May 27

Questions for the Dalai Lama

Written by Buxi on Tuesday, May 27th, 2008 at 5:14 pm
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It has now been more than 2 months since the Lhasa riots, and weeks since the Beijing government met with the Dalai Lama’s personal envoys in Shenzhen. The passions aroused by the protests associated with the Torch relay has cooled a little. Now, we can turn to deeper, less emotional consideration of the Dalai Lama and what he stands for.

The Dalai Lama’s recent trip to Europe is giving us a new opportunity to evaluate exactly what his position is, and whether he’s a potential partner for peace. A previous blog entry discussed the possibility of a new bargaining position for the Dalai Lama, and clearly positions have changed dramatically over recent weeks.

For the lack of a better option, we’ll have to rely on the Xinhua state news agency to ask the questions that are on the minds of many Chinese. Below is the translation of a blog entry from a Xinhua news reporter, about his experience at a Dalai Lama news conference in Germany.

Before I get to that translation, a few comments. When the Western media mentions Chinese media coverage of the Tibet issue in general and the Dalai Lama in particular, it prefers to jump right to the bottom. The picture Western reports prefers to paint of the Chinese media is that of a rhetoric-filled, state-controlled factory of lies; this is the only reasonable explanation, of course, for the hundreds of millions of drooling Chinese nationalist idiots who oppose the Dalai Lama’s clearly benevolent positions.

For example, the quote “wolf in monk’s robes” (一只披着袈裟的豺狼) makes its appearance in numerous Western media report on the subject:

  • Independent UK: Beijing has not abandoned its fiery rhetoric: it calls him “a wolf in monk’s robes” …
  • Times Online UK: the Chinese … have been busily painting the Dalai Lama as “a demon” and “a wolf in monk’s robes”.
  • Wall Street Journal: Chinese officials have called the Dalai Lama a “wolf in monk’s robes,” and state-run media have whipped up popular opposition to the Tibetan leader.
  • Associated Press: The new attacks on the Dalai Lama follow others in recent weeks in which Beijing branded him a “wolf in monk’s robes” and his followers the “scum of Buddhism.”

In contrast, when you look for Chinese media reports that actually used this phrase (using Baidu), you see it mentioned once in an interview with the party secretary of the Tibet Autonomous Region on March 20th, less than a week after the violent Lhasa riots, and as other violent riots still blazed throughout Tibet. The phrase hasn’t been used since, except in a report from the Asian Wall Street Journal (repeating the Western media version).

The Chinese state media hasn’t exactly been kind towards the Dalai Lama, of course. But if you’ve only been reading the Western press, you probably don’t have a very good idea of what the criticisms of the Dalai Lama truly are. If many Chinese are still skeptical about cooperating with the Dalai Lama, it’s not because we’re unaware he claims to have rejected independence; it’s because we question whether he really means what he says.

This article from a reporter at a Chinese state newspaper, the International Herald Leader, provides a counter-point to the Western media’s simplistic view of what the Chinese know of the Dalai Lama.

——————— begin translation ———————-
On May 15th, the Dalai Lama begin his six day visit to Germany. In contrast to previous “religious trips”, the Dalai Lama gave speeches in four German cities on this trip. “The primary purpose of this visit is to talk politics”, according to the chairman of the “Tibet Help Association” responsible for organizing his itinary.

In order to build momentum for this “political trip”, on the morning of May 16th, the Dalai Lama held a press conference in the city offices of Bochum. But perhaps he didn’t expect that the question raised by this reporter would be so difficult to handle.

At 9:30 or so, the Dalai Lama walked into the hall accompanied by the Bochum mayor, other officials, and six bodyguards. He flashed his trademark smile, and hugged or shook hands with the reporters he passed by. After shaking hands with the German reporter next to me, he suddenly discovered my Asian face. He walked over shook my hands, and patting me on the shoulder, saying in Mandarin: “ni hao! ni hao!”

The Dalai Lama repeatedly stressed that he “did not seek independence”, a posture that suggested “the responsibility rests entirely with the Chinese”.

The press conference was nearing its end, and the organizers in the hallway were already beginning to pack up. But I raised my hands at this time. The Dalai Lama looked around, saw it, and said: “Please, a question from the reporter from China.” All eyes turned towards me.

“You said that you are not seeking independence for Tibet, but only true autonomy. But I have a question. Not long ago, the chief negotiator that you sent to meet with China was your personal representative Lodi Gyari. When I searched online, I realized that Lodi Gyari was also one of the founders of the Tibet Youth Congress. The Tibet Youth Congress website clearly says that one of its primary principles is: ‘To struggle for the total independence of Tibet even at the cost of one’s life.‘ By sending a negotiator who’s willing to sacrifice his life to struggle for the total independence of Tibet, does this conflict with your statement that you ‘do not seek Tibet independence’? Second, is the Tibet that you’re referring to ‘Greater Tibet’, or the current Tibet Autonomous region?”

I put down the microphone, and watched the Dalai Lama. His trademark smile was gone, and was quietly discussing something with one of this assistants. I could hear him saying “your organization”, possibly because he wanted his assistant, a member of the Tibet Youth Congress, to answer the question.

But he quickly decided he’d take the question himself, and his voice was suddenly raised: “Right now, everyone knows that the Tibet Youth Congress represents Tibet independence. I’ve clearly said to this organization, that your position and our position isn’t completely the same, we’re not seeking independence for Tibet”.

But at this point, the assistant sitting at his side reminded him: “he asked about Lodi Gyari”. The Dalai Lama’s voice quieted down, and he said at a lower voice: “you should ask Lodi Gyari directly.” He then launched into a long discussion of history. The general meaning was, Lody Gyari was indeed one of the founders of the Tibet Youth Congress, but some members of this group later joined the government in exile, and that people’s opinions could change.

The atmosphere wasn’t quite as friendly as before. Perhaps the Dalai Lama realized this, and he turned around and began attacking the Chinese media, saying that we were demonizing him, calling him “a devil with horns”. The Dalai Lama put both hands on his head to emulate “horns”, and the foreign media finally laughed again.

The Dalai Lama then began wrestling with the “Greater Tibet” question. He said: “if we were seeking independence, then the border question would be relevant. But because we’re not seeking independence, but only true autonomy, then this question doesn’t exist. Within the same country, as long as there is true autonomy, then borders are not a problem.”

Of course, it’s common knowledge that the “Greater Tibet” that Dalai Lama clique has repeatedly called for includes the Tibet Autonomous Region, all of Qinghai province, 1/2 of Xinjiang, 2/3rds of Gansu, 2/3rds of Sichuan, half of Yunnan, with a total size of 2.4 million square kilometers.

Because he had to rush, after answering my question, the Dalai Lama ended his press conference. Three German and two Japanese reporters came up to me to ask me about Lodi Gyari. Suddenly, I felt an embrace from behind. I turned around, and it was the Dalai Lama! The Dalai Lama was hugging me as he repeatedly muttered something. Because of the noise on the scene, I couldn’t hear what he said clearly. But a foreign reporter later told me he was telling me “don’t be angry”, and asked me to “send his best wishes to the Chinese people.”

———————–end translation———————————–

The long-winded answers from the Dalai Lama reminds us of the long and complicated legacy of seeking independence that has defined the exile government for decades. Not many Chinese believe that the Dalai Lama is “a demon”, but many of us believe he’s a slick politician with devious political goals. If the Dalai Lama is truly committed to erasing this legacy, he will have to expect to face similar hard questions in the future.

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87 Responses to “Questions for the Dalai Lama”

  1. Opersai Says:

    A better perspective how Chinese view Dalai Lama, I feel. I don’t believe he’s evil, it’s too much to say anyone is evil. However, we just feel his actions don’t match up what he says. We are very skeptical about what he’s saying, because there had been so many instances in the past the two don’t match.

  2. Nimrod Says:

    As I wrote elsewhere, when it comes to questions of politics, the Dalai Lama is a politician, pure and simple, and should therefore face the same tough questions and skepticism that other politicians face. I don’t find it relevant that he styles himself as the “holiness”, as if his “holy” stature should give him a leg up or a free pass.

  3. Opersai Says:


    But I think that is the very problem. Many in the westerners and western media (excuse me for the generalization for a lack of better term here) somehow just bypass all the critical scrutiny for him they’d usually give to any public figure. Because he’s holy, he action, motivation must all be holy, no question there! Because it’s from his holiness or his association, information they provide were almost never check for accuracy; eg. 1 million Tibetans killed by CCP – this later was proved false as statistic shown that the total population back then was no more than 1.2 ~ 2 millions.

    It would be nice, if the media here could take off the rosy colored glass off this issue and stop painting it as a simple black-white, Chinese commies evil – Tibetan victims holy picture.

  4. Cardano Says:

    For a clear perspective on the issues you should take a look at these videos.
    The information can easily be verified online from very reputable sources, but for a concise summary they cover the issues brilliantly.

  5. JL Says:

    The Dalai Lama is a politician, and as such it is correct to question his motives, as well as the motives of his associates. Having said that, in conflict situations we don’t get to choose the leaders from the other side. Arafat had connections to violent men, but it would have been better for Israel to have made an agreement with the Palestians while he was around; now they are stuck with Hamas, who are much harder to negotiate with than the PLO.
    So I hope the fact that he’s associated with proponants of violence, or may have advocated it in the past does not stop Chinese negotiating with him; otherwise after the Dalai is gone it might be Lodi Gyari himself that the CCP is faced with.

  6. Allen Says:

    Cardano – thanks for the concise propaganda. Not sure what your purpose is. If it is a genuine desire to seek communication, you definitely did not get mine.

  7. Nimrod Says:

    I don’t think the sticking point is Dalai Lama’s past. The government seems pragmatic enough to overlook things like that in other issues like Taiwan. The sticking point is whether Dalai Lama means what he says now. Because if he actually can’t wait to be a Tibetan minority of the PRC, then what’s the trouble? Nobody forced him to say this. Yet does anybody believe this is all he wants? We have no way to know because talk is cheap. Even Arafat had to show something concrete to get a deal offered to him.

    It is a gamble either way whether to negotiate with Dalai or whoever is up next. But in some sense, it is better to know a concrete offer that may be a bit hard to take, than a nebulous one that merely sounds good.

  8. Buxi Says:

    Cardano’s propaganda is amongst the most distasteful, inaccurate that I’ve yet to see. I suspect even the Dalai Lama would reject it as farce.

    I’m honestly curious. For those who watch the above video and feel swayed by its arguments, is it worth our time dissecting it line by line?

  9. Buxi Says:


    You make an interesting point with the reference to Arafat. Of course, you could argue the opposite point. If Arafat had compromised earlier with Rabin (before he was assassinated and replaced with an extremist leaning in the other direction), another generation of Palestinians wouldn’t have grown up surrounded by poverty and death. Keep in mind that there are many Chinese who have argued the “problem” with Tibet is that the central government is being too tolerant towards minorities.

    It also seems to me the comparison with the Palestinians (or Afghanistan) is very poor, because as I’ve said before, the demographics and numbers are very wrong. I don’t think China has any reason to be concerned about dealing with Lodi Gyari and a militant Tibetan Youth Congress, not when the weight of numbers and strength is so one-sided. Can you convince me otherwise?

  10. AC Says:


    What “very reputable sources” are you talking about?

    TGIE or the Dalai Lama?

  11. Nimrod Says:

    The other thing I didn’t mention is that exile Tibetans often say, an agreement with the current Dalai Lama is the only way China will ever get legitimacy of rule over Tibet.

    On a superficial level, I understand this sentiment, except the legitimacy we’re talking about is political legitimacy, or popular legitimacy, (and not legal legitimacy): a personal ratification by the Dalai Lama can carry a lot of weight among Tibetans and the international community.

    But on a fundamental level, I disagree with this. The reason is very simple. The very same Dalai Lama already signed the 17-Point Agreement in 1951 which gives the PRC its current legal legitimacy over Tibet. That didn’t stop him from going back on it, did it? A similar question can be asked: if a new agreement is made with the Dalai Lama, what’s to stop exile Tibetans in general from renouncing it in the future? I’d say basically nothing. It wasn’t that long ago that Yasser Arafat signed the Oslo Accords, and look at how seriously Hamas takes those.

    So at the end of the day, the only thing that will improve legitimacy can only come from the internal dynamics of the PRC through better governance. Some paper agreement with the exiles seems quite useless in this context and at most can only alter the international PR perception of the PRC for a short time.

  12. Buxi Says:


    I don’t think the sticking point is Dalai Lama’s past… The sticking point is whether Dalai Lama means what he says now.

    I agree with you. My point in the post above is not that the Dalai Lama owes an apology or explanation for the past. Rather, we *question* whether the Dalai Lama is honest because of what he has said and done over the past 5 decades.

    If his concern is “cultural genocide”, why did he go into exile in 1959 and escalate this conflict? If he thought Tibetan culture or language was threatened, why didn’t he make a greater effort to teach Tibetan to the children in exile from day one?

    – In 1950, he made a decision to work with the Chinese government (rather than go into exile).

    – In 1956, he again made a decision to work with the Chinese government (rather than stay in New Delhi).

    – In 1959, he made a decision to seek independence (when he went into exile).

    – In 1982, he again made a decision to work with the Chinese government (when he started exploring options for his return).

    – In 1988, he made a decision to stop negotiating, and instead call for major political changes that would make Tibet a “buffer zone” (Strasbourg proposal).

    – In 1992, he again made the decision to seek active independence (renouncing the Strasbourg proposal).

    And now, he claims to be back to “no longer seeking independence”. Will he change his mind again, if a change in Chinese or international politics give him the strength to demand more?

    I am absolutely in favor of negotiation with the Dalai Lama. I also believe that at heart he tries to be a benevolent person. But because of his history, we have ample reason for doubting his integrity on cooperating with the Chinese. He has to prove himself.

  13. Otto Kerner Says:

    Isn’t it understandable that the Dalai Lama has a negotiating position here? Nobody begins a negotiation by giving everything away. Both sides begin by stating what they want ideally, and then they work toward a middle position. The issue of independence is an initial concession that the Dalai Lama has made. It’s not clear that the central government has ever tried negotiating with the Dalai Lama in earnest; if they did, perhaps we would learn what other concessions he is willing to make.

  14. Nimrod Says:

    I’d add that he hasn’t changed that miscalculation + opportunism that much. During March and April when things were rah-rah for the exile Tibetans, at one point the Dalai Lama said about the violence he “can’t do anything about it”. Really? Then some weeks later and much past the climax and China didn’t crack, he decided to actively call off the protests, marches, and emphasize he supported the Olympics.

    That doesn’t inspire much confidence.

  15. Nimrod Says:

    Otto, according to the Dalai Lama himself, he is eager to be a Tibetan minority of the PRC. Did you learn anything useful from this verbal concession of his?

  16. AC Says:

    This sounds like a threat to me.


  17. Cardano Says:

    Don’t fear, I wont post anymore on this forum, so don’t fret, I’ll leave to your dream world of the fairy godmother CCP as the benevolent, honest and sincere benefactor and kind Mother of the “Motherland”.
    You’ll never be able to go outside your entrenched comfort zone of a lifetime of belief.


    Tibet in fact was never part of China, it was perhaps in the same fold under the Mongol empire, but that does not constitute “part of China”.
    Part of what, the Mongol Empire perhaps, but that has disappeared a long time ago, though there is even a distinct difference, the Chinese were conquered, subjugated and ruled by the Mongols, whereas Tibet signed a mutually beneficial agreement with the Mongols and had its Own rulers during the Mongol influence.

    Then it had agreements with the Manchu Empire, but that was not even “China”.
    Just ask any Han Chinese now, they’ll all tell you that the Manchus were a foreign invader and subjugated them.
    Also the Manchu Empire was so impotent and could not even fulfil its side of the agreement to assist them to repel the Ghurka invaders that they could hardly lay claim to having ruled, owned or even influenced Tibet.
    Now such agreements are quite common internationally, bilateral assistance agreements; if one of the signatory states is attacked then mutual assistance is assured. Does that make Tibet part of China?

    In any case, the idea of: “This is mine, I had it before, so now it must be mine and I can do with it what I like” is such a puerile, depraved and infantile concept, only the CCP could possibly adhere to such a reprehensible notion and openly regurgitate it ad nauseam on the international stage.

    Tibet was populated with a distinct and homogenous race that had its own government and public services and made agreements with various other nations for millennia.

    China could never claim to “ownership” of Tibet. Before the invasion in 1950 there was not even one, just one Chinese representative in Tibet!
    From 1911 till the criminal invasion in 1950, Tibet was wholly and completely independent, no binding agreement, no outside influence, or any form of ‘suzerainty’.
    In fact Tibet was so self-assured of its sovereignty that it refused to take sides in WWll and refused the allies to cross its territory.
    The Han Chinese Communists have fabricated documents, forged agreements, invoked every trick in the book and repeated lie after lie to “prove’ its “ownership” of Tibet.
    Nothing could be more despicable or depraved than the behaviour of this cabal.
    Let alone the heinous atrocities they have, and continue to commit in illegally occupied Tibet.

    As for the riots and how they started, there is more than just tangible evidence that the CCP was behind the incitement, and I stand by the video’s version of events, for which proof can be sourced online if one dares to look.

    Now if, that is, IF you dare, follow these links and get a faint idea what the truth is about Tibet.

    People of your ilk are usually so brainwashed and hostage to their memes that even the mere thought of giving consideration to a contrarian view is so anathema to them, they’ll never be able to get themselves to even contemplate such ideas for fear of having their soother pulled out from them.





  18. JL Says:


    Yes, Arafat definitely made mistakes too -I also think he should have compromised with Rabin: for exactly the same reasons- after Rabin the Palistinians got someone much more hardline in the shape of Sharon.

    I wasn’t saying that Tibet is exactly like Palestine. It is in that there’s an ongoing sense of resentment (in some cases hatred) between two ethnic groups. But there are also differences too of course.
    I’m not so sure that China would have nothing to fear from having to deal with the more militant TYC rather than the Dalai. Small numbers of people can do a lot of damage if they are prepared to die doing it (or even if they’re not -the IRA caused a lot of anguish in England, even though their numbers were much smaller than the British army).

    Your post, as I read it, is about the question ‘can the Chinese trust the Dalai Lama’? It’s a good question. But I think there are a few points to bear in mind:
    1) Should trust be a pre-condition for serious negotiation, or is trust the product of successful negotiation? In Northern Ireland, I doubt Gerry Adams (of Sinn Fein) trusted Ian Paisley or the British government when negotiations began. But, nevertheless, most people would agree that negotiations have worked in Northern Ireland.
    2) Even if you do think that more trust is required before negotiations can begin, remember that the Dalai Lama has not had a concrete opportunity to demonstrate whether or not he can be trusted. Sure you can find contradictions in his press-releases. But then you could analyse the Chinese government’s press releases and also find contradictions. The real proof of trust-worthiness is whether or not someone sticks to concrete deals after they have been reached; not whether or not you like the position they arrive at the negotiating table with.

    There is also a lot of history you could bring up in reference to this- things the Dalai did or said in the 1950s. But I don’t think that it would be advantageous for Chinese patriots to bring up 1950s history in order to shed doubt on their opposition.

  19. Nimrod Says:

    Cardano, believe it or not we’re well aware of the Tibetan independence activists’ views on the issue. We just disagree.

  20. Bing Ma Yong Says:


    the true past of Tibet and the true now days of Tibet are endless talks. I don’t go into more of that.

    if you look at the history little more closely, Nurhaci led his Jurchen tribes rebel local Ming administration as the beginning of the founding of Jurchen Jin Dynasty then his son changed the name to Manchu and Qing dynasty. It was a rebelling inside Ming’s territory.

    Even given your theory of that area was foreign land to Ming China ,to think Manchu empire was not a Chinese empire or China is like to say Britain shouldn’t be called Britain anymore after the German Anglo-Saxon’s occupation, England was not England after William of Normandy with his French men conquered England, or Germany was not Germany when Austrian Habsburg family ruled it, or India was not India under Mugul Rule.

  21. Otto Kerner Says:

    Nimrod: “Eager to be a Chinese citizen” is his gambit to get negotiations moving. As you said, he’s a politican. He is indeed eager to reach a favourable settlement and he is willing to be a Chinese citizen since that is necessary. In that sense, it is true that he is eager to become a Chinese citizen. Since he is a politician, the more specific sense of where his heart lies is irrelevant. His jobs is to make deals.

    As far as I recall, the Dalai Lama has been consistently in favour of the Beijing Olympics all along. So, the change was, as you say, a matter of emphasis. Isn’t it natural that he would emphasise one topic while the protests were ongoing and then emphasise something else later?

  22. Buxi Says:


    You’re absolutely in the wrong place to be saying things like “just ask Han Chinese now, they’ll all tell you that the Manchus were a foreign invader and subjugated them.”

    In case you haven’t noticed, there’s quite a gathering of Han Chinese here. The Manchus were originally foreign invaders, as were the Mongols who established the Yuan dynasty. But within 2-3 generations, both the Manchus and Mongols rulers were careful to establish themselves in the exact same format as traditional Chinese dynasties. Manchu and Mongol empires wrote histories that put themselves in line with the dynasties that they replaced, and Manchu Qing emperors regularly paid respects to all of the traditional emperors that we trace our historical heritage through.

    Both the Manchu and Mongol empires had what we’d today call racist policies that kept the Han Chinese as second (or even lower) class citizens. And as a result, during the early years of the Republican revolution, there were many Han Chinese that rallied around the banner of throwing out the Manchu invaders.

    But this equally “racist” Han Chinese movement also quickly changed; by the time the Republic of China was formed under Sun Zhongshan, we realized it was time we became a multi-ethnic republic that still respected our historical and cultural heritage.

    As far as whether we’re brain-washed… well, if you had logic and facts on your side, why would you run away and pledge “never to post on this fourm again”? You’re invited to stay and try (with great emphasis on try) to make your points.

  23. Buxi Says:


    Isn’t it understandable that the Dalai Lama has a negotiating position here? Nobody begins a negotiation by giving everything away. Both sides begin by stating what they want ideally, and then they work toward a middle position. The issue of independence is an initial concession that the Dalai Lama has made.

    Independence wasn’t a negotiation “position”. Independence was the Dalai Lama’s life’s work for 40 years. He led a war of independence for decades.

    If we can take Taiwan as an example… I hate to admit it, but long-time TI advocates Chen Shui-bian and Lee Tung-hui achieved something through their hard-line tactics, by forcing Beijing to make concessions on Taiwan. But Chen Shui-bian and Lee Tung-hui will not be around to personally enjoy the fruits of this negotiation position; their work has tainted them thoroughly. Taiwan instead has to turn to a Ma Yingjiu, who could play the role of working with Beijing on preserving one China. Most of us are willing to “trust” Ma Yingjiu when it comes to this issue.

    If the Dalai Lama could turn over the leadership role to someone we could trust, perhaps things would be different. But for the Dalai Lama to repudiate his life’s work of 40 years, well, it’d be great to see… however, our point is simple: he better be very convincing. Every time he makes statements about Tibetan’s right to self-determination, every time he suggests that Chinese rule in Tibet is colonialism, every time he refuses to rein in Tibetans who call for complete independence… he will continue to destroy his own credibility in these “negotiations”.

  24. Buxi Says:

    Let me add a few more to this concept of the Dalai Lama’s “negotiating” position… It seems like the Dalai Lama has decided that the two strongest cards he can use in this negotiation are:

    1) threaten possible military uprising after his death,
    2) seek to “internationalize” this issue and get Western military and political support.

    I personally think this is a huge, huge political mistake on his part… probably because he and his advisors don’t actually understand China. In reference to 1), as I said above, I don’t think China is remotely terrified by the concept of fighting a war with the Tibetan Youth Congress. And when it comes to 2), if there’s one thing that all Chinese nationalists are very sensitive to, it’s the threat of foreign involvement.

    By playing these two cards on and off for the last 2 decades, he’s really hurt himself and his cause.

  25. Buxi Says:


    Small numbers of people can do a lot of damage if they are prepared to die doing it (or even if they’re not -the IRA caused a lot of anguish in England, even though their numbers were much smaller than the British army).

    Even the numbers there don’t work. The number of Tibetans in China are another order of magnitude smaller than the number of northern Irish in the United Kingdom. I stand by my statement that Tibetans can achieve absolutely nothing through force.

    1) Should trust be a pre-condition for serious negotiation, or is trust the product of successful negotiation? In Northern Ireland, I doubt Gerry Adams (of Sinn Fein) trusted Ian Paisley or the British government when negotiations began. But, nevertheless, most people would agree that negotiations have worked in Northern Ireland.

    Well, personally, I think that’s an excellent analogy for how many Chinese feel. We trust the Dalai Lama as much as Unionists in Northern Ireland trusted Sinn Fein at the beginning of their peace process.

    I’m not suggesting that peace isn’t possible, but I am saying that there will have to be a long, long process of the Dalai Lama convincing us that he’s honest about seeking a mutually acceptable position. I think he should be given a chance to prove himself, which is what the continued negotiations are about.

    The bottom line: it’s simply not at all sufficient, despite what some in the West continue to insist, that the Dalai Lama merely says “he’s no longer seeking independence”. We want to hear answers to our other questions, too.

  26. Lee Wee Shing Says:


    Just wonder why we have to engage with these evil-filled western shits on matters regarding Tibet or for that matter, even Taiwan. These are our internal matters & we must just tell these shits to “butt off”.

    Or, if they are genuinely concerned with spreading their western shitty brand of so-called freedom, democracy & the so-called salvation of the oppressed Tibetans, I would sincerely invite them to send in their all-mighty white soldiers onto Chinese soils to face off with our PLA soldiers. I would love to see them slit of their throats & their lousy bodies dragged through our streets like what the Somalis had done to the marines. Just don’t hide behind these pitiful Tibetans pulling all these strings behind the scene attacking the Chinese people & govt.

    As to the often quoted fear of facing the more militant TYC once this wolfy DaLiar Lama dies, the answer remains the same:just bring on whatever & whoever you want & we Chinese SHALL face them boldly & fearlessly.

    I live in Malaysia where the dominant Malay-led govt practises an unabashed/naked policy of total decimation of minority populations by importing their same-stock Indonesians to flood out the other races. China should do the same quickly & in no time these exiled Tibetans shall have no constituents to fight for any more. Tibet shall just become a normal province of China.

  27. Xioafang Says:

    The Tibetans are not trying to achieve anything through force. We Chinese are really the aggressors here. We are absolutely brainwashed when it comes to the government opinion. The Dalai Llama is a politician, just like our politicians. But the fact that we invaded Tibet cannot be washed away. We need to confront our own past and not keep saying we are so pure.

  28. Xioafang Says:

    Lee Wee Shing

    You are really scary. It’s opinion like this which keep the world in darkness with it’s “fight the world to show China is brave”. Put your balls back in your pants and shut up.

  29. Cardano Says:

    I promised not to post again, as you seem to be such a happy lot engrossed in your little world of CCP worship, and I didn’t want to disturb your cosy dreamworld. But as I’ve been invited to give my opinion and response, I shall break this promise, even though I might incur bad karma for a thousand lifetimes for doing so.
    Buxi, you seem to agree with me that the Manchu were foreign invaders to the Han Chinese.
    Bing Ma Yong
    Well, one could go back in time as far as Lucy some 3 to 4 million years, or back to the primordial amoeba 4 billion years ago, and still not come up with a definitive answer as to who “owns” what.
    What really counts is how people identify themselves with today, and how they see themselves fitting in into their political surroundings and how this is derived from their most recent history.
    In Tibet’s case this recent history goes back some two millennia, and for the duration of 1911 to 1950 they very clearly had international acceptance as a sovereign state, only because prior to this they were so isolated and cut themselves off from the rest of the world that the issue of sovereignty was not an international issue.
    Tibetans clearly identify themselves as a distinct race and different from other races, and with every justification, as a sovereign nation that has endured for millennia without ever being ‘part’ of “China”, though like many other nation it has come under the influence of the Mongols. But only in a limited way, less so than ‘China’ has.
    And even more importantly is the legal status, and in Tibet’s case the status is absolutely clear, it was an independent, sovereign nation prior to the invasion by the Chinese.
    International Jurist experts have, on weighing up all the evidence presented by Tibet and China, unequivocally determined that Tibet was, and still has the all the rights to be an independent sovereign nation.
    Countless serious historians and experts have all determined the same; Tibet is an illegally occupied country and should be given its sovereignty back.
    Everything else is pure fabrication on part of the CCP. They seem to drag up all sorts of “experts” of the most dubious calibre and reputation who readily, or perhaps for a kind reward, are willing to concur with the CCP’s version of “history”.

    Bing Ma Yong, excuse me but did you not just confirm the crucial point that just because these nations were once in their distant past ruled by some other nation, it would be beyond any rationality to say that the conqueror now still “owns” these sovereign nations! And this is just China’s claim, for which there is no legal, ethical, or precedent basis. We “own” Tibet, we had it before and now it’s ours for ever and ever and we can do with what we like.” Sounds like some petulant, recalcitrant toddler, or a hardened crim form the max security wing?
    As established before, China Never owned, governed, or had Tibet as Part of its Territory; Never.
    Any nation could go back in time in their history when they happen to have been allied with some other state for a period of time, and now lay claim to this other nation. Sounds absurd?
    But again, China never ever conquered Tibet or ruled it as one would expect a conqueror to rule a territory of conquest, or had it incorporated into its territory.
    Bilateral agreements could never be construed to be anything else than that, a bilateral agreement between two nations. And that’s what was the case between “China” and Tibet. China here is always used advisedly, as it always was a very different beast from the Han Chinese dominated “China” of today. The multi-ethnic nation you invoke is a fairy tale, invented to justify the subjugation of all the other nations an nationalities. Ask any ethnic minority and they all, to a man, want to be free of the tyranny of the Han Chinese Communist oppression.
    You can twist and turn it as you like there is no getting around these facts.
    The CCP has re-invented history and forged and manufactured documents to prove its “ownership” of Tibet, but has not fooled the experts who fairly examined all the documentation and determined the sovereignty of Tibet.
    And to those who always cling to the same old hackneyed ploy, that whatever X minority around the world should be “freed” before Tibet is given its due sovereignty back, you don’t seem to realize that this is synonymous with “if he can be a criminal then I can be too”, or “his crime justifies mine”. Which all is akin to an admission of guilt!

    But is any of this entering the conscience or even consciousness of the posters frequenting this forum?
    I realize that a lifetime of obsessive, incessant and insidious indoctrination leaves little room for the ability of any coherent, independent lateral thought.
    Posters here are so engrossed in their conceited opinion that they talk as though the CCP is the gospel and the Dalai Lama has to prove something and is the accused.
    In fact the CCP has broken every agreement and promise, and committed every crime under the sun.
    Just look at the 17 Point Agreement, their OWN piece of handy work. They’ve broken every single one of these points.
    Alas this “agreement” has no legal basis as it was signed under duress and the deputation had no authority to sign anyway and the government in Lhasa rescinded it immediately once it was known to them that the deputation was forced to sign it.
    It is Tibet that has the historical, legal, ethical and moral authority and China is the accused, not the reverse as you posters seem to believe.
    But the CCP has the guns, the manpower, the army and the willingness to use it.
    There never was any sense of fairness, justice, or the ability to even comprehend such notions by the CCP, they act like the proverbial bull in the China shop, and thumb it to all and sundry.

  30. ChinaDaily Says:

    The Chinese media do attack the Dalaiiilamma strongly with stupid arguments.

    For example of one article of ChinaDaily
    Where we can read:
    “He is a fake, and wishes to return to a time of feudal class dominion over the people of Tibet.”
    “Let’s not forget that his first foreign friends were German Nazis, what can be expected. In the old days these malcontents would have been resettled 2,000 miles away.”

  31. Who care? Says:

    Who care the D. ?
    What is important is what want the Tibetan living in Tibet. But nobody ask them, or the one who could ask them and report it freely (the foreigner) are forbidden to go there.

  32. Buxi Says:


    I do think that’s a very stupid article. Unfortunately, anything published in the English-version of the Chinese state media is almost always very poor. In this case, the article relies on a “foreign perspective” from a gentleman named Arthur Buonamia.

    Idiocy exists on both sides… how many times has the Communist Party and the Beijing Olympics been linked to Nazi Germany in the Western press? (For that matter, on this thread alone?) I think we’re better focusing on the mainstream debate on both sides.

  33. Buxi Says:


    If you want to take your issues one at a time, we can discuss each one individually. Writing a large block like this makes discussion difficult.

    In Tibet’s case this recent history goes back some two millennia, and for the duration of 1911 to 1950 they very clearly had international acceptance as a sovereign state, only because prior to this they were so isolated and cut themselves off from the rest of the world that the issue of sovereignty was not an international issue.

    You’re wrong on both accounts.

    There was no international acceptance of Tibet as a sovereign state from 1911 to 1950. There was only de-facto independence, because the Beijing (or Nanjing) governments didn’t have practical authority in Lhasa. But at no point was the Dalai Lama’s government recognized by *any* country… and we know for a fact that both the United States and British foreign offices considered recognition, but ultimately decided against it.

    I don’t need to tell you to read the Chinese media. If you haven’t read Tsering Shakya or Mel Goldstein, you need to. If anyone out there wants to share internet resources with Cordano, I’d invite them too as well. But since he has so many deeply ingrained and inaccurate biases, it seems like starting from scratch with a basic history text is more appropriate.

    As far as being cut-off and sovereignty not being an international issue… as far back as the 19th century, European visitors to Tibet (and they did exist) carried maps that marked it as part of the “Chinese Empire”. British foreign office diplomats in British India were well aware that any issue involving Tibet had to be negotiated through Beijing. The Simla Conference is plenty proof that the issue was “internationalized”, but that the international community didn’t want to challenge China’s strong and persistent claim that Tibet would be a part of China.

    As far as what I said about the Manchu, you might want to go back and re-read. The Manchu *started* off as foreign invaders, but within 2 generations they assimilated into the traditional patterns of all previous Chinese dynasties. They were clearly not Han, but they’re absolutely members of zhonghua minzu, and part of our Chinese heritage.

    Finally, on all such historical issues about whether Tibet is or was not independent.. I’ll just refer you to an earlier blog post with comments from Wang Lixiong:


    Wang’s completely right. The whole discussion of whether Tibet was “truly independent” or “truly a part of China” is impossible to win cleanly. These are all Western concepts being applied to a non-Western relationship.

  34. MutantJedi Says:

    Lee Wee Shing,
    The mutual prosperity of both China and the West depends on positive and progressive relations. Neither side can afford unproductive posturing let alone conflict. However, I suppose if you are under a heavy discriminatory hand in Malaysia, wishing worse on the rest of the world makes sense at some level. Pity.

    Is this a sort of Stone karma you speak of? In his effort to gather support, the Dalai Lama has collected an interesting bunch.
    Shortly after the riots, I tried to figure out what was going on in Tibet. I’ve learnt a lot more since that time but nothing to change my opinion about China’s claim over Tibet.

    But of course I have a bias. To me, as cute as he is, the Dalai Lama represents a theocracy. Theocracies are nasty things. Power unchecked. Even a communist dictatorship can be challenged at the end of the day with the question of “What about prosperity?” To a theocracy, such questions are meaningless. Review history. Without fail, any time a religion is running the show, the people suffer and the monks/priests/whatever get fat.

    Tibet is no exception. Remove the theocracy 50 years ago and today life expectancy is doubled, infant mortality is radically reduced, etc. Personally, I’d take the CCP over any theocracy.

    About the Dalai Lama,
    Not only is he a politician, but he is also an international star. As a star, wouldn’t he have a vested interest in the ongoing story line?

  35. yo Says:

    Amnesty International has just released their 2008 report on human rights violations and China is among a long list of countries in their report. I was wondering if your site will do a piece on this report?

    Interestingly enough, the U.S. takes the most real estate in their report. I know there are some things the U.S. can improve on but I think Amnesty International is intellectually dishonest in their emphasis on the United States.

  36. Buxi Says:


    I’m not sure what to say in response to the Amnesty International report. Many Chinese believe that it’s just a political tool for Western hypocrites.

    I don’t believe that’s the intent of the group itself. If you read through the forward (and that’s all I’ve looked at so far), the discussion of China is not outrageously incorrect. I don’t think it’s fully fair and balanced, mostly because it underweighs China’s progress on domestic issues… but it’s definitely not a demonized view of China either.

    I think it’s Western media and other activists that tend to interpret their report in a very selective way. Looking through the Western media today, the word “condemns” seems to be used pretty often. And I just don’t see a condemnation here.

    Maybe you’re right, there is something worthy of a blog post here.

  37. yo Says:

    I agree and going with the theme of this blog to bridge the gap of understanding, I think it might be an interesting topic. IMO, amnesty international reports, along with others, have been cited by many critics of China as portraying the ‘true’ picture of day to day life, given that Amnesty has some legitimacy. I agree that these reports are not totally fair and balanced but they also do not demonize China, and I believe there are huge gaps of understanding, for example:
    1. Fallacies/gaps/bias within the reports
    2. Chinese who disregard the report without investigating it(even if you disregard it, you should at least challenge it, given its semi-legitimacy)
    3. Activist blowing their reports way out of proportion

    I haven’t gotten a chance to get this report(servers are not responding), so I’m only going on news bits about the report, but if I imagine correctly, it’s going to be a long read 🙂

  38. Aiguo jiu huiguo Says:


    I am absolutely in favor of negotiation with the Dalai Lama. I also believe that at heart he tries to be a benevolent person. But because of his history, we have ample reason for doubting his integrity on cooperating with the Chinese. He has to prove himself.

    To come up with this summary, after giving a laundry list of real and imagine policy reversals by DL, is a bit ironic to say the least. As if the PRC government hadn’t reversed its Tibet policies quite a few times and had no integrity problem. Almost every promise of real autonomy since 1951 has been betrayed by the PRC – and now they are trying to reduce the “Tibet problem” (or Tibet’s “China problem”) to a question of DL’s status.

  39. Buxi Says:

    aiguo jiu huiguo,

    I see you finally made it here. As far as the PRC government reversals… there are at least two major “reversals” in PRC history we’re all very well aware of:

    – the onset of revolutionary extremist reforms starting in the early ’60s (and extending through the cultural revolution),

    – the end of these extremist reforms in 1976 with Mao’s death, and the elimination of the Gang of Four.

    I don’t have a good “defense” for the extremist reforms of the ’60s, except to say all Chinese suffered horribly; keep in mind the President of China (Liu Shaoqi) was also persecuted to death. But the second reversal is confirmation that we’ll never allow it to happen again. Keep in mind that Deng Xiaoping’s son was paralyzed when he “fell” out of a window, persecuted by Red Guards. Keep in mind that everyone in the Chinese government today suffered dramatically during the Cultural Revolution.

    I have very good reason for wondering why/how the Dalai Lama has changed dramatically from the Dalai Lama of 1959 (or the Dalai Lama of 1992 for that matter). He’s the same guy! How have his values changed since 1992, and why? Does he really mean it?

    You do not have good reason for wondering whether the Chinese government has changed from before 1978; just about every Chinese you’ll ever meet condemns everything from 1958-1978.

    One more thing… I want to address the allegation that the PRC government some how betrayed the Dalai Lama during the 1950s. (Someone else made a comment along these lines earlier as well.) I think that’s totally untrue, and I base this on my reading of Tsering Shakya’s history. (I also regularly recommend Tashi Tsering’s easy-to-read book.)

    The 17-point agreement was between the Dalai Lama’s governmen in Lhasa with Beijing, and applied explicitly to the U-Tsang area of “Outer Tibet” which today is the Tibet Autonomous Region. Beijing held true to that commitment.

    It was only in the areas outside of U-Tsang, in “inland” provinces, that the same drastic reforms that swept the rest of China were also implemented. Monasteries were closed, and religious property + lands were redistributed. Tibetan monks in these inland areas were seen as relics of the feudal class… and just like prostitutes, business owners, and priests in other Chinese cities, were “re-educated” and forced to work alongside all others.

    With the benefit of what we know now, it’s obvious that these reforms were too harsh not only in these Tibetan regions, but throughout China. But the bottom line remains the same: Beijing remained faithful to its commitment to the Dalai Lama and the Lhasa government.

    Do you know, for example, that the Dalai Lama was nearly talked into staying in India in 1956 (when he and the Panchen Lama visited for a commemoration of Buddha’s birth)? His brothers were always closely associated with the KMT government (both were educated in Nanjing, and one brother married the daughter of a KMT general)… and they encourage that he stay in exile and fight. The CIA encouraged that he stay in exile and fight for independence. The nobility who had gone into exile in 1950 encouraged that he stayed in exile and fight. Premier Zhou Enlai ultimately spoke with the Dalai Lama, and convinced him that his place was in Tibet, that he had a role to play within the scope of China. So, the Dalai Lama returned.

    Was he arrested? Did he lose his senior position within the Beijing government? Of course not, both sides continued to do its best with the 17-point agreement.

    Three years later, with Tibetan nobility in an uproar over the scale of reforms *outside of U-Tsang*, the Dalai Lama decided that he should take a chance with independence and went into exile. Actually, even after the Dalai Lama went into exile, Beijing left the door open to a face-saving return that would’ve seen the 17 point agreement continue; they claimed he went on a religious journey. But after the Dalai Lama made his political positions clear, that door was also closed. And while the rest of the world (including the KMT and the United States) has moved on, exile is where history has deposited the Dalai Lama.

  40. EugeneZ Says:

    The Dalai Lama changed his positions and tactics over the decades regarding what he claims to be his objectives. As a very significant political figure, what has he achieved over the past 5 decades, and for whom? How does he measure his own success as a politician? I wonder.

    He has caused a lot of harm for the reputation of China as a nation, not to mention the demonization of the Chinese government – if he considers that as success. But what about contributing to the well being of 5+ million Tibetans? Probably nothing. As for the cause of Tibetans-in-exile, it is not very clear to me what their cause is, which makes me wonder if Dalai has achieved much success for this group of people which he is part of.

    On a long time hirizon, as China develops herself into a major world power who can succssfully manages domestic issues including those in the Tibetan regions, the Dalai Lama or the Tibetan Independance cause is not much of a concern. But I am absolutely convinced that in the near to mid term (now to until he dies), he must be dealt with very seriously by the Chinese government and Chinese people simply because the magnitude of damage he is and will cause to the reputatin of China as a country. Negotiation should not be ruled out along with other tactics.

    By the way, in the arena of international politics, reasoning based on facts, logic, and merit does not always prevail. I would like to see the discussion focus more on some kind of objective and how to go about to achieve it. To me, the objective as realted to Tibet is to achieve prosperity and modernization of the Tibetan society, improve people’s standard of living, promote ethnic harmony among Tibetan, Han, and Hui, at the same time to defeat the splitist movement championed by the Dalai Lama clique.

    Arguing with people like Cardano is kind of waste of time. Instead, we should try to invite more people who currently live in Tibet and contribute to this discussion.

  41. Dale Andersen Says:

    I wish I was Tibetan
    Not a Han or Man-choo
    I’d say, “Now stop your frettin'”
    I’d say, “Dalai Lama…who?”

    I’d move like Michael Jackson
    Yeah, I’d do a moon walk.
    I’d look around for action
    And I’d shake a big rock

    I’d watch the flatlands tremble
    Man, I’d see them all shake
    I’d watch the buildings crumble
    As the rain fills up the lake

    I’d watch the water swirl
    See the people run amuck
    I’d say, “That’s not my world.”
    But I’d wish ’em all good luck.

    If I was a Tibetan
    Not a Han or Man-choo
    I’d watch the sun a’settin’
    But I’d leave the rest to you.


  42. Nimrod Says:


    Very good point about the 17-Point Agreement. I should add one more important point: The Tibetan Autonomous Region (TAR) was created only in 1965, when it became clear that the Dalai Lama was not coming back. In other words, the PRC government waited for Dalai Lama till 1965 with the “high degree of autonomy” (of the 17-Point Agreement) that he demanded again off and on lately. The fact of the matter is, he blew it off decades ago, so a different system (the autonomous region system) was put in place and we’ve lived with that since then.

    In this context, it is pretty clear how irredentist Dalai Lama’s demands are.

  43. Dale Andersen Says:

    Nimrod. Nimrod. Nimrod. You make the Maoists sound almost reasonable instead of the pack of liars, killers and thieves they actually were.

    Now use your logical faculties for once in your life. The Dalai Lama is a religious leader. He preaches love and responsibility and tolerance. And you expect him to humble himself and recognize the suzereignty of a bunch of dirty militant one-way motherfucker atheists? He said no for the same reason the Pope says no.

    In short, if you love life and nature and the wonders of this world, you don’t get into bed with the Devil. You’ll never get rid of the stench.


  44. Cardano Says:

    At the time of its invasion by troops of the People’s Liberation Army of China in 1949, Tibet was an independent state in fact and law…. ~removed~

    Editor’s note: Cardano, if you would like to link to an external website, you can do so. If you want to post your own thoughts in a readable way, you can do so. However, you will not paste large blocks of text into the comment page and disrupt the conversation of others.

  45. Buxi Says:

    Dale Anderson,

    Now use your logical faculties for once in your life. The Dalai Lama is a religious leader. He preaches love and responsibility and tolerance. And you expect him to humble himself and recognize the suzereignty of a bunch of dirty militant one-way motherfucker atheists? He said no for the same reason the Pope says no.

    I’m a big believer of the theory that your actions and words reflect as much on yourself as they do on others. I certainly think that your words reflect more poorly upon you than it does on us “liars, killers and thieves”.

  46. EugeneZ Says:


    Thanks. I thought more about the best way to handle people like Cardano or Dale Anderson on this blog. It is probably not wise to simly ignore them as I previously suggested. The best way is to have someone, I think that you or several others are well qualified, to quickly and consisely expose their irrationality, ignorance, and bigotry, and move on. This way we do not leave their ridiculous assusations unaddressed, but allow the rest of us to continue our discussion on this blog in an intelligent and constructive way to help China – our shared ojective, I assume.

    By the way, I strongly support the “speak4china” domain name, we do not need to apologize for having an purpose. Men who live a purposeful life tend to be happier than wanderers.

  47. Jennifer Says:

    Nine Points on Tibet, China and the Olympics

    In the interest of presenting a more rational viewpoint than is being offered by most Western or Chinese sources, here are nine points on the current controversy, with sources cited.

    1: In 2001, Liu Jingmin, Vice President of the Beijing 2008 Olympics Game Committee stated that, “By allowing Beijing to host the Games you will help the development of human rights in China.” However since that time, Chinese authorities have intensified repressive measures against groups they fear may embarrass them during the Games by drawing attention to human rights concerns. (1) In 2007, Yang Chunlin was arrested after sending an open letter to Chinese authorities entitled, “We Want Human Rights, Not the Olympics.” The letter was signed by 10,000 farmers whose land had been confiscated by the government. (2) Chinese dissident Hu Jia, best known for his work with AIDS victims, has also been jailed for “inciting to subvert state power.” He has repeatedly criticized the Chinese government for forcing Beijing residents from their homes to make way for Olympics related construction. (3) The Communist Party of China still has a long way to go before it can convince the world that it is taking its commitment to improving human rights seriously. (If you think that Amnesty International is biased towards China, please consider that AI condemns human rights abuses in all countries, including the US.)

    2: Chinese authority’s claims that Tibet is an integral part of China are based on a highly politicized version of Tibetan and Chinese history, conjured up to support the current occupation of Tibet. They claim that Tibet has been part of China since the Yuan Dynasty. During that time, both Tibet and China were subjects of the Mongolian Empire. Their assertion also assumes that the Mongolians considered themselves Chinese and their empire a Chinese empire. The assertion that Tibet became a part of China during this time is not substantiated either by ancient Chinese or ancient Tibetan records, the latter which is not given fair consideration. Official Yuan history excludes Tibet from all relevant chapters, and Chinese publications are either unable or unwilling to point to an actual act or decree that specifically designated Tibet as an official part of China. (4) Later sources, during the period of the Chinese Republic, are only vaguely referred to because they do not confirm their claims about Tibetan history. (5) The fact that such beliefs have taken such firm root among the Chinese is a testimony to the thoroughness of the patriotic indoctrination they receive from the Chinese Communist Party. Contrary viewpoints are not tolerated.

    3: It has been claimed by Chinese authorities that prior to the Chinese Invasion, conditions in Tibet could be described as “feudal serfdom.” This claim however projects a western sense of the term onto the Tibetan system and hence is not quite accurate. Chinese authorities claim that peasants in pre-1950 Tibet were treated savagely and inhumanely. This view is no doubt an exaggeration that serves their political goals. It is true that the poorest inhabitants of Tibet where subject to exploitation, but such is also the case in modern China. (See Fact1) Ignored by Chinese officials is the fact that the 13th Dalai Lama, beginning in 1912, had undertaken substantial reforms in Tibet, declaring amnesty for all runaway “serfs” and outlawing the severest forms of punishment, including eye gouging and the death penalty, which China still practices today. The PRC does not appear to in a strong position to criticize the old Tibetan society in this regard. (6)

    4: It is claimed by Chinese authorities that conditions today for the Tibetan people are more than satisfactory. Yet every year, 2,500 Tibetans attempt to escape to India. (7) Tibetans trying to flee to Indian are often gunned down. (8, see 7 as well). Efforts to assert control over Tibet are currently intensifying, particularly the forced “re-education” of monks to disavow the Dalai Lama. (9) The Chinese authorities do give citizens significant economic and social rights, including access to educational and health facilities. In practice, these rights are severely limited and ineffectual—to give one example, since 1992, criticism of PRC policies allowing Chinese migration into Tibet has been outlawed as a form of “narrow nationalism, feudal ideas and xenophobic mind set.” (10) In the book Requiem for Tibet, the author states, “Even if the Dalai Lama returned to Tibet, for short or long visits, even if some form of rapprochement were agreed with an arrogant China, what hope was there that this devastated nation could ever rise from the grave dug by a ruthless China? Tibet, as I had known it, was dead. The Tibet being shown to tourists by a hypocritical China was but the wreath on the corpse.” (11) For an account of conditions in Tibet today, see “Undercover in Tibet.” (ref.8)

    5: The Dalai Lama has often been referred to as “an evil separatist” who aims to disrupt China’s “national unity.” Such claims are completely unsubstantiated. Prior to receiving the Nobel Peace Prize in 1989, the current Dalai Lama, made a proposal to the Beijing authorities. In it, he proposed that “the whole of Tibet … should become a self-governing democratic entity… in association with the PRC.” In exchange, Tibet’s claim to independence would be abandoned. (12) This proposal was met with derision not only by the CCP, but also from Tibetans who favor Tibetan Independence, particularly the Tibetan Youth Congress, which questions the Dalai Lama’s “middle way.” (13) Recently, the Dalai Lama has stated that he doesn’t support Tibetan Independence, nor does he support a boycott of the Beijing Olympics. He simply wants greater autonomy for his people. (14) In response to recent verbal abuse aimed at the Dalai Lama, the 1984 winner of the Nobel Peace Prize, Arch-Bishop Desmond Tutu, said, “I learned that China has stated you caused violence. Clearly, China does not know you but they should. “(15)

    6: Both Pro-Tibet activist groups, and Chinese citizens abroad that do not share the ultra-nationalist views of their counterparts have been subject to verbal abuse. Malicious e-mails and other cyber-attacks on Tibet advocacy groups in the United States are linked to Internet servers used in past hacker intrusions traced by US law enforcement to China. (16) Duke University student and Chinese national -Wang Qianyuan, has received threatening emails, and even death threats for painting “Save Tibet” on the bare backs of Tibet supporters at a demonstration and trying to act as a medium between them and Chinese counter-demonstrators. A video of Wang soon appeared online, drawing condemnation and threats. “Makes us lose so much face. Shoot her where she stands,” one anonymous user wrote. Ms. Wang has stood her ground saying, “Human rights are above everything, even national pride.” (17)

    7: It is claimed by many Chinese that the Olympics are inherently not of a political nature. Yet, the 2008 Beijing Olympics are by no means the first to face controversy. The “holy” Olympic torch run began in 1936 Nazi Germany as a propaganda stunt. (18) In 1976, ten days before the Mexico Olympics, students rioted to demand more civil rights. In 1976, 28 nations boycotted the Montreal Olympics. Also, both the People’s Republic of China and the Republic of China boycotted the games, each protesting the legitimacy of the other. In 1980, the US and 60 other countries boycotted the Moscow Olympics. In 1984, the USSR boycotted the Los Angeles Olympics. It has also been suggested that China’s lobby to host the 2008 Olympic Games has been motivated by political considerations, not the mere love of sports. (19) Movie director Stephen Spielberg resigned as the artistic advisor to the 2008 games, citing China’s failure to intervene in the Darfur crisis, saying, “I find that my conscience will not allow me to continue with business as usual.” (20)

    8: CNN has been chastised by the Chinese as the “leader of western liars.” (21) The news organization falsely showed pictures of Nepalese police, but claimed that the pictures were taken in Lhasa. Such errors should not be condoned, yet it should not be assumed that CNN is the only source of news in the West, let alone the best source of news. The videos of the uprising in Tibet are now so numerous (see YouTube), it is easy for either side to use any number of select videos to state their case. Compare a video like http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VP9E9hWt_SM , which is from Sky.com, to a video like http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oG21V-JwWYs. The latter video seems to offer a relatively unbiased view. Where is the Tibetan side of the issue however? Tibetans can face imprisonment for speaking to Western journalists concerning how they really feel about conditions in Tibet. Why ??? (22) Furthermore, this is not the first time uprisings have broken out in Tibet in protest of Chinese rule. In 1959 and from 1987 to 1991, protests and demonstrations against Chinese rule took place on a regular basis. (23) History repeats itself. If you want to get news that is not distorted by either corporate or government interests, there are now many other places to look. Such sources tend to be much more critical of not only the Chinese government, but Western governments as well. See websites like Alternet.org (24) or CommonDreams (25), or IndyMedia.org (26). By the way, all references to the Dalai Lama as a Nazi or to CNN as Joseph Goebbels are insults not only to the victims of the Holocaust but also to those that gave their lives in order to defeat the Nazi threat. Those that use such terms, especially those that live in a country ruled by a Totalitarian government, should consider choosing their words more carefully. China ranks 163rd out of 169 in Reporters Without Borders Press Freedom Index. (27) (The US is ranked 48th.) It does not seem as if the people of China are in any position to criticize Western media for being biased.

    9: Pollution from China reaches California. (28) Products from China, including lead tainted toys, travel all throughout the world. (29) China’s spying is on the rise according to US intelligence sources. (30) News of human rights abuses inside China, affect the consciences of millions of people throughout the world. To dismiss criticism of China’s domestic policies as “interfering with China’s internal affairs” is to ignore the degree to which the world has become interconnected. “One world, one dream,” means to share a vested interest in the well-being of humans in all countries. Just as is the case with products and ideas, conscience cannot be contained within national borders. You can have “One world, One dream,” or you can have totalitarianism. You can have “One world, one dream” or you can have hyper-nationalism. You cannot have both. This applies to every country, not just China.

    1) http://www.amnesty.org/en/library/asset/ASA17/043/2007/en/dom-ASA170432007en.pdf

    2) http://breitbart.com/article.php?id=070904062003.m7jreun7&show_article=1

    3) http://www.independent.co.uk/new/world/asia/hu-jia-chinas-enemy-within-804589.html

    4) Authenticating ..:namespace prefix = st1 ns = “urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:smarttags” />Tibet: answers to China’s 100 Questions./ edited by Anne-Marie Blondeau and Katia Buffetrille. University of California Press, 2008. (p.12-14)

    5) Ibid. p.293-298

    6) Ibid. P.38

    7) http://www.indiaenews.com/nepal/20071031/78087.htm

    8) Undercover in Tibet. http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=7982410976871193492

    9) http://www.straitstimes.com/Latest%2BNews/Asia/STIStory_230943.html

    10) Authenticating Tibet, p. 88

    11) Requiem for Tibet/ George N. Patterson, Aurum Press, 1990. p. 223

    12) Authenticating Tibet, p.122

    13) http://chinamatters.blogspot.com/2008/03/black-days-for-dalai-lama.html

    14) http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/24097313/

    15) http://newsweek.washingtonpost.com/onfaith/desmond_tutu/2008/03/statement_on_tibet_and_china.html

    16) http://www.upi.com/International_Security/Emerging_Threats/Analysis/2008/03/24/analysis_cyberattacks_on_tibet_groups/9260/

    17) http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/24176485/

    18) http://thelede.blogs.nytimes.com/2008/04/09/the-beleaguered-torch-now-with-nazi-origins/

    19) http://allafrica.com/stories/200804251107.html

    20) http://diversityinc.com/public/3354.cfm

    21) http://www.theinquirer.net/gb/inquirer/news/2008/03/27/chinese-website-accuse-cnn-lies

    22) Undercover in Tibet (see above)

    23) Authenticating Tibet, p. 319-321

    24) http://www.alternet.org/stories/81862/

    25) http://www.commondreams.org/archive/2008/04/11/8228/

    26) http://www.indymedia.org.uk/en/2008/04/395815.html

    27) http://www.rsf.org/article.php3?id_article=24025

    28) http://www.chinauseealliance.org/news_ap072806.asp

    29) http://www.spiegel.de/international/world/0,1518,498602,00.html

    30) http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=20601109&sid=aqgFx0bVAX3I&refer=news

  48. justrecently Says:

    I think it is a good thing to speak up for China. But China includes Tibet, right? And the Chinese government is in charge of Tibet – not the Dalai Lama. It is the Chinese government’s responsibility in the first place to either make the Tibetans forget their religious leader, or to find an agreement with him. The point that not everyone who has a say among the Tibetan exilees supports Tibet’s belonging to China doesn’t speak against the Dalai Lama.

  49. Otto Kerner Says:

    Gentlemen, I still think you’re personalising this too much. As a politician, the Dalai Lama’s job is to find a deal that is beneficial to himself or whatever it is that he represents. A deal can get done between him and the government when they find a deal that is mutually beneficial. Compare to the example of Anwar Sadat of Egypt. Sadat had never been a pro-Israeli politician — like virtually everyone else in Egypt, he was against Israel. The time came, however, when he and the Israeli leadership realised that they would both be better off making peace. It would have been completely irrelevant at that point for the Israeli government to wonder whether he had had a genuine change of heart on the subject of Israel — perhaps by reading a book describing the achievements of Israel and the Jewish people. That’s not the point. They had a deal that was mutually beneficial. Nor did this mean that Sadat was a windsock, taking whichever side was most convenient at any given moment. On the contrary, he decided that it was to his benefit to commit long-term to a peaceful relationship with Israel.

    I think that you are exaggerating the idea that the Dalai Lama undermined or breached the Seventeen-Point Agreement. As far as I can tell, neither side blatantly violated the agreement. However, then the revolt began in Sichuan, i.e. (as Buxi points out) outside of the Lhasa-controlled area, and then spread into what is now the TAR. The agreement was simply unworkable under those circumstances. The Tibetan elites were very reluctant to support the revolt because they were in no mood for suicide, but eventually the Dalai Lama and his people were afraid he would be killed or arrested in the chaos, so they escaped to safety in India. At that point, the Dalai Lama began to support the revolt and work against the PRC. Can you say that he was wrong to do so? China was a horrible place to live in the 1960s. Power in Tibet had been seized completely by the PLA. The 10th Panchen Lama, who had been a staunch ally of the Chinese for literally his entire life, was arbitrarily arrested and spent ten years in prison plus eight more under house arrested. This is what you expect the Dalai Lama to go back to?

    After the end of the Cultural Revolution, conditions in China changed for the better, and the Dalai Lama responded to the new circumstances. Isn’t that the only sensible thing to do? I’m not saying that he followed a perfect strategy or always understood the situation correctly, but, with the circumstances changing so dramatically, it would have been bizarre to maintain the same policy throughout.

    I agree, buxi, that the tactics the Dalai Lama has been using are deeply flawed, for the reasons you mention. The question is, what strategy are you recommending that would have been more effective? You don’t get to play the best cards that you can imagine — you have to pick the best ones from the hand you’re dealt. What was going to be accomplished instead by not internationalising the issue? Where I think the exile Tibetan movement has failed is that this internationalisation has to be part of a two-pronged strategy, and they have failed to effectively reach out to the Chinese people or government. As this blog has pointed out previously, there are plenty of non-PRC-government-controlled Chinese media outlets available in Taiwan, HK, Singapore, etc. The Dalai Lama should be making statements there, rather than in English.

    Why does the Dalai Lama talk about the potential for violence after he is gone? This seems like a normal negotiating tactic: “Let’s make a deal. Here are the advantages of making a deal with; and here are the potential disadvantages if you don’t make a deal.” It’s obvious that the Dalai Lama wants to do anything he can think of to motivate the other side to sit down and talk, because they seem to quite content to ignore him as much as possible. In fact, it seems that they are waiting for him to die, in the hopes that the whole issue will just go away at that point. He can’t negotiate all by himself.

    Can you give some more details on the Dalai Lama renouncing the Strasbourg proposal in 1992 and seeking full independence? I don’t recall hearing about this before.

    Lastly, the question has been raised of how the PRC can trust the Dalai Lama to keep his word at this point. Allow me to ask, additionally, how can the Dalai Lama trust the PRC government? If he returns to Tibet, what stops them from simply detaining him the next time they feel like it?

  50. Cardano Says:

    But ask yourself just one question, JUST ONE:


    What is the CCP afraid of, by not allowing a free press?
    What have they got to hide?
    What are they ashamed of?
    What version of the truth do they want the people of China to “know”?
    What purpose does the controlled press serve the CCP?

    There are millions employed in controlling the Chinese People’s minds; what they’re allowed to read in print, see on tv, the internet, hear on the radio, or distribute by leaflet or any other means of communication possible.

    Where is the truth more likely to emerge, in a state controlled media, or in a multifarious, free, cross-checking, and open to complete scrutiny by all and sundry media landscape?

    What is being said on this site is but a regurgitation of the CCP’s version of the ‘truth’.
    Now if anyone could or would take the time to look beyond the Chinese state media for information, they quickly would find that there is a glaring dissonance between what the independent press reports, and what you get from the CCP’s mouthpiece.
    Now of course you’ll quickly jump the hackneyed old accusations of bias and vilification etc.
    This just won’t do, for the chorus of reporting the facts of atrocities, oppression and accusations of torture, corruption in land dealings, executions for the sake of organ harvesting, discrimination of Tibetans and other minorities etc is just to loud and coherent to sweep away with such mendacious allegations.
    The CCP has done a formidable job in indoctrinating a 1.3b population to speak with one voice, the voice of the CCP.
    The recent uproar about the Olympic torch relay and the Tibetan uprising are testimony to their complete success in having total control of (almost) the entire Chinese citizenry.
    Just look at forums like this, or youtube etc.

    In the grand scheme of planning and inciting the ‘riots’ in Tibet the CCP’s cornerstone plan was the incitement of Nationalism/Patriotism to divert from its own problems at home and to divert the ire of the disenchanted and disenfranchised Han Chinese towards the Tibetan population.

    Now the notions of Patriotism and Motherland should be seen in the light of all the misery and atrocities committed in their name, and are by any measure an outdated and derisory concept.
    Today’s world has its fair share of hatred and conflict based on racism, xenophobia and them against us, so a feeling of belonging to a particular group of ethnicity or nationality only incites the sentiments of them and us and exclusivity instead of inclusiveness.
    Humanity should move on from such whimsy comfort notions if we are ever to overcome the scourge of mankind; hatred, war, conflict, oppression of the ‘other’, exploitation of the weaker and ignorance.
    For ignorance arises from just such dangerous concepts and becomes a meme, and once hostage to such, the ability to discern, seek the truth and follow one’s true conscience and speak for a better world becomes impossible for fear of loosing that soother.

    As for the assertions made with regards to Tibet and its “ownership”, as if a nation could lay claim to “owning” another people’s land as the CCP is trying to do, this is just another self delusional, conceited arrogant tantrum of a recalcitrant toddler. And really not worthy of any ‘government’ that is portraying itself as the CCP frivolously is doing.

    Here is some reading which might shed some new light on your rosy little world of CCP Propaganda.

    If you dare – that is IF you dare to look, for anyone hostage to such a pernicious meme as you all seem to be, it would be a huge leap of faith to even dare to look.

    Looking forward to the hackneyed old replies of: “My Fairy Godmother CCP tells me a completely different story and they are always right, right because they say so”.
    Good Luck folks.




  51. Nimrod Says:

    EugeneZ Says:
    I thought more about the best way to handle people like Cardano or Dale Anderson on this blog. It is probably not wise to simly ignore them as I previously suggested.

    The way to respond is to pick the relatively informative parts and ignore the attacks. After all, you are really responding to every potential viewer of the site, not just the person you’d rather ignore.

    For example, I’m going to respond quite simply to one nugget Dale Anderson wrote (snark or not):

    Dale Andersen Says:

    Now use your logical faculties for once in your life. The Dalai Lama is a religious leader. He preaches love and responsibility and tolerance. And you expect him to humble himself and recognize the suzereignty of a bunch of dirty militant one-way motherfucker atheists? He said no for the same reason the Pope says no.

    Well, the Pope was a Nazi and the Dalai Lama did not say no. For nearly a decade, he was the vice chairman of PRC’s NPC Standing Committee and member of the CPPCC, organizations that he and the Panchen Lama traveled to Beijing to participate in.

    (On the occasion of PRC’s 1st NPC session in 1954, Mao greets Tibetan representatives. L to R: Panchen Lama, Mao Zedong, Dalai Lama)

  52. chorasmian Says:

    @Otto Kerner,

    According this speech, I don’t think he abandoned seeking independence in 1992.

  53. chorasmian Says:


    sorry, forgot the link.

  54. Cardano Says:

    Jenifer a truly heartfelt THANK YOU for your wonderful post.

    Just what, if any will enter the minds of these poor souls here, which have been reduced to trading CCP Propaganda-Lies, and sadly in many instances condescension, insults and profanities. Just see any blog, youtube etc for this.

    The scale of the atrocities is so staggering and really totally unimaginable (in the 21st century or even in the dark ages) that it begs the question how anyone can defend such a decadent cabal, for all the heinous crimes committed there is a litany of lies.
    The CCP has incurred, and rightfully so, the wrath of all righteous people around the world, bar politicians, and this has nothing to do with Western Media, the Dalai Lama or Xenophobia, it is of their own making.

    Yet still they post as if the CCP’s version of history has any credence, any at all.
    The legal status of Tibet is abundantly clear; it is an Illegally Occupied Sovereign Nation.
    The CCP has manufactured, distorted and re-invented history to suit their cover-up of their heinous crime of occupying Independent Tibet.
    Negotiations with the Chinese is just the only option left for the Tibetans – But only because the Chinese have the guns, the numbers, the power and they have demonstrated countless times that they are willing to use it indiscriminately to suppress, murder and subjugate the Tibetans in their own, illegally occupied homeland.

    The mind is feeble; malleable, pliable and manipulable you can make the holder do whatever you program it, he will do your bidding, no matter how vile or depraved.
    For once the mind is subject to a meme it has lost its control, faculties, judgement and moral compass.

    The CCP knows this all too well, and exploits it with frightening success.
    This site is ample testimony to this.

  55. chorasmian Says:

    I don’t know why I can’t post the link here. Just give you guys the title of the speech. “The Statement of His Holiness the Dalai Lama on the 33th Anniversary of Tibetan National Uprising Day on 10 March 1992 Dharamsala”

  56. chorasmian Says:


    You are tilting at windmills, mate. CCP version history books have little credibility in this forum. Furthermore, don’t put all the blame on CCP, KMT share the same view regarding sovereignty over tibet. Quote from a letter of Chiang Kai-shek to the 13th Dalai Lama.

    “Tibetans are an ethnic group within the Chinese nation. The government is urging the Commission for Mongolian and Tibetan Affairs to investigate the actual situation so as to invest in the construction of the region. “

  57. byte_me Says:

    The Tibet issues mentioned by Jennifer have been discussed to death in other blogs.
    There is an excellent forum (albeit prior to the March riots) that discusses these issues. http://discussions.pbs.org/viewtopic.pbs?t=68073

    I don’t see anything constructive arising in debating them here because it is quite clear that she is using this as a platform to spew venom. Sigh.

    That aside, since when is Desmond Tutu best friends with the Dalai Lama?

    The Nobel Peace Prize is a joke at times. Adolf Hitler was nominated (though later revoked) in 1939. Rigoberta Menchu who won in 1992 is exposed as a liar with her fraudalent accounts in her iconic autobiography. Need I also mention Al Gore? Anyway I digress.

  58. jer Says:

    @ Cardano, you said

    “International Jurist experts have, on weighing up all the evidence presented by Tibet and China, unequivocally determined that Tibet was, and still has the all the rights to be an independent sovereign nation…Countless serious historians and experts have all determined the same; Tibet is an illegally occupied country and should be given its sovereignty back.”

    I’m not necessarily disagreeing with you on this but could you give some more details, preferably a link? Who are these “International Jurist experts” & “serious historians & experts”? And why do you think the latter are any more credible than those you describe as “all sorts of “experts” of the most dubious calibre and reputation who readily, or perhaps for a kind reward, are willing to concur with the CCP’s version of “history””?

    My understanding is that the legal status of Tibet is very far from being “abundantly clear”. As far as I am aware, there is no consensus among international legal experts on this matter.

  59. Buxi Says:


    But ask yourself just one question, JUST ONE:

    What is the CCP afraid of, by not allowing a free press?

    Let me answer your question with a question. Why does France and Austria ban “holocaust denial”? What is it that they’re afraid of?

    The Communist Party in China is obsessed, laser-focused on maintaining stability, and it believes this is done by shelving any sort of popular debate for now. Many Chinese have conflicted feelings on whether this policy is right.

    But if you really believe they block discussion because logic and reason isn’t on China’s side… well, this is why we’re here. You can make any argument or point that you want, and we’ll discuss it with you clearly and logically.

    You’re going to have to do better than linking to Tibet.com and telling us to go and have our minds opened. I’ve read everything on that site, and my position on Tibet remains unchanged. Those sites are hardly objective by the way; you would be better served learning your facts from historians, not politicians.

    I embrace Tibetans in China as my brothers/sisters, I want them to have the same political and economic rights that I have, but I personally refuse to accept independence for Tibet, and I remain very skeptical about political formulas that makes independence more likely.

  60. Buxi Says:


    You ask excellent questions, so thanks for that. I’m going to break it out again on a new thread, and hopefully everyone will follow this discussion over there.


  61. jer Says:

    @ Cardano,

    re the question in my last post – were you perhaps referring to the 1993 International Lawyers’ Conference in London?

  62. snow Says:


    Your “nine points” seem to me merely a collection of some of the most anti-China views popular among the China bashers in the media or on Internet forums in the West. The tone, the logic, and the style of your piece all reminded me of CCP propaganda at its worst, despite a long list of reference trying to give your arguments an air of “well documented research”. People like you seem to be interested more in preaching and attacking than engaging in dialogue with others to seek truth. Fine if that’s what you want.

    But I have to point out that some of your frequently quoted sources are in fact not only terribly biased but also stupid lies. I was open minded but being put off half way watching “Undercover in Tibet” in which a Tibetan woman complained about pain from a forced sterilization. By now the whole world must have known that the Tibetans are, like all other minorities in China, exempted [replaced the word “exonerated” as a friendly correction. – admin] from one child policy applied to Han Chinese. It was as if the narrator had problem finding more facts to show the government’s bloodiness or he was simply ignorant of basic truth about Tibetans who live in China today. A source like this costs the credibility of your arguments darely.

  63. snow Says:

    Thanks a lot for the correction, admin!

  64. MatthewTan Says:

    Dalai Lama said: “People must talk about independence…we need to think of our methods to struggle for

    (Blog writer) Buxi: “If many Chinese are still skeptical about cooperating with the Dalai Lama, it’s not because we’re unaware he claims to have rejected independence; it’s because we question whether he really means what he says.”

    (This is a pro-Dalai Lama website. Year was 1997, ten years after his “Five-Point Proposal” and “Middle-Way Approach” were solemnly declared in U.S. Congress).

    Marchers’ Private Audience with His Holiness The Dalai

    …[The Dalai Lama] added that many people, Tibetans and friends of Tibet, think that the middle path is not
    right. Instead, Tibetans need to struggle for independence and talk about
    independence. For this reason, His Holiness explained the need for Tibetans
    to discuss what they want and to make a decision. “People must talk about
    independence,” He said. “That is good. We have the right to ask for
    independence, but we need to think of our methods to struggle for
    independence. Only prayers will not get independence, and only slogans will
    not get independence.” His Holiness stressed that Tibetans must carefully
    and systematically construct and implement a method to pursue independence.

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