Friday, October 09, 2009

Take That, Arizona State!

"Barack Obama Wins Nobel Peace Prize"

I will admit that I am somewhat dubious about this award at this time. While he may not have accomplished anything concrete yet, he has single-handedly brought the U.S. back into better favor with most of the rest of the world. His administration will agree to a historic reduction in nuclear weapons with Russia, which will reduce the likelihood of nuclear proliferation. He has stopped needlessly provoking the Muslim world like a little kid throwing rocks at a hornet's nest, and he is actually pushing on the Middle East process without waiting until the last year of his second term. He is also working to restore the primacy of diplomacy in U.S. foreign relations. Outreach to Cuba, Syria, Iran, and Myanmar may piss off the hard right (neocons) and hard left (for human rights reasons), but they may well bring rapprochement and sanity to those complicated relationships in place of bluster and political inertia.

Will anything come of these initiatives? Who knows? It is not all up to Obama, after all. There are myriad players in all of these foreign policy issues. It only takes one nut with a bomb at the al-Aqsa mosque in Jerusalem to inflame the entire Muslim world.

Hopefully, this will just give Obama another weapon to push his foreign policy, and in the end it will be seen as a no brainer. (Maybe he will win another one to bookend his presidency.)

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