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Published:October 9th, 2009 11:36 EST
President Obama is Now a Peace Prize President

President Obama is Now a Peace Prize President

By Avah LaReaux

Theodore Roosevelt. Mother Teresa. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Nelson Mandela.  Barack Obama.

After only nine months in the presidency, Barack Obama has been included in a listing of the most elite in the world with regards to individuals whose efforts have spawned cooperation toward increasing global peace. Selected from 205 nominees, President Obama was the final choice for the prestigious award because of his "extraordinary efforts to strengthen international diplomacy and cooperation between peoples." Additionally, President Obama has been credited by the Norwegian Nobel Committee for changing the climate of international politics as well as placing the United Nations back into the forefront of the world stage.

One of four United States presidents to receive this honor, President Obama is only the third sitting U.S. president to win the award. Prior to this, Woodrow Wilson was the last sitting president to win the Nobel Peace Prize. That was in 1919.

Among President Obama`s initiatives toward peace and multilateral diplomacy are his efforts to free the world of nuclear arms and ease the tension between America and Muslim nations. Such focus points have garnered respect around the world and restored faith in the international community regarding the United States. Since President Obama`s election to office, the United States approval rating has seen double-digit boosts. This information comes via a 25-nation poll by the Pew Global Attitudes Project and is a drastic improvement of our nation`s visage during the George W. Bush presidency.

While some appear to be stunned by the selection, past Nobel Peace Prize winners see it as appropriate. Archbishop Desmond Tutu says the award "speaks to the promise of President Obama`s message of hope," while the director general of the International Atomic Energy Agency in Vienna, Mohamed ElBaradei, adds that President Obama`s selection highlights his, "unshakeable commitment to diplomacy, mutual respect and dialogue as the best means of resolving conflicts."

The creator of the Nobel Peace Prize and the four other Nobel prizes, Alfred Nobel, specified in his 1865 will that the Nobel Peace Prize be given "to the person who shall have 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." Since that time, the committee has extended the reach of the award to include efforts designed to combat poverty, disease, and climate change.