Like it happens, the nomination deadline is well passed and the selective information dispersal has told us of some names in the run.
Like always, speculation games have begun. Nobel analysts are out with their analyzing.
Major names doing the rounds are Helmut Kohl, American scholar Gene Sharp, Russian human rights activist Svetlana Gannushkina, human rights body Memorial, Nigerians John Onaiyekan and Mohamed Sa'ad Abubakar, former Ukrainian Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko, Tunisian President Moncef Marzouki, Bill Gates, Bill Clinton, Bradely Manning and so on out of over 230 nominations. Could there be some more Arab Spring leaders?
Some of the activists and organizations like Helmut Kohl, Svetlana Gannushkina, Memorial and
for Sierra Leone have figured almost every year in the recent past but given the global geopolitics and the social calamity in many parts of the world, Arab Spring stands out.
In a world where over 30 armed conflicts are still raging and where massacres are still happening, recognizing an effort that fights the malaise should be the one this year.
Though the prize committee said last year that it included the Arab Spring in its decision by awarding the prize to a Yemeni activist, the relevance of recognizing the Arab Spring in totality is even more now.
For, 2011 was the year of the protester. He took to the streets and spoke decisively against many dictators. It inspired movements across the world including China, India, Russia and the global ‘Occupy’ movement. But after a year or so, except Tunisia, conditions look disturbing. Egypt and Libya are staring at prospects of civil war. Syria is killing its citizens at will. Yemen’s transition of power just changed the faces. Voices form other Arab countries are diminishing. ‘Occupy’ has not been able to occupy.
The journey that began with the Arab Spring cannot be left midway. It’s the onus of the international community to intervene in places of horror like Syria or Bahrain as soon as possible. And it should be the sincere responsibility of global thought-process affecting bodies like the Nobel Foundation.
Recognizing Arab Spring this year will be an optimized choice to boost the support to the every fighting protester in every part of the world. And so the vote should go to the activists related to the Arab Spring. If it happens, the Tunisian President Moncef Marzouki is going to be a strong contender. Tunisia is the birthplace of the Arab Spring and has been a positive story after so far after it thrown out its dictator of 23 years in January 2011.
Another worrying spot is the Eurozone crisis that may throw yet another possibility. I don’t know if someone has nominated Angela Merkel, the German Chancellor. Germany’s attitude is going to make or break the Euro and she can be a contender if she responds positively to G20 Eurozone bailout plan. The Eurozone crisis is threatening the global economy creating ripples of recession. Rating agencies are busy downgrading economies and financial institutions. Germany can be the wheel to bring the world out of the spreading gloom. So, much depends on Mrs. Merkel.
Last year Peace Nobel was a good and uncontroversial decision when the prize committee awarded two Liberian women, President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf and human rights activist Leymah Gbowee and Yemeni human rights campaigner Tawakkul Karman for doing significant work in their countries to improve human rights and promote democratic ethos. In doing so the prize committee toed the tried and tested line of recognizing the work being done with significant achievements already in its fold.
Let’s see how it turns out this year.