Forgot your password?
typodupeerror
The Internet Government The Media Politics Technology

WikiLeaks, Internet Nominees For Nobel Peace Prize 202

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the keep-'em-nominated dept.
Hugh Pickens writes writes "WikiLeaks and the Internet are among a record 241 nominations for the 2011 Nobel Peace Prize that also includes Afghan rights advocate Sima Samar, the European Union, former German Chancellor Helmut Kohl, Cuban dissident Oswaldo Paya Sardinas, Russian rights group Memorial and its founder Svetlana Gannushkina. 'Looking at the long term, we can say interest in the prize is strong and growing along with the number of candidates,' says Geir Lundestad, a non-voting member of the Nobel panel. WikiLeaks grabbed the world's attention and angered a number of governments by publishing thousands of secret US diplomatic cables, while pundits say the Internet or social media such as Facebook and Twitter, which have been used to help organize dissent in countries with oppressive governments, could be rewarded. Under the leadership of former Prime Minister Thorbjoern Jagland, the Nobel panel has not shied away from bold decisions — first picking Barack Obama just months after he became US president, and last year awarding the prize to jailed Chinese dissident Liu Xiaobo."
This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

WikiLeaks, Internet Nominees For Nobel Peace Prize

Comments Filter:
  • by kriston (7886) on Tuesday March 01, 2011 @11:05AM (#35347294) Homepage Journal

    I'd love to meet this Internet guy some day.

    • At this point I'd propose a nomination for the Medicine Nobel: water. (Hey, it keeps people alive all the time.)
      On the other hand among the nominees you have the EU. The Nobel Committee must be just trolling.
      • You would feel that way about water, if you knew the evil it has done: Dihydrogen Monoxide Warning [msu.edu]
      • by Weezul (52464)

        Moreover, they should not ask engineers to accept the award on behalf of the internet, i.e. no Tim Berners-Lee, no Zuckerberg, etc.

        Ideally, the people who accept the prize should be people who're most putting themselves at risk to make the internet friendly to dissidents. And that'd be Julian Assange, Jacob Appelbaum (Tor project), etc. :)

        We should all hope that WikiLeaks wins with Assange accepting the prize because it's be fucking hilarious if they award an empty chair with him being in prison in Sweden.

      • by IICV (652597)

        Well the thing is, a whole lot of people can nominate almost anything for the Nobel Peace Prize - just look at who's eligible [wikipedia.org] to submit a nomination on Wikipedia:

        * Members of national assemblies and governments and members of the Inter-Parliamentary Union,
        * Members of the Permanent Court of Arbitration and the International Court of Justice at the Hague,
        * Members of Institut de Droit International,
        * University profess

    • Oh c'mon, he's a myth. Everywhere and nowhere, transcending space and time... get real!

    • by dkleinsc (563838)

      We have met the Internet and he is us.

    • by Ihmhi (1206036)

      This may just be conjecture, but I hear Internet's a pretty cool guy. He has pron and doesn't afraid of anything.

    • by Canazza (1428553)

      If the Internet wins, will Al Gore be picking the award up on it's behalf?

    • I'd love to meet this Internet guy some day.

      Don't be silly, the Internet isn't a person, it's a small black box [youtube.com].

  • by idontgno (624372) on Tuesday March 01, 2011 @11:07AM (#35347310) Journal

    will leave the United States government in an interesting quandry if it proceeds to success.

    The US was vociferous in supporting the award of the Peace Prize to Liu Xiaobo, in the face of the Chinese government's strident opposition. What will it do when an organization it considers "treasonous" is a Nobel candidate?

    Just for payback... I mean, symmetry... China should publicly back Wikileaks' bid.

    • by darjen (879890) on Tuesday March 01, 2011 @11:14AM (#35347376)

      It just so happens that Liu Xiaobo was/is an ardent supporter of the Iraq and Afghanistan wars, which probably gave the USA even more cause to support him. I don't understand how on earth you can give a peace prize to someone who supports war. What a joke.

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Liu_Xiaobo#Political_views [wikipedia.org]

      • by nomadic (141991)
        They gave Henry Kissinger a peace prize; everything after that was downhill.
      • by GooberToo (74388) on Tuesday March 01, 2011 @11:24AM (#35347464)

        Known terrorists have literally been awarded the Nobel Peace Prize. Obama was awarded the prize for having done absolutely nothing to earn it. The combination literally means everyone on earth has earned a Nobel prize. Sadly, the prize has become something of a sad joke and isn't respected by anyone with a brain. Worse, in modern times, they've been attempting to use it to shape politics rather than reward high ethics and peaceful politics, making it all the more pathetic.

        The Nobel Peace Prize is absolutely meaningless at this point in time.

        • by Ihmhi (1206036)

          So basically, it's like those crappy little trophies they hand out to every single Little League player at the end of the year (regardless of how well they actually played), except it's only one award and just once per year?

        • Known terrorists have literally been awarded the Nobel Peace Prize

          Yassir Arafat.

          At this point, if anyone gets the prize who deserves it, the reason isn't because they deserved it. Assange will get it, not because he deserves it, but because it would embarrass the USA.

          It's a good award to refuse at this point.

          • by chrb (1083577) on Tuesday March 01, 2011 @12:19PM (#35348016)

            Known terrorists have literally been awarded the Nobel Peace Prize

            Yassir Arafat.

            Arafat jointly won the Nobel Prize along with Yitzhak Rabin and Shimon Peres for their part in the Oslo Peace Accords. Arafat was not a terrorist at the time of winning. He had just negotiated and signed the Peace Accords - which formally renounced violence and recognised the state of Israel. He led a secular organisation, and fought against Hamas and Islamist influence in Palestine. He was seen as a traitor by some of his people for conceding too much in the negotiations, was sidelined by Israel and the West, which ultimately enabled Hamas to seize power.

            Arafat's fate wasn't as bad as that of Rabin, who was also viewed as a traitor to his people for signing the Peace Accords, was condemned to death by some Jewish religious scholars for the crime of "treason", and then assassinated by someone who believed in that verdict.

            It's too bad that both were seen as traitors for pursuing peace; the failure of the Peace Accords was probably the biggest squandered opportunity for regional peace in the last few decades.

            • The fact is, whenever any group of people at each other's throats kiss and make up, they get the pace prize. Whenever someone makes a credible threat to the world and then recants it, he gets a prize. I mean just take a look at the list and see what slimeballs get it. It's a political prize, it's meaningless, get over it. (And before you cite the Dalai Lama, look at the actual system he stands for.) There have been a few deserving recipients over the years, especially further back, but they would probably f

          • by nedlohs (1335013)

            Manedela got it a year earlier, just as big a terrorist.

            I wouldn't care if Stalin had been awarded it (he was nominated more than once after all, heck Hitler was too though that was supposedly in jest) I'd still take the $1.5 million if they wanted to give it to me.

        • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

          by Fractal Dice (696349)

          Every time I see these slams against Obama for getting the prize for nothing, I smile. Because the way the rants are phrased only prove to me that committee made the right choice. Obama is just the placeholder. It's the American people who really won the award.

          "I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin, but by the content of their character."

          • by Rich0 (548339)

            That is probably the best description of affirmative action that I've ever seen!

            And probably the last thing Martin Luther King was suggesting was that one of his kids should be given a reward of some kind simply for being a placeholder, that is, that they were judged by the color of their skin, and not by the content of their character.

            If you want to endorse the views of MLK, then be happy or sad about the award being given to Obama by virtue of his character, not his skin.

          • by darjen (879890)

            No. Obama doesn't deserve a peace prize for continuing the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan even though the American people want out. Not to mention all the supposed enemy combatants he continues to jail indefinitely without any evidence or trial. Many innocent lives continue to be destroyed because Obama refuses to quit the wars which he campaigned against.

        • by dkleinsc (563838) on Tuesday March 01, 2011 @12:09PM (#35347904) Homepage

          Known terrorists have literally been awarded the Nobel Peace Prize.

          There are at least 2 counterarguments to this being somehow illegitimate:
          1. "Terrorist" is an extremely hard word to define, because almost everything that people generally considered terrorists do, governments also do. For instance, the US government has blown up apartment buildings in Yemen to try to influence Yemeni policy. All too often, "terrorist", like "communist" 50 years ago, just means "some guy a government doesn't like".
          2. Known terrorists can in fact make peace. The IRA were terrorists, yet they made peace with the UK. The ANC were at times terrorists, but Nelson Mandela made peace with the South African government.

          • It reminds me of a passage in "Interesting Times" by Terry Pratchett. It goes along the lines of:

            - You are a rebel. You should be punished!
            - But there are mitigating circumstances!
            - There are no mitigating circumstances for rebels.
            - Unless you WIN.
            - Yes, that is the only mitigating circumstance.

        • by Spykk (823586) on Tuesday March 01, 2011 @12:10PM (#35347924)

          Known terrorists have literally been awarded the Nobel Peace Prize. Obama was awarded the prize for having done absolutely nothing to earn it. The combination literally means everyone on earth has earned a Nobel prize.

          You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means.

        • by Kjella (173770)

          Known terrorists have literally been awarded the Nobel Peace Prize. Obama was awarded the prize for having done absolutely nothing to earn it. The combination literally means everyone on earth has earned a Nobel prize. Sadly, the prize has become something of a sad joke and isn't respected by anyone with a brain. Worse, in modern times, they've been attempting to use it to shape politics rather than reward high ethics and peaceful politics, making it all the more pathetic.

          A known terrorist that at the time was shaking hands and making peace with the israelis on the White House lawn. Also I think Norway suffered an awful lot of hubris because these were the Oslo Accords [wikipedia.org], Oslo being the capital of Norway. Many people liked to believe this was the agreement to finally settle things between the israelis and palestinians, which would have been a prize-worthy accomplishment no matter his past. The trouble is that they act too soon, they put the prestige of the peace prize into the

          • by arth1 (260657)

            A known terrorist that at the time was shaking hands and making peace with the israelis on the White House lawn.

            Don't forget Meachem Begin, who was one of the Irgun terrorist organization leaders, and directly responsible for the King David Hotel bombing, in which 91 people (mostly British and Arab civilians) died. Unlike Arafat, he never distanced himself from violence.
            Or Nelson Mandela, who was a founding member of Spear of the Nation, responsible for quite a few terrorist acts.
            There is nothing that makes Irgun and Spear's actions any better than PLOs, so only focusing on Arafat is partisan at best and uninformed

        • The combination literally means everyone on earth has earned a Nobel prize.

          Everyone has literally won a Nobel prize? Do we each get the prize money or is it split among everyone on Earth? I'm guessing split. So about $1.4 million split between about 6 billion people... Less than a penny each. Actually, forget my prize money. I just want a little statue or plaque to hang on my wall. Baring that, can I at least put "Winner of the Nobel Peace Prize" on my resume?

        • by Asic Eng (193332)

          "Worse, in modern times, they've been attempting to use it to shape politics"

          Arguably, that's exactly what it's for. Just as with the science-oriented Nobel prizes - they enable the receiver to conduct more research, freeing them from some of the financial constraints.

          In that sense it wasn't really wrong to give the prize to Obama because he hadn't done anything yet - it was wrong mainly because it was already clear that he wouldn't and also because the money would not help him to accomplish any of his (nom

        • by ShakaUVM (157947)

          >>The combination literally means everyone on earth has earned a Nobel prize.

          Kind of like the "Time Person of the Year" for 2006?

      • to remedy a bad situation?

        I am sure we could have just kept ignoring the all the killings, rapes, and such, that went on in Afghanistan. Lord knows we are damn good at ignoring the crimes of humanity committed 'over there' or by groups which might want to harm us directly but can't because they are 'over there'. I am quite sure one could sit down and in the space of an hour or two come up with a list of many times when a war occurred that fixed more problems than it caused.

        I would take Bush over Obama an

      • by c6gunner (950153)

        I don't understand how on earth you can give a peace prize to someone who supports war.

        Yeah, a lot of people seem to be under the impression that anything they can't automatically understand must necessarily be wrong. It's called a "god-of-the-gaps" fallacy.

        Si vis pacem, fac bellum.

      • by dcw3 (649211)

        I don't understand how on earth you can give a peace prize to someone who supports war. What a joke.

        For the same reason that the award is named after the guy that invented... http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dynamite [wikipedia.org]

    • by Magada (741361)

      Dunno. Sic mercs [anonleaks.ch] on them, maybe? Plausible deniability is a sweet thing.

    • Just for payback... I mean, symmetry... China should publicly back Wikileaks' bid.

      Perhaps you mean harmony ;-)

    • by GooberToo (74388)

      A better question is, despite your hyperbole, why would the US government care. Furthermore, they have no input into the matter so even if they do care, who cares.

    • Muahaha delicious, I was hoping this would happen for exactly this reason. Let's see how the US reacts when the tables are turned.

    • Except I'm sure that China is far more afraid of wikileaks than the US Government.
    • by Genrou (600910)

      will leave the United States government in an interesting quandry if it proceeds to success.

      While I agree, wouldn't it look even worse to, say, Sweden?

  • Who can accept an award on behalf of the Internet? The Swedish Pirate Party has a candidate, presented here [opassande.se]. (Google translation to English) [google.com]
  • Norwegian companies have reported still meeting problems trading with China for having had the gal to give the price to a Chinese criminal, and the Chinese refuse to accept that the Nobel Peace Committee is independent of government.

    I wonder if this misunderstanding could be rectified if WikiLeaks was given the peace price? At the very least China would see that they make decisions that obviously isn't in the best interest of the Norwegian state.
    • by tnk1 (899206) on Tuesday March 01, 2011 @11:42AM (#35347608)

      Its not a misunderstanding. The Chinese know full well the prize committee is not an agent of the government, they just choose to spin it that way for their population.

      What they really think about it is that it is an outgrowth of Western culture and political theory. The Chinese government believes that it has the best interests of its people at heart, and that a state like theirs is best for China. They know the the West does not share that opinion, so the Chinese government will use whatever means it has to discredit the prize committee when it conflicts with them. The best way of doing that is to spin it as a political tool.

      As for the problems with trade, they are not punishing Norway for awarding the prize, they are punishing Norway for failing to spy on the committee, and then to for failing to intervene, exert influence and prevent such a candidate from being awarded the prize simply because China is bigger and more powerful. They are trying to bully the Norwegian government into acting in a manner contrary to its people's expectations and more in line with China's. China expects that other governments will do special things to stay friendly with China, and if they don't, they will make sure that the transgressor will pay for their lack of vision.

      In short, China won't care if Wikileaks wins, they only care that they were thwarted before and they do not like to be thwarted. The only thing that will mollify China is if their hand-picked candidate wins due specifically to Chinese power. This isn't a matter of balance, its a pure dick waving contest.

      • by BZ (40346)

        > The Chinese know full well the prize committee is
        > not an agent of the government

        Uh... The peace prize committee is appointed by the Norwegian Parliament. There is now a restriction that sitting members of the Parliament can't be on the committee, but it's just made up of past members of the Parliament.

        Looking at the makeup of the committee as of today ( http://nobelpeaceprize.org/en_GB/nomination_committee/members/ [nobelpeaceprize.org] ) I see:

        1) Chair was a member of the Parliament 1993-2009, president of the Parliam

  • by elrous0 (869638) * on Tuesday March 01, 2011 @11:09AM (#35347338)

    The prize now has become so political that it's hard to take it seriously anymore. There is no way Wikileaks stands a chance because of the way the committee is beholden to Western governments. Only pro-Western dissidents ever win, NEVER anti-Western dissidents or even those who might be construed as opposed to Western governments (ala Wikileaks). Obama's prize was the height of this political hypocrisy--giving him the award before he even had the chance to do anything, just on his word that he was going to do peaceful stuff (which he hasn't, if anything he's expanded Bush's heavy-handed war policies even more).

    • by darjen (879890) on Tuesday March 01, 2011 @11:19AM (#35347424)

      The hypocrisy in giving Obama the prize wasn't because he didn't have the chance to do anything. It's because Obama ended up embracing and extending Bush's wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, bombing Pakistan and the covert operations there. He utterly failed in his promise to close Guantanamo, insists on continuing the practice of jailing so-called enemy combatants indefinitely with no evidence or trial, etc etc etc.

      You don't give someone who willingly insists on conducting global wars the peace prize. At least not if you have any credibility whatsoever.

      • by drakaan (688386)

        I'm not sure I agree. Peace is the opposite of death and chaos, but that death and chaos can occur without an official "war" being waged. For that matter, sometimes, official "war" is what ends the death and chaos.

        I can't argue with your analysis of the President's promises vs. actions (though I doubt we agree on what was a failure and why), but I think you *can* give someone the peace prize who conducts war, if the reason and end result is a decrease in that same death and chaos for innocent people.

        • by Tim C (15259)

          Peace is the opposite of death and chaos

          Chaos perhaps, but deaths are going to happen however peaceful things are. Perhaps you meant violent death?

          • by drakaan (688386)

            Yep. I did indeed mean violent death. And furthermore, violent death at the hands of another human who intentionally killed you.

            Seemed a bit wordy, though, and I hope others had the same insight as you as to my full meaning there.

      • by dkleinsc (563838)

        You mean like back when they gave it to Henry Kissinger? Really, the politicized nature of the prize is nothing new.

    • by LordVader717 (888547) on Tuesday March 01, 2011 @11:54AM (#35347720)

      Obama basically got the prize for the new START treaty. Of course his actions since then have been very unconvincing and many would like to be able to retract the prize after so many U-turns.

    • by jdgeorge (18767)

      It's SUPPOSED to be political. It's a prize for peace [wikipedia.org]. The idea of peace is inherently political.

    • peace is a political concept. it is not possible to talk about peace without talking about politics. the very definition of the concept of peace itself is only possible to be made in political terminology

      any political situation has people on one side or another. therefore, every peace prize every offered, or any theoretical peace prize even possible, will have political controversy attached to it. even if you awarded the prize to some monk who just helped farmers grow their crops better: some company who is

    • by GreatBunzinni (642500) on Tuesday March 01, 2011 @01:44PM (#35348956)

      The prize now has become so political that it's hard to take it seriously anymore.

      The Nobel Peace Prize [nobelprize.org] is awarded to those who "shall have done the most or the best work for fraternity between nations, the abolition or reduction of standing armies and for the holding and promotion of peace congresses." Bitching about who was awarded with the Nobel Peace Prize because the process "has become so political" is therefore absurd, because the very purpose and existence of this award is political. Wars are political, relations between nations are political, acts between states are political. Therefore, by it's very nature, it's quite obvious that the purpose of this award, and the only purpose it has, is to praise a specific type of political action, which is in itself a political act.

      As a consequence, it's stupid to try to downplay the Nobel Peace Prize by complaining that it "has become so political". It's stupid because this sort of accusation reflects the ignorance of those who reiterate it regarding the Nobel Peace Prize, and it demonstrates a failure to understand it's intended purpose, as set by Alfred Nobel.

      More depressing than this, this sort of accusation actually is meant to convey the following complaint: "I don't like the person who was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize, his award means that what he does or represent has been publicly praised to a world-wide audience, and as I don't like that person then I feel I'm forced to resort to pettiness to try to downgrade that achievement". After all, you don't complain that the Nobel Peace Prize is meaningless. Instead, your complains boil down to

      1. X was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize
      2. I don't like X
      3. Therefore this means Nobel Peace Prize isn't good anymore
      4. As the Nobel Piece Prize isn't good anymore, X's award means next to nothing
      5. As X's award means next to nothing, X isn't good, and everyone should hate X, just like I do

      So, to sum things up, the Nobel Peace Prize is, and always was, political in nature. And nothing other than that. So bitching about it being political is just like bitching that the water is wet.

    • by c6gunner (950153)

      Only pro-Western dissidents ever win, NEVER anti-Western dissidents or even those who might be construed as opposed to Western governments (ala Wikileaks).

      Yeah, I know. I'm still disappointed that they turned down my previous nominations of Fidel Castro and Kim Jong Il. This year I'm gonna nominate Osama Bin Laden - another truly heroic "Anti-Western-Dissident" - but those damn Swedes will probably just ignore me again.

      Also, remember, wikileaks is "non-partisan" and "objective". Don't make the mistake of labelling them as anti-western-dissidents, comrade.

    • by guspasho (941623)

      When was the Peace Prize ever *not* political?

  • The Internet? (Score:5, Interesting)

    by arielCo (995647) on Tuesday March 01, 2011 @11:10AM (#35347342)
    I guess we can nominate Anonymous as well. At least *someone* can go in a Guy Fawkes mask to collect the prize :)
  • by unity100 (970058) on Tuesday March 01, 2011 @11:16AM (#35347396) Homepage Journal
    Either toughest ass award, because one needs to have the toughest ass on the planet in order to brave going against all the established dirty dealers of the world, or, a heart as big as a mountain.

    Regardless of how you look at it, they perfectly embody the definition of 'berserker'.
  • Vote Anonymous! (Score:3, Insightful)

    by fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) on Tuesday March 01, 2011 @11:17AM (#35347400) Journal
    People have the unfortunate tendency to commit terribly boring speeches when they win things. Anonymous, on the other hand, could keep it pithy.

    "Thank you, thank you. We did it for the lulz." *Applause*
  • by Tr3vin (1220548) on Tuesday March 01, 2011 @11:17AM (#35347404)
    Wow, WikiLeaks got nominated! This has to be an important story. After all, it isn't like the nomination process is fairly simple or that there are 240 other nominees.
  • Tunisian General ? (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Jimpqfly (790794) on Tuesday March 01, 2011 @11:27AM (#35347488) Homepage Journal
    What about Rachid Ammar, the Tunisian General who :
    - denied a direct order to shoot on civilians,
    - put Ben Ali on a place with a kick in his ass,
    - protected the people from armed militia ?
    • by guspasho (941623)

      Nominations are kept secret by the Nobel prize committee so there's no way to know unless the person who made the nomination announces it. But nominations are also due by February 1st so it seems unlikely.

  • by SpaghettiPattern (609814) on Tuesday March 01, 2011 @11:29AM (#35347510)
    I don't believe in conspiracy theories but this smells like yet another way to get Julian into Norway where he will be kidnapped and brought to Sweden where the US forces will bring him to the world series court of justice.
  • A nomination for facebook boy. He was already overrated for importance before Time awarded (presumably because he sold them your personal information on the cheap) person of the year to him. Alfred Nobel would likely be rolling - no, exploding - in his grave if his top prize were awarded that arbitrarily.
  • Wikileaks should win the Nobel. It will make the prize more relevant to our times.
    If there is an online campaign/voting to select the Nobel peace prize then Wikileaks got a great chance.
    But Wikileaks is not going to win.
    Like Maradona winning the most number of votes for the player of the century and FIFA selecting Pele as a safer choice.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/FIFA_Player_of_the_Century [wikipedia.org]
  • There's no way Assange or anyone internet-related will get it after the North African uprisings. Mohamed Bouazizi might have got it if he hadn't died.

  • I hope Gene Sharp is on the list. He wrote the book that many followed to revolution: http://www.aeinstein.org/ [aeinstein.org]

  • With the occasional exception in some areas the Nobel prize has long since ceased to stand for anything. Routinely the conditions for winning the prize seem to come down to one of two things: 1) a nominee is a high profile figure and holds a political view compatible with that of the prize committee, 2) the committee has determined that they can use a nominee to make a political statement. And despite evidence to the contrary they seem to continue to hold the delusion that they can affect change by awarding

  • Nobel Peace Prize: "I'd kill for one of those." - DA Dan Fielding
  • by DavidDM (1981824) on Tuesday March 01, 2011 @04:23PM (#35350720)
    If you are giving it to Wikileaks, it's only fair Bradley Manning gets the Nobel. He was the one who made it all available to him, and he is suffering in obscurity while Assange contemplates book deals and becomes an international darling of the media and people in the know. He also is the one who actually broke the law, and that needs to be acknowledged as well as transparency. Plus, it would force a spotlight on his treatment.
  • If we are going to nominate conceptual things, why not go big and just nominate "Peace" for the Peace Prize?

There are worse things in life than death. Have you ever spent an evening with an insurance salesman? -- Woody Allen

Working...