Donald Trump under consideration for the Nobel Peace Prize: A sentence that makes sense to absolutely nobody, except maybe Donald Trump.
An AFP report states that Trump is on the list of names in consideration for the annual Nobel award, but whether that is actually true, or means anything if it is, is questionable.
Monday was the last day for nominations to be submitted for the award. These nominations are kept secret by the Norwegian Nobel Committee for 50 years, but many submitters make their choices public.
To that end, AFP reports that Kristian Berg Harpviken, the director of the Peace Research Institute of Oslo, received a copy of a nomination letter for Trump.
The letter, whose author was not revealed, states Trump deserves the prize for "his vigorous peace through strength ideology, used as a threat weapon of deterrence against radical Islam, ISIS, nuclear Iran and Communist China," Harpviken told AFP. Use of the phrase "threat weapon" always comes across as very peaceful.
Assuming Harpviken's anonymous letter came from a valid nominator and was accepted by the committee, which we do not know because of the secrecy rules, this isn't a big deal. Being nominated for a Nobel Prize doesn't really mean anything. All that needs to happen is that someone on the list of valid nominators has to think you deserve the award and write a letter to the committee prior to February 1 saying so. It takes more effort to sign up for a Twitter account.
The list of people who can nominate is extremely broad as well. According to the Nobel Prize's website, a nominator must be:
- A member of a national assemblies or state government.
- A member of an international court
- A university rector, or professor of social sciences, history, philosophy, law or theology.
- A director of a peace research institute or foreign policy institute.
- Someone who previously received a Nobel Prize or is a board member of an organization that received a Nobel Prize.
- An active or former member of the Norwegian Nobel Committee.
- A former adviser to the Norwegian Nobel Committee.
That only limits the nomination pool to millions of people. All it would take to put Trump in the running is one member of a state legislature who's a Trump fan with enough cash for foreign postage. There are a few people who fit that description.
That hasn't stopped hundreds of news websites from running the headline that Donald Trump has been nominated for the prize alongside Pope Francis, Nadia Murad, and other people who sound much more deserving. At least after his second place showing in Iowa, Donald Trump can now look at the news and see he won a nomination for something.