9 Reasons That Nobel Peace Prize to Juan M. Santos Was a Wrong Decision
NOBEL LAUREATES, 17 Oct 2016
 Only the government side got the prize 7 October, not FARC; the same mistake as the 1971 prize only to Willy Brandt, not also Brezhnev and the 2000 prize to Kim Dae-jung, not also to North Korea. It takes (at least) two to make a handshake; one hand is only shaking the air.
 The agreement does not include ELN guerrilla and para-militaries, fighting against and for the status quo, with no indication they will continue doing so; possibly filling in for FARC and the government.
 Is the deal symmetric with both sides abstaining from violence, or rather asymmetric, disarming only FARC and bringing demobilized guerrilleros back to “normal” life, not also parts of the army?
 Crimes have been committed by all sides in Colombia–crimes mostly by omission by the government, and crimes of violence by commission by all parties–and justice is now not being served.
 The prize confuses cease-fire with peace, unlike the 1998 prize to Nelson Mandela and Willem de Klerk not only for cease-fire but for solving the underlying conflict of South Africa: equal dignity through democracy, by One Person-One Vote regardless of the skin color.
 The underlying conflict in Colombia is the flagrant inequality between an upper-middle level of white people and a lower level in poverty and misery–including the surviving 3-4% indigenous of the once 100% and the blacks imported as slaves–unsolved by the deal. Much more than land reform is needed for their dignity in a country run by the “poderes fácticos” of landowners, military and clergy.
 Nobel’s will includes understanding among nations; two groups of mainly whites agreeing not to kill each other after negotiations with the victims not directly participating as such do not add up to that.
 Nobel’s will mentions reduction of standing armies; the agreement disarms FARC but not the government whose army is now increasing.
 The Colombia referendum rejected the agreement 50.2-49.8 percent- 38% participation-2 October for the above reasons singly or combined. Maybe another approach, like lifting the bottom up, is needed?
Johan Galtung, a professor of peace studies, dr hc mult, is founder of the TRANSCEND Network for Peace, Development and Environment and rector of the TRANSCEND Peace University-TPU. Prof. Galtung has published 1669 articles and book chapters, over 400 Editorials for TRANSCEND Media Service, and 167 books on peace and related issues, of which 41 have been translated into 35 languages, for a total of 135 book translations, including ‘50 Years-100 Peace and Conflict Perspectives,’ published by the TRANSCEND University Press-TUP.
This article originally appeared on Transcend Media Service (TMS) on 17 Oct 2016.
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