Edward Snowden Nominated for Nobel Peace Prize
By Tal Kopan, Politico
16 July 13
Swedish sociology professor has nominated Edward Snowden for the Nobel Peace Prize, saying that awarding the former NSA employee would correct Nobel Committee’s mistake in giving the award to President Barack Obama in 2009.
According to a translation of the letter published by the Daily Mail and RT.com, Umeå University professor Stefan Svallfors wrote the committee that Snowden has made the world safer in releasing information about United States surveillance.
“Edward Snowden has - in a heroic effort at great personal cost - revealed the existence and extent of the surveillance, the U.S. government devotes electronic communications worldwide. By putting light on this monitoring program - conducted in contravention of national laws and international agreements - Edward Snowden has helped to make the world a little bit better and safer,” Svallfors wrote.
Referencing the Nuremberg trials of Nazis, Svallfors says following orders is not an excuse for acting against human rights and freedom, and he praised Snowden’s courage in leaking the information.
Svallfors also noted that Obama was a past recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize, which he called a correctable mistake.
“The decision to award the 2013 prize to Edward Snowden would - in addition to being well justified in itself - also help to save the Nobel Peace Prize from the disrepute that incurred by the hasty and ill-conceived decision to award U.S. President Barack Obama 2009 award,” Svallfors said.
Because of Svallfors’s professorship at Umeå, he is one of the people who can submit a nomination to the Nobel organization. However, nominations for 2013 were required to be postmarked by Feb. 1.
It was unclear if the committee would consider Snowden’s nomination for 2013 anyway. The Nobel Peace Prize website says the committee may sometimes add nominations to the list accrued by Feb. 1, but once names are whittled down into a shortlist, the nomination process is closed. Nominations after the deadline are usually considered the following year.
The committee received a record 259 nominations this year, it said. Prizes are announced in October.
On Monday, WikiLeaks noted that Snowden joins WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange and leaker Army Pfc. Bradley Manning in having been nominated for Nobels, but the organization in a series of tweets decried the committee as a “corrupt” tool of foreign policy.