Nomination of Julian Assange, Chelsea Manning and Edward Snowden for the 2021 Nobel Peace Prize by Mairead Maguire, Nobel Peace Laureate
4 January, 2021
The Norwegian Nobel Committee
Henrik Ibsen’s gate 51
O255 Oslo, Norway
Subject: Nomination of Julian Assange, Chelsea Manning and Edward Snowden for the 2021 Nobel Peace Prize
Dear Members of the Norwegian Nobel Committee, I hope this finds you well.
I am herein nominating these three individuals, as a group, for the 2021 Nobel Peace Prize.
All three have been individually nominated in previous years for the Peace Prize, but none received it to date. My reasons for nominating them together are simple.
Individually, each has given countless examples of courage exposing governments’ illegal actions that caused millions of deaths—putting their own freedoms and lives on the line.
Collectively, their lives of self-sacrifice and selflessness constitute remarkable demonstrations of the magnificence of the human spirit. They are indeed breathtaking testimonies to the goodness inherent in the human heart.
Today around the world, when we listen or read about violence, militarism, poverty, war, pandemics, climate change, and particularly the suffering of millions of little children hungry in a rich world, it is hard not to feel despair and wonder… ‘where is the hope?’ However, the hope lies in the lives of ordinary people doing extraordinary things to serve and help others even sometimes at the cost of their own lives.
Our hope lies in lives like those of Chelsea, Ed and Julian, their altruism helping restore our faith in ourselves and in our brothers and sisters everywhere. We allow ourselves to be inspired by their courage and example as they motivate us to act. If they are capable of such great acts of love, maybe we too can do something for others – at least we can try to keep the Golden Rule, ‘do unto others as you would have them do to you’ (which all religions preach). We each can try to do no harm, and try to do what is right.
Chelsea Manning, as an American soldier based in Iraq, could not go along with the murder of Iraqi civilians. Julian Assange, as a publisher, had to do his duty and disclose facts of the Iraqi and Afghan wars to the public. Edward Snowden, working in U.S. intelligence, could not remain silent knowing that his government was carrying out illegal surveillance of US citizens and world governments.
They could have remained silent but chose the hard road to tell the truth. Now they are being punished cruelly and vindictively by those who broke international laws, the very people who should be held responsible for the deaths of children and civilians in Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Libya, Syria, Yemen…
Currently Assange is in Belmarsh Prison, UK, facing extradition charges to USA, as the British government cooperates with the American Grand Jury to condemn him (an Australian citizen and publisher) to cruel, degrading and inhuman treatment, which could even lead to the death penalty.
Even more insidious, with a few honourable exceptions, the Main Stream Media–if not silent at the unjust torture of Assange by the UK and US governments–collude in the abuse of Assange, a fellow publisher. If Assange is extradited to USA to stand trial and imprisoned for truth telling, thereafter no reporter, newspaper or publisher in the world will be safe from the same treatment by the USA and other repressive governments opposed to public accountability and scrutiny.
Snowden is seeking asylum in Moscow (Russia have just granted him citizenship to help protect his life) and is unable to return to his home in the USA lest he be arrested and confined to an American prison for life.
Manning is in an American prison, having been re-arrested and held because she courageously refuses to give testimony against Assange.
All of these three Champions of Peace followed their consciences, did their duty with love. I am sure that they were afraid, but they endured their Dark Nights of the Soul, they each did something beautiful and magnificent in service of others. We must all be grateful for their uplifting spirits.
The Nobel Committee could protect and help save the lives of these three champions of peace by awarding them the 2021 Nobel Peace Prize. By doing so you would honour the will of Nobel, in acknowledging true heroes of Peace. The Nobel committee would also give great hope to publishers, journalists, writers, and many who face repression and persecution by their governments as they struggle to be the writers of truth and history of humanity.
Nobel Peace Laureate
Australian Senators Peter Whish-Wilson and Janet Rice
31 January 2021
Jean-Luc Mélenchon – French politician serving as the member of the National Assembly for the 4th constituency of Bouches-du-Rhône
28 January 2021
“More than ever, Julian #Assange needs the protection of the peoples of the world. Granting him the Nobel Peace Prize would allow that.”
A Nobel Peace Prize for Julian Assange!
I decided to nominate journalist Julian Assange for the Nobel Peace Prize, as I have the power to do as a parliamentarian. Julian Assange is a hero of freedom. The WikiLeaks initiative has raised awareness of war crimes and serious human rights abuses. It is right that the peoples of the world express their gratitude to him.
On January 4, 2021, British justice refused his extradition to the United States, but maintained his imprisonment. More than ever, Julian Assange needs the protection of the peoples of the world. Granting him the Nobel Peace Prize would allow that.
Several other rebellious parliamentarians will share this process with me. I thus continue my fight for Assange’s freedom. After going to see him in London in 2012, after having held a videoconference meeting with him in 2013, I asked for political asylum in France in 2019 then 2020. At the time, the Minister of Justice Dupont- Moretti made the same request. Julian Assange served France, including revealing the spying on three Presidents by the United States.
I call on all French parliamentarians to in turn commit to having the Nobel Peace Prize awarded to Julian Assange.
Mathilde Panot – French politician, member of French National Assembly
31 January 2021
“As a parliamentarian, I can nominate a personality for the Nobel Peace Prize. As @JLMelenchon , I propose the whistleblower and journalist Julian #Assange . He is a hero and France would be honored to offer him political asylum.#NobelPeacePrize4Assange“
Steve Keen – Australian economist and author
31 January 2021
Violeta Tomić – Slovenian politician, member of PACE
31 January 2021
Nomination of Julian Assange to the Nobel Peace Prize
By Elisabeth Eide, Professor emerita, Oslo Metropolitan University and Rune Ottosen, Professor emeritus Oslo Metropolitan University
By publishing documents on war crimes committed in Afghanistan and Iraq, the nominee has contributed to an important global public debate on warfare and its consequences.
By publishing documents about war crimes committed by the U.S. and their allies, Julian Assange has contributed to public debate on their warfare, with special emphasis on the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq. If such crimes were to continue to be unnoticed, the large warring powers and alliances may be able to create illusions of “clean” wars against the “criminal others”, at a time when thorough investigations of atrocities show that such responsibilities oftentimes are equally shared.
Therefore, Assange’s publications are important. To an increasing degree, modern wars claim civilian victims, and the weapons used, turn more sophisticated, some with lasting human effects far into the future.
Assange is imprisoned in the UK awaiting a possible extradition to the U.S., where he is charged referring to the Espionage Act and risks 175 years of imprisonment. If revelations of war crimes are treated as serious criminal acts equivalent to treason, it will create a dangerous precedent and a chilling effect on the public debate.
In Norway as well as in other countries, several media have contributed to publishing the WikiLeaks revelations. By doing so, they have strengthened the knowledge basis on modern wars, as well as freedom of expression linked to the legitimacy of acts of war. They would not have been able to do this without the courageous work of Assange, shedding light on the dark sides of war.
It takes great courage to defend freedom of expression by going public with information about abuse of power in warfare, this perhaps most difficult societal issue. Citizens’ right to information is a prerequisite for democracy. Without a democracy with informed citizens, it is hard to correct and put a stop to atrocities and abuse of power. Julian Assange has defended the core of democracy. As several predecessors, he has shouldered the role as whistle blower in this sensitive area, a role often criticised by contemporaries. Nevertheless, in many cases, such deeds by whistle blowers have been recognized as very important when historians later present their version.