Swedish professor nominates Edward Snowden for the Nobel Peace Prize

  • Stefan Svallfors, sociology professor at Umeå University, nominated Edward Snowden for the Nobel Peace Prize
  • Snowden will not be eligible for this year’s prize, which will be awarded in December 2013 – but could be considered for 2014
  • The NSA whistleblower would have a hard time accepting the award, as he has already unsuccessfully applied for asylum in Norway

A sociology professor in Sweden has recommended NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden for the Nobel Peace Prize.

In a letter addressed to the Norwegian Nobel Committee and published in Swedish newspaper Västerbottens-Kuriren, Professor Stefan Svallfors nominated Snowden for his ‘heroic effort at great personal cost’ shedding light on the expansive cyber-spying conducted by the U.S. National Security Agency.

Because of his bravery, Snowden ‘helped to make the world a little bit better and safer,’ Svallfors wrote.

A nomination for Snowden would be symbolic because it shows ‘that individuals can stand up for fundamental rights and freedoms.’

History: The Nobel Peace Prize has been awarded to 124 times since 1901

Svallfors compares Snowden’s act to the rulings in the Nuremberg trials of 1945 because ‘I was just following orders’ was not held as a viable excuse for the Nazis who carried out human rights atrocities.

Svallfors also believes this will help the Peace Prize regain some of respect it lost after prematurely awarding Barack Obama the award in 2009.

‘It would show its willingness to stand up in defense of civil liberties and human rights, even when such a defense [could] be viewed with disfavor by the world’s dominant military power.’

But it may be too late for Snowden to receive the award this year.

Nominations for laureates must be postmarked no later than February 1 for consideration in the following December’s prizes.

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