- By Peter FeaverPeter D. Feaver is a professor of political science and public policy and Bass Fellow at Duke University, and director of the Triangle Institute for Security Studies and the Duke Program in American Grand Strategy. He is co-editor of Elephants in the Room.
Kudos to President Obama for his statement applauding Nobel Laureate Liu Xiaobo. His measured words of praise provide a stark contrast with the shrill and defensive reaction to the Nobel Ceremony from the Beijing regime, which seems to be going out of its way to prove why Liu was the right choice for winning this year’s prize. Obama’s rare self-deprecation — praising Liu as more worthy of the prize than he was — was especially gracious and welcome.
When Obama speaks out in defense of the values on which our country stands, he can be very compelling. Even a politically weakened president still commands a powerful bully pulpit. I hope and expect the president will make good use of it in the coming year. His response to the Nobel Ceremony is a good start.