Friday, October 11, 2002


Jimmy Carter, the first (and only) American President ever to be attacked by a swimming rabbit, was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize today. The former President's foreign policy ineptitude, both in and out of the White House, has been well-documented by others, so I'm not going to dwell on that.

Actually, I don't think President Carter and his administration get enough credit for their pivotal roles in ending the Cold War. After all, his four years in office ensured Ronald Reagan's landslide election in 1980. Moving on.

No, what drew my attention today is the reasoning behind the decision:

"Gunnar Berge, chairman of the Nobel committee, said giving the award to Carter 'should be interpreted as a criticism of the line that the current administration has taken. . . . It's a kick in the leg to all that follow the same line as the United States.'"

As you may know, the prize originates in the insignificant Kingdom of Norway (don't feel bad if you can't find it on a map--it truly does not matter). Norway is a country best-known for whale-killing and giving the English language the noun "quisling." In World War II, like all parts of Western Europe not entirely surrounded by water, this country folded up like a cheap suit once a platoon full of Germans got within firing range. They even provided willing help to Hitler and his jack-booted legions after the occupation. In fact, more Norwegians volunteered to fight for the Axis than for the Allies.

Indeed, they were so enthusiastic that the last fighting of the war involved an SS unit with Norwegian volunteers.

With that background, you can see that the appeaser mentality is deeply ingrained in the Norwegian psyche. Here's hoping they don't send volunteers to Hussein, but you never know....

Okay, that was a little harsh. There probably won't be any dictator-fawning volunteers this time around--unlike Germany or the Russian Front, Iraq's a little too warm for your average Norwegian. In reality, Norway's power in the modern world is limited to this: The spiteful awarding of a trinket and some prize money to a washed-up American statesman. Oooh, scary. Memo to Norway: You can't "kick us in the leg" when you don't even reach our instep.

That is all. Plaudits for Peter Singer to follow...

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?