I think this letter from Bruce Kent in today's Guardian newspaper nails why the awarding of the Nobel Peace Prize to Liu Xiaobo was ill thought out...
All those who respect Nobel's intentions should challenge the award to Liu Xiaobo, brave and inspirational man though he is. However, Nobel's peace prize, as his will makes clear, was intended for those who work against militarism, champions of peace, those who promote nonviolent solutions to international conflict, the reduction of armaments and organisers of peace congresses. Since 1945, the Nobel committee has taken it on itself to award the prize to anyone it feels like. Some awardees have certainly done great work for humanity in their own fields. Some, like Henry Kissinger, perhaps not. Were the executors of a private will to behave in this fashion there would surely be legal consequences.
Liu Xiaobo does not fit the remit. The Nobel Peace Prize has, sadly, been reduced to a tool for political point scoring.