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"I want to change the world, get me a prize!"

It wasn't until the evening on October 9th that a Facebook status update (as quoted in the title) on a friend's profile truly reflected on the absurdity of the situation. President Barack Obama, crusader of 21st Century hope and dreams has been awarded the 2009 Nobel Peace Prize within 24 weeks of his diplomacy through the world's "most powerful country".

We have, once again been shaken to our cores.
Within hours, news flooded every imaginable media outlet. From blog posts to local tabloids, the man made front news throughout the world. An expected furious debate roused as to whether President Obama, in fact, deserved to be awarded the most esteemed prize in the world within such a short period of his 'conquest towards global harmony'.

However, for the hardcore fans, the Prize is an addition to what Dear Mr. President represents. As Jessica, a blogger from NYC writes at BBC World 'Have Your Say!' - "Obama has accomplished more than most presidents combined have done in one year of service. He acknowledged the award as a call to action." In a moving time where a quintessential struggle towards global goodwill is at stake, the President exudes an image of charm and promise, a role that very few world leaders of today have managed to play. While some quote Alfred Nobel who believed in honest efforts over flattering achievements, it cannot be denied that Nobel Peace Prize till now have been awarded to only those who have spent a substantial length of their lives striving for human rights and equity.

Hitherto, the Norwegian Nobel Committee has not necessarily had the best track record. Having awarded Yasser Arafat and Henry Kissinger with the same prestige, it is not uncommon or unnatural to place that pride on President Obama. On the contrary, after the past few years of economic and social downstream, Obama has managed to sway the entire world with hope of a better tomorrow.

In spite of it all, a sound resonates even in the ears of the very neo-generation Obama had spell bounded during his Presidential campaign. His inspirational words have brought him a long way, but substance and impact are yet to be made. True, his peacemaking efforts with Middle East, negotiations towards minimising nuclear warheads and sweeping changes to US foreign policy are noteworthy; but can one honestly pinpoint a finger at the man and consider him a guaranteed winner for the Nobel Prize out of 205 nominations?

However sceptic one end of the world may be, the other extravagantly celebrates Obama's achievement. In a small city in Fukui prefecture named 'Obama' in Japan, thousands of phone calls reached the city office to congratulate Obama receiving the world most prominent award. The mayor answered to media interview and told everyone they are going to put banners all over the city to celebrate. In addition, compilations of Obama's popular speeches hit a sales boost, while Japanese comedian (who apparently looks like President Obama) received a daylong of TV exposure with his words, "Yes, We Can!" Seems like the President's "pursuit of peace" has indeed pulsated the minds of the Japanese!

Fact is yours truly personally likes the guy. He definitely has quality to win a Nobel Peace Prize. What's shocking is the premature vibe of it all. What 4 years of Obama might bring to the world is unknown and placing him on the same pedestal with Kofi Annan and Mother Teresa is, bluntly put, far fetched. It's surprising how the "most influential man in the world" views the Nobel Peace Prize as a call for strengthening his efforts; when in reality, many fear it only adds onto the pressure of this particular 'divine call'. While the awestruck world waits for this man to make a move, let's just keep our fingers crossed so that Obama can, in the end, live up to his promises. It will be a pity to waste a Nobel Peace Prize for simply not being George W. Bush!

By Sabhanaz Rashid Diya and Yasuyuki Goto


Children's Film Festival

The inaugural program of the Second International Children's Film Festival was held on October 5, 2009 at the Bogra Zilla School. The inaugural program was held at the open premises; it was followed by setting free of balloons with festival slogan and logo by the chief guest Aly Zaker and Md. Iftekharul Islam, DC of Bogra.


Michael Jackson Never forget you

By Abiba Imam Dynti

I will never forget you, Michael Jackson. I love your songs, your moon walk and your dances. To me you will be the hero of the world.



Fallen Leaves

Vignettes under the kaleidoscope of colours, transitioning from life to death, Summer to Winter. We all take a moment to pay our respects to the impending dark; we also give thanks to the waning sunlight, as we store our harvest of this year's crops. Be not beguiled by the shimmering hues of the transition for all journeys are not what they seem, but remain steadfast: the road has much to show.

Leaves crisp,
Dressed for death-
Fall like angels

Gently drifting-
They shiver-
The skies become barren

Crystal lake;
Crows fly over-
Or under?

Her eyes and her eyes-
Locked in clarity;
Who was real?

Bed's warmth-
Delightful fruit of autumn;
Life has written on her face

Hues of orange-
Basked in sweetness;
Cloying horror

Shadows dance-
Over midday traffic,
Cadence of clouds

Countless sighs-
Life stilled;
Life quenched

Muddy waters-
A crystalline stream and green meadow,
Before the rain

Glinting earth-
Lost keepsake;
Or finders keepers?

A season later
This soil will remain
A honey-less hive

Encrusted it lies-
Sodden shoe faded;
Memories of a gift

Embers burn
Warm- fading slowly
Life stories

Flitting moth-
Aglow in transience;
Lost soul

Black marquee;
Wailing moon pierces the fabric
Of the night

Window shutters-
Sacred trysts;
Final whispers of the moon

Bursts of light
Send birds flitting out
Every nook

He does not see;
But the colours?

Over-dressed again,
Curse the indecisive sun
Of mid-autumn

But hush-
A silent breeze;
Solitary leaf

By Ahsan Sajid and Azfarul Islam





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