Now even the mayor of London is lashing out at the Norwegian Nobel Committee, for awarding the Nobel Peace Prize last week to the European Union (EU). The committee has also been fending off criticism at home, mostly from those who want to make sure Norway stays out of the EU.
London Mayor Boris Johnson, meanwhile, used his weekly column in the newspaper The Daily Telegraph to claim that the EU was not a worthy winner of the Peace Prize. Johnson, who has lofty political ambitions in the UK, suggested that members of the Nobel Committee must have been drinking too much of the strong Norwegian liquor akevitt when they made their decision.
The UK is a member of the EU but never joined its monetary union and many British citizens, potential voters for Johnson, are skeptical and critical of EU policies. Norwegians, meanwhile, rejected EU membership twice and those most opposed to EU membership have been among the harshest critics of the Nobel Committee at home.
Reaction among many others, including professors and politicians both inside and outside Norway, has been positive. The Nobel Committee awarded the prize to the EU for promoting fraternity among nations, preserving the peace among EU members for the past six decades since World War II ended, and for expansion and the admission of new member states that also can help preserve peace in areas such as the Balkans.