President Obama made light of his increasingly controversial Nobel Peace Prize during a speech on energy. He praised the efforts of Energy Secretary Steven Chu before quipping: "Chu’s the right guy to do this, he’s got a Nobel prize in physics—he actually deserved his Nobel prize," reports Mediaite. On weekends, Chu "goes into his garage and he tinkers around and figures how to extract natural gas," Obama told laughing students at Georgetown University.
Chu shared the 1997 Nobel for physics, and Obama won his in 2009 while waging wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. He acknowledged the irony when asked about it during his Latin America visit last week, notes the New York Times. "I’m accustomed to this contradiction, of being both a commander in chief but also somebody who aspires to peace," he said, adding: "I think the American people don’t see any contradiction in somebody who cares about peace also wanting to make sure that people aren’t butchered because of a dictator who wants to cling to power."