The Tibetan Issue


Amongst world's people, Tibetans are probably the most peace loving. Compassion and kindness for all living beings is the central tenant of their religion. As devote Buddhists, they seek to live in harmony with the universe. Their honesty and truthfulness are proverbial. One would expect their country to be a "Heaven on Earth".


But, they have one big problem, GREED.
Not their own (greed), but that of their "neighbour", China.
Chinese aggression has ruined their peaceful world. Not content with wholesale demolition of ancient monasteries, burning ancient wisdom and cruel murder of monks. Chinese government is intent on wiping out the very identity of the Tibetans. Instead of "Ethnic cleansing", they have adopted "Ethnic swamping" as their main weapon to destroy these peaceful people.


Tibetans find themselves in an impossible situation. They suffer racism and prejudice in their own country. Unable to rise politically, financially or militarily, many have fled their beloved country. One party Communist regime has made sure the Tibetans are kept under their thumb, unable to even speak out while their precious nation is being raped of all its natural resources. "Roof of the World" is being divested of its' gold, silver, timber and people. Apart from India, no one has lifted a finger to help these people. For the last 60 year, India has provided refuge for Tibetans fleeing Chinese oppression.


While the United Nations makes big speeches on world unity and progress, it ignores the very conscious of its' security council members. UN and US, were more than eager to attack Sadam Hussian for his transgressions. They were moved by the sad pictures of Bosnia's suicide attempts. Yet the same UN and US leaders plead silence on the thorny issue of Tibetan suffering. Hasn’t China Attacked a neighbouring nation without due provocation? Hasn’t the Chinese Government shown contempt for the twin ideals of Freedom and Democracy by killing unarmed student and monks in Tibet as well as Tieanamin Square? Isn't this "genocide by any other means"? Why hasn't the US mobilised its army and air force to free the people of Tibet? As Kurds, Kuwaites, Shias and Serbians merit international protection, surely, so do the Tibetans.


China continues to push Tibetan issue out of "diplomatic" conversation by sounding indignant anytime anyone even whispers the word "Tibet". No world leader is allowed to meet leader of Tibetans, the Delai Lama, without China threatening to cut off diplomatic ties or abandoning join projects. This political and emotional blackmail works only because China is an "emerging world power".  However, does this justify such callous disregard for human rights ?


Perhaps the answer lies in our own greed.
Tibet is not an oil rich country with plenty of financial pull, nor is it directly related to the western powers by history. It is a nation of simple people whose race and religion are very different to that of the west. Their mineral and natural wealth is not easy to extract or transport, hence the west sees no benefit in helping them. It is obviously assumed wiser to spend money and lives on causes that will have quick financial and political rewards.


Kuwaites had cash, Palestinians have Intifada, Bosnians and Serbs have world media to bring their grievances to public notice. Who helps Tibetans? What can they do to wake us up and seek justice for them?


  To read more - - (Tibet and China in the Twenty-First Century. Non-Violence Versus State Power by John Heath. Saqi Books, London, 2005. ISBN: 0-86356-591-3. Price: US$ 29.95, 332 pages.)


� Bhagwat    [email protected]


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