Our reasons for the Profiles in Courage Award, 2007
to Archbishop and award-winner Desmond Mpilo Tutu

Speech by Svend Aage Nielsen, Toreby.
November 7, 2007 in The Danish Church in London.
Chairman of the Kennedy Society of Denmark.

Your Excellencies. Dear Archbishop, nobelwinner Desmond Tutu.
Your Excellency, ambassador. We thank for your welcome to all of us. We are grateful that the Royal Danish Embassy and the Danish Church has managed to let this happy award-ceremony take place here.
We are very grateful for the answer that you Archbishop Desmond Mpilo Tutu sent us, when you wrote: ”I have recently received your communication. Thank you for it all. I am flabbergasted and overwhelmed. I am humbled and honoured and am happy to accept the award. I look forward to hearing from you. God bless you, Desmond Tutu.”
We think your words echo deep respect for John and Robert F. Kennedy’s good words and deeds.
Just as we intend to do it with the purpose of the Kennedy Society.
So we too are humbled, honoured and happy for your accept of the award. And we learned to be ”flabbergasted” as well.
We are happy to give our reasons for the award to you. We do it with deep respect for your courage during decades. And we agree with John Allen’s biography about you, where he sums up, that your vision of reconciliation may be the greatest gift from you to future generations. Your faith in One God means inclusiveness – just as the Lord’s Prayer – for all mankind.
For you human rights come - just as President John F. Kennedy said – not from the generosity of the state – ”but from the hand of God.” And One God means the same God to all citizens of the world. To pray ”Our Father…” means to be in one family in a sister and brotherhood to all.
- Your achievements in ”The Truth and Reconciliation Commission” and in your book ”NO FUTURE WITHOUT FORGIVENESS” send a much better signal than the one sent from the ”Nuremberg Trial” after World War II. In ”Profiles in Courage” John F. Kennedy has a chapter about the courage of the American senator Robert Taft. He challenged the Nuremberg Trial and he called it ”The trial of the vanquished by the victors.”
This is not the truth about your chairmanship of ”The Truth and Reconciliation Commission.” When its report was presented it condemned both sides for committing atrocities.
We still lack such an equal justice from both sides in the World Wars. We need to unite in a definition of terror as deliberate attacks on civilians and we shall overcome these faults. Victory does not justify all means. ”The Truth and Reconciliation Commission” generated world wide inspiration.
- We also thank you for the courage to call it obscene to use amounts on budgets of death and destruction.” Just as senator Robert F. Kennedy realized it in his opposition to the war in Vietnam: ”Guns and bombs cannot fill empty stomachs or educate children, cannot build homes or heal the sick. But these are the ends for which men establish and obey governments.”
Your courageous principles are so very needed in this new millennium. Therefore we have now placed our Laudatio for you - on our world wide website www.kennedysociety.dk
Indeed, it is a great pleasure and honor for us today to give you The ”Profiles in Courage Award”
John F. Kennedy’s book: ”Profiles in Courage.”