Nasheed listed in magazine’s annual top 100 “thinkers”

President Mohamed Nasheed has come in 39th place in Foreign Policy magazine’s list of its Top 100 Global Thinkers on the back of a number of high-profile environmentally-themed speeches and commitments such as a national pledge to be carbon neutral by 2020.

The magazine, which chronicles international political development, chose the president in a list of figures it believes have had great significance on global affairs over the last eleven months, which has been topped this year jointly by business giants Bill Gates and Warren Buffet.

Pointing to a much publicised underwater conference held by the president in the Maldives last year – a promotional event designed to raise attention to cutting global output of greenhouse gas emissions amidst fears the country may be sunk by changing climate conditions – the magazine believed Nasheed has continued to be an important pioneer for greener political talk.

“Since taking office two years ago, Nasheed, a 43-year-old former human rights activist, has become the world’s most environmentally outspoken president,” the magazine claimed. “He has made his tiny country — a string of atolls in the Indian Ocean that sits an average of just 7 feet above sea level — a poster child for the need to stop global warming.”

Other names included in the list include US president Barrack Obama in third place, Oxford University economist Paul Collier at 29th place and Salam Fayyad, the Palestine prime minister, at 23.

As reported by Minivan News last week, Nasheed has continued to talk strongly about sustainability commitments. He claimed last week that failure to meet his government’s plan of becoming a carbon neutral country by 2020 would be a “disaster” for the nation and the wider development and promotion of alternative energy-driven economies as a whole.

The article praised the president particularly for comments made this year in the media calling for dynamic street action by citisens of the US to change political attitudes in the country that he has accused of being a significant “obstacle” to trying to battle climate change.

As a destination for green developments, environmental organisations such as Greenpeace have said they view the Maldives more as a symbol than a practical demonstration of how national development and fighting climate change can be mutually exclusive.

Wendel Trio, Climate Policy and Global Deal Coordinator for Greenpeace International, believed that the Maldives can nonetheless play an iconic role in promoting the potential benefits of adopting alternate energy programmes.

“By coupling both strong words and the need for the big emitting countries in the developed and the developing world to reduce their emissions sharply, with a strong commitment at home, the Maldives has gained respect,” Trio explained.

“However, obviously none of the big emitting countries are looking at the Maldives as an example, as they all claim that their social and economic development cannot be compared to that of a small island state.”


26 thoughts on “Nasheed listed in magazine’s annual top 100 “thinkers””

  1. I was the one who spoke about environment first. Why should this little guy get all the credits in the world.

    I was the one who brought democracy to the Maldives too. I never jailed and never tourtured anyone in my regin of 30 years.

    Prehaps, it's because I'm not the president now. So I guess I should get back into Maldivian politics again and run for presidency in 2013. (Thanks, Omar Naeer, my boy. Thanks for telling the people that I will be coming back again.)

    Also thanks to all the boys and girls who're writing damaging comments to the current administration of Nasheed.

  2. i wonder what was the thinking behind this thinker award! I wonder were we are heading? I wonder why? I wonder what I would happen tomorow! I wonder..

  3. @Makunuvaa

    Don't die for these awards!

    They could be withdrawn the moment 'flat dhonbe' the name he opts above 'ganja' goes against their wishes.

    Look at Mugabe.

    In 2008, the then UK Foreign Secretary David Miliband complained to the Queen about Mugabe and soon after the 'honour' of GCB was stripped from him.

    From, Order Of The Bath, to uncivilized barbarian!

  4. Gayyoom was the leader who raised his voice on these environmental concerns that threaten us.

    I guess one can talk big, bluff no limit's that is beyond one's reach.

    One can build wind farms, lay submarine cables and build a grind that connects the pear like islands. Talk of all shades of green. WoW !!!! I am stunned !!!

    Every-time I pass the near gaafaru I can see the see the tall monumental structures and wonder how many more like these can be built ..............

  5. Positive achievements must be recognised and congratulated in good spirit.

    The President of Maldives is recognised as a "Thinker" at a international level, 39th place is something to be proud of. Now, is the time to acknowledge and express joy.

    May God guide you in making the right decisions.

  6. @heck
    Oh please shut the hell up. No one cares about your idiotic comments. Having seen most of your negative comments, it suffices to say you have the intellect of an ant or less. So please keep those very inane thoughts to yourself. Thank you.

    And kudos to Nasheed, if anyone deserves it he does.

  7. See! Anni.

    Your hard work is paying off.

    Next year you must muster all your efforts and try to be clear at the top.

    We like Maldives to be at the top of something, at least, after attaining top place (from behind), in the Asian Games.

    How about declaring Maldives a secular nation and delete the word Islam from the Constitution?

    I am sure that would be a short cut to the top.

    No foreign policy expert can BEAT that!

    In fact you will be, way, up at the top, where no one can even see you!

    That's how far you will go.

    Take this as an encouragement.

    NOT from me, but from the person who did this to you.

    They are very much aware that top executives of small nations are greedy for titles like these.

    Like a hungry hyena going for a steak.

    Better luck next time!

  8. heck,

    For a guy who appears to know diddly squat about secularism, you sure seem to bring it up a lot.

    You have reduced Islam to a tiny, narrow little anti-gay movement and obstacle course of sins.

    Thankfully, Islam doesn't exist that way in the real world.

    Our regional neighbor, Bangladesh - one of the most populous Muslim nations in the world (that also has above 90% Muslims) has just this last month declared itself secular - and deleted the Islamist provisions from its constitution.

    That is a huge advance for a country that has been wallowing in Islamist self-destruction and downward spiral for decades.

    Please do respond with a kindergarten-level comeback that will include the word 'gay'.

  9. @*Yawn*meen

    You have brought that secularism thing again.

    And I quote from my earlier comment

    "Secularism is definitely a religion, whether you like it or not. That’s why you are being so ‘dogmatic’ and ‘defensive’ about your ‘firm’ beliefs!

    As far as I know, Bangladesh is a country still trying to breath after it separated from Pakistan revolving around whether they want a secularist nation or an Islamic state like Pakistan, against whom they fought and gained independence.

    I don’t think their political decisions on the subject of secularism and Islamic state has anything to do with strong public opinion against the religion of Islam itself.

    It could be just a political decision based on the aspirations of Bangladesh as a nation, to survive as an independent nation, after religious based politics was banned even at the brutal birth of Bangladesh.

    There is no clash with Islam in Bangladesh, and if you look clearly, this secularism thing was there in the first constitution of Bangladesh.

    So I think, it is secularism itself which is at risk in Bangladesh, not Islam.

    Maldives is a different nation. We did not have to fight a brutal war to gain independence against a larger Muslim country.

    Secularist promises were made during Bangladesh’s struggle for independence understandably to gain the support of minorities and possibly the support of it’s large neighbour, who is constantly at odds with whom Bangladesh fought for independence.

    Even so, do you see the political willingness in Bangladesh to confront public opinion and jeopardise the next election term.

    It’s like Anni keeping quiet about Adhaalath Party, one of the the only few remaining stones in Anni’s crown that shaped his political future. Similarly Sheikh Haseena knows she must not open her mouth like the bay of Bengal if she wants to win another term.
    So it’s all politics!"

  10. @yaamyn

    "You have reduced Islam to a tiny, narrow little anti-gay movement"

    Huh! Poh! And you have alleviated Islam in all your anti-Islamic comments?

    Why do you get offended when I use the word 'gay'. That's funny! Very funny!

  11. I knew you couldn't resist the word 'gay' - and you didn't disappoint.

    Nevertheless, you're halfway right about Bangladesh. It was indeed formed as a secular state, which was Islamized along the way.

    The country has suffered from waves of Islamist violence, and has been the base of militant organizations like HuJI.

    The present government is only taking steps to undo the damage and wasted years of hateful rhetoric (the same kind we're seeing in the Maldives today)

    It is a political decision - and a marvelous, mature, far sighted political decision.

    It proves that an overwhelmingly Muslim nation, can of their own initiative - and despite the threat of violence, intimidation and assassination squads of intolerant Islamist fundamentalists - still show the political commitment and leadership to introduce sweeping, modern reforms and embrace secularism.

    You're repeated assertions that 'secularism' is a religion have no bearing on reality or the meaning of the word. You might just as well insist water is dry.

    It does nothing to change reality.

    Finally, I'd like to point out that the founder of Pakistan - Mohamed Ali Jinnah was a secularist.

    This is easily obvious from his famous August 11 speech to the constituent assembly, where he declared that

    ' course of time Hindus would cease to be Hindus and Muslims would cease to be Muslims, not in the religious sense, because that is the personal faith of each individual, but in the political sense as citizens of the State."

    A truly beautiful speech. Do read the full text of the speech here:

    He also said: "You may belong to any caste or creed. That has nothing to do with the business of the state'.

    As for Jinnah's liberal commitment?

    My point remains. India, Pakistan and Bangladesh were all founded by strong secularist visionaries.

    Of the three, Pakistan floundered with the Wahhabi General Zia-Ul-Haq deciding to Islamize the state, introduce the infamous blasphemy laws and other bits of Islamist tools of oppression that has seen Pakistan climb up to dizzying heights on the minorities oppression indices. (No. Seriously. Google freedom of religion indices)

    It has seen dictatorship after dictatorship, and not seen a single democratic government complete a term.

    There's a movement to include Jinnah's speech into the constitution, so that the country heads back to the original secular, modernistic vision of its founder.

    Bangladesh, also founded on secular ideals, found another Zia to Islamize it.

    Ever since, the otherwise culturally rich and vibrant Bengalis who were at the forefront of the anti-colonial movements have been reduced to an impoverished, largely uneducated, poor country just trying to keep its head above the water.

    India, meanwhile, has been successfully able to largely defend its basic constitutional principles of socialist, liberal secularism - despite the best efforts of Hindu and other fundamentalists.

    Just study the contrast between the three states.

    India is already a regional power, and projected to be a global superpower in a few decades. Its economy is growing at breakneck speeds and its cities are booming.

    Pakistan is usually associated with the words 'failed state' and still trying to extinguish the flames of radical Talibanism that is burning its mosques and sufi shrines, killing its citizens.

    Bangladesh, until the last elections, was projected to go down the same Islamist, fundamentalist downward spiral.

    So, now you tell me. Why is EVERY SINGLE COUNTRY IN THE WORLD that has let Islamism thrive seen a social deterioration, collapse of economy, stagnation of growth, impoverished middle classes and all around decrease on every single social development index?

    By your theory, Saudi Arabia should be the global power right now. It is on the other end of the graph.

    Taliban era Afghanistan should have made strides. Instead, their cutting edge legislation included banning its women folk from buying cucumbers, to 'prevent sin'.

    I only wish I were joking.

    WHY does this happen? WHY do Secular states beat Islamist infested states on everything?

    Why are Muslims better off in secular states than in theocracies? Statistically, the reason HAS TO LIE with Islamism itself.

    With a sample size of the entire globe and every country - and the development charts and statistics of ALL THESE countries, you simply cannot pretend that Islamism/Wahhabism is not a problem.

    It is an ailment, and the sooner Muslims move away from this cancer, the better it is for them.

    You won't eat a medicine that has a proven zero percent success rate.

    You won't drive a car that is statistically proven to crash on every single test run.

    Why then do you insist on clinging to this backward, useless, intolerant ideology of yours that has never done anybody any good?


  13. @yaamyn

    "You won’t eat a medicine that has a proven zero percent success rate."

    I EAT food, and DRINK water, for your kind info!

    "You won’t drive a car that is statistically proven to crash on every single test run"

    You don't understand. The car is ok. It's my glasses! I will get a thicker one for the next test run!

    I am also planning to see the dentist, next month - I lost all my teeth with all those crashes!!

    Can I tell you something?

    There is a humongous difference in the definition of the word 'reward' in the dictionary of a religious Muslim and a religious Secularist!

    When you understand that much - I am done! And I hope you would also be done.

  14. No need to think too much..the world is heading to disaster and destruction whether people THINK about it or not! People just don't have much control over the universe anyway..But anyway, thanks for trying Mr.President!

    Maybe after reading this bit of news,the youth in the country will wake up from their stupor to rack up their drugged minds and start THINKING!

  15. does he realy love the environment? ofcourse his speeches are great.i can give a great speech about environment aswel.but the big question much is he bringing it to action? before trying to make this world carbon neutral,why not try make our surroundings a bit cleaner.lets stop damaging our reefs.lets do little things like..not dumping our waste in the ocean,not make a concrete harbor around each small island by breaking the reef and affecting movement of current,saving the natural habitats like ponds and lakes etc. our president is shamelesly talking about what china and the states are doing to the environment when he cant take care of what his own country is doing to the vulnerable environment of this many tonnes of waste do you think maldivian sea vessels dump in the sea every many old smoking vehicles do you think this small country many trees do you think is being cut from these tiny islands.why dont WE be more environment friendly before we ask others to mend there own damage.are we out of that group just becoz maldives is tiny compared to them? did it ever cross our minds that our contribution to environmental hazards is small only in percentages compared to countries that are much larger and hundreds of times more populated? if we count the damage man to man dont you think we will be even o worse compared to them? we are using motored bikes or cars to travel hardly 2 miles across male'.would it realy kill us if we walk 15 minutes to office? these things will never change just because the president had a cabinet meeting underwater or he walks from jetty to his residence two blocks a maldivian i would love our president to make all the maldivians more environment friendly before he goes you realy think winning awards by doing stunts like this will do any good to this country or world? with the current situation of this country i would never accept any award that is given to me for being a great thinker or a guardian of the environment.president nasheed is not the father of environment.neither was maumoon.think again beloved maldivians...

  16. Crime is at an all-time high. People in their teens and twenties are being stabbed on the street. Politicians are practicing their immaturity, their ineptitude out in the open. Our economy is still in the dumps.
    Yet, all Yaamyn can manage to sputter out is spitting on the religious establishment and starting up a gay bar. You're messed up, little boy.

  17. ..also, previous comment also alludes to Anni's total inability to solve these problems. Some great thinker.


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