Nobel Prize Winners
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John Cockcroft - Facts
Sir John Douglas Cockcroft 1951 Born: 27 May 1897, Todmorden, United Kingdom Died: 18 September 1967, Cambridge, United Kingdom Affiliation at the time of the award: Atomic Energy Research Establishment, Harwell, Berkshire, United Kingdom Prize motivation: "for their pioneer work on the transmutation of atomic nuclei by artificially accelerated atomic particles" Field: Accelerator physics, nuclear physics
1982, Kenneth Geddes Wilson . was an American theoretical physicist and a pioneer in leveraging computers for studying particle physics. He was awarded the 1982 Nobel Prize in Physics for his work on phase transitions—illuminating the subtle essence of phenomena like melting ice and emerging magnetism.
Klaus von Klitzing - Facts
Klaus von Klitzing 1985 Born: 28 June 1943, Schroda, German-occupied Poland Affiliation at the time of the award: Max-Planck-Institut für Festkörperforschung, Stuttgart, Federal Republic of Germany Prize motivation: "for the discovery of the quantized Hall effect" Field: Condensed matter physics
1993 Nelson Mandela: 1918-2013: South Africa. In the 1950s he was leader of the youth wing of the African National Congress (ANC). The white government prohibited the ANC in 1960, he organized a military underground movement engaged in sabotage and was arrested and sentenced to life imprisonment. He was the world's most famous political prisoner from 1964 to 1990,. He shared the Peace Prize with President de Klerk who released him because they had agreed on a peaceful transition to majority rule
1993 Frederik Willem de Klerk: 1936-: South Africa. He released Nelson Mandela from prison and the two politicians worked together to bring an end to the policy of racial segregation. He had been a firm upholder of white privilege but realized that apartheid was leading to economic and political bankruptcy. Secret negotiations with Mandela and the ANC liberation movement led to a new constitution with equal voting rights for every population group in the country.
1991 Aung San Suu Kyi: 1945-: Burma (now Myanmar). Since 1988 she has led opposition to the military junta that has ruled Burma since 1962. She was one of the founders of the National League for Democracy (NLD) and called on military leaders to hand over power to a civilian government. In the 1990 election, the NLD won a clear victory but the generals prevented the legislative assembly from convening, continued to arrest members of the opposition and refused to release Suu Kyi from house arrest
1990 Mikhail Sergeyevich Gorbachev: 1931-: USSR. In 1985 Gorbachev was elected leader of the Soviet Union. He sought to reform communism and introduced "glasnost" (openness) and "perestroika" (change). He sought détente with the USA so as to transfer funding from defence to civil society. In 1989 the Berlin Wall fell, and the Cold War between East and West was brought to a halt with the fall of communism in Europe. In 1990, the Nobel Committee gave Gorbachev the main credit for this
1989 The 14th Dalai Lama (Tenzin Gyatso): 1935-: Tibet (now People's Republic of China). From exile in India, the religious and political leader the Dalai Lama has since 1959 stood at the head of the nonviolent opposition to China's occupation of Tibet. He had shown willingness to compromise and seek reconciliation despite brutal violations. He recommended that the country be turned into a demilitarized zone as a buffer between major Asian powers but this was rejected by the Chinese government
1994 Yitzhak Rabin: 1922-1995: Israel. He became Prime Minister in 1992 and abandoned force in favour of negotiations to achieve peace with the Palestinians. He approved the Oslo Accords to share the Peace Prize with his Minister of Foreign Affairs Peres and Palestinian leader Arafat. Some Jews saw the Oslo Accords as a betrayal, and Rabin was assassinated by a religious fanatic in 1995.
1994 Shimon Peres: 1923-: Israel. In 1993, secret negotiations between Palestinians and Israelis in Oslo resulted in the Oslo Accords signed in Washington. The agreement aimed at reconciling the two peoples with Israel gradually withdrawing from occupied territories and granting the Palestinians self-determination. Israel's Minister of Foreign Affairs Shimon Peres in charge of negotiations on the Israeli side shared the Peace Prize with his Prime Minister Rabin and Palestinian leader Arafat
1994 Yasser Arafat: 1929-2004: Palestine. He took part in the war against the new state of Israel in 1948 and organized the guerrilla group Fatah which attacked Israel. In 1974, he addressed the UN General Assembly to say he held an olive branch for peace in one hand and a freedom fighter's pistol in the other. Twenty years later he and Israeli leaders Peres and Rabin received the Peace Prize for reconciliation between Israelis and Palestinians by signing the so-called Oslo Accords in Washington
1986 Elie Wiesel: 1928-: USA. He was born in Romania. His family died in Auschwitz and Buchenwald but he survived to be liberated age 17. He made it his life's work to bear witness to the genocide committed by the Nazis during World War II. Today he is the world's leading spokesman on the Holocaust. He believes that it is equally important to fight indifference and sees the struggle against indifference as a struggle for peace. In his words, "The opposite of love is not hate, but indifference".
1982 Alva Myrdal: 1902-1986: Sweden. Early, she worked to improve conditions of the working class through the Social Democrat Party. After WW II, she held prominent posts in the United Nations particularly as head of UNESCO's social science section. It was as the government minister in charge of disarmament that she stood out. As the representative of a non-aligned Sweden, she worked actively to persuade the superpowers to disarm and fought for nuclear weapons-free zones in Europe
1983 Lech Walesa: 1943-: Poland. He was employed at a shipyard in Gdansk and during a strike in 1980, he led negotiations for a victory for the Solidarity union movement. In 1981, Polish authorities banned Solidarity alleging that this was the only way to prevent a Soviet invasion. After a couple of years they abandoned that policy, and Poland was gradually liberalized. In 1989 Solidarity won free elections and in the following year Walesa was elected President of Poland.
1982 Alfonso García Robles: 1911-1991: Mexico. He had a long career as a diplomat including various posts at the UN.After the Cuban missile crisis in 1962, he played a key part in the laborious efforts to make Latin America a nuclear-free zone, which led to an agreement signed by 14 states in Mexico City in 1967.But it was as a diplomat that García Robles achieved his greatest triumphs. The last time he visited the UN Headquarters he was lauded as "Mr. Disarmament".
1984 Desmond Mpilo Tutu: 1931-: South Africa. Bishop of Johannesburg and former Secretary General, South African Council of Churches. Despite bloody violations committed against the black population, as in the Sharpeville massacre of 1961 and the Soweto rising in 1976, Tutu adhered to his nonviolent line. Yet he would not blame Nelson Mandela and his supporters for having made a different choice. He was honoured with the Peace Prize for his opposition to South Africa's brutal apartheid regime.