He went to Oslo to accept the peace prize and gave his hosts a standard Anglo-American speech justifying humanitarian wars. Where have we heard this sort of magic before? Tony Blair.
One of the most revealing gestures of Obama’s presidency was his decision not to turn down this prize. His reaction, on first hearing the news of it, showed his awareness that it was undeserved; but it isn’t in him to refuse the glow of appreciation and honors. Helping other people to crown him with approval is, in his mind, a way of helping the world.
The show of versatility at the end of the speech–still keen to inherit the mantle of Gandhi and Martin Luther King even as he directs an array of good American wars–epitomizes his have-it-both-ways approach to many things.