I've hit columnist Thomas Friedman recently for his praise of Communist China's can-do attitude, his paranoid fear of tea party protesters, and his apocalyptic climate change scenarios that come straight out of a disaster movie. So it's only fair to recognize his excellent column on what Barack Obama should say in his Nobel Prize acceptance speech, in which Friedman-as-Obama hailedthe U.S. military as "the world's most important peacekeepers."
Here is the speech I hope[Obama] will give:
"Let me begin by thanking the Nobel committee for awarding me this prize, the highest award to which any statesman can aspire. As I said on the day it was announced, 'I do not feel that I deserve to be in the company of so many of the transformative figures who've been honored by this prize.' Therefore, upon reflection, I cannot accept this award on my behalf at all.
"But I will accept it on behalf of the most important peacekeepers in the world for the last century - the men and women of the U.S. Army, Navy, Air Force and Marine Corps.
"I will accept this award on behalf of the American soldiers who landed on Omaha Beach on June 6, 1944, to liberate Europe from the grip of Nazi fascism. I will accept this award on behalf of the American soldiers and sailors who fought on the high seas and forlorn islands in the Pacific to free East Asia from Japanese tyranny in the Second World War.
"I will accept this award on behalf of the American airmen who in June 1948 broke the Soviet blockade of Berlin with an airlift of food and fuel so that West Berliners could continue to live free. I will accept this award on behalf of the tens of thousands of American soldiers who protected Europe from Communist dictatorship throughout the 50 years of the cold war.
Friedman ended with a patriotic flourish:
"If you want to see the true essence of America, visit any U.S. military outpost in Iraq or Afghanistan. You will meet young men and women of every race and religion who work together as one, far from their families, motivated chiefly by their mission to keep the peace and expand the borders of freedom.
"So for all these reasons - and so you understand that I will never hesitate to call on American soldiers where necessary to take the field against the enemies of peace, tolerance and liberty - I accept this peace prize on behalf of the men and women of the U.S. military: the world's most important peacekeepers."