The Nobel Peace Prize should have been awarded to Greg Mortenson, who has dedicated his life to building peace in one of the world’s most war-torn regions. He and his organization, the Central Asia Institute, have constructed schools throughout the most impoverished and remote areas of Pakistan and Afghanistan. By building schools that educate Pakistani and Afghan boys and girls, he is providing them a future, one that does not involve having to grow fields of poppies or join a violent extremist organization to make money.

His schools offer an alternative to the radical madrassas that are more recruiting grounds for future terrorists than places of learning. By building these schools that teach moderate Islam, in addition to math, reading and writing, he is fighting the war on terror without firing a single shot and has probably had more success than any military force yet.

While President Barack Obama may desire peace, he has done little to make it a reality. Mortenson has.

If the Nobel Peace Prize committee truly wanted to honor someone who has made strides toward world peace, and if it wanted to bring attention to a noble cause worthy of recognition by the world, why give it to someone who already has throngs of adoring fans and is known all over the globe? Why not give it to the one man who has actually made a real, lasting and significant difference, and who could do exponentially more good with the publicity and donations that the prize would bring to his organization?

First Lt. Matthew C. DuPreHelmand province, Afghanistan

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