completely.
10:03 March 10, 2012 by OUIJA
´@ Reason and Realism # 15

I would like to had written what you wrote. It seems that it does not matter the subject, a great majority of posters have the word "racism" in their minds.

@Britt-Marie # 16

You need eyeglasses, but that is your problem. On the other hand, you are wrong when stating that they do not know what they are doing. Yes they do. They have converted the Nobel's wishes into a political item, that serves the Norwegians agenda quite well.
Today's headlines
Opinion
'Why were we kept in the dark for years?'
The submarine hunt is now in it's sixth day. Photo: TT

'Why were we kept in the dark for years?'

Military expert Johanne Hildebrandt tells The Local that the biggest question in the Stockholm submarine hunt hasn't been answered yet - why don't we know more about the "other operations" from the last few years? READ  

The Local List
Eight things to love about renting in Sweden
Apartments in Sweden are compact. Photo: Shutterstock

Eight things to love about renting in Sweden

A housing crisis means that short-term sublets are the norm in major cities and rent regulation rules are frequently flouted. But this week, The Local's decided to look on the bright side of renting an apartment in Sweden. READ  

Business & Money
Nordea banks big third-quarter profit gain
Nordea's Chief Executive Christian Clausen. Photo: TT

Nordea banks big third-quarter profit gain

Swedish bank Nordea announced on Wednesday a sharp rise in third quarter profits despite the economic slowdown and major outlays for an IT overhaul. READ  

National
Knutby priest faces early release from prison
Knutby in eastern Sweden, the scene of the murder. Photo: TT

Knutby priest faces early release from prison

A former priest in eastern Sweden who was sentenced to life in prison for organizing the murder of his wife has had his sentence reduced. READ  

Opinion
'Sweden will see Russia as a threat again'

'Sweden will see Russia as a threat again'

The Local speaks to one of Europe's leading security experts about why social media meant the Swedish military couldn't keep their 'submarine' search a secret and how she believes the country will ramp up its security against Russia. READ  

Interview
'Swedes are funnier than they think'
Comedian Al Pitcher has launched his new tour. Photo: www.alpitcher.com

'Swedes are funnier than they think'

New Zealand-born Al Pitcher launched his new comedy show in Stockholm this week. There wasn't a dull moment as The Local phoned up the man who has become one of Sweden's hottest comedians, while he took an eventful stroll in the capital. READ  

National
Stockholm suicide bomb investigation closes
The suicide bombing took place in 2010. Photo: TT

Stockholm suicide bomb investigation closes

Sweden's Security Service (Säpo) has announced that it will stop its core investigation into a suicide bombing in Stockholm four years ago. READ  

Stockholm 'sub hunt'
Military heads into 'new phase' in sub search
The search for the missing 'submarine' is now in its sixth day. Photo: TT

Military heads into 'new phase' in sub search

A press conference on the search for a suspected foreign vessel in Swedish waters revealed that the Armed Forces would be heading into a "new phase" on Wednesday, although it remained unclear what that might involve. READ  

Lifestyle
Vasa ship cannon blasted in Sweden
The bronze replica cannon. Photo: Beth Dacey.

Vasa ship cannon blasted in Sweden

A replica of one of the cannons present on Stockholm's iconic Vasa warship when it sank in 1628 is being tested for the first time in central Sweden. READ  

Health
Swedish farmers contracted swine flu
Swine flu can spread between pigs and humans. Photo: TT

Swedish farmers contracted swine flu

A human strain of the swine flu virus normally only found in pigs was discovered in Sweden earlier this year, the country's Public Health Agency has revealed. READ  

RECEIVE OUR NEWSLETTER AND ALERTS
National
Vasa ship cannon blasted in Sweden
National
Sub hunt: Day-by-day
National
Sub hunt: Stockholm islanders share their fears with The Local
Sponsored Article
The best options for oversea transfers
National
Get 20% off unique Swedish homeware
Blog updates

21 October

Denna & den här (The Swedish Teacher) »

"?Denna? or ?den hr?? Swedish language students often ask question about different pronouns. One pronoun that especially..." READ »

 

19 October

Getting it (Blogweiser) »

"Follow Joel Sherwood on FB Few watch baseball in Sweden. This is excellent when your team loses..." READ »

 
 
 
National
Dentist gives free care to Roma beggars
Business & Money
Get your own office in Gothenburg or Stockholm - free for a day
Gallery
Property of the week: Malmö
Gallery
PHOTOS: 'Foreign activity' in Swedish waters
Gallery
People-watching: October 19th
TT
Society
QUIZ: How good is your Swedish?
Lifestyle
What's on in Sweden: October 17th - 24th
Society
The nudity... and nine other things expat men notice in Sweden
Gallery
People-watching: October 15th
Gallery
Your views: Should outdoor smoking be banned in Sweden?
Business & Money
Sweden has 'large hole' in finances
Sponsored Article
Introducing... Finding a job in Stockholm
Society
Monster salmon caught in northern Sweden
Gallery
Property of the week: Lorensberg
National
Scandinavia's child bride
National
Ebola crisis: How is Sweden preparing?
Business & Money
How Sweden is becoming a cashless society
Gallery
Stockholm Burlesque Festival 2014
National
How a little red horse became a symbol for Sweden
Gallery
People-watching: October 12th
Business & Money
The hottest start-ups from southern Sweden
National
What's on in Sweden: October 10th - 17th
National
Stockholm is 'best' region for well-being
Gallery
People-watching: October 8th
National
Five facts to know about Patrick Modiano
Society
My Swedish Career: A French fashionista in Sweden
Society
Swede's anti-bully Facebook tale goes viral
Society
Have you seen Sweden's viral subway cancer campaign?
National
Isis: Swedes linked to Turkish prisoner swap
National
Should Swedes be banned from buying sex abroad?
Gallery
Fredrik Reinfeldt's leaving presents
National
Five Swedish TV shows you shouldn't miss
Gallery
A tool belt, a casserole, and a book. Fredrik Reinfeldt's parliament gifts
TT
Lifestyle
Top five winter festivals in Sweden
TT
National
Sami reindeer herders win mine reprieve
Gallery
Property of the Week: Gamla Enskede
Sponsored Article
How to catch the first lobster of the year
Politics
Ten new minister faces you should know
Tech
First womb transplant baby in world born in Sweden
Gallery
People-watching: October 5th
National
What's on in Sweden
Team SCA
Sponsored Article
All-female SCA team takes off on Volvo Ocean Race
Latest news from The Local in Austria

More news from Austria at thelocal.at

Latest news from The Local in Switzerland

More news from Switzerland at thelocal.ch

Latest news from The Local in Germany

More news from Germany at thelocal.de

Latest news from The Local in Denmark

More news from Denmark at thelocal.dk

Latest news from The Local in Spain

More news from Spain at thelocal.es

Latest news from The Local in France

More news from France at thelocal.fr

Latest news from The Local in Italy

More news from Italy at thelocal.it

Latest news from The Local in Norway

More news from Norway at thelocal.no

1,007
jobs available
Swedish Down Town Consulting & Productions
Swedish Down Town Consulting & Productions is an innovative business company which provides valuable assistance with the Swedish Authorities, Swedish language practice and general communications. Call 073-100 47 81 or visit:
www.swedishdowntown.com
PSD Media
PSD Media is marketing company that offers innovative solutions for online retailers. We provide modern solutions that help increase traffic and raise conversion. Visit our site at:
http://psdmedia.se
If you want to drink, that’s your business.
If you want to stop, we can help.

Learn more about English-language Alcoholics Anonymous in Sweden. No dues. No fees. Confidentiality assured.
AA-EUROPE.ORG/SWEDEN