Kofi Annens Nobel Lecture

Kofi Annens Nobel Lecture - Your Majesties, Your Royal...

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Unformatted text preview: Your Majesties, Your Royal Highnesses, Excellencies, Members of the Norwegian Nobel Committee, Ladies and Gentlemen, Today, in Afghanistan, a girl will be born. Her mother will hold her and feed her, comfort her and care for her just as any mother would anywhere in the world. In these most basic acts of human nature, humanity knows no divisions. But to be born a girl in today's Afghanistan is to begin life centuries away from the prosperity that one small part of humanity has achieved. It is to live under conditions that many of us in this hall would consider inhuman. I speak of a girl in Afghanistan, but I might equally well have mentioned a baby boy or girl in Sierra Leone. No one today is unaware of this divide between the worlds rich and poor. No one today can claim ignorance of the cost that this divide imposes on the poor and dispossessed who are no less deserving of human dignity, fundamental freedoms, security, food and education than any of us. The cost, however, is not borne by them alone. Ultimately, it is borne by all of us North and South, rich and poor, men and women of all races and religions. Today's real borders are not between nations, but between powerful and powerless, free and fettered, privileged and humiliated. Today, no walls can separate humanitarian or human rights crises in one part of the world from national security crises in another. Scientists tell us that the world of nature is so small and interdependent that a butterfly flapping its wings in the Amazon rainforest can generate a violent storm on the other side of the earth. This principle is known as the "Butterfly Effect." Today, we realize, perhaps more than ever, that the world of human activity also has its own "Butterfly Effect" for better or for worse. Ladies and Gentlemen, We have entered the third millennium through a gate of fire. If today, after the horror of 11 September, we see better, and we see further we will realize that humanity is indivisible. New threats make no distinction between races, nations or regions. A new insecurity has entered every mind, regardless of wealth or status. A deeper awareness of the bonds that bind us all in pain as in prosperity has gripped young and old. In the early beginnings of the 21st century a century already violently disabused of any hopes that progress towards global peace and prosperity is inevitable -- this new reality can no longer be ignored. It must be confronted....
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This essay was uploaded on 04/11/2008 for the course CWP 101 taught by Professor Mckinnis during the Fall '08 term at Buffalo State.

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Kofi Annens Nobel Lecture - Your Majesties, Your Royal...

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