Nobel Prize for Peace 2019

As many know, the Nobel Prize for Peace is given by the Norwegian People through their representatives in Parliament who choose a 5 -member committee.  Its composition has changes over the years.  It is the only Nobel Prize awarded in Oslo. We do not know why.

It is unclear why Nobel wished the Peace Prize to be administered in Norway, which was ruled in union with Sweden at the time of Nobel’s death in 1896.  The Norwegian Nobel Committee speculates that Nobel may have considered Norway better suited to awarding the prize, as it did not have the same militaristic traditions as Sweden. It also notes that at the end of the 19th century, the Norwegian Parliament had become closely involved in the Inter-Parliamentary Union‘s efforts to resolve conflicts through mediation and arbitration.  The small Peace Prize museum is in Oslo, as well.



Past Awards have gone to Malala, the young Pakistani girl who advocated girls’ education and was the target of Taliban and terrorists, alike.  And while many told her to stop her activism, she did not.  Those who see the promise and hope of an educated young woman in their country, now see her example multiplied a thousand-fold around the World.  Even in Ms. Greta Thunberg, the teenage climate activist from Sweden.

The Nobel Prize Committee wants you to know the sacrifice of Peace laureates.  Norway is a peaceful nation, but knows war first-hand.  If you visit the Museum, as I did you will see many things.  I visited on the 70th Liberation Day for Norway after their victory over fascism and Germany during WWII, and heard the King’s speech* at Akershus Fortress across the port from where the Museum stands.

This may be hard to look at for some, it is the clothing that Malala wore the day she was shot going to school.

IMG_8808.jpgMalala’s bloody clothes, as displayed in the Nobel Peace Prize Museum (2015).

IMG_8809.jpgMalala is the youngest Nobel laureate in history to this day.




“Peace is not a given. It is not today, and neither was it 70 years ago….” 


IMG_0208.jpgA photo of a Norwegian Corporal.  Her given name is Vibeke. She was born in 1973 and at the age of 20-years old was part of the one of the hardest peace operations the UN has ever undertaken, as an MP in one of the the most violent of cities in the World – Mogadishu, Somalia.  This photo is in the Military Institute Museum near Akurshus Fortress.   Norway is a founding member of NATO.



Finland, which is not a member of the NATO alliance, announced on Wednesday the suspension of all new arms exports to Turkey or any other country involved in the fighting.

Norway announced Thursday 10OCT19, it was suspending all new arms exports to the country after Turkey launched a military offensive against Kurdish forces in northern Syria.

“Given that the situation is complex and changing quickly, the foreign ministry as a precautionary measure will not handle any new demands for exports of defence material or material for multiple uses… to Turkey,”  Norwegian Foreign Minister Ine Eriksen Søreide said in an email sent to AFP.

She added that the ministry would also review all licenses for arms exportation that have already been issued.

Syria’s Kurds, who were the West’s allies in the fight against Islamic State group jihadists, were battling Thursday to hold off a Turkish invasion as thousands of civilians fled air strikes and shelling that deepened fears of a humanitarian crisis and raised international alarm.

In addition, Norway won’t participate in a major European NATO exercise in 2020.  Iceland and Norway are the only two NATO members that won’t take part.  Iceland was a founding member of NATO.

 



*Anniversary 8th May 2015 Liberation H. M. King’s speech at the commemoration of the Liberation anniversary and Defence veteran’sday Akershus Fortress, 8 May 2015 

President of the Storting Prime Minister 

Ministers Defense Chief 

Dear All!

Peace is not a given. It is not today, and neither was it 70 years ago. 

Behind the roar of cheers in the May days of 1945 was the seriousness of what we had experienced and learned: that peace, freedom and democracy is not something we can take for granted. These values must be built, protected – and if necessary, defended with our lives at stake. Also today innocent people worldwide experience war and conflict. Every day some of them lose their freedom, and every day some lose loved ones.

Through five long years Norway fought alone and with our allies. The decisive battles took place outside our country’s borders. But here at home, there was shown the spirit of sacrifice and heroism that today invokes admiration and enthusiasm.

Some were hit harder than others.  Of 772 Norwegian Jews and Jewish refugees who were arrested and deported through the war years, only 34 survived. Today also Jews and other minorities across Europe experience threats and or even murder. Hate speech we also experience in this country 

Hatred and prejudice makes us less. Decency make us greater. 

70 years ago I was eight years old. During the war I was a refugee in the United States – along with my mother and my sisters. Meanwhile, my father and grandfather, the Administration and the Norwegian government found protection in the Great Britain, From there they were able to lead the resistance work and maintain the hope of regaining our freedom. 

Many countries and people are still waiting for their 8th of May. Even today many fight for freedom and democracy. As a consequence of war and conflict, they must travel from those they love. A refugee carries not only his personal wounds, but also a people’s hope for a new beginning. On 8 May, Norway gained a second chance. May 8 is the day to remember the dead and thank the living. More will today get their deserved honor. Still, many carry on the war burdens of grief and loss.

Much is different from 1945. but much is also the same. In their farewell “Hjemmefronten” (Norwegian Homefront resistance) wrote: “…we must face each other on purpose in understanding and mutual trust”. It is magnanimous advice that we still do well to take with us both as individuals and as a people. When we take care of each other, we also take care of peace. 

To all who fought during the five long years. To all veterans  – young and old. To all who fight against war and injustice  – and for peace and freedom, democracy and human rights: we shall never forget April 9, and we will always remember May 8th.  it 70 years ago.”

“Behind the roar of cheers in the May days of 1945 was the seriousness of what we had experienced and learned: that peace, freedom and democracy is not something we can take for granted. These values must be built, protected – and if necessary, defended with our lives at stake. Also today innocent people worldwide experience war and conflict. Every day some of them lose their freedom, and every day some lose loved ones.

“Through five long years Norway fought alone and with our allies. The decisive battles took place outside our country’s borders. But here at home, there was shown the spirit of sacrifice and heroism that today invokes admiration and enthusiasm.

“Some were hit harder than others.  Of 772 Norwegian Jews and Jewish refugees who were arrested and deported through the war years, only 34 survived. Today also Jews and other minorities across Europe experience threats and or even murder. Hate speech we also experience in this country.

“Hatred and prejudice makes us less. Decency make us greater.”

“70 years ago I was eight years old. During the war I was a refugee in the United States – along with my mother and my sisters. Meanwhile, my father and grandfather, the Administration and the Norwegian government found protection in the Great Britain, From there they were able to lead the resistance work and maintain the hope of regaining our freedom. 

“Many countries and people are still waiting for their 8th of May. Even today many fight for freedom and democracy. As a consequence of war and conflict, they must travel from those they love.

“A refugee carries not only his person wounds, but also a people’s hope for a new beginning. On 8 May, Norway gained a second chance. May 8 is the day to remember the dead and thank the living. More will today get their deserved honor. Still, many carry on the war burdens of grief and loss.

“Much is diferent from 1945. but much is also the same. In their farewell “Hjemmefronten” (Norwegian Homefront resistance) wrote: “…we must face each other on purpose in understanding and mutual trust”.  It is magnanimous advice that we still do well to take with us both as individuals and as a people. When we take care of each other, we also take care of peace. 

“To all who fought during the five long years. To all veterans  – young and old. To all who fight against war and injustice  – and for peace and freedom, democracy and human rights: we shall never forget April 9, and we will always remember May 8th.”

–translated to English by Ed Edgerdahl, SLI, Seattle.


 

 

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