“The Norwegian Nobel Committee has decided that the Nobel Peace Prize for 2009 is to be awarded to President Barack Obama for his extraordinary efforts to strengthen international diplomacy and cooperation between peoples. The Committee has attached special importance to Obama’s vision of and work for a world without nuclear weapons.”
Obama becomes the first sitting president in 90 years to win the Nobel Peace Prize.
Two past sitting presidents have won the peace prize: Teddy Roosevelt in 1905 for helping to end the Russian-Japanese War, and Woodrow Wilson in 1919 for his push to create the League of Nations. Former President Jimmy Carter won the prize in 2002, two decades after he left office.
The BBC notes that the committee “has taken a bold step” and adds, “This is of course an implied criticism of former US president George W Bush and the neo-conservatives, who were often accused of trying to change the world in their image.”