Editorial Analysis for 12th October 2020

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Food for peace: On 2020 Peace Nobel


Mains: General Studies- II: Governance, Constitution, Polity, Social Justice and International relations.


The Nobel for the World Food Programme highlights multilateralism’s benefits

Why World Food Programme?

  • For its contribution to combating hunger in conflict and disaster-struck sites.
  • The Norwegian Nobel committee took note of the WFP’S life-saving rolein the year of the pandemic, staving off catastrophes of hunger in Yemen, Congo, Nigeria, south Sudan and Burkina Faso.
  • The prize is a fitting tribute to the aid workers who brave hazardous conditions to reach starving people in theatres of war, civil strife and natural disasters, moving food on aircraft, trucks and even all-terrain amphibious vehicles.
  • The decision to honour the WFP echoes the advice of another peace laureate from 1949, lord john boyd orr, the first head of the FAO, that peace cannot be built on empty stomachs.
  • It commands one of the biggest non-military and non-commercial logistics operations worldwide and is engaged in delivering food and other assistance to those needing aid as well as developmental support, including in some of the remotest and often conflict-stricken parts of the globe.
  • The organisation has also developed the capabilities to serve as the frontline telecommunications and logistical support provider to all UN agencies and NGOs in crisis situations.


  • Funding Gap: Lack of all member countries to foster greater cooperation to close the WFP’s funding gap of $4.1 billion.
  • The world’s hunger map presents a depressing picture with more than a quarter of the population facing undernourishment in many countries;

Example: in strife-ridden Syria, an estimated 4.6 million people survive on food aid.

  • Lack of stronger commitment: without stronger commitment from the big powers, the challenge to feed the millions who suffer acute hunger due to conflict and failed agriculture widens.

How this recognition will help?

  • The recognition that the WFP has received can help the humanitarian organisation prepare for a decade of ambition and help meet the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG).
  • Of central importance is SDG, achieving zero hunger by 2030, a target that requires determination to resolve festering armed conflict.
  • This will help indirectly to mitigate carbon emissions early and avert effects on agriculture from disastrous climate events.
  • the need for international solidarity and multilateral cooperation is more conspicuous than ever so the prize will make superpowers to cooperate.
  • According to one estimate around, 690 million people are affected by hunger globally. This goes against the spirit of humanism as these people have the right to live peacefully and without hunger.


Several poor countries have suffered a severe setback to their developmental aspirations due to the pandemic, and lack strong institutional governance to manage the crisis. This is a time for the world’s big powers to strengthen the UN system, espousing fraternity, shunning militarism, greening economies and resolving conflicts in the true spirit of the Peace Prize. Without peace, one cannot achieve the global goal of zero hunger; and while there is hunger, there would never be a peaceful world.

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