Wednesday, March 8, 2017

PJ pioneer Dr. Johan Galtung on short list for Nobel Peace Prize
According to Nobel Peace Prize Watch, peace journalism and peace studies pioneer, professor, and founder of Transcend Media Service Dr. Johan Galtung has made the short list of 32 individuals and organizations being considered for the 2017 Nobel Peace Prize.

His nomination, from Prof. Richard Falk of Princeton University and the Univ. of California-Santa Barbara, states, “Johan Galtung has been the sort of dedicated warrior for peace that it seems to me the Nobel Prize was created to honor. By so doing, (this will) raise public consciousness of what must happen if we are to overcome the war system and enjoy the material, political, and spiritual benefits of living in a world of peace premised on the nonviolent resolution of disputes among sovereign states and respect for the authority of international law.

"For decades Johan Galtung has been an inspirational presence in the field of peace studies broadly conceived. His exceptional vitality and mobility has brought this message of understanding and insight into peace with justice to the four corners of the planet in a remarkable fashion that is truly unique in its educational and activist impact. It is no exaggeration to write that he invented and established the field of peace studies as a respected subject of study in institutions of higher learning throughout the world. As a consequence of his charismatic speaking ability and seminal writing Johan Galtung has reached the hearts and minds of thousands of people throughout the world, conveying the belief above all that peace is possible through the dedicated efforts of ordinary people..”

I have had the privilege of interviewing Dr. Galtung for my peace journalism book in 2015. We spent an afternoon eating pizza, sipping tea, and talking about peace, peace journalism, and the state of media. It's among the most fascinating three hours I've ever spent in my life. Dr. Galtung was polite, gracious, and humble. Even well into his 80's, Dr. Galtung is an intellectual giant. In fact, there were times during our visit that I noticed Dr. Galtung slowing down to explain things to me, not in a condescending way, but as a colleague and friend. His observations were insightful and profound, and integral to the success of my book. 

Whether he gets the peace prize or not, Dr. Galtung's work will continue to provide a much-need beacon to light our way through these dark times.

Upon posting this blog, I got a nice tweet from Dr. Galtung. Thank you, kind sir.

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