Viewpoint: Europe must lead global peace drive - Barroso


'Be vigilant' of Europe's old demons, warns EU Commission chief Barroso

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The President of the European Commission, Jose Manuel Barroso, has told the BBC that the Nobel Peace Prize gives the EU authority to lead peace efforts worldwide. Here is his viewpoint on the award, which he and other EU leaders are receiving in the Norwegian capital Oslo on Monday.

Being in Oslo to jointly receive this award on behalf of the European Union is an honour and a humbling experience.

Start Quote

The irony is that the euro... risks driving some countries further apart”

End Quote Mats Persson Director, Open Europe think tank

This is an award for the European project - for the people and the institutions - that day after day, for the last 60 years, have built a new Europe.

It is a good moment to remind ourselves of what the European Union has done:

  • It brings lasting peace between former enemies who fought many devastating wars on the continent including two world wars;
  • It brings lasting freedom, justice and democracy for 500 million people, including for so many that lived under dictatorship and totalitarian regimes;
  • And it does so in a unique manner: by creating a political system that brings us together across national borders in a supranational community, through the sharing of sovereignty.

I know that some have asked why, why now?

Well, Thorbjoern Jagland, Chairman of the Norwegian Nobel Committee, summed it up perfectly on the day of the announcement (and again just now - and I wish to thank him warmly for his words). "This is the right moment to give a clear message to Europe to preserve what we have achieved… This is a prize to have a better organised world, to have stability and peace."

We will honour this prize and we will preserve what has been achieved. It is in the common interest of our citizens. And it will allow Europe to contribute in shaping that "better organised world" in line with the values of freedom, democracy, human rights and rule of law that we cherish and believe in.

The last 60 years have shown that Europe can unite in peace. Over the next 60 years, Europe must lead the global quest for peace.

Mr Barroso spoke to the BBC Hardtalk programme in Oslo. You can watch the full interview on BBC World News on Monday 10 December at 0430, 0930, 1530 and 2130 GMT, on the BBC News channel on Monday 10 December at 0430 GMT and Tuesday 11 December at 0030 GMT. You can also watch the interview on the BBC iplayer and you can download a podcast. .


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  • rate this

    Comment number 136.

    The EU is the best thing to happen to Europe and not only must we fight for its survival, we must build and grow it.

  • rate this

    Comment number 135.

    Amazing how there are many more negative comments than positive.

    You would think that the opinion of the majority would be positive.

  • rate this

    Comment number 134.

    We MUST KNOW that we never lost any wealth;so generated by us earlier but we are just mis-managing it,not exactly knowing how to arrange it under the present situation to get the flow back, through behaving ourselves normal everywhere with some kind of confidence infused to the Common Public who are the Author of setting a rule to all Financial Activities that govern us to live our lives.

  • rate this

    Comment number 133.

    We dis-agree with the meaning derived with respect to the Award.Instead it encourages us to remain calm while confronting the live valcano of injecting instability to our ties to show the others a path to fight exactly alike.Germany is keeping the Devil by the horn ;not allowing it to dance within us with UK providing the strength but yet EU is proud to hold the Flag.This is what we are!

  • rate this

    Comment number 132.

    Jose Barroso says "the Nobel Peace Prize gives the EU authority to lead... worldwide."

    Good. You can start by returning sovereignty to Europe's parliaments. Returning the Nobel prize money to the people you taxed to "earn" it, since it was the people who chose to live in peace. & while you're at it; you can hand back the award saying it was disgraced by its awarding to Henry Kissinger in 1973.

  • rate this

    Comment number 131.

    I think the nobel peace prize has become a bit of a joke.

    First they give it to obama when he had only been in office for a short time. Since then he has used drones to constantly bomb other countries.

    Then to the eu for keeping peace in Europe, even though it was nato that has done that job.

    Next tony blair? for sorting out Iraq and doing such a great job as middle east peace envoy.

  • rate this

    Comment number 130.

    Barosso dreams of closing the gates of Janus for a new Pax Romana. He should learn from Augustus Caeser who achieved this 3x via a new foreign policy for Rome, which had previously been focused on expanding the empire as much as possible. Augustus advocated a shift toward prosperity and pacification within the borders of the empire instead of expansionism.

  • rate this

    Comment number 129.

    Hmm looks like the beeb is censoring the comments again...

  • rate this

    Comment number 128.

    It seems fairly obvious the EU is negative for Europe
    because EU is about money-Euro
    and not about whats best for Europeans

    That being said what better way to disguise EU's true intentions
    than with the 'Nobel Peace Prize'?

    Its like wolf in sheep's clothing

    If EU truly had the best intentions for Europeans
    they would practice democracy instead of dictatorship

  • rate this

    Comment number 127.

    Maybe he should try and sort out the hunger, unempolyment and rioting in the Eurozone before he starts to expand his failed model aound the world.

    As for him saying they need to be vigilant against nationalism on HARDtalk maybe if he listened to the referendum results instead of ignoring them the people not think that the eu's the dictatorship that it's turned into.

  • rate this

    Comment number 126.

    I feel completely oppressed by the UK police state and by the undemocratic EU/European Commission.

    Barroso talks of peace but he is pushing people towards war.

    I want freedom to live my life quietly without the state constantly interfering with my life.

    I want to run a small business without being forced to deal with endless, ever-changing EU 'directives'.

  • rate this

    Comment number 125.

    the eu is a busted flush and its high time barroso and his ilk got chucked out of office

  • rate this

    Comment number 124.

    “The belief that there is only one truth and that oneself is in possession of it seems to me the deepest root of all evil that is in the world.”
    Max Born

  • rate this

    Comment number 123.

    Watched hardtalk,Barosso is deluded if he thinks they deserve the Nobel peace prize.Talk about self centered self obsessed politicians with no grasp of reality.They dont live in the same world as us mere mortals.He contraddicted himself at every other question.The man is niavely blind.Is it any wonder europe is in a mess...

  • rate this

    Comment number 122.

    Pre-moderation with 15-20min lead time reduces thread participation.

    Later analysis may mistakenly conclude topic was of low interest - mere 117 posted in 12 hours.

    It is worth noting that Barosso has nowhere near an overwhelming majority of HYS posters lining up to back his dream of "europe MUST lead".

    But with such a low mandate he is on track to be police commissioner o

  • rate this

    Comment number 121.

    LOL,beauty.Europe`s federalist flunkies vote down all & sundry here. Make`s not one jot of difference.Increasing problems in the euro zone will not go away.Its badly designed & political.Costing billion to keep the show on the road,the wheels will come off.Wise council warned of the dangers of a single currency & were called little Englanders,ect.
    Who was right? & who was wrong ? LOL.

  • rate this

    Comment number 120.

    Looking at the ratings,there must be a load of EU employees on HYS accompanied by a similar number of europhiles.Both groups are either looking after themselves or brain dead,probably both.

  • rate this

    Comment number 119.

    Mahatma Gandhi never got a Noble peace prize.
    Down vote me if you think the EU is more worthy then Gandhi of a peace prize

    go on do it, I know in your hearts your a bit sick to hear such truths

  • rate this

    Comment number 118.

    The EU is aimed at bringing as many people as possible under the fold of Roman Catholic globalization, preserving bullfighting in Spain, destroying the Greeks, and keeping out the Turks.

    In the meantime, countries like Holland, Britain and Norway will remain deeply suspicious, while the Germans will find more ways of cooking up prizes for Barroso to collect.

  • rate this

    Comment number 117.

    great get europe to go peace and let america be the worlds police, how pathetic.


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