Cooper: President Obama's Nobel Peace prize regretted by organization official

Visitors in 2009 look at a sand sculpture of U.S. President Barak Obama with a Nobel Prize medal, which was created by sand artist Sudarshan Pattnaik on the Golden Sea beach in Puri, India.

On second thought

If he had it to do over again, the former director of Norway's Nobel Institute says in a new book, President Barack Obama would never have been awarded the 2009 Nobel Peace prize.

"[We] thought it would strengthen Obama, and it didn't have this effect," Geil Lundestad told The Associated Press. "Even many of Obama's supporters thought that the prize was a mistake."

The former director said he and the committee had unanimously decided to grant the award to Obama just after his election in 2009 more in hopes of aiding the president to achieve his goals on nuclear disarmament rather than in recognition of what he had accomplished.

Apparently, the award even took the Obama White House by surprise.

U.S. officials, Lundestad said in the book, privately asked if a Nobel Prize-winner had ever skipped the awards ceremony.