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May 16

The Terrified Monks

Written by Buxi on Friday, May 16th, 2008 at 10:01 pm
Filed under:Analysis | Tags:, , ,
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Nicholas Kristof of the New York Times is traveling in Xiahe, Gansu. (We can safely assume his trip isn’t within the past week, or otherwise he would’ve been within a few hundred miles of the earthquake’s epicenter.)

The editorial adds little that is new to the discussion. It is a reiteration of monks claiming that they were assaulted while arrested, which correlated with a military presence, is finally translated into a “harsh crackdown”. The editorial ends with this line:

China is emerging as a great power in this century, and it is famously concerned with saving face. But it loses far more face from its own repression of Tibetans than from anything the Dalai Lama has ever done.

Kristof suggests on his blog that many Chinese will be outraged by the editorial, and invites comments. Mine are repeated here.

At the end of the day, I really believe Kristof has missed the point by focusing on what essentially boils down to “police abuse”. Public security forces in China are poorly trained for dealing with dissenters, but it’s not as if American cops are particularly known for their pacifist ways (cue Sean Bell). I believe all Chinese can be united in agreeing with Nicolas Kristof that our police officers should learn to follow the law themselves, and that their use of physical force as punishment is a crime.

That said, Nicolas Kristof is certainly right that many of us are skeptical of “exaggerated” claims coming from Tibetan sources. The credibility of these eyewitnesses has been compromised by the overwhelming amount of falsehoods generated by many of their compatriots. I’m not a follower of Tibetan Buddhism, but I can’t help but conclude that lying is not a sin in their religion.

The Tibetan monks who strikingly interrupted the Lhasa media tour in March, for example, managed to claim in the same breath that they had been denied contact with the outside world since March 11th, while also claiming they saw the bodies of hundreds of dead protesters. Other first-hand reports (including the Dharamasala press releases issued in the evening of 3/14 claiming 100 dead and tanks on the street) have been completely contradicted by Western journalists who have less motivation to lie here. I wouldn’t want to get into a debate about the credibility of the Chinese state press either; there’s plenty of convincing evidence that the Chinese state press also lies or exaggerates as needed. So, let’s just be honest: we need to be skeptical and hear both sides of every story in this case.

Although Nicolas Kristof has basically failed in actually making a point on this matter, let’s focus on what matters: “repression of Tibetans”.

I believe China needs to work out a practical mechanism for allowing public protests. When I say practical… on the one hand, I mean that China needs to actually *grant* permission for protests when the circumstances are right, instead of forcing Chinese people to pretend they’re only going out for a “walk” (see Chengdu, Shanghai, Xiamen); on the other hand, by practical I mean that China needs to keep in mind those who start off “protesting” will sometimes explode into an orgy of mass murder (see Lhasa, 3/14). Without such a practical mechanism, Tibetans are “repressed” the same way all Chinese are “repressed”; unless we have an internet connection, we have no other way of expressing our strong feelings about any subject.

But I have a feeling Kristof is talking about something else other than these basic civil rights. When he speaks of “repression”, he’s really talking about the fact that the Tibetans’ political position is ignored. And to this, I say… so what? In France and Austria, you can be arrested and imprisoned simply for “denying” the Holocaust. In the United States, if you’re implicated in a religious sect that condones polygamy, you might even have your children taken away from you. These Western democracies don’t always have a great deal of tolerance either, do they?

And we Chinese understand that sentiment: many of us, the vast majority of us (of different nationalities), oppose the idea of separatism with all of our hearts. We, the people, simply do not condone it. We love our more perfect union, and we have no interest in seeing it compromised. Most of us believe there is room for political criticism of the Communist Party; most of us support the private practice of religions (including Tibetan Buddhism); most of us believe more should be done to preserve Tibetan culture… but we simply have no interest in being “tolerant” to a separatist movement. And when activists actually storm government institutions, pull down our national flag and replacing it with a snow-lion flag… that’s not a cultural or religious statement, that is a separatist movement, and we encourage our government to eradicate that dangerous movement immediately. Abraham Lincoln sacrificed the lives of millions of Americans in order to preserve a more perfect Union, and if eliminating this political movement allowsus to prevent that sort of chaos and damage, I embrace it.

Keep in mind that in the United States, gay marriage is legal today (apparently), and yet might be illegal tomorrow (if the constitutional amendment passes). Why? Because the constitution exists, because it is a neutral body of text that the American people uses to specify exactly what sort of behavior is acceptable, and what isn’t. We have a constitution in China too; it is imperfectly written, and it is imperfectly implemented… but there’s one clause in it that many of us support: no activities that encourage ethnic conflict, that encourage separatism.

So, that’s pretty much the bottom line. The country we wish to build is multi-ethnic and multi-cultural; the country that we wish to build will respect different political opinions on most issues; the country that we wish to build will have a civil, professional police force; the country that we wish to build will still not tolerate separatist movements or separatist activities.


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50 Responses to “The Terrified Monks”

  1. Paul Says:

    You wrote, “So, let’s just be honest: we need to be skeptical and hear both sides of every story in this case.”

    That is the whole problem.

    Beijing does not want anyone to hear all sides of the issues.

    So how can people in China comment on anything if they are not allowed to hear what others who do not agree with the government think?

    By keeping everyone out of Tibet, the immediate thought is that there is something to hide.

  2. Buxi Says:

    Paul,

    The fact that you can say with all seriousness that “the problem is Beijing does not want anyone to hear all sides of the issue” is… well, that’s naive, patronizing, and simply incorrect.

    I’m not going to whitewash China’s propaganda. However, you think you can’t engage with 1.3 billion in China, and I’m here to tell you that you’re wrong. There are at least a good 50-200 million people out there in mainland China you can have a discussion with about this issue online.

    There are also at least 3-5 million overseas Chinese who can hear both sides of the story that you could have a discussion with about this issue, if you wanted to. Just to help you with the numbers there: there are as many overseas Chinese outside of the PRC as there are Tibetans on this planet.

    How many of us have you convinced? If you can’t convince us… how can you keep deluding yourself into believing that Beijing’s censorship is the problem?

  3. Joe Says:

    Buxi is right that it is not the main problem about Beijing not wanting to hear all sides of the story.
    But, only insofar as there are other, bigger problems.
    Beijing definitely doesn’t want everyone to hear all sides of the story, and anyone who thinks there is freedom of the press in PRC is ‘pissing in the wind.’
    Beijing spends lots of time and money making sure they can eavesdrop when they want wish. They also make no secret of the lack of anonymity of Chinese internet use. Just try to access international news from China, if you think there’s something naive or patronizing about China’s censorship of news the people in it’s country have access to.
    Better yet, try commenting on edgy blogs in Taiwan from China. Oh, wait I forgot, you can’t SEE them from China.

  4. richard Says:

    I like the way you put quotation marks around “repression”. I don’t know how many people in the west have been jailed for Holocaust denial but I bet it doesn’t get into double figures. I bet they don’t get the electric cattle prod on their breast or their skull cracked with an iron bar. It’ not just Tibetan monks who get this sort of treatment – look at those Chinese people unfortunate enough to complain about having their property confiscated or cheated out of their wages. Local authorities, property developers and cops have a network of local heavies to do their dirty work, or should I say “eradicating a dangerous movement”.

  5. Bing Ma Yong Says:

    1. if the monks were physically assaulted in prison. I would believe so. prisoners are assaulted in no Tibetan area as well but Nicholas Kristof is not interested. my point is not because they were Tibetan monks they got assaulted. it happens more in rural China when police officers are poorly trained. the prisoner abuse is not ethnic or political motivated. They would assault a thief as well.

    2.”Local authorities, property developers and cops have a network of local heavies to do their dirty work” is one of the big problems everyone in China or outside China knows. And the central government knows. know many government officers are put in jail each year because of their dirty work. this has nothing to do with china central government’s policy or encourage. It’s a too big topic to analgize the cause of corruption and abuse. many Latin American and Asia democratic countries have same or even worse situation regarding this. personally not too sure if democracy and free speech can just fix the problem

  6. Buxi Says:

    Richard,

    Here’s a names from the last few years of those arrested for the thought crime of holocaust denial.

    http://www.ihr.org/news/061112_prisoners_of_conscience.shtml

    I have no problem with their arrest. Frankly, I think the German, French, Austrian people have earned the right to repress Nazi ideology. I’m just not ignorant and hypocritical enough to suggest that “repression” is a term that doesn’t need to exist in quotes.

    As far as electric cattle prod on their breast or their skull cracked with an iron bar… as I said above (and BMY said below), there’s police abuse throughout China, unfortunately. If this sort of abuse was *policy* and the Chinese government really wanted to force these monks into revealing their sources, we’d be smarter than using cattle prods and local heavies… we’d just use water-boarding.

  7. Buxi Says:

    Joe,

    I don’t claim that there’s freedom of the press in China, far from it.

    However, far too many Westerners (and it sounds like yourself) are using this fact as a fig leaf for covering up your own ignorance. The West might have a free press, but that doesn’t guarantee an informed citizenship.

    I’ll just remind you of a few points:

    – do you read Chinese, and have you actually tried engaging with the Chinese online? Here’s a link for you: http://blog.foolsmountain.com/?p=74

    – do you actually know what sites can be seen from inside China? Taiwan’s UDN, PTT, for example, are all regularly reading for many Chinese.

    – what about the opinions of the tens of millions of Chinese who’re overseas, or in Hong Kong? Are our opinions equally disposable and irrelevant to you?

  8. jim Says:

    Buxi,

    >>If you can’t convince us… how can you keep deluding yourself into believing that Beijing’s censorship is the problem?

    Some might argue that that is exactly why they can’t convince you: Beijing’s censorship. If you spend your entire life in that kind of media environment/educational system, do you think it has no effect? If it has no effect, then why does the government bother to censor everything, to restrict all debate, to limit the information people have access to? For fun? They do it because it is effective.

    As Paul said, if the government is right and has nothing to hide, then why censor the media? Why keep people out of Tibet? This does not mean that the government is automatically wrong, but it does mean that no one will believe them even if they are right.

    >>”So, let’s just be honest: we need to be skeptical and hear both sides of every story in this case.”

    Let me fix it for you:

    “So, let’s just be honest: most Chinese aren’t skeptical and have only heard one side of this story. Even many of those who actually do have access to other viewpoints don’t want to even consider them and label those who do ‘traitors’.” Ok, fixed.

    The 3 to 5 million overseas? Wow, that is almost 0.4% of the Chinese population. And not all of those people agree with your position.

    It is difficult to argue that “all sides should be considered and weighed” when that is exactly what is forbidden in China. That’s the whole point.

  9. Wang Chung Says:

    “police abuse”? “Abraham Lincoln” oh, please. your infantile desperation to cover up fascist atrocities in china is pathetic. grow up. look in the mirror. the enemy is you.

  10. Buxi Says:

    jim,

    The 3 to 5 million overseas? Wow, that is almost 0.4% of the Chinese population. And not all of those people agree with your position.

    I don’t care what percentage of the entire Chinese population I (and many other Chinese) are. I’ll take you on a one on one basis. Your inability to debate the issues on that front just proves the depth of your own intellectual cowardice, and or deep ignorance as to the substance of the issues.

    Care to prove me wrong?

  11. Buxi Says:

    @Wang Chung,

    “police abuse”? “Abraham Lincoln” oh, please. your infantile desperation to cover up fascist atrocities in china is pathetic. grow up. look in the mirror. the enemy is you.

    I don’t think you get to define me, you only get to define yourself through your own words. If you have the ability to make a point, please give it a try. If not, study, think, and come back again.

  12. jim Says:

    I don’t care what percentage of the entire Chinese population I (and many other Chinese) are.

    Of course you don’t — because it undermines your entire argument.

    Your inability to debate the issues on that front just proves the depth of your own intellectual cowardice, and or deep ignorance as to the substance of the issues.

    On the contrary, you respond to any substantive points with name calling.

  13. Buxi Says:

    jim,

    Of course you don’t — because it undermines your entire argument.

    My argument is simple, and it’s not “undermined” by anything you’ve said so far. I’d love it if you’d discuss issues with the Chinese within China (which is part of the reason I introduced Tianya/MITBBS and will continue to introduce other related chat sites), but you either can not, or you will not.

    Instead, you prefer to hide behind your convenient fig leaf that “they” don’t know the truth. If that’s the case, then engage in a discussion with the millions of Chinese who are outside of China, like yours truly.

    On the contrary, you respond to any substantive points with name calling.

    I’ll help you with a few links where I try to make my point clearly, and with a minimum of rhetoric. I am still waiting to see your “substantive” points in response.

    http://blog.foolsmountain.com/?tag=tibet

  14. jim Says:

    >>I’d love it if you’d discuss issues with the Chinese within China

    Hmm, since I lived in China for more than 5 years, I’ve discussed these issues with Chinese both within and without China plenty.

    >>Instead, you prefer to hide behind your convenient fig leaf that “they” don’t know the truth

    That sums up every argument you make: “All Chinese think like me. You refuse to talk to them. You don’t know the truth.”

    I would guess that most Westerners who comment here and on other China blogs have connections to China: we speak Chinese, we’ve lived in China, many of us have Chinese wives or girlfriends or husbands. So you can stop using the “go talk to Chinese – you know nothing of China” line. That isn’t much of an argument.

    >>My argument is simple, and it’s not “undermined” by anything you’ve said so far.

    I’ll spell it out for you.

    >>There are also at least 3-5 million overseas Chinese..How many of us have you convinced? If you can’t convince us… how can you keep deluding yourself into believing that Beijing’s censorship is the problem?

    1) Not all overseas Chinese think the same way, about Tibet or anything else. You aren’t the only one around here who can read mitbbs.

    2) Most Chinese (other than the 0.38% who live overseas and the tiny percentage of online users who use proxies and read news in English) do not have access to “both sides” of any story, much less when it comes to Tibet. The fact that a tiny fraction of people have that access and still agree with the government point of view doesn’t prove that the government is right. It doesn’t necessarily prove anything. And contrary to what you argue, it might just prove how effective their system of censorship is — not how ineffective it is.

    3) Can you see the irony of asking people to consider “both sides” of an issue when that is precisely what is forbidden in China? Also, be careful — or an angry online mob of Chinese “patriots” will label you a 汉奸.

    Now, let’s see if you can respond with anything other than:
    – ignoring the points people raise.
    – name calling.
    – “you are unable to debate the issue,” etc.

  15. CLC Says:

    Your assumption that anybody in China who does not use proxy and read English can not access both sides of the story is just preposterous. There are independent overseas Chinese media that are easily accessed in mainland. On top of that, VOA, RFA and BBC definitely present western/DL side of the story in Chinese. And more Chinese live outside censorship than you think. HK, for example, has 7 million people.

    Your dismissal of the opinions of overseas Chinese is puzzling. Your argument is that Chinese held certain views because of government censorship. When somebody pointed out that Chinese people who have access to the western side of story still do not buy into it, you just dismiss it as they do not represent the majority of Chinese people?

    And, finally, how may westerners have heard “both sides” of story before they mete out their moral judgment on the Tibet issue? And as a side note, in 2006, three years after the invasion, 50% Americans believed Iraq had WMD, up from previous year’s 36%. Censorship doesn’t explain everything, does it?

  16. jim Says:

    >>Your dismissal of the opinions of overseas Chinese is puzzling.

    I didn’t dismiss the opinions of overseas Chinese. I challenged the idea that all overseas Chinese think the same way.

    >>Your argument is that Chinese held certain views because of government censorship.

    No. My argument is that just because a portion of overseas Chinese agree with the government’s position that does not ipso facto prove that the government position is correct. And it certainly doesn’t prove that all overseas Chinese have considered “both sides” and then made a rational decision to support the government’s side. I’d wager that Buxi is the exception here, not the rule.

    >>When somebody pointed out that Chinese people who have access to the western side of story still do not buy into it, you just dismiss it as they do not represent the majority of Chinese people?

    No. I didn’t dismiss it. I simply gave alternate explanations for why some people who have access to outside information might still agree with the government’s position.

    >>And, finally, how may westerners have heard “both sides” of story before they mete out their moral judgment on the Tibet issue?

    If I were going to guess, I’d put it at about 4%.

    >>And as a side note, in 2006, three years after the invasion, 50% Americans believed Iraq had WMD, up from previous year’s 36%. Censorship doesn’t explain everything, does it?

    I’m glad you used this example because it really does illustrate MY point. (50% is high, though, I think. I think it was more like 30% in 2006.) Some Americans — through a combination of ignorance, reliance on highly biased “news” organizations like FOX, and a nationalist mentality — are virtually impervious to facts. You could transplant them to China or to France where the media is entirely different, yet somehow they would still believe the bullshit they’ve been brought up on. They will still believe Iraq had WMD 50 years from now. You could make them watch CCTV everyday for the next decade and they would still spout every stupid FOX “news” talking point.

    How does that relate to my point about some overseas Chinese? They grew up in a media environment that is much more restrictive than the media environment that the typical FOX viewer is exposed to. Then add the Chinese educational system into the mix. Then add the greater prevalence of nationalism in China (relatively speaking). So if you accept that a combination of nationalism, media and educational environment, and plain stupidity can lead “50%” of Americans to believe patent nonsense, do you somehow think it is different for overseas Chinese? Are they immune? And if the Chinese elite aren’t immune, are the 99.5% of the rest of Chinese immune?

    See my point yet?

    Maybe I should start a blog in which I try to explain how the idiotic 30% of America has considered “both sides” but still believes that Iraq has WMD. That will prove that the Bush position is right, won’t it? And if you can’t convince those idiots, maybe it isn’t because of ‘propaganda’.

    Of course propaganda is part of the explanation. Part of it is also they way that certain people think.

    Personally, I’ve already said before on this blog that I don’t really care about Tibet — well, not whether it is “free.” Because it won’t be free, and that isn’t the issue anyway. I’m trying to get some people to see that they are approaching this issue the wrong way, with the wrong arguments.

  17. jim Says:

    >>Your assumption that anybody in China who does not use proxy and read English can not access both sides of the story is just preposterous.

    1) Would you care to make a guess what percentage of the Chinese population gets their news from Western sources on “sensitive” issues like Tibet? I’d really like to know your guess. If you say more than 3%, I’ll laugh my ass off.

    Why does that matter? For the same reason it would matter if I tried to claim that “most Americans” got the Chinese side of the story through sina and cctv. You are talking about a tiny minority.

    2) As I’ve tried to illustrate, over and over, access to information is not enough. Much more important than that is the way that people already think when they access information. An American neocon and a Chinese nationalist will always come to the same conclusions no matter what media they are exposed to.

    3) Does point #2 mean that if any Chinese agrees with a CCP position that they are wrong and brainwashed? No. It does mean, though, that arguing that some Chinese have watched CNN and still agree with the CCP and therefore “propaganda doesn’t work” or therefore “the government is right” or therefore “the fact that China has a censored media doesn’t matter” are stupid arguments.

  18. CLC Says:

    @Jim

    The 50% is from a Harris Poll. Please see
    http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2006/08/07/AR2006080700189_pf.html. Interestingly, from the data, we can say the (at least) 14% of the population, who apparently were not brainwashed by the Fox News, etc. in the previous year, had a change of mind.

    I agree with most what you said regarding to Chinese censorship and government propaganda. However, a simple question is: how can you convince people like Buxi, whom I assume you regard as not an idiot, that the problem is Beijing’s censorship, propaganda, and Chinese people’s stupidity? Isn’t there something deeper than that?

  19. jim Says:

    >>how can you convince people like Buxi, whom I assume you regard as not an idiot, that the problem is Beijing’s censorship, propaganda, and Chinese people’s stupidity?

    I don’t think that Beijing’s censorship, propaganda, stupidity is the only explanation. I’m just pointing out that that is a factor and can be a valid explanation for why some Chinese agree with the CCP’s position on any given issue — just like that can be a reason for the positions of Americans, etc. Censorship, propaganda, and nationalism are a potent mix — in any country.

    Like I said, for the most part, I don’t think most overseas Chinese have examined the “other side” of the Tibet issue. And most Westerners haven’t either. Many Chinese have a knee-jerk nationalist “pro-China” reaction to anything when foreigners are involved. And most Westerners have a knee-jerk “anti-CCP” reaction to anything when China is involved.

    As to how I can “convince” Buxi of anything, I doubt I can. But he probably doesn’t really disagree with the underlying point I’m trying to make. Right? 😉

  20. CLC Says:

    @Jim

    I totally agree with you this time 🙂

  21. CLC Says:

    I don’t want to speculate that how many overseas Chinese have examined the “other side” of the Tibet issue. However, I’d like to bet that most overseas Chinese who has examined both sides of the Tibet issue will reach the same conclusion as Buxi’s.

  22. AlmostAnABC Says:

    Many pro-Tibet Westerners fail to understand that Tibet is an issue of nationalism. Nothing to do with the Communist Party, nothing to do with censorship. If the Nationalists had never been defeated in the Chinese Civil War, I wager the same thing would be happening today. The Qing Dynasty could afford to let . No modern government of China can do the same, Communist or not.

    The other thing is: Try coming up with solutions, instead of rehashing a bunch of “atrocities.” The pro-Tibetan Westerns are their own worst enemy in terms of getting actual result. They’re turning previously open-minded people into staunch defenders of the Chinese government.

    Should Tibet be made an SAR instead of an autonomous region? How can the Dalai Lama take concrete steps to convince the Chinese government that he isn’t a secret advocate of independence? etc. There are all sorts of issues that you can discuss, without throwing insults at China. Come up with some solutions (aka compromises).

    Do you want to help the Tibetans, or do you just want to feel self-righteous? I get the feeling most pro-Tibet Westerners would rather feel self-righteous.

  23. LuJunyi Says:

    It seems like a lot of the quibbling between people over whether or not China’s government sponsors or at the very least condones these ‘atrocities.’ (The amount of words among these comments used in parentheses is remarkable, btw) In any case, I think rather than using currently salient issues as merely a window through which you can further criticize the Chinese government and/or society, perhaps we could try taking them as what they are–current salient issues.

    Regardless of my position on the Tibet conflict, it is a unique problem with unique solutions that run outside of the Chinese government’s ability or inability to meet whatever ‘free’ Western standards you may apply (keeping in mind that, as Buxi pointed out earlier, the West is hardly a good example of this.) Tibet is not an amplifier for your already undeniably clear objections with the Chinese government. The problem won’t be solved by the West playing a blame game with China, nor with China pointing the finger back (much like the pollution problem).

    And, just as a sidenote @ jim–and i realize this may sound like bigotry–but having Chinese wives or girlfriends or husbands, even living in China for 5 years does not logically imply an understanding of the Chinese people or mindset, and certainly not an indisputably accurate one. I think it might have even been you who said that fundamentalism is unlikely to change, even in the face of a wealth of liberal information. When a judgment is made about one’s understanding of another people’s general mentality, it is done so (assuming a mature level of reasoning) generally on the basis of the ideas said person expresses, rather than a faulty assumption of disconnect from the target population. This is not to undermine your credibility or your familiarity with the Chinese–again, just a sidenote.

  24. jim Says:

    >–and i realize this may sound like bigotry–but having Chinese wives or girlfriends or husbands, even living in China for 5 years does not logically imply an understanding of the Chinese people or mindset, and certainly not an indisputably accurate one.

    Did I say it did? I merely said that some Westerners who comment here are familiar with China and have discussed these issues with many Chinese. I said this because Buxi kept saying that I “refused to engage” with Chinese or find out what they think.

    As a sidenote:

    Living in the US for 5 years (with a Chinese girlfriend or wife or husband) does not logically imply an understanding of the American people or mindset, and certainly not an indisputably accurate one. I guess I’ll say that from now on whenever a Chinese person criticizes the “Western media” and the biases of Western people.

    I really don’t know what your point is in making that statement. Let’s stick to the actual arguments people offer.

  25. Buxi Says:

    Jim,

    I saw a bunch of rhetoric from you, which I will not respond to. I’ll just try to respond to specific points:

    – I agree with you that “many Chinese” (including those overseas) were not educated on the Tibet issue before 3/14 and subsequent chaos.

    – I agree with you that “many Chinese”, especially those in mainland China, have their perspectives shaped by what they’re taught and read. As CLC suggested above, this clearly isn’t limited to China alone.

    However, I simply don’t comprehend and can not agree with this statement:

    The fact that a tiny fraction of people have that access and still agree with the government point of view doesn’t prove that the government is right. It doesn’t necessarily prove anything. And contrary to what you argue, it might just prove how effective their system of censorship is — not how ineffective it is.

    You keep talking about “fractions”; I don’t understand the significance of “fractions” as percentage of the main. I am one person, and you are one person. My opinions are worth exactly as much as yours are. And the fact that I (and so many other overseas Chinese) who have thoroughly studied the Tibetan issue from both sides still lean strongly in the same direction on this issue absolutely proves *something*.

    If I could summarize your argument so far… all I’ve seen you say is that media control in China invalidates the opinion and informed arguments of anyone of Chinese descent on this planet. Unfortunately, this is quite typical of the dismissive attitudes held by many Americans who’ve “known” the answer all along. Pretend that my name was John Smith, stop painting me a CCP apologist, and let’s discuss the issues.

    If you’ve made a point yet on the Tibet issue, I’ve yet to see it. But whenever you actually make a point, I’m ready to respond to it. I believe I’ve read everything there is to read on the issue; I’ve been educating myself on the Tibet issue for close to a decade, and I’ve personally donated about $40,000 to Western charities working exclusively with Tibetans in China over that time frame.

  26. LuJunyi Says:

    Perhaps I misconstrued your meaning then–I thought that, in your retort to Buxi’s suggestion that you had no contact with Chinese people that knew the issues where you stated that you lived in China for 5 years and perhaps had a Chinese wife/girlfriend/husband, you were suggesting you did in fact understand the Chinese. Or rather, my mistake was in assuming that having contact with Chinese people implies an understanding of their situation.

    In any case, it was just a sidenote I wanted to make. I don’t think I made a point to set out a particularly salient point in deconstructing your previous comment. But as for sticking to the argument, that’s precisely what the rest of my post suggested we should do. I’d be happy to debate the degrees to which the Chinese government’s policies regarding censorship are justifiable, but I think it takes away from the general goal of trying to delve into the Tibet issue, which I’m sure I’m less educated on than some of you here.

  27. LuJunyi Says:

    Also, you’re right–people who can know both sides of the issue and still agree with the Chinese government don’t automatically validate the government. But, it lends the government more credibility at the very least, and I think that should be acknowledged.

    Socialization certainly does play a large part in forming the opinions of Chinese people overseas and at home, which is why fractions of people finding their own unique opinion actually IS significant. Relative to the US, where people have been free to change their minds for quite some time, China’s last 50-60 years of history have been dominated by CCP campaigns to reform social consciousness. So it is remarkable when we do observe someone agreeing with the government after having done a full analysis, and not simply because of their previous socialization as children.

  28. jim Says:

    >>I don’t understand the significance of “fractions” as percentage of the main.

    When someone claims that “overseas Chinese think x” or “Chinese have access to the western media, VOA, etc., etc., and still think x,” obviously “fractions” are important. Why? For example:

    – what percentage of overseas Chinese think x?
    – what percentage of overseas Chinese have actually examined all sides of the issue?
    – what percentage of Chinese actually get their news from banned media?
    – what percentage of Chinese agree with the government because they have looked at the issue rationally compared to those who have knee-jerk nationalist reactions?

    Percentages matter because you and others are making sweeping claims like that to bolster your case. My point was simply:

    1) the percentage of Chinese (whether overseas or not) who have actually examined both sides and have come to the conclusion that the government is right is actually a tiny fraction of the whole.

    2) The percentage of Chinese who live overseas is a tiny fraction of the Chinese population, so you can’t use them as “representatives” of Chinese as a whole. That would be like claiming that the views of American Ivy League graduate students who live in China are representative of the views of average Americans.

    3) The percentage of Chinese who read/access banned media is tiny.

    If you don’t see how that undermines that aspect of your argument, I’m not sure how to make it any clearer.

    >>And the fact that I (and so many other overseas Chinese) who have thoroughly studied the Tibetan issue from both sides still lean strongly in the same direction on this issue absolutely proves *something*.

    What does it prove? Well, one of the things it *could* prove is merely that the Chinese educational system is very effective. Or it could prove that if you take people with nationalist leanings from any country and put them in a different media environment that it won’t really have much of an effect on them. It could prove that many people automatically reject views that conflict with what they already think. And, as I said, all of that is true in some cases – whether you are talking about Chinese, Americans, or Indians.

    For example, there are Americans who have “examined all sides” of the Iraq issue through foreign media and still conclude that Iraq had WMD and that the US invasion was entirely justified and not a mistake. Please tell me, what does that prove?
    Does it prove that the US government position is correct?
    Does it prove that people aren’t affected by biased media/censorship/propaganda?
    Does it prove that anyone who disagrees with them is wrong?

    Or maybe it proves:
    – some people are stupid
    – some people will never change their views no matter what media they are exposed to
    – some people have a nationalist mindset that is impervious to facts

    What it probably really proves, though, is that some people’s views aren’t really based on facts. They select and emphasize the facts to match their preconceived notions of identity, nationality, etc.

    All of this is not to say that if you agree with the Bush administration or the CCP on a given issue that you are automatically wrong. It is to say, though, that you are making a weak argument. And I’m pointing this out to you because this is what most people in the West are going to think when you make this argument. Just like many Chinese would think the same things if some American neocon made the same argument about Iraq. So my point isn’t that they are necessarily “right,” but that this argument isn’t helping you.

    >>If I could summarize your argument so far… all I’ve seen you say is that media control in China invalidates the opinion and informed arguments of anyone of Chinese descent on this planet.

    I question your ability to read. I specifically said:

    >Does point #2 mean that if any Chinese agrees with a CCP position that they are wrong and brainwashed? No.

    I will say this, though: the fact that the Chinese media is censored does give most Chinese a huge obstacle to overcome. It puts you at an automatic disadvantage. Just as it puts the CCP at an automatic disadvantage. If they were smart, they would realize that. The disadvantage is that even when you are right, no one will take you seriously.

  29. Brgyags Says:

    For example, there are Americans who have “examined all sides” of the Iraq issue through foreign media and still conclude that Iraq had WMD and that the US invasion was entirely justified and not a mistake. Please tell me, what does that prove?
    Does it prove that the US government position is correct?
    Does it prove that people aren’t affected by biased media/censorship/propaganda?
    Does it prove that anyone who disagrees with them is wrong?

    Or maybe it proves:
    – some people are stupid
    – some people will never change their views no matter what media they are exposed to
    – some people have a nationalist mindset that is impervious to facts

    So, free access to information does not help to deflect accusations of nationalism.

    I will say this, though: the fact that the Chinese media is censored does give most Chinese a huge obstacle to overcome. It puts you at an automatic disadvantage. Just as it puts the CCP at an automatic disadvantage. If they were smart, they would realize that. The disadvantage is that even when you are right, no one will take you seriously.

    So, lack of free access to information can be cited to dismiss Chinese nationalism.

    Brilliant!

    Hey, Jim, if nationalism is the beast, tackle it with some intellectual honesty, would you?

  30. jim Says:

    >>So, free access to information does not help to deflect accusations of nationalism.

    Of course not. Does nationalism only exist in countries that do not have free access to information?

    >>So, lack of free access to information can be cited to dismiss Chinese nationalism.

    Trying addressing the point I actually made rather than one in your imagination. The fact that China does not have a free press damages the government’s credibility, both inside and outside of China. Is that hard to grasp? And where did I mention “nationalism” in that paragraph?

  31. Brgyags Says:

    Okey, let’s read the paragraph:

    I will say this, though: the fact that the Chinese media is censored does give most Chinese a huge obstacle to overcome. It puts you at an automatic disadvantage. Just as it puts the CCP at an automatic disadvantage. If they were smart, they would realize that. The disadvantage is that even when you are right, no one will take you seriously.

    Who are this “you” you referred to? I consider I am part of this “you”. I am not part of the Chinese government.

  32. jim Says:

    >>Who are this “you” you referred to?

    Are you saying that “you” is a code word for “nationalism?” This is news to me.

    The fact that China’s press is controlled by the government presents a credibility problem for both those who agree with its positions (the “you” was Buxi in this case) and the government itself. I believe Chang Ping made a similar point — right before he was “demoted.”

  33. Brgyags Says:

    So, “you” is somebody who takes the Chinese government’s position on Tibet, which can be labeled as fascist, chauvinistic, imperialistic, nationalist or patriotic, depending on your political stance. Sure, you did not use the word “nationalism”, but don’t try to fool anybody about the essence of the topic, please!

  34. jim Says:

    Brgyags,

    I don’t know what you are talking about.

    I said that the fact that the press is controlled by the government makes it harder for people to take the government and those who agree with its reporting seriously even when they are right. I don’t see why that is controversial or hard to grasp.

    I didn’t say “if you agree with the government, you are automatically wrong.” I agree with the Chinese government on some issues — that doesn’t change the fact that when I agree with them, it puts my argument at an automatic disadvantage in the eyes of the rest of the world. Is that fair? Probably not. Is that reality? Yes.

  35. CLC Says:

    Jim,

    I understand your point that China does not have a free press damages the government’s credibility, or by extension, the credibility of those who side with Chinese government on any issue. However, a free press does not in and by itself ensure the credibility of a government or guarantee a well-informed public. If there are many Chinese who can only access one side of story, then there are also a lot Americans whose knowledge on Tibet is solely from Hollywood movies. And to take the WMD issue as an example, what a free media did was actually amplify the US/UK governmental propaganda.

    So, if I follow your logic right, a counter argument can be made that an American who holds a mainstream opinion will have a credibility problem since there are biased media and a misinformed public in the US.

  36. jim Says:

    However, a free press does not in and by itself ensure the credibility of a government or guarantee a well-informed public.

    Agree 100%.

    >>a counter argument can be made that an American who holds a mainstream opinion will have a credibility problem since there are biased media and a misinformed public in the US.

    Agree 50%. It would take a page to explain why I subtract 50% from that, but I don’t disagree with the spirit of it.

  37. Buxi Says:

    jim,

    I don’t think you have any clue of the “argument” I am making.

    I have not intended to suggest that because “many” Chinese believe in a certain perspective, it is therefore clearly factually correct and indisputable. I actually feel quite the opposite.

    For example, I believe the Tibetan nationalist position is morally and intellectual equal to the Chinese nationalist position. I don’t believe that those advocating Tibetan independence must be morally wrong and/or poorly informed. Unlike the mythical Westerners you seem to insist are all around us, I don’t assume that those who disagree with me are simply “wrong” (or informed) while I am “right”.

    I simply believe in the existence of different perspectives, different value sets, and different identities. This is precisely why I’ve repeatedly described the purpose of this blog as “making our voice heard”; we don’t expect to win the debate by showing up, but we do have a point to make, and we *will* make it. Many Chinese have looked at the various conflicts that have been brought up over the past few months… and after careful study, the most common conclusion I have heard is: “our butts determine our heads” (屁股决定脑袋)。

    In other words, where we sit (our butts) determines our perspectives and conclusions (our heads).

    I have not written any of these articles believing that the West is on the road to Damascus, that if I can just say the magical words they’ll automatically come to share “the Chinese perspective”. Instead, I believe “the Chinese perspective” merely represents another voice, another value set, another identity that deserves to be heard… if nothing else, because it is shared by more than a fifth of humanity, and evidence confirms that this voice/value set/identity is not easily erased simply by exposure to the light of Western discussion.

    I’m looking only for mutual understanding and respect, not mutual agreement. Perhaps this is all miscommunication, but it certainly seems that it is this possibility of mutual understanding you seem intent on refusing.

    The disadvantage is that even when you are right, no one will take you seriously.

    I’m sorry if you haven’t managed to be clear and convincing in making your own points… but I’m confident and optimistic about what we can (and have already) achieved in bridging the gap between Western and Chinese value sets. Despite what you insist, many in the West are finding it difficult to dismiss and “not take seriously” the expressed, articulate opinions of informed Chinese, many of whom have lived overseas for years or decades.

    I’m not afraid of being called a CCP apologist; sooner or later the dismissive labels will become difficult to stop, and you’ll see that we are still standing tall on the marketplace of ideas.

    That said, to all of the others involved in this debate… I’m not sure that we’re getting too far with jim on this topic. He’s only expressing his opinion that we can’t possibly get our message through… we can only prove him wrong by doing a better job of doing precisely that.

  38. JL Says:

    “will still not tolerate separatist movements or separatist activities.”

    But will you tolerate movements that ask that treaties like the Seventeen Point Agreement for the Peaceful Liberation of Tibet (concluded between the Tibetan govt and the CCP) are upheld? This agreement provides for the maintainance of the old political order in Tibet, which was supposed to become a genuinely autonomous part of China. According to the letter and spirit of the agreement, Tibet should have been like Hong Kong is now. Will you tolerate that?

    Personally, I think what Tibet perhaps needs most at this point is honesty regarding history. It has not always been a part of China, and the people there know that. How can you expect them to go on reading, when every textbook begins “Since ancient times Tibet has always been an inseparable part of China…”? Chinese people often accuse foreigners of being hypocrites regarding Tibet (‘they bash China, but ignore their own colonial history’). This is a fair critique, but it does seem to imply that Chinese people are aware that there are parallels between Tibet and the European colonial states. So why not just admit that Tibet is a colony and begin to think about how to go about repairing the ethnic relations destroyed by the colonization process? And, in my view, honesty regarding history would be a good first step on that road…

  39. jim Says:

    Buxi,

    >>I have not intended to suggest that because “many” Chinese believe in a certain perspective, it is therefore clearly factually correct and indisputable.

    Hmmm.

    >>How many of us have you convinced? If you can’t convince us… how can you keep deluding yourself into believing that Beijing’s censorship is the problem?

    and this

    >>And the fact that I (and so many other overseas Chinese) who have thoroughly studied the Tibetan issue from both sides still lean strongly in the same direction on this issue absolutely proves *something*.

    On many occasions you made appeals based on how “many” Chinese think this or that. I examined that claim more closely — just as I examined what this could possibly “prove” in the eyes of many — and your response is that you aren’t looking for mutual agreement. Well, there is certainly no threat of that when you refuse to engage in debate.

    If you want to retreat into “we think what we think, so there” generalities in response to any specific objections to the arguments you use, you can certainly do that. I’m not sure how that advances your position or brings more people to the point of mutual understanding that you are seeking. At no point did I argue that mutual understanding is impossible, but perhaps I am more realistic than you are regarding the obstacles to that understanding, which is why I pointed out the objections some would likely make to your line of reasoning.

    Regarding the “many in the West” who find it difficult to dismiss the opinions of overseas Chinese, I can only guess that they are just as numerous as the Chinese who invite and “applaud” foreign criticism on various topics that you claim exist out there. On both counts, I wish reality matched your delusions.

    >> He’s only expressing his opinion that we can’t possibly get our message through

    No, actually, he just raised some specific objections to arguments you made.

  40. Brgyags Says:

    Regarding the “many in the West” who find it difficult to dismiss the opinions of overseas Chinese, I can only guess that they are just as numerous as the Chinese who invite and “applaud” foreign criticism on various topics that you claim exist out there. On both counts, I wish reality matched your delusions.

    There are better ways to find an answer than guessing. For example:

    http://www.zonaeuropa.com/200804b.brief.htm

    Hong Kong By The Numbers (04/14/2008) (HKU POP) (1,017 Hong Kong residents interviewed between March 12 an 14, 2008 by telephone) “Since June 1993 and continuously for 15 years, POP has been regularly surveying Hong Kong people’s opinion on the independence of Taiwan and Tibet, as part of our survey series on national issues.” This survey was conducted before the Lhasa disturbance occurred.
    Tibet independence?
    11%: Support
    71%: Oppose

    Taiwan independence?
    12%: Support
    80%: Oppose

    Hong Kong media is not under CCP censorship. Since you insist freedom of speech is a prerequisite for researching public opinions, you may find HK a better place to peek into the thinking of Chinese people, ONLY IF you want to. Your habitual resorting to agnosticism is intellectually sloppy and insulting.

  41. Brgyags Says:

    So why not just admit that Tibet is a colony and begin to think about how to go about repairing the ethnic relations destroyed by the colonization process? – JL

    The Chinese will not because:

    1) It is factually wrong. Colonial powers assume a racial superiority in legal terms in their conquered lands, while all Chinese citizens, Tibetans and Han, have the same rights. The issue is not that Han Chinese are legally superior to Tibetans. Rather, it is that some Tibetans claim they are “different”. Analogies can be found in Scots in the UK, Basques in Spain, native Hawaiians or native Americans in the US or Canada. In addition, colonial masters expect to profit from colonizing, but Tibet for China is financially a net loss.

    2) It is dangerous. To yield that Tibet is a colony implies that Tibetans have an unsettled right to self-determination and independence.

  42. Buxi Says:

    According to the letter and spirit of the agreement, Tibet should have been like Hong Kong is now. Will you tolerate that?

    If we could rewind back to 1950 or 1959, I would tolerate that. But after 50 years of an independence movement fostered in exile by the Dalai Lama, I have reasons to be suspicious of the Dalai Lama’s motives.

    I’m a regular subscriber to various Tibet-related newsletters, including the WTN published by the Tibet Canada Committee. Numerous leading figures in the Tibet independence movement have said in recent years that they support the Dalai Lama’s Middle Way, because they believe autonomy will make eventual independence easier. As long as that remains the thinking in those quarters, as long as the Dalai Lama doesn’t use his influence to end that type of thinking (with the same determination he’s used in fighting Shugden for example), then I’m not in favor of autonomy.

    Keep in mind that Hong Kong’s Basic Law is intended to preserve autonomy only for a limited amount of time (50 years), to ease the transition and integration process. The ultimate goal is *not* the creation of a permanently autonomous unit; in contrast, the Dalai Lama’s goal in Tibet is precisely the creation of a permanently autonomous Tibetan homeland where non-Tibetan Chinese would be unwelcome. Hopefully you can understand why I might support one and not the other.

    Personally, I think what Tibet perhaps needs most at this point is honesty regarding history. It has not always been a part of China, and the people there know that.

    I do agree that history should be approached in a more modern, nuanced way… but your assertion that Tibet is a “colony” is simply not accurate, and certainly not how I would approach it.

    I think China should emphasize (as it has in other parts of China) that Tibet has been a close member of the extended Chinese family for at least 300 years, but that the concept of nationhood itself is a new one for all of China, “invented” less than a century ago. We are here to rebuild a successful, multi-ethnic, multi-cultural family on the basis of our past ties, and the Tibetans, Han, and every other Chinese nationality will play a key role in that process.

  43. Buxi Says:

    On many occasions you made appeals based on how “many” Chinese think this or that. I examined that claim more closely — just as I examined what this could possibly “prove” in the eyes of many — and your response is that you aren’t looking for mutual agreement. Well, there is certainly no threat of that when you refuse to engage in debate.

    When I say “many Chinese” agree on an issue, I’m not insisting that therefore our conclusions are implicitly the only true ones. My only point is that the Chinese perspective is therefore *logical* based on all known facts; my only point is that those who hold their breath and cross their fingers that the current divide between West/East on these issues will simply dissipate because the Communist government lifts censorship and/or changes its name to the “Freedom Party” is living in a fantasy land. And yes, I might be talking about you.

    I only know how to debate issues, jim. I don’t know of any way to erase in your mind the dogma that we shouldn’t bother trying to convince the West of anything through logic, as long as the Communist Party practices censorship in mainland China.

  44. JL Says:

    Regarding Tibet and colonization:

    You say:
    “1) It is factually wrong. Colonial powers assume a racial superiority in legal terms in their conquered lands, while all Chinese citizens, Tibetans and Han, have the same rights.”

    I suggest you read some more abut Western colonization. Take New Zealand, for example. The treaty that made New Zealand a part of the British Empire, the Treaty of Waitangi, also specifically gave Maori people the same rights (actually more rights than) British subjects. Was New Zealand a colony? So your statement that colonization always implies a legal assumption of racial superiority is simply wrong. Similar treaties were made by the British in Canada. Of course, there were times when the letter and spirit of these treaties was not implemented fairly: the Maori were “ripped off”, so to speak. But there have also been times in Tibet when the legal equality of Tibetans and Han has not existed in reality.

    You also say:
    “In addition, colonial masters expect to profit from colonizing, but Tibet for China is financially a net loss.”
    This is also untrue. Certain companies made profits for short times (and then all went bust) in the European empires. But the governments consistently lost money.

    Actually, the vocabulary of the Qing and Republican era governments was much more honest in this regard. Governors such as Zhao Erfeng (赵尔丰)argued that China colonize Tibet in exactly the same way as Britain had colonized Australia. In the last decade of the Qing, Zhao put his plans into action, and they were continued in Eastern Tibet (then called Xikang) by Repubican era leaders such as Liu Wenhui (刘文辉). One of the key terms they used was 垦殖, I presumably don’t have to tell you that ‘zhi’ meant the same as it does in 殖民地。

    So Tibet is very similar to the European colonies. Researching this is my day job so I can provide you more references if you want. And I’m disappointed that you would deny it because you think “its dangerous” to do so. I thought you were interested objective reality?

    My point here is not that Tibet should be independent, or even that it should be more autonomous: after all the Maori now have very little autonomy in New Zealand. But I would have liked to have seen some honesty regarding Tibetan history from Chinese netizens. Happily, there are Chinese scholars who are more honest about Tibet’s colonial past and present though. I suggest you check out 王力雄, a Beijing based researcher, whose work presents Tibetan history from a fairly neutral perspective.

  45. Brgyags Says:

    JL,

    There are different types of colonies. I see two major categories: old world colonies and new world colonies. Africa, India, Indochine, Indonesia, etc., belong to the first type, which are characterized by irreplaceable size of indigenous populations. Colonial powers seek to subjugate and exploit locals, while facing rebellion from people of vastly different cultures. The new world colonies, or settlement colonies, are places where the Europeans committed genocide. Indigenous peoples in these colonies are reduced to negligible numbers by disease, warfare and/or assimilation. Consequently, the indigenous people poses no threat to the European settlers. In those settlement colonies, the major contention is between local Europeans and European Europeans. But since the strife is between people of the same culture, a peaceful solution is sometimes easy to achieve.

    NZ, as well as Australia and North America, was a settlement colony. If you want to accuse China for being a colonial overlord of Tibet, NZ is not a good example for comparison. Unless the Han Chinese have wiped out most of the Tibetan population or overwhelmed them numerically, your NZ experience bears no semblance to Tibet’s. Tibet is part of the old world and the ethnic contention there is nothing new compared to other hundreds of ethnic conflicts in Africa or Europe or Asia. Before you accuse China of colonialism, compare the situation in Tibet to those real colonies that once spread all over the old world: India, Congo, Vietnam… What rights did the locals have in those colonies?

    Now, on profitability. I agree that sometimes colonies are not profitable, but this does not negate the fact that colonies were sought by empires for economic gains in the first place. Consistently, unprofitability was exactly one of the major rationales that European colonialists cited to withdraw from their oversea possessions. Now, look at Tibet: economic calculations have never, ever mattered in PRC’s determination to keep Tibet. China needs Tibet for strategic and prestigious reasons, and because of that, China is not going to relent on its claim over Tibet in any foreseeable future.

    The crux of the problem is that China sincerely wants to see Tibetans join the big family, but some Tibetans, for understandable cultural anxiety, refuse. For the ex-nobility and the clergy, they have everything to lose in this process of acculturation and assimilation, so this is their life-or-death struggle. You can build a good case on the identity politics of Tibet, but to label it as a case of colonialism is presumptuous.

  46. JL Says:

    Brgyags,

    Thank you for replying, I appreciate the fact that you took the time.
    I think you’re fundamentally wrong about NZ.
    There are strong similarities between Tibet and NZ.
    Contrary to what you imply, there was no genocide in NZ (if by genocide we mean racially motivated mass murder). There was a war over land and sovereignty, in which large numbers of people were killed. This war was fought primarily between Maori rebels -who wanted more autonomy- and the British/NZ government, not -as you imply between “people of the same culture”. The Maori were not “reduced to negligable numbers.” They constitute more than 15 percent of NZ’s current population.
    Likewise, there have been wars over land and sovereignty in Tibet, fought between Chinese and Tibetans, in which large numbers of people have been killed. The Han do not need to wipe out the Tibetans for it to become like NZ, they only need to continue to encourage migration there, just as the nineteenth century British government encouraged migration to New Zealand and other settler colonies.

    I agree that the crux of the problem is that (Han) CHinese sincerely want to see Tibetans join the big family, but some Tibetans refuse.

    My opinion is that until the “big family-ists” own up to their family history, the Tibetans will continue to refuse.

    (On a personal note, as you may have guessed, I am a New Zealander. I used to think much like you -that NZ was one big happy family, that we should forget about history and move together as a happy, equal family. Then I read a bit more about our family history and found that Maori complaints were, in general, well founded. Such complaints -“grievances” as they are called here, need to be addressed before progress is possible.)

  47. MatthewTan Says:

    @43 JL Says May 20th, 2008 at 8:28 pm Regarding Tibet and colonization:

    “Actually, the vocabulary of the Qing and Republican era governments was much more honest in this regard. Governors such as Zhao Erfeng (赵尔丰)argued that China colonize Tibet in exactly the same way as Britain had colonized Australia. In the last decade of the Qing, Zhao put his plans into action, and they were continued in Eastern Tibet (then called Xikang) by Repubican era leaders such as Liu Wenhui (刘文辉). One of the key terms they used was 垦殖, I presumably don’t have to tell you that ‘zhi’ meant the same as it does in 殖民地。”

    1. Can JL provide the original text and documentation regarding what Zhao Erfeng (赵尔丰)has said?

    2. Regarding the term 垦殖, unfortunately, a simple search shows it does not mean “to colonize”. It simply means “to cultivate” yet uncultivated lands.

    See dictionary,

    http://www.zdic.net/cd/ci/9/ZdicE5Zdic9EZdicA6343019.htm

    垦殖 kěnzhí

    [reclaim and cultivate wasteland] 将荒芜的土地开垦成为良田

    亦作“ 垦植 ”。开垦荒地,进行生产。《三国志·吴志·华覈传》:“诚宜住建立之役,先备豫之计,勉垦殖之业,为饥乏之救。”《陈书·高祖纪下》:“周旋千餘顷,并膏腴,堪垦植。”《魏书·高宗纪》:“入其境,农不垦殖,田亩多荒。” 徐迟 《入峡记》:“当然,湖泊蓄洪垦殖是要搞的,这几年搞了一些,还继续要搞。”

    ZDIC.NET 汉 典 網

    eg. do a baidu search on 垦殖指数

    and 垦殖

    modern example text:
    from http://www.5151doc.com/xslw/Economic/Place/200806/106365.html

      2、乾宁农牧场

      位于泰宁(今道孚县八美镇),由建省委员会时期1937年4月设置的“泰宁垦牧实验场”,于1939年改组成立为“泰宁牧场”[15],起初直接隶属于省建设厅。“下设技术、推广、总务、会计四股,办理牲畜及牧草之育种繁殖,改良牲畜之饲养与管理,以及畜产之加工,并兼办高寒地带农作物之试验改进”。从1942年1月改隶康农所,管理机构改组为“畜牧、兽医、*垦殖*三课,及总务股”。职掌“牲畜品种之选择繁殖”、“畜牧技术之研究改良”广畜产制造之改进运输”、“饲料作物之栽培推广”、“兽疫防治之设备实施”、“荒土沃野之开拓耕种”等六项。成为“兼办农事”、种植粮食与蔬菜的牧场(川档 234—77)。至1947年6月时,场长为梁达新,下属12人(次年扩展为18人),拥有熟地2474354亩,荒地2500亩,草原12120亩。 1948年改名为“省立乾宁农牧场”(梁达新仍任场长),从事牛羊良种与改良、牧草栽培与引种。1950年解放时只有技士一名,后改名为“八美农业试验场 ”。

    modern example texts:
    http://www.ksdsxx.cn/dzts/ts038040.pdf
    此后,杨伯恺又找大家商量过两次。这年年底,他应成都大学张澜的聘
    请回四川教书,在离开上海前夕,同大家一起确定了办书店的许多事项。书
    店的店名,经葛乔提议,大家讨论通过,定为“辛垦书店”。“辛垦”是英
    语“思想”的音译。按汉语又有辛勤*垦殖*的意思

    他的勉强的“过渡”是根本性的失算吗?这似乎不能简单作结论。假如
    风浪不同他开玩笑,他完全可以自由往返于此岸和彼岸。假如他看清了风浪,
    意识到没有可能“过渡”,应该迅即返航,所谓伊人,并非都在水之涯。这
    边也有他熟悉的、足够他毕生 *垦殖*的沃上。

  48. Alat Peraga Says:

    Penyedia Alat Peraga Edukatif TK sampai SMA / SMK alatperaga.web.id

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