Image Courtesy of Executive Office of the President of the United States, Public domain, accessed from Wikimedia Commons
To take one last jab at the end of the Nobel Prize hanogver, I would like to suggest that the next Nobel Peace Prize go to Boris Yeltsin. He should've won it this year. After the fall of the USSR, amidst domestic terrorism, missile threats, a hurt national pride, a collapsed economy, and a nuclear security crisis that shook the spirit of the world to its core, he kept the ship sailing smooth. He even handled himself coolly and effectively when, in 1994, a Norwegian meterological research team stupidly made their weather rocket from Spitzbergen appear on radar in the likeness of an American ICBM headed towards Moscow.
Unfortunately, Yeltsin died 2 years ago, so he would not be alive to accept the prize. It is sad that he was not honored in his lifetime.
Many nations split off from Russia after the fall of the USSR, taking their own political and economic trajectories and sometimes, a little government assets from Mother Russia. Two of these, the Ukraine and Kazakhstan, took with them a part of the USSR's nuclear arsenal. It took years to disarm them. Several others were involved in civil wars, and monstorous levels of inflation.
Yeltsin created the CIS, or Commonwealth of Independent States, to give Russia a remaining feel of empire, and give the new countries a forum to unite for military protection, negotiate trade conditions, coordinate nuclear security and counterterrorism, and allow states like Kazakstan and Kyrgyzstan with important former Soviet government functions to continue their business for Russia, keeping employment in the country and saving Russia from having to build new facilities. Also allowing all millitary forces common training facilities, so that all of them may be measurable millitary powers beyond their size and prosperity. He kept these nations stable, kept his own nation stable, and prevented at least one possible horrifying nuclear action in 1994.
Some people criticize Boris for the instability in Russia's economy, but Russia's economy was ruined long before Boris took the helm and decades of Communist abuse would not be healed overnight. Although I'm no expert on Russia's economy, I do know that Boris did raise hell in the Aluminum markets, bringing home massive profits, exports and employment for Soviet military related aluminum plants at the expense of virtually every developed country with cheap electric power.
Barrack Obama does not live up to names like Theodore Roosevelt, Nelson Mandela, and Martin Luther King Jr in ANY aspect of his sacrifices, efforts, or results achieved. Maybe he will someday, but he has not yet. I don't know about sacrifices, but in terms of results, Boris certainly lives up to them.
But then again, we were too late anyways. Rest in peace Boris. How I regret that no one was there to give you the recognition that you deserve.