Top 10 Men Who Were Great Peacemakers

There are various individuals who have worked hard to attain and maintain tranquility around the world. As of 2010, 98 individuals and 20 organizations have been awarded the Nobel Peace Prize for their honorary efforts. The following 10 male peacemakers deserve recognition as they set an example for us in the contemporary society.


1. Woodrow Wilson

Former President of the United States, Woodrow Wilson made significant efforts to resolve differences between European nations after World War One. He wrote and formulated 14 points, which served to provide a band-aid solution to the events and conflicts that transpired during World War One. In his 14 Points speech, he recognized the right to sovereignty for all nations and created an international governing body that would govern over world conflicts: The League of Nations. The League of Nations was a precursor to the United Nations, which protects all nations from anarchy.

All in all, Woodrow Wilson was successful in bringing peace for 21 years. Conflicting nations such as Germany and France were beginning to shake hands and work on putting past differences. He thus deserves to be recognized.


2. Ramon Delaire:

This Canadian was sent on a United Nations’ peacekeeping mission to Rwanda where Tutsi and Hutus were at war over political power and rights. Various international bodies and nations such as Belgium, the United States and Tanzania tried to broker talks and maintain peace between the two clans. As mounting tensions ensued, various nations pulled out. Romaine Delaire and his small United Nations peacekeeping force stayed. He was the first to witness the extermination of Tutsis and moderate Hutus in Rwanda and wrote a telegram back home to raise awareness. By then extermination was well under way and there was nothing he could do.


3. Craig Kielburger:

When Craig Kielburger was 12 years old, he decided to take on child poverty and child labour laws around the world. He was saddened by the death of Iqbal Masih in Pakistan, who fought against child labour laws. In 1995, Kielburger founded the Free the Children organization with his friends to prevent more untimely deaths. The goal of the organization was to educate others about world poverty and child labour exploitation. The organization successfully launched the Me to We project in the Millennium, which outlined 101 ways we can improve quality of life.

Today, Craig Kielburger is an inspirational speak and leader. Since 1995, he has opened up 300 schools and raised money for textbooks, desks and other supplies for countries torn by war and famine. He serves as an inspiration to all children as he was able to build a legacy which now involves thousands of youths in over 35 countries.


4. Elie Wiesel:

Elie Wiesel is an inspirational speaker and leader who survived the Holocaust. He educates others about the horrors of war. His books give detailed examinations of war like times and conditions. His mission is to help others remember the Holocaust and those who died. In his teachings, he writes that we should not be indifferent as it is a sin. Being indifferent hurts the aggressor more than the victim, especially in wartimes.


5. Martin Luther King Jr.

Tensions between African Americans and white southerners existed for over two centuries. Jim Crow Laws which governed various states between 1876 and 1965 served to separate Blacks from Whites. Each race went to different schools, ate at different restaurants etc. While on buses, African Americans had different sections. If there was no space for white southerners, African Americans had to give up their seat. Martin Luther King, a Christian preacher tried to desegregate society in southern United States. He believed that one day black and white children will walk hand in hand together in a free society. Sadly he was assassinated before he saw peace.


6. Lester B. Pearson:

During the Suez Canal Crisis, Lester B. Pearson stepped into to resolve the conflict that ensued over the nationalization of the Suez Canal in Egypt. He successfully created an international police force which put an end to the war that threw nations such as the Soviet Union, France, Egypt, Great Britain, United States and Egypt into a tailspin. His mission was the first international peacekeeping task operated by the United Nations and set a blueprint for future peacekeeping operations.


7. Nelson Mandela:

Nelson Mandela was not just a former President of South Africa; he was a leader of the African National Congress (ANC) underground movement. ANC sought to end segregation and apartheid where one could be arrested for drinking out of the wrong water fountain. He strived to make both black and whites living in South Africa equal in status and in pay. Sadly, he was jailed for 27 years for his beliefs and for his fight for peace.


8. Liu Xiaobo:

This Chinese critic, writer and professor is an advocate of non-violence and human rights. He seeks political reform in China where there is more dialogue and compromise. Hoping to abandon class struggles, he advocated for an end to one party communist rule in China. When violence was inevitable, he organized a 4 man hunger strike in Tiananmen Square in 1989. He hoped to attract non-violent protest which ended in bloodshed with the arrival of police and the state. He was subsequently arrested for his role but later released. Throughout the post Cold War years, Xiaobo has been in and out prison. Most recently when drafting the Charter ’08, which sought to provide more freedom of speech and human rights, Xiaobo was arrested again.


9. Menachem Begin:

This Israeli Prime Minister successfully did what no other Prime Minister of Israel could. He lucratively struck a deal with Egyptian leader Mohamed Anwar Al-Sadat in the Camp David Accords in 1979. He gave up land and territory his country gained during war in return for peace.


10. Mohamed Anwar Al-Sadat:

On November 20, 1977 Mohamed Anwar Al-Sadat did what no other Arab leader ever did. He officially visited Israel and put the country on the map to broker peace talks with Menachim Begin. At the time of the visit, Israel had been at war 4 times since its independence. In 1979, Sadat and the Israeli Prime Minister Menachim Begin signed the Camp David Accords, signaling friendship and cessation of all conflicts between the two nations. Sadly, Sadat was assassinated before he could make larger impact on other nations such as Lebanon and Syria. Peace, however, has been attained and has remained for the last 32 years between the two countries.

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