The Profiles in Courage Award 2020.
In the 75th anniversary of the United Nations Charter in 2020, the Kennedy Society has decided to
give John F. Kennedy's book "Profiles in Courage" as an award to the United Nations by
Secretary-General António Guterres.
Since its founding, the UN has worked as courageously as possible for its members’ commitment to the UN Charter, the promotion of peace, human rights, health and the preservation of the climate in the world - much in line with the Kennedy brothers' view of life.
Secretary-General Dag Hammarskjöld showed courage to address the "endless possibilities for self-destruction" in his statement to Atomic Scientists in 1961: "The dilemma of our age, with its infinite possibilities of self-destruction, is how to grow out of the world of armaments into a world of international security, based on law." In 1960, Denmark showed the courage to advocate for everyone's entry into the UN. In the speech of our King Frederik IX to the United Nations on October 17, 1960 he said: "It is our principle opinion that all independent and sovereign states, that are prepared to keep the United Nations Charter should be found as members of this organization." He continued: "When we read the UN Charter - something we all should do from time to time - brings out four main purposes: peace, human rights, international law and social progress." President Kennedy stated to the UN in 1961: "For in the development of this organization rests the only true alternative to war, and war appeals no longer as a rational alternative." And: "Let us call a truce to terror." And: "This will require new strength and new roles for the United Nations. For disarmament without checks is but a shadow, and a community without law is but a shell." And: "The elementary tools for a peaceful settlement are found in the United Nations Charter."
To the UN in 1963, President Kennedy said: "We meet again in our quest for peace ... The task of building the peace lies with the leaders of every nation, large and small." And: "The members of this organization are committed by the Charter to promote and respect human rights." And: "United Nations cannot survive as a static organization. Its Charter must be changed as well as its customs." And: "United Nations must be developed into a genuine world security system."
Robert F. Kennedy said in 1961: "In the United Nations we are striving to establish a rule of law instead of rule of force." And his words in 1965: "Guns and bombs cannot fill empty stomachs or educate children, cannot build homes or heal the sick." And in 1965: "We will need to enlist the help of the United Nations, and all other nations - including Communist China - in the effort to prevent nuclear catastrophe."
The Kennedy Society previously awarded its award "Profiles in Courage" to UN Secretary- General Perez de Cuellar in 1989 and to Secretary-General Kofi Annan in 1999. Secretary-General António Guterres opened his office in covenant with John F. and Robert F. Kennedy's objectives for FN, when he said: "Let's resolve to put peace first." And he continued: "Inspired by the new concept of sustaining peace, it is time for all of us to engage in a comprehensive reform of the UN strategy…" He has continued to pursue those purposes.