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Don't Expect Protests to Hurt Chinese Regime

It wasn’t supposed to be this way. This year was supposed to be China’s grand coming out party. A par-TEH for The Party. Instead, it’s turning out to be most serious challenge to China’s Communist leadership since the student-led demonstrations since 1989. This doesn’t mean China’s (fortune) cookie is anywhere near crumbling. And it actually could mean that China’s regime will emerge from this stronger than before.

Let’s review the events of the last few months.

Starting in mid-March, Tibetans in five provinces rioted and demonstrated against China’s rule. A whopping 800 people have been arrested in Lhasa alone. That’s the biggest anti-Chinese uprising (and I think we can call it that by now, given the tens of thousands of security personnel dispatched to quell it) since Tibetans rose up against Chinese rule in 1959 during which the Dalai Lama fled China to India.

The Tibetans aren’t alone. Now the Uighurs (pronounced WEE-gurs, a mostly Muslim, ethnically Turkic minority) of Xinjiang province are restless, too. In recent weeks, they’ve demonstrated against Chinese rule in several cities in Xinjiang – most notably Hetian – famed for its carpets and stringy lamb stew.

It’s obvious that people with a bone to pick with China’s leadership think the impending Olympics in Beijing are creating political space to air their demands.

What’s next? Well, we haven’t heard much in recent months from Falun Gong, the Buddhist-inspired spiritual sect and the object of an ongoing brutal campaign of suppression by the Chinese state. No doubt they are going to pile on soon as well. Who knows, maybe smack in the middle of the Olympics opening ceremony.

What about us unruly foreigners? We’re screaming at them about Tibet. We’ve been screaming at them about Darfur – and that’s only going to get noisier. We want them to allow the Yuan to float higher against the dollar. We want them to solve the North Korean nuclear problem; push Burma into the modern world and help convince Iran to shelve its program to build a bomb. The only bright spot in that arena is in Taiwan where, in late March, the Taiwanese elected Ma Ying-jeou as the next president. No doubt he’ll improve relations with China and will do a better job than his ham-handed predecessor Chen Shui-bian.

So is this going to weaken China’s government? On the contrary. The more pressure the Chinese get from foreigners and barbarians – which are actually synonymous in ancient Chinese – the stronger the system becomes. Indeed, China’s system feeds off this kind of adversity. The Communist regime has a peculiar genius for turning these types of threats into opportunities.

There are signs the troubles in Tibet and Xinjiang are already bolstering the regime. The Chinese blogosphere has erupted in a chorus of patriotic cheering as the People’s Armed Police have flooded Tibetan zones. When China calls the Dalai Lama a liar and a “jackal in a Buddhist monk’s clothes,” Americans cringe. To us it sounds like the Cultural Revolution all over again. But it rings true to Chinese ears. In China, most Han rarely if ever think of the guy; they generally view China’s minorities with a mixture of paternalism and despair. They have little patience for Tibetan or Uighur desires for more autonomy, much less independence. Crush them! the blogosphere says.

Same goes for Mia Farrow’s campaign against the “Genocide Olympics.” The Foreign Ministry and China’s other propaganda organs have already framed these calls – for China to stop supporting Sudan, free its dissidents, negotiate with the Dalai Lama – as a foreign plot to weaken China. Again, to Western ears, that sounds goofy. But it resonates with the Chinese. With their mother’s milk, they’re nourished on a diet of resentful nationalism. For 150 years, China has been beaten down and oppressed by foreigners. Once again, the foreigners are at it. And what’s worse, they have picked this moment – China’s moment – to do it. Not only do they want to weaken China, the party’s propaganda organs crow, they want to make it do something even worse. They want to make it lose face. In front of 1.4 billion Chinese.

So, keep this in mind when you see footage of workers providing the final gloss to China’s Olympic locales. China’s big year could be a lot bigger than the Party figured it would. But prepare for unintended consequences.

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Comments (203)

Yong:

Personally, I think as usual, the Western Media mainly the English Media, such as CNN, CNBC, BBC are tring to distorted the truth. Innocent non-Tibetan civilian were killed, yet the English Media chose to stand on the side of rioters. Sadly, I would said many people are gotten so used to foreign media writing wrongfully news not just about China, but all other country which they dislike. The English media claimed they are independent, but they chave a clear agenda and write exactly what they like write. Let's be frank, if rioters were killing and burning innocent people in US and in UK, I am sure that both government would have responded with deadly force. Further if Texas is in riot and want to declare independent, I am sure the policy maker in White house will send in troops to quell it. A Germany's RTL television said on Sunday apologized on sunday on covering wrong message in regards to the riot in Lhasa when it used a picture that was taken on March 17th in Kathmadu, where Nepalese security forces confronted Tibetan protesters. But the TV station said it was a scene in Tibet involving Chinese Security forces. I hope the audience out there when reading or listening to the English should carefully filter the contents because that is what they did to hundreds thousands of innocent Iraqis civilian in the name of their version of "human right" and "democracy". Hey to those English man with these wicked motive, please don't go to Church on Sunday as you might condemn to go to hell one of this day.


US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi blatantly exercised double standard when she turned a blind eye to the recent lootings, beating and burnings in Lhasa. The US Speaker become a muckraker of her own hypocrisy when, out of the so-called concerns about human rights in Tibet, she pompously condemned China in Dharamsala, while enjoying the hospitality of the orchestrators of the riots. The death toll in the Lhasa riots reached 18 on Saturday (while Tibet excile claimed 140 lives as reported by CNN, and I wonder where is the solid prove of this figure), with the news that a family including an 8th month old boy had been burned to death. Pelosi's double standards reveal her motives and those of her kind: their indignation is reserved for those occasions when theri interests are best served. Pelosi and others who claim to be the "police of human rights" are habitually eager tarnish CHina, refusing to check the facts and find out the truth aobut who is really trampling on human rights? Well beneath the double standards lies their intention to serve the interest goups behind them, who want to contain or weaken China. When Pelosi lashed out in the name of justice in Dharamsala, did not she also feels the whip of her own conscience?

Tibetan in Exile--we need money!:

Tibetan in Exile--we need money!:

Yes, our Holiness gets all the attention and money (though not from Sharon Stone) from your governments. But what about us who actually do the shouting, grabbing running around in costumes and waving? Sure we are born in the west and never been to China. But that is not the point. The point is that we need the Tibet issue to survive.

The recent events really helped us a lot with more financial support. But is this enough? Certainly not! We have about 30000 Tibetans living in the US. But we have hundreds of local organizations. They are getting very little money. For example, our "Free Tibet" local chapter in Utah only has a budget of just over 400000$. Why so stingy? I think the British is a little more generous. The Germans and French are talking tough but the money doesn't show. Those are peanuts. We get our lion's share from the US.

So please help us. We are really afraid that you will forget us after the Olympics are over. Please!

Jian:

Footnote to my comment below: Ethics means mutual morality. (in case westerners haven't learnt it from Christ or Dalai Lama.)

Jian:

If I were a westerner and were sincere to help, below would be what I would say to Beijing (assumming honesty of western media, but it is edvident by now that they are not honest, including editting Nepali pictures and even scenes from movies into reports of so-called “Chinese police violence in Tibet”. However, for the sake of analysis, let’s assume relative honesty of western media at this momment):

“We westerners have committed so many crimes: slavery trading, global colonization, genocides, cultural genocides, Nazism…. you name it, we did it, and we have not even been punished yet. But we feel very bad about it, and things have not turned out good according to the law of Karma. Racial tensions, family failures, morality crisis… Even the word “white” sounds like a bad word now (at least in USA), morally we have already been being punished, our conscience tortures us….. So, if you, China, is doing or even just thinking anything remotely similar to what we have done, please do not do it.”

That way, China has no choice but at least listens. This is the only truthful, sincere, and mostly importantly, the only effective way of doing it. By the way, what did Christ say to the mod when they were about to stone that poor woman? The west must confess sincerily in heart and in action first. This is the universal ABCs of ethics. So westerners don’t even know that? A murderer protesting at someone else for his not respecting life, a rapist protesting at someone else for his not respecting women, will that someone else respect the opinions of the unconvicted, unpunished murderer? Rapist? This behavior can generate nothing but mutual contempts at best.

As it is clear, westerners feel OK to protest as the murderer and the rapist described above, un-enlightened, un-embarrassed, un-convicted, un-punished. What does this phenonmenon reveal? It reveals: under the surface righteousness, westerners are still of the same arrogance (we are now “good people” since we are not doing slave trading any more, we therefore can criticise you, after all we are still better than you…), and the stubborn self-centeredness, in other words, the same illness of the heart that once made westerners white colonists and slave owners and still at this very moment war profiteers, and this is what hypocrisy means in a more fundamental sense if not a more hopeless sense.

Such simple basic ABCs of ethics, do we really need to “explain” it to westerners here? Is not the west supposed to be more “developed”? Where are the west's culture or wisdom?

And besides, protesting is a very lame form of culture. Oganized rudness and yelling are still rudness and yelling. Should any people of intelligence really believe yelling at someone’s face will make a difference for the better? There is something called “communication” in human culture which takes sincerity and patience. But as it is edvendent now, westerners know only two things: going to war and going to protest. Impatience, if not Stupidity, this is what I call it.


Hawaii:

Hawaii is an independent Kingdom, until it was annexed by US. The Queen of Hawaii was forced to sign to surrender to US with US army gun pointed at the Queen head. It is illegal invasion to make Hawaii a military base for US army. The same happen to Guam. FREE HAWAII.

Loong:

If you really want to change China, stop buying American and British made crap products. US and British products are expensive and not worth the money. Buy more Chinese made products, cheap and good, make the Chinese rich, and they will love democracy after that. Don't believe me my foreign devil friends ? Try it out. If you like Xichang (Tibet) so much, buy Xichange products as well, it is made in China, because Xichang is in China.

IRA - FREE NOTHERN IRELAND:

US support British colonisation of Nothern Irelend. We want the British to stop killing and hanging of IRA soldiers without trial. US only support so called human rights in countries that are regarded as enemy or competitor of US, such as China, Russia, German, Iran, Venezuela, etc. But US never support human rights in countries that are regarded as friends (which actually are puppet states) such as British, France, Spain, Saudi Arabia, Israel etc. British brutally tortured and killed many Irish young males and females, Isreal killed many Arabs, Saudi Arabia is a corrupt Anarchi Kingdom, but you never see US say a word (of course you never see this John Promfret said a word about British or Israel human rights abuses, he just pretend it never happened). We hope China can support us.

Bertrand:

Nationalism and especially ethnic-nationalism (nationalism based upon race and blood) is a rather archaic, often racist, and clearly reactionary form of political thought. When one thinks about ethnic-nationalism, one can't help but think about Nazi Germany and more recently the brutal war that split up what was the former Yugoslavia.

Therefore, it is rather ironic and shocking to see so many in the West under the banner of liberalism advocating for Tibetan nationalism, cheering and fanning the flame for ethnic separation rather than for universal human rights in China as a whole.

Nationalism by its very nature is irrational and tribal. It's about separation of human beings, it's about arbitrary divisions, and it's about selective historic memories. Thus, as far as this author's opinion is concerned, less is better.

So I urge anyone who fancies himself/herself as a progressive or a liberal to think twice before jumping on the "Free Tibet" bandwagon. What exactly are you championing for? Are you championing for further division of people based upon ethnicity and racial lines?(i.e. only when we all live in ethnically and racially "pure" countries, can we have peace and justice.) Or are you championing for more human rights? If that is in fact the case, then say that, say "I am for more human rights for all Chinese citizens-that includes all ethnicities in that country: Hans, Mongols, Koreans, Huis, Tibetans..." After all, if the British and the Spanish are given the opportunity to work out their national crisis with respect to their restless ethnic minorities in Northern Ireland and the Basque Region without the hysterical and juvenile "Free Northern Ireland" and "Free Basque" bumper stickers, why isn't the Chinese being accorded with the same courtesy?

Ah, but you say, China has an undemocratic government. But let's think logically for a moment; does the fact that a country has an undemocratic government at a particular moment in its history somehow justify the rest of the world getting on a particularly high horse and in a rather ironic way, using that supposedly moral high ground to fan and promote ethnic divisions within that country to break it into little pieces? I think not.

Ah, but you further argue, look at how the Chinese government has send in so many soldiers into Tibet, with GUNS!! Yes, I hate soldiers, guns, and nationalism just as much as the next liberal. But in a world where the notion of a nation and nationhood still exists, would the national government of any other nation react any differently if people from one of its provinces decided to unilaterally declare independence or go on a riot in support of one? Therefore, should we in the West impose a double standard on the Chinese nation because we find their current form of government not to our liking. Isn't that just a tad bit hypocritical?

Anonymous:

Return the Falklands to Argentina!
Oops, that's for London 2012.

so be it:

Might Is Right!

The answer to all gonernments' bully action toward the others is simple:" we came, we saw, we conquored. What Are you going to do auou it!"

To think that we ar civilized, be real!

China to Dalai Lama:

Dear Dalai Lama,
if u truly love your people in and out of Tibet,
please make the ultimate sacrifice.

Declare yourself as the last Dalai Lama, i.e. no more reincarnation.

Though there is no more living Buddha after u have passed, Tibetans will still continue to pray to u, just as Christians continue to pray to Jesus.

For this sacrifice, China would reciprocate by confering permanent "One Country, Two systems" status to Tibet, and limit the no. of non-Tibetan settlers.

Iraq Solution:

First of all, that Amerikan yes-puppet Iraq president has to go, and let the Iraqies elect their own president.

Give Iraqies the right to maintain law and order in Iraq.

Having Amerikan solders swarming all over Iraq, just smacks of occupied territory.

Tibet solution:

First of all, that Commie yes-puppet Tibet governor has to go, and let the Tibetans elect their own governor.

Give Tibetans the right to maintain law and order in Tibet.

Having Chinese solders swarming all over Tibet, just smacks of occupied territory.

To West and Westerners:

Politicians, Lobbiests, Pundits, Tree Huggers, Chicken-hawks ...

I thank you for your concern over the human rights situation in Tibet as one part of China. However after seeing the protests towards the torch relays, and the treatment China side has been getting from your MSM, we have come to a conclusion that both sides have reached the end of the dicussion. It's painful in the short term but helpful in the long term to have our romantic feelings and views towards the West crashed by your medias and people in the past 2 weeks, I have to thank you for that too.

So at this point there's really not much to talk about, the only thing I can say is that China has vital national interests in Tibet, that 1.3 billion Chinese will never give it up, it has absolutely nothing to do with ideologcial frames, sorry.

And we dont think Dalai Lama can be trusted before he segregate himself with TYC and denounce 3.14 rioters in public. I know it'd be hard for him do that, sorry.

I acknowledge there are problems in Tibet, if things can work out under OUR terms, good for everybody, if not, too bad. If the world claims we are cracking down on them harshly then we will crack down on them harshly and never look back. If somebody has to give, it's better them than us, sorry.

So if you want to come for the olympic thing, you will be welcome as dear friends. If you want to boycott and continue to protest, be as it may. We cant afford to care one way or the other, sorry.

peace out.

TO Tenzin Boepa: :

So what u saying? thoese tibetans had a reason to beat, kill and loot? they had a reason to burn 5 defenseless girls to death? of course, so did those terrorists hit the twin-tower. I didnt know anybody were interested to investigate what happened to them in their earlier lives.

Tenzin Boepa:

I appreciate the posting of some of the Chinese here and their willingness to see if there is another side to the story of Tibet, other than that of Beijing's. Unfortunately, what the current ethno-centric demonstrations by Chinese in China and in the West is doing is only deepening the feeling among the "minorities" that China=Han. Just look at the postings on the websites or the people who demonstrates.

Both the Chinese students in the United States as well as those in China who demonstrate against Tibet seem to have similar slogans despite saying they are not organized.

Yes, there are two sides to every issue and if our Chinese friends can start learning that we can begin the process of mutual understanding in earnest.

Till today, the views of the majority of the Chinese are shaped by CCTV and Xinhua reportage on what happened on March 14 with the implication that Tibetans started the violence. Only an investigation will show who started it. More importantly, the demonstrations began four days earlier than March 14 and they were peaceful. Our Chinese friends may do well to ponder over why the Chinese media does not talk about those.

Nick:

Gentlemen:

It is extraordinary hypocrisy on your website, you could speak loudly around the world about the China human rights violation, but you do not see, or you do not want to see the USA human rights violation, the shameless, brutal, animal cruelty of the United States government, and it is everywhere in the your country, not in China. For example, the extraordinary tragedy is in progress right now, the Federal Government of the United States of America is killing the innocent man: silently and secretly, and, if you could see, the so called the Law of the Land does not work, and the Court is a part of system of persecution.

Please note that such case is absolutely impassible in the China: even in China is a normal person that set allegation first, at least explain the reason for action, but in the USA government can kill everybody silently, secretly, without any explanation.

It is the United States government, and you as usually would keep the grave silence, the world greatest hypocrisy.

The up to date story on the website:

http://www.mykolalyssenko.net

Thank you very much for your attention.

Alf:

On one side, it's alarming to see Tibetan's disapproval of Chinese rules in Tibet, even though we Chinese kept thinking of our "generosity" towards the Tibetans. And it's not only the exiled Tibetans outside Tibet, but also Tibetans in "Tibet", so it's really an awakening call for us that something is wrong, no doubt about it and no need to deny either.

On the other hand, is the charge by Dalai Lama and others (exiled Tibetans and western media) of cultural genocide that really frustrates me. Comparatively speaking, China is really one of the very few country that tries to preserve the cultures of its minorities. Please don't wipe my stmt as ignorant yet. If you looked at Uigurs in Russia, Okinawans in Japan, Chinese in Indonesia, most have their names changed to suit local flavors. But minorities in China maintained their own names.

For Uigurs and Tibetans, they actually learn Mandarin in high school or college. The schooling system maintains their local languages as the main language. Maybe that's actually a bad thing, since many Uigurs and Tibetans now complain they can't find good jobs since they can't speak Mandarin well, it's similar to foriegners in the U.S. entitle to only disk washing because they can't speak English. Yes, something needs to be changed for this, but to what direction? More or less Mandarin?

Han Chinese in urban area are entitled to one kid per couple, 2 in the country side if the 1st one is a girl. But 3 for Tibetans! More for some small minorities. It's a way for cultural preservation. No wonder the Han Chinese are frustrated with their "generosity". I remember a "Too" man, a small minority in Hunan once "proudly" told me he could not be executed, even if he murdered someone else, because he's a minority.

Tibetans can enter university with lower scores from national exams. The Chinese gov't set up "cultural" universities in Tibet just to preserve Tibetans' culture.

No doubt when Chinese are accused of cultural genocide, they are confused. Maybe we should have "assimilated" the minorities in the 1st place and we will not have this accusation upon us now?

Certainly there are way to go in terms of more religious freedom and I'm not denying that.

As to why the Chinese are not talking to Dalai? I thought they did for 6 rounds already. And sound like the Chinese felt cheated when Dalai sent delegation to meeting on one hand and kept his accusation of China on the other. Worst, the exiled Tibetans seem to be demanding the area more than the "proper" Tibet to be under their automonous control, they actually in "real" control of "proper" Tibet for a very short of time in they eyes of the Chinese, not to say the area of Gansu, Sichuan and so on. Do you think the Chinese will give in? Unrealistic goal is impossible goal.

I went to a Tibetan's village in western Sichuan 2 years ago. There was a influx of tourists and the owner of the coaches we were riding actually was a ethnic Tibetans, I could tell he's pretty contented with his business. I also happened to pass by a Tibetan's new house, the owner actually gave us a warm welcome and he seemed content also. So I guess these are 2 sides stories, many Tibetans who remained in Tibetans are kids of former serfs, some are happy with progress and some are not when they are out of luck in the progress of development, due to insufficient education etc, similar to situation to every other country. The exiled Tibetans are a different story, they are displaced when many of their ancestors were high monks and serf owners, today they are really no one but refugees.

I do hope western media when accusing Chinese of news blockage also remember their own action of selective news coverage. Their recent action actually brought Chinese of different orientations together, that probably is not their initial goal. Please do reporting in true perspectives. Chinese actually do not trust their own news that much, now they found out they can not trust anyone.


Anonymous:

Sticks and stones may break my bones, but protests can never hurt me.

ff:

"For those so igorant to think they are perfect and every other country has to obey their advice,"

This is another fallacy common in these discussions. That someone disagrees with you doesn't imply that they think they're perfect, nor does voicing criticism amount to ordering other countries to obey.

BRAMBLES:

TO SUJO:
>>See, this brings back to my original point, the mere Mention of Tibet, gets all these folks jumping up and down. Whats up with that? I did not say anything about the status of Tibet, just mentioned it.. And that was enough to get "Karma" worked up!! (END OF QUOTE)

That's actually easy. Either there's something terribly wrong with more than 1 billion of us, which is apparently the answer to you, or there's something that you DONT UNDERSTAND A BIT.

I wouldnt name any wrongs on either side. Neither you nor us are WRONG. We have a difference of opinion. When there's a difference of opinion, like, when you argue with your GF/BF, do you always scream "what's wrong with you?"? Does she/he yell back the same words everytime you do that?
Why you keep thinking you are always right? Why?

Pls, dont tell me the answer. I m just saying you are saying nothing. There's no fast cure for a difference of an opinion, especially when it comes to beliefs, religious or not. The Chinese has a thing for national unity. You dont have to understand. I would want to summarize it as a historical issue but it still is too complicated for anyone outside of this nation. Accept it as a fact, if not a quirk of us, cause there's nothing you/we can do about it.

For that matter, I totally support the true autonomy of Tibetans, the preservation of their culture, including their distinctive language and religion. That's their inalienable right under the law. And I support the policy that gives preferential treatment to the improvement of the Tibetans' welfare. Just dont talk to me about independence. Even Dalai would do that. He claims for true autonomy under the current constitutional framework. Believe it or not, most educated Chinese would want the same. There are unfortunately other fenetic nationalistic elements among us but I doubt they'd have any influence on the policy in question. They need time to discern and distinguish the independence leaning riots from the real issue here: Tibetan grievances.
Anyone talking about independence, pls take a Tibet history 101 first. Or you'd be humiliating your majesty self.

XL11:

"And why is it that every time China's criticisms are brought to light, someone shovels up what the West did 150 years ago, or even what Japan did to China 60 years ago? Yes, those atrocities and crimes are horrible, but are you trying to justify current repression with past repression? That somehow China is fully in the right, because it was wronged before?"

Very simple: west has a tracking record of doing things wrong and horrible. For those so igorant to think they are perfect and every other country has to obey their advice, this just shows that you need need to have better education before jioning the discussion; otherwise, no one is going to you seriously, except, of course, by the same igorant people as you.

wow:

Mark Twain II:

The Olympic games should always be in the United States, Great Britain, France or Japan, as these are the only nations having impeccable human rights records,

WOW!! Dubya is that you?

Chinafronting:

Free Tibet:
It's ironic that majority if not all barbaric Han Chinese think they liberated Tibet from the Daila from the barbaric Han's "standard". Let's me ask the Han Chinese this way, what do you think if the CIA rid of Hu Jintao and free you guy from his dictatorship according to the Western standard of democracy?
What you want them (Tibet) to have is not what they want to have? Respect for other culture's differences. Remember, when you push the kindest dogs to the corner, they will come out and bite you, no matter how nice the dogs are. They don't need your money and they don't need your fake freedom either. Get out of Tibet!


Funny isnt that the reason US invaded Iraq? to liberate iraqis from a tyranny, to save them from a backwards civilization?(those were the reasons after the WMD claim, the biggest lie in human history fell through...) Get out of Iraq before you come here shouting.

Chinafronting:

"And why is it that every time China's criticisms are brought to light, someone shovels up what the West did 150 years ago, or even what Japan did to China 60 years ago? Yes, those atrocities and crimes are horrible, but are you trying to justify current repression with past repression? That somehow China is fully in the right, because it was wronged before?"

Because the West have never officially apologized for it, and compensated for it, so there's no closure brought, untill then, you have no rights to judge anybody else.
Besides, you continue to do it even now, see iraq. how many iragis died? 100K? that's not genocide? if you can blame China for what's happening in Darfur, how can excuse US for what's happening in Iraq?

Really??:


To that SOJO Indian guy, you claimed:

You can go to All parts of Unites States. No one says a reporter cannot go to Vermont. You can go to all parts of England, India, for Gods sake even Sri Lanka which has a bloody insurgency going on.

Really? I m very concerned about the human rights abusement in Guantanamo bay camp, can we send our reporter to go in there take a look?

EasyBoys:

Tibet will never become a country, unless you start to nuke all chinese cities one by one. Olympics will take place, and finishes, like all other stupid parties. Nothing, I mean there is absolutely nothing the Lamas or western media do, could make a difference.

The only thing they could change, is how ordinary chinese people think of tibetans and western media in general. by Chinese people I mean 1.4 billion men and women, 25% of the human race, more than all the white people and tibetans combined in this planet, who are able to hate, able to kill. so think carefully before you take further actions. There're a lot of chinese people like me, who dont give a f**k about tibet and olympics. Do not make us do ......

Sujo :

Boo hoo.. Treat China with Kid-gloves, else we will end up pushing them back!!

Why is the whole world supposed to accommodate this arrogant attitude? Grow up!! All these guys are towing the Chinese Government line!! nothing else. The message seems to be "we will do what we want, you guys need to accept it and be nice to us" . Too bad, it does not work that way.

"Do not talk about Tibet, It is our internal matter"
Seems to be the only thing the CCP and the Chinese Government and the Chinese posters on this website seem to be able to come up with. Is there a distinction between these three entities?

One of the guys "Karma :" even tried to "warn" me!!

"If I were you, I would be very extremely careful in exercising "freedom of speech" on international issues especially when the people and government of a foreign country are involved."

I have no interest in Tibet, but have a huge problem with this attitude where there are things that are just not supposed to be talked about just because a someone says so!

Freedom of speech means freedom of speech, without any restriction. I am not in your country, I can say what I want. You have the right to disagree,but you cannot tell me what to say and what not to!! When will you guys understand this concept.

I am sick and tired of hearing the same line again and again.. "Don't talk about Tibet, if you do this it will push China back and no progress can be made" .

So in effect these folks are saying "It is my way or the highway". They are using scare tactics, arm twisting and every thing available to just force people to agree with them.Arm twisting, secrecy , scare tactics, under handedness, well enough of it.

See, this brings back to my original point, the mere Mention of Tibet, gets all these folks jumping up and down. Whats up with that? I did not say anything about the status of Tibet, just mentioned it.. And that was enough to get "Karma" worked up!!

Ditto to any Chinese person I speak to.. What do you call this attitude??

Karma :

To: LUKE – THE POWER OF FORGIVENESS

The sentiment of Han towards Tibetan’s past and present situation shows Han's racism. Such mentality is insensible and unbearable to any Tibetan, especially their younger generation educated in Western countries. So it deserves to be condemned.

But HK being colonized for 99 proved to be good and most HK people appreciated what British government brought to them. Look at India, how much British culture has been assimilated by Indian people who are, at least, very fluent and good at English language and more democratic than current China. So my point is that cultural assimilation, or even, colonization, can have very positive effects. It goes with the rationale in Tibet. The undeniable truth is: CCP gave the land to the serfs from the hands of nobles and the monks, CCP set up schools to teach serfs’ children how to read and write, CCP set up hospitals so that then sick Tibetans went to hospitals not temples for medical help. The list goes one and one…

I believe many Chinese including myself has a family history to tell on inhuman and brutal things CCP did to its people by using MOBS and RED GUARDS. But we forgave the CCP. WHY? Because we knew that such cruel and inhuman deeds were the results of idolization of MAO by its people, the ignorance and lack of education of the mass and manipulation of “GANG OF FOUR” who manipulated and wanted to get the power after the death of MAO. Back then MAO was THE GOD. Any one opposed him is EVIL. Isn’t that a familiar when comes to Dalai Lama as a living GOD? I heard so many Tibetans in NYC who told me that Dalai Lama is their GOD

We forgave CCP. We forgave Japan. We forgave Britain. Isn't that the COMPASSION Daila Lama is going to preach in the U.S? I remember that Esmond Tutu said in his book “The Power of Forgiveness”: Forgiveness is “I forfeiture the right to seek revenge from you which I am entitled to”. That is what Chinese people did towards our government: we forfeiture our right to seek revenge from our government because we are people of peace and humanity like people everywhere. Is that more powerful and solid than any words of any preachers?

FANG in Maryland:

Although China has its own human right issues, we are witnessing rapid changes and progress in the democratic and legislative development in the country. Since the foundation of the country half century ago, its people are bestowed the rights of free ally, freedom of speech and publication, and freedom of religion. As the number of educated and well-trained legal professionals and consulting firms growing, attorneys start using the weapon of constitution and legislations to defend their clients and pushing forward the legal evolution. In 2005, there were about 90,000 massive civic demonstrations and protests took place in China. The year 2003 was dabbed "the year of rights defense", as it saw more and more lawyers accusing the government of land seizure from the farmers, middle classes attending courts to protect their personal properties and consumers rights, parents fighting for equal education opportunities for their children, and pet lovers striving for the animal protection. That shows the quick awakening and awareness of human rights in Chinese, which just stepped out of the struggle for food and shelters three decades ago.

The transformation to free market started in 1979 has not only revitalized the country's economy, improved people's standard of living, but also opened the country and changed people's minds. West culture and ideas are adopted and localized so quickly. A great number of Chinese are studied, trained, or visited oversees, which grant them a chance to open their eyes to the rest of the world, to see how China is perceived by them, and what's the defects and deficiencies in their own system. All those are diversifying and reshaping people's values and thinking. Rival standards are competing with each other from underneath. It's important for the world to have a deep understanding of the changes, so that they will not only criticized and press on the Chinese government, but also constructively advise so that the open, rational, and peaceful values of the country will dominant.

AATB:

The following truly shows how limited knowledge some people have about China and Chinese people. Limited knowledge leads to, most times, wrong conclusions.

“My knowledge of East Asian history is admittedly limited but as I recall, at the beginning of "China's humiliations" there actually was no China, only the Manchu Empire. And within this notoriously repressive political unit, Han Chinese were subjects of the Manchus in much the same way that the Tibetans, Uighurs and Hans are subjects of the CCP.”

Qing Dynasty is the last Dynasty in China. Indeed, the emperors were from Manchu. Before Manchu took power, they belonged to previous Chinese Dynasty and finally got separated. Manchu were studying Chinese culture for hundreds of years before they took power in China. After Manchu took power, Manchu kings chose to become Chinese by fully adopt/embrace the Chinese culture, fully aware of the inevitable result of Manchu race would finally disappear among Han Chinese people. Some Qing Dynasty kings became more Chinese than Han Chinese by further developing Chinese culture. The current reality is that Manchu people/race has mostly “disappeared” into Han Chinese.

We can even trace back further about 2000 years, Han Dynasty was fighting with Huns and great wall was built to prevent the invasion of Huns. Some people believe that this Hun is the same Hun as for “Attila the Hun”. The result of the war was that half of the Huns (northern part) went to west, most likely to become “Attila the Hun”. Other half of the Huns (southern part) merged with Han Chinese and become Han Chinese.

Han Chinese got the name from Han Dynasty. Thousands of years before Han Dynasty, however, there was no such Han Chinese identity. China was much like current Europe. Han Chinese back then lived in various different countries. Like US being a melting point, a unique Han Chinese identity appeared stronger later with even more merges. There is a lot of history behind this. All these merges are possible because people on this land are basically and most likely from the similar/same origins. This is why people say that there are currently 56 races in China but they all belong to Chinese family.

When American and European came to China, there were just too many differences. However, American values (freedom, liberty, democracy, science and technology) actually now took deep root among Chinese people, especially the young and educated Chinese people because it is proven to be the right way.

It is very interesting to know that some people think that more educated Chinese are difficult to talk to.

Some ancient Chinese emperor and some Chinese leader back in 1960s to 1970s also “discovered” the same thing. In order to control people, some Chinese emperor tried to give people less education. The 10 year “culture revolution” started from top in 1960s to 1970s was actually also partially to serve this purpose when colleges/universities were closed because it was considered from top that it is not necessary and it is only causing troubles due to people having just too many different ideas. Of course, this went no where and caused only damage and whole Chinese people now fully realized this.

In a democratic society, is it supposed to have different opinions? Can these young and educated Chinese have different opinions simply because they now have more knowledge about both East and West and they perceive things differently since they have a very different vantage point to know both East and West to a good extent?

To me, it is people from West that do not have good enough knowledge about East.

Normal American:

As a regular mid-west American it is good to hear the point of view of the "average" Chineese person. As an average American, I could care less about what China does about Tibet. Please don't take what our media says too seriously or hold it against the people of America. Most Americans have very little respect for our media and realize that see things the way they want to. We will fight to the death for freedom of speech, but most of our media is controlled by special interest so it must be taken with a grain of salt. I am very happy to hear the the oppressive policies of China are relaxing and that the normal citizens are experiencing increased freedoms. America's freedoms are a wonderful thing but sometimes people take thier rights to an extreme, just to prove that they can.

Good luck:

The vast majority of people are, saddly, stupid (this is a conclusion after interacting mostly with people who has a Ph.D. at least), and most of human beings are racists (that includes eveyone). It is in our genes. The debate can go on forever, and it will not solove anything. The current issue with China is just one of the millions we will face in the next few years. As for China, no one but only Chinese can change their country, and I beleive they are changing. For Americans and others, focus on your own issues, paying off your credit card bill, your mortgage, having a black friend, or gambling in an Indian casino, vote for Obarma when it counts.

UPCHINAUP:

I am a Chinese (born and raised in Taiwan), US educated and now living in Singapore.

The real strength of Chinese can only be found in CCP, who is the saviour (from who... make a guess..) to all the Chinese people (including the Chinese overseas who may not have realized it).

Travelled and stayed long term in Beijing over the last eight years, awed, humbled and respect greatly of my mother land. People are having a greatly improved quality of life(yes, better than most prosperous countries in Asia) and a very positive outlook.

Too much baseless negative comments from outsiders with ulterior motives. It is none of your business if you have not even a grade school level of knowledge about China. If you do not shut up, I would only regrad you as being a brainless racist, bigot neocon who is not aware that the days of western imperialism are over. Whatever, soon, whether you like it or not. It will be up to China to say if he wants to respect you as equal or not.

AATB:

I believe that Western medias did not think about how their behaviors will be judged by normal Chinese people when they rushed in and broadcasted the "fake" news.

Western medias have equated China with Chinese government and did not even take a moment to think how normal Chinese people will think about "rushed in and fake news". They should since they care so much about human rights unless they actually do not mean it.

Also, Western medias did not think/realize that there are a lot of changes in China, changes to Chinese people, changes to Chinese government, changes to the overall society including the freedom and human rights Western media cared so much about.

When the riots (arsons, vandals, murders) happened and normal Chinese people (including Muslim Chinese) were being vandalized or killed, even before Chinese government took any actions, Western medias were already and immediately condemning a Chinese government bloody crack down. How do you think normal Chinese will react?

You may still think that China is behind iron curtain and no real information can go around in China. The reality is that the whole China society and Chinese people have moved on to a very different society and people but western media did not catch up.

Now, you can see that even the Chinese worldwide are having a different view, including the ones who really can not get along with current Chinese government. Does this mean anything?

Here again, some people again rush into some even less reasonable conclusions about even Chinese culture. It does not help.

In order to make right judgements, there need to be a lot of facts finding, including the most current facts. Rushing in to conclusions usually causes mistakes.

Tibet issue is not that simple and is related to a lot of history, including the whole Chinese history and how China/Chinese come into being. The outsiders think that Tibetans are a totally different people from Han Chinese. However, Tibetan languange is found to belong to the same language family of Han Chinese. Current DNA studies also indicated that Tibetans originated from the same people where Han Chinese originated from. Tibetans also moved into Tibet from other places and were consisted of various tribes that do not share same language. Rushing into the conclusion of Han Chinese simply took Tibet country in 1951 can not really convince ordinary Chinese people.

Chinese government is now taking a stronger stand against Western medias due to a lot of pressure from ordinary Chinese people. In this situation, more democracy and freedome in press in China will actually cause even harsher reactions, the opposite to what Western medias might think.

How ironic it will be then?

By the way, please let me know which word in Chinese that has the same meaning of Barbarian and Foreigner and under what condition it is be used. If I guess right, the people that word refers to have already become Han Chinese for thousands of years. How ironic?

Luke:

My knowledge of East Asian history is admittedly limited but as I recall, at the beginning of "China's humiliations" there actually was no China, only the Manchu Empire. And within this notoriously repressive political unit, Han Chinese were subjects of the Manchus in much the same way that the Tibetans, Uighurs and Hans are subjects of the CCP.

For any Han Chinese who finds it unfathomable that Tibetans can seemingly be so ungrateful for not having been involved in their own development process, consider for a moment how irritating it would be if the British and the French started claiming that they had "liberated" China from the decadence and corruption of Manchuria and that this somehow made the unequal treaties not only permissible - but justified.

Luke:

My knowledge of East Asian history is admittedly limited but as I recall, at the beginning of "China's humiliations" there actually was no China, only the Manchu Empire. And within this notoriously repressive political unit, Han Chinese were subjects of the Manchus in much the same way that the Tibetans, Uighurs and Hans are subjects of the CCP.

For any Han Chinese who find it unfathomable that Tibetans can seemingly be so ungrateful for not having been involved in their own development process, consider how irritating it would be if the British and the French started claiming that they had "liberated" China from the decadence and corruption of Manchuria and that this somehow made the unequal treaties not only permissible - but justified.

David, USA:

I think the damage to the Olympic game this year may have done already. It supposed to be a great opportunity to have China to better understand the world and to have the world better understand the China this coming August. Therefore I am 100% for the decision to award the Olympics game to Beijing.

Yes, most of the protestors from last couple weeks are well-intentioned to advance their cause for human rights in Tibet, Darfur, etc. Yes, the Chinese government has reacted badly to the international criticism by restricting the foreign journalists and censoring the news coverage. But after weeks of protests, especially the violent protests in London, Paris and San Francisco, I am afraid that we just pushed China 10 years backwards. I am a Chinese living in the west for the last twenty some years. I remember back in 2001, I was not particularly exited about the news that the Olympic game awarded to Beijing. But when I look back the past seven years, China changed a lo to, to the positive, both economically as well as in the aspect of the political freedom. I think the awarding Olympics to Beijing had its effect and I am very happy for China. Now I also noted that my compatriots in China are hugely proud of the Olympics and I think that they deserved a party like Olympics game after last twenty years achievement. But now the party is crashed, people in China are naturally angry. You can blame on the violent protestors or the Chinese government’s handling (although I don’t have first hand information, I believe firmly that the government and the police were very restrained on 3/14 and many Han and Hui Chinese’s lives were sacrificed unnecessary, the fact is that the restraints were not given any credits for in the western media). With the world condemning China, the Chinese government went back to the old methods and speaking a language that is more common back 10 years ago. This is sad.

Anything could have happened differently? I am afraid not. I believe that many historical events are inevitable. I think this time, the Chinese people are ready, but the Chinese government is not ready for the Olympics spot light. I remember that 1989 during the Tiananmen protests, I was young then and a huge supporter for the students and was thinking if that was not the time, when would the democracy come to China. There was also a historical event around the same time when a Soviet leader (Gorbachev) visiting China for the first time after more than 20 years. But he had to avoid the Tiananmen Square to avoid the demonstrators. A huge embarrassment for Deng Xiaoping. Everyone knows now what happened afterwards. But luckily, the government learned a lesson and focused on the economical development in China. Right now I am not optimistic about this year in China, including the Olympics game. But eventually, a new leader will come, may not be democratic elected yet, will learn what the world want from China and will make China a great country.

Karma :

Hey, my Indian friend:

If I were you, I would be very extremely careful in exercising "freedom of speech" on international issues especially when the people and government of a foreign country are involved.

I have lived in the U.S. as long as you have. But I dared not exercise such privilege until now when I am 100% sure that the tones in its media reports regarding the Tibet riots were wrong and that the consequences such reports would inspur overnight outcry of Chinese worldwide. I am very SPECIFIC and very ACCURATE when I first sent my opposing letter to to CNN and Washington Post.

I am ok now because I saw the improvement after our voice was heard. So I moved forward and began to warn other Chinese the danger of the nationalism and to remind them the prejudice many Chinese including me had towards Tibetan people. I don't venture into the jurisdictional issue of Tibet nor presume Chinese government was right or wrong with its military presence in Tibet because the jurisditional issues belongs to the work of lawyers and the UN and the death rate of the people in Tibet is a process of fact-finding which will come into light sooner or later.

Whatever you said about China, Chinese people and Chinese government did not bother me. But I would not say anything about your people, your country and your government because I am neither an Indian nor an academic expert on India. I believe in what you told me about your country since there is no need for you to lie about your country, right?

On my part, I know the world, the people and events in the world are extremely complex, different and evolving. There is no such thing as simple as "black" and "white" in international disputes. So I conduct my life not per the rule of freedom of speech when politics is involved. Instead, I try my best to follow my cultural and family upbringings: Don’t say things you do not know.

Anti-Jingoism:

Nationalism is bad, period. Chinese, Indian, American, whatever. Nothing wrong with patriotism, but join the 21st century, forget centuries-old resentments without modern significance, and start acting like adults here, not kids bragging about who has the coolest toy.

Sujo (Indian living in the US):

To "Karma:"

No one has attacked China. So there goes your argument. Second, why do I "jump in"? Because I have a concern for free speech, human rights , cultural values and diversity. These are values I grew up with and will support them no matter where I am. All of these are being trampled upon as we write. And no , other nations do not "think uniformly" to use your paraphrasing. There are times when a country is attacked , its citizens unite, but as i said, where is the attack?? There is a deeper issue here , and if you are smart, you will recognize it. Tibet or no Tibet there is a fundamental problem that exists.

If all is so well, why not allow foreign reporters uninterrupted in all parts of China? You know and I know it is not going to happen. No matter which way you try to spin this my friend, it looks BAD.

You can go to All parts of Unites States. No one says a reporter cannot go to Vermont. You can go to all parts of England, India, for Gods sake even Sri Lanka which has a bloody insurgency going on.

I am pretty sure there are only a handful of countries and only one the size of China which has restrictions like this. What does it have to HIDE? Or it is not sure if Tibet is fully colonized or not?

Karma :

I agree with the Indian friend that Chinese thinks uniformly. But we do that only when we are attacked as a nation and as an individual by joint foreign forces. Same goes with you, the Tebet-exiles and any citizen of any other countries. Otherwise, why you suddenly jumped out since no one was talking about you?

I would strongly urge all the Chinese who claim that "Tibet was, is and will be part of China" to read the Wikipedia on Tibet. Tibet does not belong to any country but the people who live in Tibet. Chinese people indeed made Tibetan people feel bad because Chinese feel they are culturally and economically superior. However, those sentiments do not give Tibet exiles any right to represent Tibetan people in Tibet. It is ok for them to use a leverage for a contract negotiation. But using Olympics as the leverage is wrong. Tme will tell.

Sujo (Indian living in the US):

I have seen a lot of Chinese chest thumping about their great nation. Well guys, if you are so great , why do you need the Olympics to tell the world about your greatness? There's got to be something wrong with the culture where Barbarian and Foreigner have the same word. It shows an ignorance and understanding that others too are can be equal and better than you are.

No matter how loud your nationalistic voices grow the fact remains that China is short of original ideas. They imported Buddhism from India, communism from Russia/Europe and Capitalism from America and Europe. I see a nation (and off late a lot of its people), so short on self confidence that it needs all kinds of reassurances from everyone else. So sensitive, that every chinese person I met starts jumping around at the very mention of Tibet. How come so many people think exactly alike? And don't you think (if you can??) that it might have something to do with not having any original idea?

I am amazed at such similarity of thinking and such lack of originality.

I love the US even though it is not my birth place. I can appreciate their democracy, freedom, rights for free speech and even the second amendment. This country is full of original thinking and original ideas. They only can come from a free people who are free to think whatever they like. The very reason there are so many Chinese in the America is a testament to its openness and greatness.

I know you folks like to compare yourself to the US, that is a noble goal. What you forget however, that all your technology, comes from the US (and Europe). All your goods are sold to these countries. In fact the US is exporting all its inflation to your great nation, and your government is so scared of managing a real financial system that their only solution is to peg Yuan to the Dollar!

To "REASON"
Something about India: you comments about India not unexpectedly trashes my country for no reason. You will not be arrested for protesting or speaking your mind in India (and in most parts of the world)- it may not matter to you, but it does to us.That is why we are so different people and there cannot be a comparison. India has a long way to go in many areas-- hard infrastructure being the biggest, but in no way we would like to compare it with China. We know better than that. In India, one can create their own regional party and contest elections. You can even ask for a separate country without being killed! So before you start taking the higher road of trashing India, we know we are no competition to the Chinese dictatorship and their brutality. By writing India off as a non-entity, you show your ignorance. Yes we have many difference of opinions in India and sometimes it becomes un-manageable, but the solution is not to silence everyone else who disagrees with you. But then I can't expect a you to understand this point of view ? Can I?
And yes, whether you like it or not, we are your neighbors sooner or later you will start dealing with ordinary Indians (well you are encroaching and coming pretty close to us now that you have control over Tibet). Word of advice, dealing with the Indian government is not the same as dealing with India or Indians. We make that distinction unlike some of the Chinese posters here. So I would be very very careful taking the higher road on anything.



Mr. Xiao:

To quote the Great Helmsman (Mao): “Communism is not love. Communism is a hammer which we use to crush the enemy.” China will crack down on any and all who try to do anything at the sacred Olympics. The legitimacy of the regime, or lack thereof, is at stake.

Remember Strike Hard? That will look like the dinner party referenced in one of Mao’s other silly quotes. The big question will be, how much the west will kow tow to the thugs in Zhongnanhai? I would suspect much, and the CPC will do whatever they like.

Xiao

Karma :

Have any of you read the book "Rise and Fall of the Third Reich"? The oppression is the perfect soil to raise jingoism. Now we have Chinese jingoism v. Tibetan exile Jingoism, a very dangerous game. The victims will be the people, the ordinary Chinese and ordinary Tibetans inside and outside China.

Haven't we had enough of such victims around the globe?

am:

The comments from jingoistic chinese bloggers here remind me of what I have read about Nazi Germany and how super nationalistic the rhetoric was then.

If China treates its minorities in the same way as the Nazis did, it may suffer the same fate.

Janus:

I am disappointed that Chinese people seem to be so paranoid, nationalistic, jingoistic, self-righteous, and largely ignorant. Oh well.

Kevin Hu:

To Pomfret,

Thanks to share your opinion on the recent Tibet issue. Especially, It is a relief to hear someone who actually knows talking about it rather than those people's comments on youtube lacking of knowledge of China and Tibet.

However, I am here to talk about the reason why didn't Communist China did not fail like any other communist regimes. I bet WESTERN WORLD WAS TOTALLY CONFUSED. If one learn Chinese modern history, it is easy to see. Basically, Communist China is Mainland Chinese's SAVIOR and pride of whole Chinese race.
Chinese people have suffered from being the strongest nation to the weakest nation in a matter of seconds. Ever since the opium war, we started to become weak because Ching government paid 60 million Kg of silver to western country. (1 unit of standard Chnese currency is 50g silver)
The Ching government humiliated our country and made our people suffer, and the Kuomingtang government does nothing but fighting our own people(CCP).
The Communist army fought foreigners like Japanese and American. Communist also defeated Japanese invasion, though KMT also fought it. But, Communist was the leading force. They protected us. This is reason why people supported Communist in China in the early stage of Communist regime in China. In cultural revolution, Communist ruled by terror and dictatorship. However, Deng, after the cultural revolution, ruled China based on only one thing-economic prosperity. This is the ultimate reason why Chinese people supports Communist China. Communist China is only government that bring us Rocket, Olympics, Gold medals, unity, Nuclear Weapons, and most importantly economic prosperity. Only economic prosper China would garauntee ordinary people's survival. Yes, you heard it right. Survival, a challenge to most Chinese under Ching and KMT's goverance but Communist garuantees it.
Now, Chinese would have no problem with foreign threats and survival issues. Internal issues such as conflicting interest of different groups of people will soon give this country only one way out-Democracy hybrided with socialism (state owned company system). Democracy was not only the way to solve social issues but also fulfills people's needs of involving in politics. Though we might expierence things happening in Taiwan. The goal is to develop true democracy with economic prosperity. Afterall, an age of democracy is destined to come in China. NO DOUBT. It is just happening to be late.

x:

I left China as a child because my parents were participants in Tiananmen. Like many fellow participants, their views on the Chinese government have improved dramatically through the years.

From my own perspective, I left China with memories of not having enough meat to eat, living with lack of heat during the winters, buying rationed goods with food stamps and living under my parents combined monthly wage of about 50 US dollars.

Yes, the Chinese government is heavy handed, restricts freedom of speech, religion and vote. However, the West often ignores freedom's meaning in its entirety. I am talking about freedom from starvation, freedom of better housing, freedom of work, freedom of education, freedom of movement and freedom from fear. The last freedom will be panned by those who don't understand China. I grant there are groups in China such as Tibetans but Tibetans make up less then .5% of the population. Your typical Chinese do not live in fear of the government or their surroundings. China is not the inner cities of America, the suburn ghettos of Paris or Iraq. As with these what I consider your more basic freedoms, no one can deny that under this current government, the world has seen the greatest improvement of living standard for the greatest amount of people in human history. To me this is the more fundamental freedom most common citizens care about, getting food on the table, buying that new 50 inch plasma screen tv.

Thre reason why the government is repressive at times is because they believe that the current stability is the ingredient to their success for the past 30 years. For me personally I think sometimes the gov is too paranoid, but I am not sure is they are completly wrong. In the aftermath of the Lhasa riots, the police actually enclosed off the Chinese Muslim sector the city, going through house to house obviously without warrents. Do you know why? The Chinese Muslims had already assembled weapons and were about to go take their revenge on the Tibetans for rioting but their freedom was restricted. With regard to religion, take the Chinese Muslims for example, influence of extremist ideology is strictly monitored. The government also promotes a female aman system is this unique in the Islamic world, again the freedom of the Chinese Muslims are restricted.

I don't expect change any of your views on the Chinese government, just want some of you to understand a ordinary Chinese's perspective with regard to this current PRC government.

ken2:

I totally agreed with what has been expressed by YES and WANG. I am an oversea Chinese living in SE Asia (I am not a Chinese citizen).

The western evil motives have united all Chinese over the world and open their mind for them to thought and ignite a soul searching of who they are and where they belongs to. I may not be living or a citizen of China but I am a Chinese wherever I am. My soul is Chinese and I will die as Chinese.

I urge all Chinese to work and study hard, contribute to the welbeing of the motherland and to ensure the motherland has peace, progress and strong.

Take care all Chinese brothers and sisters.

P/s-I am no racist but the reality in this world makes you think like one.

YES:

As a Chinese American I am thankful that the Free Tibet people have successfully united Mainland Chinese and Overseas Chinese in a way which the Chinese Government could never do. I don't recall this many Chinese expats counter protesting for a long long time now. Although there are always subtle racism in every country from every group even at the top, at no times do I feel that my race and my ancestry to be under more attack than now with the hundreds of "F-China"messages on the forums and "EVIL CHINA" messages from Op-Eds.

If I did not have any sides to take before, I do now. I know that not everyone is going to like what I say, but I sincerely hope that China immediately removes all types of special benefits which the Tibetans are enjoying with tax money from the Mainland Chinese, and implement more strict anti-terrorism laws. At this rate I am sure that Tibetans will become militant and terrorist groups will emerge. Rather than the Chinese people including my friends and relatives in China becoming their target I'd rather that the Tibetans are dealt with ASAP. If the world claims that China is harshly cracking down on the Tibetans, then harshly crack down on them and don't hold back. There is no face to save anymore. Just repeat the feats by the US in Iraq and Russia in Chenyna and use Terrorism as an excuse. You can call me blinded by nationalism or whatever you want, but that's how I feel.

Wang:

This was written by a Chinese journalist, Xiong Lei


Thanks to western media

By all means, I feel grateful to the western media for their distorted coverage of the recent riots in Lhasa and a few other places. Thanks to their distortion, a new force has risen in the international communication for China, which are the ordinary Chinese people around the globe who have uttered their voices.

They are telling the world by commentaries and self-made videotapes on the web, by letters to politicians and media, and by peaceful rallies and demonstrations that Tibet is, was and will always be part of China.

They are telling the world that the Chinese nation is composed of 56 ethnic groups and the 56 ethnic groups belong to the one family. They want integration of their home. And they would say No to any attempt to part Tibet from China.

Never before have the ordinary Chinese people uttered their voices so openly, clearly and resolutely to the world on issues related to China’s Tibet. As a journalist who has worked for nearly three decades in China’s international communication, I feel an unprecedented reinforcement in these expressions.

This is the real people power, not orchestrated by the Chinese government, but incurred by the western media.

In fact, many of the critics of western media’s distorted reports are also critical of the Chinese government and official media. However, they share a same bottom line, which is articulated by an unknown netizen at BBS of tianya.cn, a popular Chinese portal:

“However dissatisfied I am with my salary, I won’t support the Taiwan secessionists;

“However disillusioned I am at the government, I won’t go for the Dalai Lama; and

“However disappointed I am in my life, I won’t do anything to dissociate my nation.”

Actually, this is a political position of the grassroots Chinese spanning different age groups in different countries. As elaborated by a netizen identified as “akaaaa” and a law major, “We Chinese no longer harbor a blind faith in western media’s reports and we have learned to make our own analysis.”

My friend Zhou Jun, an engineer with a local TV station in Sichuan, is a good example. He just suffered a cut in his salary in the wake of an internal restructuring when the riots in Lhasa burst out. The incident could have nothing to do with his personal life and gains.

Yet he was so indignant at the nature of the riots and western media’s crooked coverage that he cast away his personal troubles and was occupied with gathering commentaries and fact pieces showing truth of the issue and publishing them in his blog at bolianshe.com.

Through Zhou Jun and his blog, I came to know a bunch of overseas Chinese, who also went beyond themselves to condemn western media and the Dalai clique with reason and facts.

Out of his conscience for justice, a netizen named “houjibofa” – “deep accumulation but rarely fire” – took the pains to translate some English media’s reports into Chinese and refuted them paragraph by paragraph on an overseas Chinese website called talkcc.net.

Another overseas netizen identified as “laone” – “this old monk” – had quit writing online for several years. But the recent event drove the linguistic professor to write several letters to a local newspaper protesting its biased reports on Tibet. Ignored, he returned to the website to share his experience and feelings with more people.

All this indignation and passion have been ignited by the western media. Perhaps the official Chinese media are clumsy, but at least they are not as hypocritical as the western media which always wave the flag of impartiality yet are actually biased on many issues related to China.

If people are entitled to have their voices heard, it should not be only those from the Dalai Lama and Tibetans in exile. But voices other than theirs are often missing in western media. Tibetans who are peacefully living and working in China never get the limelight given to those secessionists, let alone Han people and other ethnic groups.

Even the rallies expressing the Chinese people’s position for their country’s integrity and sovereignty, taking place in the home of those western media, are not fairly covered. The Toronto rally last Saturday (March 29), for instance, drew little attention from the major western media. The few who did covered the event focused on one or two Tibetans in exile but rather ignored the hundreds of participants claiming Tibet is part of China.

Such performance on the part of western media tells lie of their “impartiality” and makes the “freedom of the press” pales.

As “laone” noted, “I used to belong to the rightist wing, but all of a sudden I found myself a liberal leftist.” And he attributed the change to the western media.

Western media indeed serve as a negative teacher for the Chinese public, and their education is much more effective than our government and official media that pure freedom of the press is impossible.

That’s why I wish to thank these good teachers sincerely. (End)

Sense and Sensibility :

TO FF and TO ANDY:

It is indeed very difficult for me to compare the history of American Independent War with the Chinese 2 Opium Wars that eventually led to the complete independence of the current China and the nationalism of Chinese we see today. But I agree with what my American friend said: American culture creates diverse thinking and Chinese culture creates more uniform thinking. There must have a way to manage the differences rather than using the term “Anti”. People are here debating and understanding each other, not insulting the history and culture of others that they do not share.

I agree with what Andy said to “Chinese Forever”. Privileged Chinese Ph.D students should appreciate the fact that they are accepted for their Ph.D education by their American professors, which are parts of the American people. (As to other type of education, my understanding is that it is a good business for both sides. Chinese students pay the international students tuition like other international students, which is normally double than the in state tuition. It is the mandatory that they buy medical insurances. Otherwise, they get into trouble with their students visa. In return, they got the privilege of studing, living and even working in the US if they are lucky enough to get a job. But as the Ph.D candidates, instead of paying for the tuitions, they work for the hiring professors, which are called “bosses” by Chinese students, in their labs, where they conducted research, publish academic articles, and etc… Those Ph.D candidacy positions can be given to Americans, not necessarily to Chinese although it is completely the private decision of the hiring professors based upon grant budgeting and the merits of the applicants. But those Chinese ph.D students should never forget that the budget they count upon for the Ph.D study are from the U.S. government or non-government agencies.

I also agree with Andy’s view that it easier to talk to an un-educated Chinese in Mainland China than an educated Chinese, especially those who are educated in the United States. I would like to venture into the assertion that it is far easy to manage those uneducated population than those so-called westernized and spoiled little emperors. The reason Mao succeeded in driving the elite Nationalist Party and rich people outside mainland China is because Mao was supported in China by millions of millions of peasants. To me, those are the people who really matters and who are the major force and contributors of China’s economy. Privileged and spoiled little emperors like me, which is less than 10% or even 5% percent of the population, pick what is best for our personal interests because we have the privilege for the picking.

As a farewell to this forum, I have to say I loath those Chinese who say “it is Chinese century” espeically when they are on the American soil. It is as insulting to Americans as the media's insulting reports to Chinese. What actually matters in the entire Free Tibet issue is the life of the ordinary Tibetans, Hans and other ethnic people in Tibet who do not have any privilege to go anywhere nor read and understand another foreign language.

I DON’T CARE about what Tibetan monks, Tibetan exiles and Dalai Lama said and done because they are even more privileged and spoiled than me in the past, at present and in the future. Any government or individual who is capable of providing a better life to those Tibetans who are weather-beaten, illiterate, who prostatrate outside temples praying God for relieving their grievances and who accept the "holy water" from the mouths of the Monks. We, the priviledged people, can only guess, debate or imagine who they are and what they need. Will Dalai’s return followed by those aggressive, spoiled, well-dressed and well-fed young generation of oversea Tibetans, most of which are naturalized citizens of western countries, give them a better and secured life than the money poured in by the Chinese government? No one really knows the answer. Or maybe we can assert that those underprivileged ordinary people which Monks call as “lay people” needs only a spiritual life of what Richard Gere wants but not his material life.

Chinese in NYC:

I take no position on the Tibet issue (quite honestly, I couldn't care either way if Tibet is independent or not). However, I don't like the fact that these protestors are attacking the torch bearer. As far as I am concern, these people don't live China, they didn't go kill people in Tibet. If you are upset, go attack the torch bearer that actually works for the government or go attack the chinese embassy/consulate. Don't take your anger out on random atheletes that all they want is participate in a sporting event.

This article is absolutely right that these protests are counter-productive and they are doing nothing but aiding the CCP. Look at how much Bush's approval rating went up overnight after 9/11. Its the same for every country: foreigner intervene, people start supporting their government.

Oh, and before Americans complain about genocides in other country, genocide is exactly what you did to the American Indians in this country....

clear:

Europeans and America have used national independence for 250 years to weaken empires and states and divide different peoples who were once divided. The Muslim world was divided by Arab, Turk, etc nationalism supported and propogated by European colonial empires that wanted to 'divide and conquer". How are the many tiny nation states of the world? They are dependent on the Western powers and World Order for their protection.
-----------------------------------------------
You are very clear on this issue. See Kosovo, they not only did it but is doing it.

splittists can not represent all:

They have little patience for Tibetan or Uighur desires for more autonomy, much less independence. Crush them! the blogosphere says.
------------------------------------------------
We love our tibetan and uighur people, we call for crushing splittists not our kind tibetan or uighur people. And I repeat again: if Tibet was a independent country, how many countries ever made foreign relationship with them and send embassadors and build embassies there? How many countries's maps ever marked tibet as an independent country?

Not you were, but you are:

Sure I'm bad, but so were you, so shut up!"
-----------------------------------------------
See what US has done to split Kosovo from Yugoslavia, and still sell weapons to Taiwan, which make Chinese have to keep an eye on you.

Nelly:

I thought this article by an Australian journalist is one of the more balanced views I've read regarding the Tibetan issue. Well worth a read.

http://business.theage.com.au/western-media-miss-the-real-tibet-story/20080408-24nz.html

Cao Meng De:

Actually America's war in Iraq serves China's purpose just fine. When those same neocon clowns who advocated confrontation with China before 9.11 drag the country into Middle Eastern quicksands, it brought China much need breathing space to concentrate her own economic development.

Five years later... geopolitical balance have decidedly shifted in China's favor. Thank you Mr Wolfowitz, Mr Rumsfeld and Mr. Cheney. Your sheer idiocy and incompetence in occupation of Iraq, all but GUANRANTEED that this will be a Chinese century. Perhaps it's time to rename the Project for New American Century to the Project for New Chinese Dominance.

Getting back to Mr. Pomfret's take on China, Yes Chinese government at this point enjoys the backing of majority of the Chinese populace, the ONLY backing that MATTERS in how China will be run.

West's plan for China matters very little. It has been true since the days of Mao. Thanks to Deng's reform and consequent economic growth, what West thinks matter even less now.

Now let's get back to our lives and enjoy the New Chinese Century.

Andy:

For those Han poster's bringing up the Iraq War:

You're government has loved the War on Terrorism and the language that comes with it. It has given them a new rhetorical tool with which to justify their suppression of minorities in Xinjiang and Tibet by labeling them as terrorists, splittists etc. Point being, don't act like China is so "above" the politics of terrorism and Iraq...the only reason your government didn't support the invasion is that they knew an American presence there meant that they couldn't get their hands on the oil of another corrupt dictatorial regime. That whole line about China not mixing in the affairs of other nations is a load of bull...

Andy:

To Chinese Forever:

Your well-travelled, bilingual lifestyle affords you the opportunity to look at sources beyond the Chinese media and make more informed judgements as to what is the truth. Unfortunately, people like you represent a miniscule fraction of the Chinese populace as a whole. Most only hear what party-influenced media organs have to say.

The perplexing thing is that, having lived in China for a number of years, I have noticed that the more educated Hans get (especially the current generation of young people) the more blindly nationalistic they become. I'd much rather talk to a Han who gets no access to foreign media than an educated bilingual Han, who from my experience seem to have the biggest chip on their shoulder when it comes to geopolitics, even though they have been the first to enjoy the more comfortable lifestyles brought to them by the globalization of their economy.

Finally, you come to the West, take advantage of our better education systems, take advantage of our better health care systems and standard of living for four or five years, then return to China only to complain about how you were a minority, and treated so badly. Meanwhile, because of our generosity, you come back with better prospects than you ever could have imagined had you stayed in China. How about a little gratitude? Because of you, one of our own was denied a college or post-graduate education...if you love your country so much, why not stay there and get an education, where you can remain a pampered Hanzu.

One of China's biggest problems: a widespread and naive sense of entitlement, brought on by colonial memories, the legacy of Mao's revolution and communist experiment, and more recently the one-child policy that has produced a generation of spoiled Little Emperors...

Living in US 15 years::

Oh, forget to mention another really upsetting assumption the West has here. It is assumed all the Chinese are brainwashed if they are against Dalia lama or defending certain policies by the Chinese government. It is especially insulting when some Chinese oversea put some pro-China videos on YouTube and some Western medias immediately assumed the Chinese government was behind that.
Let me tell u, if there is a free election in China next week, I would jump onto the next flight available home so that I can cast my vote to oust that damn government.
If Bush can find supports among liberals for his immigrant policy, why it's so hard to believe that sometimes the Chinese government may actually find supports among its people who are not brainwashed?

Living in US 15 years:

To FF

"Yes, but how many articles on Tibet were you allowed to see? My understanding is that the censorship is very specific; news channels and websites are allowed in, but specific items on sensitive topics are screened out in the process. I have no doubt that the media access in China is great when it comes to issues with no bearing on the CCP, but Tibet is not in that category."

Although u have been conducting a civic debate here, I have to point out one typical Western behavior u have here. All u know about China is from second hand as shown here about the censorship in China. I have been visiting China almost every year since I came here. The last trip was during last Xmas. I never have had any problem accessing Washington Post. The truth is Chinese government is pretty lenient in their censorship towards foreign language web site. Yes, that rumor is true, Wikipedia is blocked in China. But most of the English-language news sites are running fine, whether it's CNN, fox news, or NY Times, not to mention Weekly Standard or National Review, which the Internet Czar there probably never heard of. So u can read pretty much any articles attacking Chinese government on any topics, as long as it's NOT in Chinese. The only exception is BBC, which I was never able to log on. But the reason is BBC has a Chinese language version and just a few weeks ago, BBC announced the lifting of the censorship of its English language site in China although the Chinese language one is blocked. It's a total different story about Chinese language sites, with most news sites from Taiwan and Hong Kong blocked.
I would love to see the toppling of the communist government in China and I would be happy if I can contribute to that effort. But I don't like double standard whether it's from CCP or from the West.
To me the most upsetting thing in this episode is the initial report about the riots in Tibet. The western media didn't report anything about the looting, arson, and murder committed by the Tibetan rioters. Granted the CCP was stupid to expel all the journalists. But why the media was so ready to tell the stories from the exiled Tibetans, whose stories couldn't be verified either?
Remember the LA riot after Rodney King's case? No matter how justified their angers were, no one called those rioters civil right activists. But the media here couldn't wait to crown those Tibetan mobs as peaceful and courageous freedom fighters. How courageous one could be to burn some defenseless teenager girls to death?
Those murderers should be executed. But at least I can understand why they would do this and probably was even justified from their point of view. But if Western media claims to be objective and has no biases against China on the Tibetan issue, I really have a hard time to see how one can match their words with their actions.

ff:

"150 years’ foreign oppression and humiliation (Westerners and Americans do not have.) "

I always find it puzzling when people assume that Americans can't identify with victims of colonialism. The United States was born out of an uprising against European colonialism, and for centuries made resistance to colonial empires a plank of its foreign policy (right up until they all collapsed, really). I recognize that we squandered a lot of that credibility in Vietnam (and other places), and that people aren't accustomed to thinking of the world's most powerful country as a victim of any kind, but the fact remains that anti-Imperialism is deeply embedded in the American national identity, from the liberal values to the national holidays to the faces on the currency.

Perhaps it's true that we've moved on in our worldview (certainly, Americans don't get all that wound up at criticism from England these days), or perhaps the fact of having achieved independence through successful struggle makes us feel more secure, but I think it requires a profound misreading of history to suggest that Americans don't have any references for understanding the plight of the colonized and oppressed.

Sense and Sensibility :


To John Pomfret:

As a native Chinese from China, I have no hesitation in saying that your article makes people like me think deep and hard. I guess that is what journalism should be: let people think and keep their mind open, not spreading seeds of hatred, distrust, nationalism and gossip.

Every Chinese is so badly wounded by the anti-China waves in recent weeks. No matter how much we dislike our government and no matter what evil things it did in the past to all the Hans, Tibetans, Muslins and etc.., we immediately forgive the our government and stand firmly on its side in face of foreign interference. The reasons for such reaction, which I would like to call “My China Complex”, are accurately summed up by you: mother’s milk (same with American patriotism every American is born with) and 150 years’ foreign oppression and humiliation (Westerners and Americans do not have.)

I hope we will have chance to read more of your articles on China, a very old NATION of more than 3 thousand years’ ancient civilization but a very young and confused COUNTRY of only 51 years old.

Jack:

@Kevin in DC

"Look at the comments from Americans, you will know that McCarthyism still exist. I am sure I do not need to update on that. "

Yes, internet comments posted by angry teenagers going through puberty is meant to act as an accurate gauge of how much Americans hate Chinese. Please.

ff:

"When I was in Beijing last year, I had no problem logging on to Post, NY Times, or CNN."

Yes, but how many articles on Tibet were you allowed to see? My understanding is that the censorship is very specific; news channels and websites are allowed in, but specific items on sensitive topics are screened out in the process. I have no doubt that the media access in China is great when it comes to issues with no bearing on the CCP, but Tibet is not in that category.

"In fact it is when the young generations in China logged on to CNN to look for some the so-called objective reports and saw those fabricated picture that they got irritated."

I'm not clear what picture you're referring to.

"And it is a fact that most people in USA reach their conclusion on Tibet relying on one-sided report by major media here. "

I'd argue that most people had made up their minds about Tibet long before the current unrest. Bumper stickers that read FREE TIBET have been a staple of college towns for decades. If the media comes off as one-sided, it's because it's catering to the already-decided position of the audience, not the other way around. There is most certainly no conspiracy amongst media agencies to go after China; on the contrary, most of the media executives are only too happy to cozy up to the CCP in exchange for access to Chinese markets.

"Second, the March 10 protest is in commemoration of the 1959 ‘armed uprising’, so independence is the key issue."

I think that's a very facile conclusion to draw, and I suspect you know this. Show me a statement from a Tibetan leader or protestor demanding independence. If that's what they're about, it should be difficult to find one.

"Ask the exile government of Tibet if you do not believe it."

Well, the Dalai Lama is the head of that government, and he is explicit in setting the goal to be genuine autonomy, comparable to Hong Kong, and NOT full independence. Why you all keep insisting otherwise is beyond me.

"I think no government in the world will run a national self-determination vote if their governance is recognized by the majority of the residents (in this case Tibetans). "

Why ever not? If a majority of Tibetans would vote to legitimize the current system, that would be a huge coup for China. Provided the election was free and fair, there would be nothing anyone could say to criticize China's role in Tibet after that. If Chinese rule is as popular as you say in Tibet, then the only reason they have for not holding a referendum is the precedent it would set. The CCP cannot aknowledge the principle that Chinese people are entitled to national determination via elections, or they would then face calls to subject their own rule of China to elections, allow rival political parties, etc.

"Look at the comments from Americans, you will know that McCarthyism still exist. I am sure I do not need to update on that. "

I have no doubt that there are many ignorant, bigoted Americans out there (every country has its share). But the comment I was responding to was alleging that the media, government and various other institutions were collaborating in some kind of global Communist witch hunt. And I stand by my assertion that this allegation is laughable.


Kevin in DC:

To FF

First, your argument shows that perhaps you have never been to China, not to mention Tibet. When I was in Beijing last year, I had no problem logging on to Post, NY Times, or CNN. It is true that party censorship leftover from the 70s still exist, but it is far from what Americans think. In fact it is when the young generations in China logged on to CNN to look for some the so-called objective reports and saw those fabricated picture that they got irritated. And it is a fact that most people in USA reach their conclusion on Tibet relying on one-sided report by major media here.

Second, the March 10 protest is in commemoration of the 1959 ‘armed uprising’, so independence is the key issue. Ask the exile government of Tibet if you do not believe it. For the scale of the protest, according to Washington Post, the March 10 protests went on for many years and the government never interfere with it under the condition it is peaceful (it is same with protests in other regions of China). However, the scale of the protest is decreasing each year. It seems that ordinary Tibetan lost interests in that abstract political pursuit.” I think no government in the world will run a national self-determination vote if their governance is recognized by the majority of the residents (in this case Tibetans).

Third, it can be shocking to any Chinese who came to Untied States how people here know little about China yet how confidently they expressed opinions about China. I was asked questions like “do Chinese girls still bind their feet?” “are men in China allowed to have concubines?” This is just like asking an American “do you still burn witches?” Look at the comments from Americans, you will know that McCarthyism still exist. I am sure I do not need to update on that.

Usama:

Tibetans should realize the foolishness of Tibetan national independence.

First, Europeans and America have used national independence for 250 years to weaken empires and states and divide different peoples who were once divided. The Muslim world was divided by Arab, Turk, etc nationalism supported and propogated by European colonial empires that wanted to 'divide and conquer". How are the many tiny nation states of the world? They are dependent on the Western powers and World Order for their protection.

Second, in this day age, many nation states dependent on the West for power and economics, are suffering from their exploitative relations. Egypt is having bread riots, as are Haiti, Sierra Leone, and other nations. Other tiny nations are poor and without economic future except as servants of the West. In the meantime, Western nations are forming multinational, transnational trade unions, like the EU, NAFTA, ASEA. How would Tibet do? Landlocked- dependent upon foreign trade & international law, like East Timor and Bosnia? How are they?

Third, China's occupation and annexation of Tibet has much to do with its reversal of Western colonialism of China and Central Asia. China also was confronting India (Nehru served the Crown and the CommonWealth) which was originally serving the British. Thus, China's acquisition of Tibet was a buffer against British/Western intrusion via India.

Fourth,
Tibet is 1.9 million people in 1.2 million squ kms: 1.68 persons per km. Tibet could never resist China's power, being that it is less than 1% of the Chinese population.I certainly sympathize and agree with the desire for liberation from oppression and corruption. But nationalism is not the solution Rather its an idea which serves those who are adversaries of China, making the people of Tibet pawns caught in the middle.

Sense and Sensibility :

We don't want a world war III or a cold war, do we?

Nationalism is too dangerous. That is why we need the Olympics where nationalism can be enjoyed and cheered without national boundary. I recommend this article to every one who is here to debate with passion and compassion for a better world.

An Opinion published on "International Herald Tribune"

Beware an angry China

By Philip Bowring
Published: April 8, 2008

HONG KONG: Tibetans have a strong case against Beijing. But mixing it in with the Olympics and Darfur is a red rag to a wounded young bull.
Nationalism is more often aroused by setbacks than success, so the Tibet problems and the possible threats to a triumphal Olympics are stirring it in China.
On the horizon is the possibility that these will combine with high inflation, stagnating exports and trade tensions with the United States to create a perfect nationalistic storm.
The Chinese leadership faces a difficult balancing act.
As its legitimacy is now based on national achievement, not communist ideology, it must appear in step with popular feeling. Yet stability at home and good relations abroad require keeping nationalist emotions in check. The paranoia about evil foreign designs that thrived under Mao and was discarded by Deng Xiaoping is still close to the surface.
Almost all of China is offended that foreigners are so keen to lecture them and to encourage the petty boycotts that could spoil the Olympic party. It genuinely infuriates the Chinese that they are blamed for Darfur while their Western critics occupy Iraq. Beijing is happy to let such nationalist resentments vent in the sometimes violent language of Internet blogs and chat rooms.
The anger, in turn, makes it easier for the government to pin the Tibetan problems on foreigners and Tibetan exiles headed by the Dalai Lama, to arrest human-rights advocates and crack down on foreign media.
Beijing plays up the foreign threat - much like the U.S. government used the Al Qaeda threat as a justification for invading Iraq. For example, Beijing has raised the specter of Tibetan suicide squads organized by the "Dalai Lama clique" attacking the Olympics.
Such acts cannot be ruled out. But a cooler government would quietly strengthen defenses rather than raise the temperature - and raise fears that terrorist outrages might be staged to discredit the Tibetans.
Under pressure, officials have fallen back on Cultural Revolution language and lies. The Communist Party secretary in Tibet described the Dalai Lama as a "monster with a human face."
Less dramatically, Prime Minister Wen Jiabao said that the channel for dialogue with the Dalai Lama was open so long as he "abandoned claims for Tibet independence" and used his influence to "stop the violence in Tibet." In fact the Dalai Lama long ago accepted the principle of autonomy within China, so long as it was real autonomy. And he is at odds with many Tibetans who oppose his advocacy of peaceful means.
Equally important is the way official Chinese media has depicted the violence in Tibet as attacks on Han Chinese. This predictably arouses the hackles of the Han, who comprise 90 percent of China's population, and who tend to view Tibet as a backwater they improve by their modernizing drive.
They see no reason why Tibetans should be unhappy with Han migration and dominance of trade, and they resent that Tibetans do not feel grateful for the money poured in by the government.
"The Communist Party is like a parent to the Tibetan people and is always considerate about what the children need," declared the Tibet party secretary. The party, he said, was the "real Buddha" for Tibetans.
This racial/cultural aspect not only makes it even more difficult for China to resolve minority issues, it also raises the Han identity issue in a wider, international context.
Racial mythology as well as cultural identity run strong, whether vis-à-vis immediate "barbarian" neighbors - be they Japanese, Mongol or Russian - or toward the Westerners who long lorded it over the Middle Kingdom.
How will the Chinese react if the Olympics really do become noted more for demonstrations and boycotts by Tibetan-inspired foreigners than for the achievements of China's athletes and organizers? At whom will popular anger then be directed?
If the party is spoiled, whether by Tibet or air pollution, the demand for top level scapegoats may be irresistible.
Worse still is if this coincides with heightened trade tensions with the United States, which could arise as the U.S. economy enters a recession.
If the Chinese come to perceive that the benefits of globalization have peaked, will the leadership retreat from 30 years of Deng-ist engagement?
None of this has to happen. But ethnic pride and thwarted ambitions are powerful forces. It is worth recalling that foreign economic pressures, patriotic fervor and rising military power made a once liberal Japan into the expansionist, militarist and hyper-nationalist Japan of the 1930s.
Tibetans have a strong case against Beijing. But mixing it in with the Olympics and Darfur is a red rag to a wounded young bull.

Sense and Sensibility :

Beware an angry China

By Philip Bowring
Published: April 8, 2008

HONG KONG: Tibetans have a strong case against Beijing. But mixing it in with the Olympics and Darfur is a red rag to a wounded young bull.
Nationalism is more often aroused by setbacks than success, so the Tibet problems and the possible threats to a triumphal Olympics are stirring it in China.
On the horizon is the possibility that these will combine with high inflation, stagnating exports and trade tensions with the United States to create a perfect nationalistic storm.
The Chinese leadership faces a difficult balancing act.
As its legitimacy is now based on national achievement, not communist ideology, it must appear in step with popular feeling. Yet stability at home and good relations abroad require keeping nationalist emotions in check. The paranoia about evil foreign designs that thrived under Mao and was discarded by Deng Xiaoping is still close to the surface.
Almost all of China is offended that foreigners are so keen to lecture them and to encourage the petty boycotts that could spoil the Olympic party. It genuinely infuriates the Chinese that they are blamed for Darfur while their Western critics occupy Iraq. Beijing is happy to let such nationalist resentments vent in the sometimes violent language of Internet blogs and chat rooms.
The anger, in turn, makes it easier for the government to pin the Tibetan problems on foreigners and Tibetan exiles headed by the Dalai Lama, to arrest human-rights advocates and crack down on foreign media.
Beijing plays up the foreign threat - much like the U.S. government used the Al Qaeda threat as a justification for invading Iraq. For example, Beijing has raised the specter of Tibetan suicide squads organized by the "Dalai Lama clique" attacking the Olympics.
Such acts cannot be ruled out. But a cooler government would quietly strengthen defenses rather than raise the temperature - and raise fears that terrorist outrages might be staged to discredit the Tibetans.
Under pressure, officials have fallen back on Cultural Revolution language and lies. The Communist Party secretary in Tibet described the Dalai Lama as a "monster with a human face."
Less dramatically, Prime Minister Wen Jiabao said that the channel for dialogue with the Dalai Lama was open so long as he "abandoned claims for Tibet independence" and used his influence to "stop the violence in Tibet." In fact the Dalai Lama long ago accepted the principle of autonomy within China, so long as it was real autonomy. And he is at odds with many Tibetans who oppose his advocacy of peaceful means.
Equally important is the way official Chinese media has depicted the violence in Tibet as attacks on Han Chinese. This predictably arouses the hackles of the Han, who comprise 90 percent of China's population, and who tend to view Tibet as a backwater they improve by their modernizing drive.
They see no reason why Tibetans should be unhappy with Han migration and dominance of trade, and they resent that Tibetans do not feel grateful for the money poured in by the government.
"The Communist Party is like a parent to the Tibetan people and is always considerate about what the children need," declared the Tibet party secretary. The party, he said, was the "real Buddha" for Tibetans.
This racial/cultural aspect not only makes it even more difficult for China to resolve minority issues, it also raises the Han identity issue in a wider, international context.
Racial mythology as well as cultural identity run strong, whether vis-à-vis immediate "barbarian" neighbors - be they Japanese, Mongol or Russian - or toward the Westerners who long lorded it over the Middle Kingdom.
How will the Chinese react if the Olympics really do become noted more for demonstrations and boycotts by Tibetan-inspired foreigners than for the achievements of China's athletes and organizers? At whom will popular anger then be directed?
If the party is spoiled, whether by Tibet or air pollution, the demand for top level scapegoats may be irresistible.
Worse still is if this coincides with heightened trade tensions with the United States, which could arise as the U.S. economy enters a recession.
If the Chinese come to perceive that the benefits of globalization have peaked, will the leadership retreat from 30 years of Deng-ist engagement?
None of this has to happen. But ethnic pride and thwarted ambitions are powerful forces. It is worth recalling that foreign economic pressures, patriotic fervor and rising military power made a once liberal Japan into the expansionist, militarist and hyper-nationalist Japan of the 1930s.
Tibetans have a strong case against Beijing. But mixing it in with the Olympics and Darfur is a red rag to a wounded young bull.


ff:

"This is a foundamental question because this is exactly what this unrest is about."

No, it's not. I have yet to see any Tibetan protestors demand independence. The Dalai Lama is explicit in NOT calling for independence. The only people who insist that Tibet is after independence are the CCP and their apologists, who must frame the debate that way because they know they'll lose the real debate (which is about meaningful autonomy and respect for self-determination). So instead they pretend that the Dalai Lama is advocating independence and so challenging the legitimacy of the Chinese state as a whole. However, this is not the case, and everyone (outside of China, anyway) knows this.

"With the population of more than 600,000 and majority of them of Tibetan origin, only one 1 out of 1000 Tibetans in Lhasa joined the protest."

If you want to question how representative the protests, or the Dalai Lama, are of the Tibetan people as a whole, that's valid. But the CCP's policies with regard to media and democracy prevent us from answering these questions definitively. So I'll just add that 1 out of 1000 people joining a protest is fairly significant, when you consider that you stand to be shot, beaten, arrested and maybe disappeared for protesting. This is not America where the right to peaceable assembly is respected.

"I would say this is a serious problem, but not going so far as to call it a point for self-determination, which for government in the world is the last resort to solve ethnic conflict."

It sounds like you're confused about what the term "self-determination" means. Moreover, if the CCP (or the Chinese people more generally) refuse to respect the self-determination of the Tibetans (not to mention the Uighurs and Taiwanese), how can they demand that anyone else respect their self-determination? On what basis, then, should we be swayed by their complaints of Japanese or European imperialism, if not the inherent right of self-determination?

"As long as the central govenment retains the legitimacy to rule, national unity is always the priority. Think about the civil war in United States."

It's not comparable, because Tibet and China are, and have always been, separate nations. What we're talking about here is state integrity, not national unity. Perhaps this is a good time to emphasize the distinction between a nation (which is an identity shared by a group of people) and a state (which is a formal organization that excercizes political control of some geographical area).

"It shows the suspicion of Chinese on the real intention behind the fabricated news, one-sided reports, and irrational response from the West. Are this much-faked cause really about pursuit of freedom or just that Hollywood created image of a sacred world untainted by communism."

It's hilarious that you think everyone *else* are the ones reading one-sided fabricated news, when the CCP operates the world's most extensive, intrusive media censorship and control operation. And, by the way, nobody is worried about Communism any more; indeed, it was China's decision to abandon Communism decades ago that precipitated the collapse of the international Communist system. You guys really need to update your rhetoric; it reads like something out of the 1970's, with all this post-colonialist rage and rhetoric about Communism.

ff:

"I consider that his statement that US liberated China from Japan in WWII is not only ignorant but insult to millions Chinese died against Japanese invasion started in early 1930. American did not support China until after Perl Harbor was attacked on December 7, 1941. "

It's true that America's entrance to the war was after it had been raging for a while, and it's also true that a great many Chinese made a great many sacrifices resisting the Japanese Empire. For that matter, a great many Phillipinos, Indians and other Asians made great contributions.

But it's also true that without the American war against Japan, China would still be part of said Empire. I suspect that the high level of insecurity about this issue is due to the subsequent CCP revision of history, which sought to exaggerate Communist contributions to the war effort, while minimizing the importance of contributions by the evil Capitalists (and in particular the Chinese Nationalists). Meanwhile, the rest of the world is very much aware that it was the war between Japan and America that determined the outcome in the Asian theater, and that the Chinese Nationalists did the bulk of the resisting inside China, while the CCP focussed on consolodiating its political base and preparing for the subsequent civil war. Of course, this is far short of the heroic narrative the CCP feels is required for its legitimacy, and so a great deal of propaganda has been thrown at Chinese people to convince them otherwise.

Kevin in DC:

"You missed my first and most foundamental question, how many Tibetans desire independence beside the protesters? "

Given that neither I nor the Dalai Lama have ever advocted Tibetan independence per se, I contend that this is not a fundamental question, but exactly another smokescreen intended to derail discussion of legitimate concerns.

--------------------------------------------

This is a foundamental question because this is exactly what this unrest is about. With the population of more than 600,000 and majority of them of Tibetan origin, only one 1 out of 1000 Tibetans in Lhasa joined the protest. I would say this is a serious problem, but not going so far as to call it a point for self-determination, which for government in the world is the last resort to solve ethnic conflict. As long as the central govenment retains the legitimacy to rule, national unity is always the priority. Think about the civil war in United States.

Also, the hypocracy argument is not totally irrelevant (however it is not my argument). It shows the suspicion of Chinese on the real intention behind the fabricated news, one-sided reports, and irrational response from the West. Are this much-faked cause really about pursuit of freedom or just that Hollywood created image of a sacred world untainted by communism.

ff:

"do they know how many US dollars go from CIA to Dalai?"

You mean *went* to the Dalai? That was 40 years ago, when China was still the USSR's buddy.

Do you know how many US dollars go from US consumers to Chinese producers, and thence to the CCP as taxes? If we're plotting to undermine you, why is it that we've consistently supported extensive industrialization and economic growth in China for decades?

Xi:

The Foreign Ministry and China’s other propaganda organs have already framed these calls – for China to stop supporting Sudan, free its dissidents, negotiate with the Dalai Lama – as a foreign plot to weaken China. Again, to Western ears, that sounds goofy.
===================

that's exactly why you guys are pathetic! do they know how many US dollars go from CIA to Dalai?

http://www.state.gov/www/about_state/history/vol_xxx/337_343.html

ff:

"However, the Olympic Games are supposed to be above politics."

Perhaps, but the fact remains that the Olympics, and in particular, the 2008 Olympics, are blatantly politicized. The decision to award the games to China was heavily politicized, and the CCP is unapologetically exploiting the games for political purposes. We're basically being steamrolled with a political program concocted by a small elite behind closed doors, so it's a bit ridiculous to chide people who don't like this for "politicizing the Olympics." As I mentioned earlier, people wouldn't care so much if the Olympics weren't widely (and correctly) perceived as legitimizing the CCP and their myriad policies.

ff:

"And why is it that every time China's criticisms are brought to light, someone shovels up what the West did 150 years ago, or even what Japan did to China 60 years ago? Yes, those atrocities and crimes are horrible, but are you trying to justify current repression with past repression? That somehow China is fully in the right, because it was wronged before?"

Yeah, this is the standard defense against criticism from Western countries in post-colonialist discourse. You basically shift the discussion onto how the (Western) critic is evil and doesn't respect your sovereignty, and should just leave you alone. This has worked quite well for smaller countries when it comes to internal issues (democracy in Iran, say, or economic policy in Venezuela). Where it is bound to fail, of course, is when the country in question becomes stronger and the criticism has to do with external issues. At which point, the argument is revealed as craven and bankrupt: "Sure I'm bad, but so were you, so shut up!"

The humorous part, of course, is the collision between naive Chinese who still expect such a strategy to work for them, and Westerners who've heard it all 1000 times and are chomping at the bit for a chance to reverse this rhetoric.

Anonymous:

"Just buy the products from countries that don't boycott, like Airbus"

Uh, Airbus is mad in France. You know, where the protests and boycotts are strongest?

ff:

"You missed my first and most foundamental question, how many Tibetans desire independence beside the protesters? "

Given that neither I nor the Dalai Lama have ever advocted Tibetan independence per se, I contend that this is not a fundamental question, but exactly another smokescreen intended to derail discussion of legitimate concerns. If the Tibetans want independence, that's fine, but it's also fine if they want meaningful autonomy within the Chinese state (which is what the Dalai Lama has advocated for decades). The point is that they should decide the fate of their nation for themselves. Pretending that people are advocating independence is the same tactic that the CCP uses to confuse and stonewall.

The spies among us:

Ronald,

"Because you are ignorant". No, it is you who are either ignorant, or worse..

This, in an April 3, Post piece about the well established Chinese espionage network here in the U.S.:

"Mak was sentenced last week to 24 1/2 years in prison by a federal judge who described the lengthy term as a warning to China not to "send agents here to steal America's military secrets." But it may already be too late: According to U.S. intelligence and Justice Department officials, the Mak case represents only a small facet of an intelligence-gathering operation that has long been in place and is growing in size and sophistication.

The Chinese government, in an enterprise that one senior official likened to an "intellectual vacuum cleaner," has deployed a diverse network of professional spies, students, scientists and others to systematically collect U.S. know-how, the officials said. Some are trained in modern electronic techniques for snooping on wireless computer transactions. Others, such as Mak, are technical experts who have been in place for years and have blended into their communities...."

liz rogers:

It strikes me that just about everybody who has provided comments here can agree on one thing -

CHINA WILL NOT CHANGE OR IMPROVE HUMAN RIGHTS -

What was the IOC thinking???

peace4all1:

I'm a Chinese American and have a lot of intellegent Indian colleges. Apparent SUTAPSA BHATTACHARYA is not one of them.

I consider that his statement that US liberated China from Japan in WWII is not only ignorant but insult to millions Chinese died against Japanese invasion started in early 1930. American did not support China until after Perl Harbor was attacked on December 7, 1941.

As a person grew up in Taiwan, Mao was not my most favor person. But the demeaning tone placed on Mao is sure to incite a lot of unnecessary anger from Chinese people and promote nothing but instability.

Sutapas Bhattacharya:

As someone said on the Independent (UK) newspaper website under its call to support Tibet, the Chinese think that the West are so dependent on them but the West could easily switch its cheap labour component assembly manufacture to other parts of the world such as Eastern Europe and numerous other places if it really wanted to. So China needs the West far more than the West needs China! It was to counter the Soviet threat that the West decided to build up China (after of course the USA liberated it from Japan in WWII).
Mao's plan was to melt down all the pots and pans in China to make her the leading industrial power!
To the Tibetans, we should be sending the message that they sang to Nelson Mandela when he appeared in London after he was freed: "Walk on, Walk on, with hope in your hearts, and you'll never walk alone, you'll never walk alone!"

Ronald:

"I find it creepy that there are so many defenders of the Chinese government here. "

Because you are ignorant.

Boycott Made In China!:

Shiv Das,

Very well said!

Additionally, I very much believe in not only a boycott of the Olympics by everyone with a sense of right and wrong, but an economic boycott of Chinese made products.

I still find it possible to get many of the products I need from other sources. Use Google searches, and always call before ordering if the country of manufacture is not stated. I admit it is very much a struggle sometimes, but as you go along this route, like anything else it becomes easier. Also, I'll sometimes purchase used items online, rather than buy new Chinese made ones.

And yes, as another poster said, let the customer service people know about why you are not willing to purchase their Chinese made goods. Recently, I've been informed by two different companies' rep's, that I am not alone, that they are getting increasing numbers of similar sentiments! One of these said that they have been instructed to keep a record of these types of calls. And, this was even before the current publicity given to the awful plight of the Tibetans, so the boycott is definitely a viable tool!

Let's roll on this!! Make our founding fathers proud, and be able to look yourself in the mirror, instead of being complicit in perpetuating this evil Chinese system. Be not afraid!!!!!!!!

independent?:

YOu cannot trust China. The Han are fundamentally a racist culture: their view if any other than Han are barbarians at the level of animals..."
-------------------------------------------------
Only those who are brainwashed trust this slander! That's what ancient Chinese did, not modern chinese. Anyone who has been to China never believe this.

Gerald:

From the comments here, i see that much of the discussion centers around Tibet "independent or not". Tibet is an autonomous region already. Independence is not realistic. It would be better to put an effort into insisting that China turns the so-called autonomy into a real one. Give Tibetans a say in, who can buy land in the region, on building permits, and regional organization, including schooling and local elections. The Chinese can still move around freely in the region then, make their profits, and their army can stay to secure China's influence.

Independent?:

In our confused sense of justice, we forget that China is one of the most brutal regimes on the planet. China has no more right to Tibet than they have to Vietnam, or Cambodia or even Thailand.
------------------------------------------------
Do you konw the history that Britain played numerous tricks to drag Tibet out of China? You want to continue the lies and conspiracy to challenge China's territory integrity? Come to Beijing and try us!

Kosovo?:

Implement the Kosovo intrigue on China? Suck your single-ethnic nation theory!

Independent?:

If Tibet was ever an independent country, how many countries ever made foreign relationship with it and set up embassies there? How many countries ever marked Tibet as an independent country on their maps?

Shiv Das:

We are mesmerized as well as terrified of China. They have a huge cache of WMD, enough stuff to vaporize the planet and some more. They have enough cash to bring the value of the dollar to pennies. Every day, we keep on stuffing their wallets with IOUs and living on borrowed money. No wonder, we are too scared to even make eye contact with them. Does any one think even for a moment that the Bush administration would stand up against the Chinese? I doubt whether we would do that even if China over-runs Taiwan, which they will eventually.

Kudos for the French. At least some of them came out to protest against the Chinese torch. The French crackdown on the North Africans in France is not even a remotely close comparison to the Chinese butchering the Tibetans. The Tibetans are in their own land fighting the Chinese invaders.

In our confused sense of justice, we forget that China is one of the most brutal regimes on the planet. China has no more right to Tibet than they have to Vietnam, or Cambodia or even Thailand. Yet, the western powers idly stood by and watched, as China invaded, and forcibly occupied Tibet in 1951. No one raised even a single hand against it. Instead, China was rewarded with a permanent seat on the security council of the United Nations. Since then, there has been a systematic ethnic cleansing of Tibet. The Han Chinese settlers were imported by the tens of thousands to create facts on the ground. Systematic and organized efforts to wipe out the language, culture and religion of the country march on. Nothing is spared in the efforts to strip the Tibetans of their identity.

The puppet government in Tibet is just that. However, the Young Tibetans are awakening. They will not settle for half measures. His Holiness the Dalai Lama asks only for autonomy for his people, not separation from China. I respectfully disagree with his Holiness. It will not do. China must leave Tibet, and Tibet must be free and independent. Nothing will make the Tibetans into Chinese.

The rest of the world stands by and watches. American companies are tripping over each other to invest and build up and glorify one of the planet’s most vicious empires. And we, the people, pretend not to notice any of these things. Instead of glorifying their Olympic Games, we should be championing for a Free Tibet. No official representation from the US Government should be there at the Chinese Olympics. We helped the Kosovars achieve their freedom. The Tibetans deserve no less.

Romeo:

The book I mean is >

Romeo:

I guess you(John Pomfret) know a lot about China.
Your book > hasn't been published in mainland.
My teacher, one of your classmates, sometimes mention you and your experience in his class.
You are a excellent journalist,to say the least.
Contact me if necessary: LUO_1999@Hotmail.com

Aidsmonkey:

"Don't buy products made in China, don't buy products from companies that do business with China, and make sure to let them know why you won't do business with them"

Good luck.

Mick:

John Pomfret is quite right. The protests against the Olympics are counter productive. Much as I agree with the sentiments of the protestors, they achieve little except to inflame Chinese nationalist anger and bolster the position of a government that now relies on nationalism rather than communism.
It might be better for all concerned to let the Chinese enjoy their 15 minutes of Olympic fame.

Jack:

@Phillip Woon

Exactly what point are you trying to make?

I would be careful to make comparisons of the Tibetans to struggles with Palestinians, Native Americans, and Aboriginals.

Are you basically implying that Tibetans are going to become increasingly desperate and violent in order for anyone to listen to their cause? Or are you saying that the Tibetans will eventually be sidelined in their own home and left impoverished, under-educated, and inebriated as their culture gets slowly commercialized into things like movies and sports (looks at Fuwa, oops, too late!).


Either way, you're not providing a positive case for China to keep Tibet.


And why is it that every time China's criticisms are brought to light, someone shovels up what the West did 150 years ago, or even what Japan did to China 60 years ago? Yes, those atrocities and crimes are horrible, but are you trying to justify current repression with past repression? That somehow China is fully in the right, because it was wronged before?

Finally, who the hell cares that you're a Chinese descent that grew up in the West. So what? I'm also a full blooded minority in America, one that was mistreated by whites as well, therefore your argument ENTIRELY FAILS on 30% (and growing) of the US that aren't White Anglo-Saxons.

Kevin in DC:

Too FF

Thank you for addressing my comments. You missed my first and most foundamental question, how many Tibetans desire independence beside the protesters? Given the ethnic sensitivity, political ambition, religious idealism, western backup, and the Olympic spotlight involved in the recent Tibetan event, it would be a surprise to many that the monk-led protest has not developed into a full-scale unrest: just a few hundreds in Lhasa and a few here and there. It looks like another showdown between two political groups, the Beijing government and the Tibetan monks, over the governing power of Tibet. Yet it reflected the weakening of the Lamas’ influence in Tibet as capitalism expands in Western China.

Self-determination is a beautiful slogan, which was used by Mao Zhedong more than 60 years ago in driving westerners out of China. And with beautiful propagandas and support from Russia, it successfully fooled many Chinese. Grown out in an age full of such gilded slogans, I understand how easily good-willed people in the third world are manipulated, agitated, and expended for others’ ambition hidden under an abstract cause. I admired American tradition to pursue freedom. And I treasure those values myself. But came back to the first question, how many Tibetans want independence? I do not have the statistics, but my observance is that most of them do not even care so much as these western supportors.

Although I criticized the Chinese government for failing to solve the economic equity problem in Tibet and failing to listen to the dissidents, I do think Chinese government still retains legitimacy in governing Tibet, given the social-economic development in recent years. To suggest breaking the status quo in Tibet without considering possible consequence is at best irresponsible. Western people might prefer to keep a Hollywood created image of a separated sacred world untainted by communism. But the reality is that many Tibetans are embracing capitalism in hope of enhancing their quality of life.

What the Chinese young generations suspicious of is a western joint efforts to escalate ethic conflicts in Tibet and make it diffcult for Chinese government to keep the integrity of its territory, which might not be true. However, the boycott of Olympic or trade is absolutely not a good idea to integrate China into the democratic world, as witnessed by the hostilities arose from these proposals recently.

Pagun:

Boycotting the Olympics is a start, but if you really want to have an effect, hurt them in the pocketbook. Don't buy products made in China, don't buy products from companies that do business with China, and make sure to let them know why you won't do business with them.

the one finger salute:

The Chinese should collectively give the west the one finger salute. And no, I'm not talking about a thumb up or down... It's absolutely appalling to see the self-righteous French protesting a Chinese crackdown in Tibet. Evidently they forgot about their own violent crack down in Paris, Marseille, Lyon in Nov. of 2005 when desperate French youth of North Africa origin protested against squalid condition under which they live, and demanded a fair shake in the national economy. I don’t recall any French protests against the police crack down. Nor do I recall any vociferous media criticism. In fact, they enthusiastically supported it and the French elected the “tough guy” Mr. Salkozy to be their president… So the French crack down was to restore law and order, but chinese crack down is violation of human rights??? What a bunch of horse manure!!!

fh2008:

Tibet is China's internal affairs, so don't interfere .

politics all about interest:

political people in the world do things all about interest,don't imagine they're thinking about conscience,monks want their status back,americans want oil in middleast,china want its power back

Wago:

More and more I'm finding parallels between these protests and the whaling protests against Japan just months earlier. The protesters have no understanding nor respect for the culture of those they're protesting against. The protesters are fighting for a cause they can't even relate to. The protesters, rather than demonstrating peacefully, resort to physical confrontation with those who are just trying to do their job.

During the whaling protests, a middle-aged Japanese man was interviewed, and I will paraphase his response: "We don't even like eating whale. But what we also don't like is being told what to do by the foreigners. So if they keep meddling in our business like this and trying to tell us what's right, we'll keep eating whale meat just to send a message."

The message is this: No one likes to be told what to do. History goes back further than the 1950s as pointed out in the post. Western countries should start looking back at their own history before criticizing that of others. And speaking of Japan, it would be nice to finally get an apology from them one of these days.

Seeing the world with open eyes:

"tee sabo:

YOu cannot trust China. The Han are fundamentally a racist culture: their view if any other than Han are barbarians at the level of animals..."

You comment itself shows that you are a racist instead by labeling the Han culture as a racist one without any elaboration.

I double dare you to tell us what your racial background is.

Please boycott products made in China:

As a native Chinese, I strongly urge Americans and European countries to boycott products labelled with "made in China."

Does the western people know that more than 200 Chinese young girls in their early 20s perished in a factory fire in less than 2 hours in Shenzhen when the factory owner, a Taiwan businessman, locked all the doors and windows to prevent those girls from taking fresh air and break? The Taiwan businessman is a clothes supplier of an American company. He fled to Taiwan without any trace when he heard about the "accident". Chinese government does not even have a record of his true name and identity.

All the cheap products made in China are tained with bloods of hard working Chinese people. But the joke is they are shockingly expensive for ordinary Chinese to afford because they are labelled as "name brand" made by foreign companies even though they are made in China.

Mark Twain II:

Since some people seem to have difficulty recognizing satire, I will be serious and try to refrain from sarcasm. The issue of Tibet is fairly complex and balanced perspectives are elusive.


Chinese rule over Tibet has had good and bad effects upon the Tibetan people. There has been repression of the practice of Tibetan Buddhism and a lessening of traditional Tibetan culture, in certain ways. The cultural repression overall seems to have been less than the cultural repression by the United States toward native Americans, including the Hawaiian people, between the mid 19th century and 1950's CE. Native American children and Hawaiian children were taught by white teachers their traditional culture was backward and not allowed to use their native languages.

The United States Supreme Court, in recent history, ruled the Sioux tribe were swindled out of their sacred lands in the Black Hills. The United States government offered the tribe monetary compensation, but the Sioux refused. They want their land back. Returning the Black Hills to the Sioux would be a small step the government could take to belatedly correct the systematic mistreatment of native Americans by the Americans and Europeans. Yet I have not seen any banners posted on bridges or campaigns led by any celebrities to free the Black Hills.

China today is not a totalitarian country. The people have considerably greater freedoms than they did just thirty years ago. The government is authoritarian in its political structure and in suppressing open political forms of dissent. The Chinese society though is mostly capitalistic, similar to the United States during the early 20th century CE, with little similar regard for unions, worker's rights, farmers or the environment. However, the social and economic changes in China, for good and bad, are more dramatic, even radical in certain respects, than in almost any comparable period in United States history, except arguably the 1860's and 1930's.

The Chinese leaders should have been wiser, especially leading up to the Olympic Games, to have allowed greater religious freedom, especially for Falun Gong practioners and Tibetans. The generally peaceful protests by Tibetan monks needs to be strongly differentiating from the rioting and violence by some Tibetans, which resembled the actions by some persons in Los Angeles after the Rodney King verdict. Some American reporters have written the violence by some Tibetans was motivated, not by concerns for religious freedom or independence, but from being discriminated against in better paying jobs. The riots in Tibet seem similar in many ways to race riots in the United States during the 1960's.

China will continue to change in the future, however the Chinese, not foreigners will be the agents of change. The author is probably correct in asserting protests among Tibetans and some people in the West will only strengthen the authority of the Chinese authorities.

The vast majority of people in China are proud their nation is hosting the Olympic Games this year. Protests by some persons in the West will be viewed by most Chinese as anti-Chinese, which is partly correct.

There was considerable anti-Japanese opinions in this country during the 1980's because of economic competition. The Japanese became scapegoals, to many Americans, for economic difficulties in the United States. Since the late 1990's, there has been increased anti-Chinese sentiments, for exactly the same economic reasons. Therefore the protests by some people in the West, not Tibetan exiles though, is colored by their concerns about Chinese economic competition.

The recent actions by the Chinese government probably will not damage its international standing. The Bush administration has damaged the international standing of this country with far more serious actions. Yet even this is temporary, a new administration will likely begin to repair the damage.

Some people in the West are insistent that the rise of China as a leading global power will be peaceful. I hope this is true. Yet the rise of Great Britain, France, Germany, the United States and Japan as leading powers, was characterized by agression, imperialism, colonialism and violence toward other people.

People in the West should be free to express their opinions on any issue. Foreign governments should encourage and urge the Chinese government to allow greater religious freedom. However, the Olympic Games are supposed to be above politics. The ancient Greeks briefly stopped wars among rival city states to participate in the Olympics. There is already excessive nationalism and commercialism, as well as a downgrading of the amateur ideal, in the Olympics. The ancient Olympics did not always live up to their ideals either, yet they seem overall to have enjoyed a more mature persepctive than many persons in this era.

Phillip Woon:

Do you think America should give back Hawaii to the Hawaiians? Or Texas and California back to the Mexicans? How about Puerto Rico?

What if the Seminole , Apache, Sioux, Chippewa, Hopi, etc Indians come forward and say they want their land back? Should the Australians give back the land to the Aborigines? What about the land that belonged to the Palestinians before the English wrongfully gave it to the Jews? (Wait, there is a struggle going on there- my bad).

You westerners (I was born in the West- of Chinese descent),should read Chinese history before trying to justify western racism against the Chinese. Hey, the west almost colonized China, just like they did India, the Middle East, the west Indies, South America, Africa. Let's face it, the West (white races) "raped" the world, and because there is one non-white country that's standing up, the caucasians don't like it. The original article is dead-on, and perhaps the Chinese government will learn not to be so sensitive to losing face. They should say "We're holding an Olympics, which we deserve to hold, since we are 1/5th of humanity, not because you "white" countries gave it to us. If you want to attend, fine. If not, that's ok too, although you'll be missing out on the best Olympics that will ever be held". Just buy the products from countries that don't boycott, like Airbus and ....(wait China doesn't need anything from anyone, they make everything -- except large planes - but not for much longer :)). The world cannot boycott Chinese goods: It's been proven.

SlitWhite:

Advice to all patriotic Chinese:

(1) Study hard, work hard, and make your country rich & strong.

(2) Don't try to reason too much with the barbaric westerners, since they will never abandon the thought that they are the master of the universe (space aliens are speaking English; don't you see?) Their narrow minds are long set regardless of all the "free" media/information they have. The media maybe "free", but their minds are not.

(3) When China becomes strong & rich, these barbarians will lose their barking over time. Make them kowtow at that time; or simply let them live their lowly life (with big mouths and self-centered ego maniacs).

(4) When China is rich & strong, any crap that the west is enjoying now, you will have it too.

Everything needs to be carried out in the correct steps. China and the Chinese government is going in the correct direction and process. All Chinese should put up with these barbaric for a little while. Chinese are patient; one day (sooner or later, as the Chinese history has gone through countless time) all Chinese will live better lives and only then to teach all these barbaric self-centered westerners how to respect others' rights of executing their own affairs.

Liu:

Never ever ever again will we let the western 'guizi'(not other good western friends) interfer with our Homeland or destroy our ever-changing happy lives! Every red-blooded chinese is ready to defend our country,and thats against you,you and you who r a nasty minority in whichever country you r from. you wont even have all of your own peoples support.
Dont buy our goods if u dont want to,its your money to spend. no one bought our goods for thousands of years,we were always strong untill certain people came robbing and stealing.
on a side note,if ever dalai lama pay us back billions of money we ve put in 'his' country,we might consider letting him F off with his temples and monkeys! Come on, all of you pro-tibet idiots,time to put money where your mouth is, DONATE,DONATE!!! Morgage your house to donate more for a more swift independece,if u feel so srongly about it!!!

larry:

I watched CNN this a.m. and heard the woman Zane Verjee (must be of Indian descent) open up her description of the protest in Paris as, "every stop the torch goes is met with protests". Has she ever heard of Kazakhstan? Their President even was a torch bearer. This is just one example. I firmly believe more today that CNN (China Negative News), BBC (Britain Bashing China) and to a lesser extent, Al Jazeera (who watches it anyway) have so called anchors who are ignorant of facts. I believe that there are two requirements for one to qualify as an anchor at the above networks. One, a good command of English. Two, the ability to read off a tele-prompter. High IQ is optional.
LOL, some people can wish for Tibet to be an independent country but the reality is who believes this to be true. Even the United Nations recognizes Tibet as part of China so let us put this issue to rest or debate it till hell freezes over.
After the Olympics, what will happen to all these people protesting? China should clamp down or "crackdown" on the violent rioters. The peaceful Tibetans should be treated as model citizens & there are a lot of them.

John:

Don't assume the protests will work?

Obviously they're working. The story is in the news every day all over the world. The Chinese authorities are being exposed for what they are: a brutal dictatorship.

I hope the protestors keep up the good work.

Anonymous:

ff:

Apparently some posters on this board don't know that replying with "oh yeah, well, your country isn't so great either!" is the same as admitting that what China is doing to Tibet is wrong. But, hey, go ahead and complain about Bush's policies all you want: I never supported them, and they're wildly unpopular throughout the country. He currently has the lowest approval rating of any president in US history. All you end up doing is legitimizing the criticism directed at China.
----------------------------
People does not mean to let evil justify evil.It is not Bush chose this war.He get most American's support from this country,especially with the propaganda of the mainstream media. So people talk about the Iraq issue,just wanting to remind you the media is working the way they did for Iraq invasion.Just hope this example is still fresh to you,even though you are so sure that you are not one of warmongers before.
Demonization will do no good to anybody. Exaggerate grievances of Tibetan (majorly from those slaver master in the past,and now Tibetan in Exile) from the CCP government does not rationalize the separation of Tibet.
China should take any criticism.Most Chinese know the difference between their country and their government.So they are actually pushing this government's progress,the extent of which may not be to your liking.

PleasePleasePlease:

I find it creepy that there are so many defenders of the Chinese government here. It's one thing to acknowledge the sins of Western powers such as the US, France, and the UK. But it takes a deep cynicism to argue that these sins somehow excuse the human rights abuses that have occurred in Tibet.

Billy:

I laugh at the headlines that proclaim Olympic protests go global because it's just a few Western countries making all the noise. Given that Americans are involved, they think that whatever they see must be how the whole world sees it. hahahahahahahahahaha hahahahahahaha. Since there are 200 countries in the Olympics, I say China should do what it can to neutralize the haters, the ones with sour grapes, and focus her energy on welcoming the rest of humanity, you know, the overwhelming majority of people on this planet, for whom the Olympics is not about how America feels about Tibet.

ff:

"If Americans/Europeans can't stop their own government(s) from killing all kinds of people in many countries for whatever objectives, why do they need to bother what happens in China or any other country."

Fair enough, although I'd point out that Westerners generally have given China a pass up until this whole Olympics thing. It's not an issue of either criticizing China or leaving them alone; the Olympics amounts to a huge endorsement of China, and this is what has people stirred up. Were the Olympics not occurring there, people would still be ignoring Tibet/China; it's the fact that we're implicitly approving of them bypeople feel they need to speak out.

osat:

While many of the allegations against China might be true, you got to put it in historical perspective, you can only walk one step at a time, so does China.

There is no doubt that American is a great country, and the American people are of the greatest, but please also remember how the American got here today, how long did it take.

Tibet became part of China long before the American established a country on this continent.
If you talk about decisions on Tibet be (solely) made by Tibetans, think about who should make the decisions about the American continent, shouldn't it be the native Indians?

China has made great progress in the past decades on civil rights and freedom, and is now moving even faster in the right direction.

In terms of the minority policy and culture protection? One thing I know for sure is that the minorities enjoy a much more favorable policy than the ordinary Han ethnic Chinese do.
The minorities are not bounded by the one child policy; during the days when food was scarce, they received a bigger/better portion than the rest of population; in the national college admission, they have lower admission score requirements, etc.

Western friends, healthy criticisms are appreciated, but when you speak, think about it, put it in perspective. Many politicians (and media) have an agenda, that's a whole different issue, but you don't have to be one of them.

ff:

"History just tell you the hoary story that this nation exist for some time and nonexist for some time.Obviously,you choose that time you like,right?

You are right: nations have the right to self-determiantion. Tibet is not even a nation,did you see a Tibet in U.N?"

You seem to be confusing nations and states. Which is understandable, given the preeminence of the nation-state in today's geopolitical environment.

From Wikipedia:

"A nation is a form of self-defined cultural and social community. [...] Members of a "nation" share a common identity, and usually a common origin, in the sense of history, ancestry, parentage or descent. "

The key term there being "self-defined." A people are a nation if they believe themselves to be a nation and act on this belief. None of your ideology or readings of history has any bearing on Tibet's identity as a nation, nor does the existance (or not) of a functioning Tibetan state. That a Tibetan state which no longer exists once had complex relations with a Chinese state that also no longer exists is neither here nor there: the Tibetan nation is entitled to self-determination, and no contradiction of this fact will ever be seen as legitimate.

"So China as the nation has the right for the self-determination according to your logic,thanks!"

No, the actions of the Chinese state to destroy and subsume the Tibetan state do not mean that the Tibetan nation has ceased to exist or become a part of the Chinese nation. It merely means that the Chinese state is depriving the Tibetan nation of its right to self-determination.

The rest of your post is incoherent, even apart from your atrocious English (which is, admittedly, drastically better than my Mandarin).

Trueview:

If Americans/Europeans can't stop their own government(s) from killing all kinds of people in many countries for whatever objectives, why do they need to bother what happens in China or any other country. The Olympics torch is just a stir-up for a lot of street criminals.

ken2:

Yeah, I knew of all those stuff of democracy, human rights, freedom of expression etc. etc but at the end, this has come to my conclusion ie.

The Chinese Government Should have crushed those Tibetan dissidents and foreign hypocrites without any hesitation.

Stand up all Chinese to save China.

FactFinder:

There was a very good discussion on PBS' The Inside China forum from last year. Before anyone takes sides, think it through yourself with your own research about Tibet and its history related to China. Please find out the FACTS (i.e.: academic researches/articles published by SUNY, Columnbia, Harvard University...etc) about Tibet's religion, God-King and slavary systems and of course how China invaded Tibet and human rights abuse; and how the CIA and Indian agents supported the Dalai Lama during the 1959 uprising.

ff:

Apparently some posters on this board don't know that replying with "oh yeah, well, your country isn't so great either!" is the same as admitting that what China is doing to Tibet is wrong. But, hey, go ahead and complain about Bush's policies all you want: I never supported them, and they're wildly unpopular throughout the country. He currently has the lowest approval rating of any president in US history. All you end up doing is legitimizing the criticism directed at China.

Where are tibetans:

It seems most demonstrators are white people,
not many realy tibetans.

SlitWhite:

Chinese should not waste too much time with the westerners, and possibly Indians (who are jealous of China).

99% of the big mouths here (I mean those China bashers) don't study history, let alone 5000 years of China history. They may not even have travelled to any part of Asia, especially China (and Tibet).

These people just talk out of their ass; equally rotten as fart. And the wise Chinese should just treat them as such.

yyyzzz:

America should matter America's matter first. Mia Ferrow should talk against the Iraqi war first and talk about the plight of many African Americans and native Americans first. Without that, she does not apply the same standard.

Pre-Games Medal:

Who should get the pre-games medel for whatever demonstrations for ALL different purposes? I guess it should be the Dalai Lama.

JamesB:

ff:
The Western leaders who ARE complaining about Tibet happen to be the same ones who *opposed* invading Iraq. So you don't really have much of a point, although you are doing a good job of demonstrating how reductive and insular your worldview is.
---------------------------
It is not those few

Speaking of credibility, how's that authoritarian dictatorship treating you? These lectures on sovereignty, legitimacy and history would be a lot more convincing if they weren't delivered in the service of a Party that rules through naked force.
-------------------------------
The "authoritarian dictatorship" is not good but not bad as what you figured. The point is you obviously should not set your bar of your credbility any closer to that dictatorship you called.I read western lecture,so you do not have to imagine and prejudge how brainwashed enough others are. If the "naked force" show their presence at the beginning,there would have riot, don't you agree? So,whatever they do,they are always "naked" in your opinion.So,why bother...

The thing about history is that all those people are dead. No reading of history can deprive a nation of its right to self-determination.
--------------------------------
History just tell you the hoary story that this nation exist for some time and nonexist for some time.Obviously,you choose that time you like,right?

My country isn't telling anyone anything. Rather, it is me telling you that nations have the right to self-determination, and that it's wrong to interfere with that. That you can't seem to respond to this simple statement without introducing a mass of confusion about who is saying what on behalf of whom does not recommend your position highly. I do not speak on behalf of "America" or "the West"; only myself. So go ahead and assert historical authority or list whatever complaints you can dig up about Western countries: none of it is relevant, and none of it is going to distract me.
------------------------------------------
You are right: nations have the right to self-determiantion. Tibet is not even a nation,did you see a Tibet in U.N? So China as the nation has the right for the self-determination according to your logic,thanks!(Do not tell me U.N does not count according to your personal decision,that does not help you too much) I am little confused why you downplay the role of history here since you just mention above that hisotry would justify your claim of self-determination.

Yes, and....? Try again when the US government starts firing into crowds and kicking out the media. Not that the Lakota independence movement is at all comparable to Tibet, but it's humorous that you think this example backs up your stance.
-------------------------------------------------
US army do not bother kick out the media when they fire since they can label anybody as "terrorist".
Tell me your reasons why Lakota independence cannot be compared with Tibet. I hear no your arguments and I cannot see how much sense of humor you can show us.

Anonymous:

'GIVE ME A BREAK!',

You can spin and rationalize all you want, but you can't lump all Americans in together as being culpable in the many wrongs that our government has committed. And, we do protest. Many of us, or our ancestors, were in fact victims of some of the very things you mention. But, that doesn't change the simple truth that what China has imposed on Tibet is wrong, and also, don't forget the many other issues mentioned in my original post. Simply put for you, two wrongs do not equal a right.

It is this Totalitarian Communist Chinese regime that is now, not some time in the past, intolerant and disallowing of free speech; this is just one of the myriad misdeeds they have done and are doing right now, not in the past, and there is not even a semblance of a free press, let alone a democracy, to protest.

You wouldn't get much of a "break" in Totalitarian China. They'd give you another sort of break if you spoke your mind there, as we are free to do here.

Mao-Tse-Tung:

Authoritarian communism saved 1 Billion Chineses from starvation. Even though if was many years ago, and even if today's communism has little to do with what it uses to be, Chineses remember. They are not about to turn their back on their state and their government to espouse liberal causes. Certainly not because Frenchmen and/or other white-skinned westerners blow-off the olympic torch.

yyyzzz:

Freedom of speech is not a guarantee for freedom!

How many of you have argued against the war beforehand? How many of you are voicing your concerns after spending a trillion dollars, after losing more than 4,000 solders, after wasting tens of thousands innocent Iraqis? More than 30 percent of Americans still support the Bush administration. An even higher percentage support John McCain who is talking about having troops in Iraq for a hundred years. After all of these, I am still waiting for see the same kind of anger and emotion. I have yet to see people blocking Bush's limo or throwing eggs at the White House!

I agree that while the Chinese gov is authoritarian in nature, they have done good things in Tibet. The life expectancy has improved dramatically in Tibet. The economy is much stronger. How many of you can say the same thing about the American Indian reserves in the U.S.? If you survey overseas Chinese (including the Taiwanese) who have good access to the media, I bet that more than 30% would support the Chinese government.

The Iraqi war teaches us a lesson. We can not always trust overseas exiles. They tend to exaggerate the problems and downplay the progress. Look at how Ahman Chalabi and others said before the war. How much is true?

Have you seen many people that have boycotted the Los Angeles Olympic Games because of the dire conditions in South Central LA. Look at how African Americans live in this richest country of the world! Their life expectancy is shorter than those in the Communist Cuba! How many of them are murdered on the street each day? I bet the number is far higher than the total number of Tibetans have died in this tragic event. Remembers, many more ethnic Chinese have lost their lives. Even some Muslim business people lost their lives.

When there were racial riots in South Central and other places, how many of you have supported the rioters? Many of the rioters also wanted freedom and equality. Can you compare that with what is going on in Tibet?

The U.S. gov. supports the most oppressive regimes on earth such as Egypt and Saudi Arabia. Women were not even allowed driving cars in Saudi. Women were sentenced to death for being raped by others. Have you voiced your concerns? The U.S. is sending billions to the Saudis and the Egyptians each year. Have you ever blinked your eyes? The U.S. sent detainees to Egypt to get them tortured. What does the U.S. get from those tortures? False information! And it was used to justify the invasion of Iraq. What have you said?

GIVE ME A BREAK!

Liz Rogers:

The IOC should have anticipated this when they chose Beijing for the next venue as nobody really seems to think that China will improve their human rights policies. "One World, One Dream" has become a nightmare. Now what next? At some point the IOC will have to admit their error.

Meanwhile a million and a half people have been displaced to create this venue. The IOC finally admitted that the air polution may affect performance - reason enough not to hold the Olympics there. The Olympics never should have become a forum for such dissent, but the choice of Beijing made this inevitable and now even my nine year old son is upset by what is happening to the torch relay.

Let's put the blame for this Olympic crisis clearly where it belongs - the IOC.

Living in US 15 years: :

To: Chinese and China

U are talking non sense. The majority of the Chinese may not know how to articulate their needs for freedom and may say "no" to abstract questions about the needs for political freedom, that doesn't mean they don't want it. If u ask a peasant if he wants lower taxes/administrative fees, if u ask a migrant worker if she wants a union actually speaking for her, if u ask a college student if he wants to have a peek at a porno site, if u ask a private gasoline station owner if he wants the end of the monopoly by big state-run oil companies, if u ask.... the answers will all be "yes". And what they are asking for here are their rights. Can they actually exercise those rights if they don't have the freedom u so disdain here?
Yeah, if CCP is in a good mood, they may grant these rights to the citizens. But without the freedom u so disdain, can anyone guarantee these rights won't be taken away tomorrow when CCP is in a bad mood?
As the news coverage about Tibet riots showed, the West is very ignorant about China and her people. It is ridiculous to claim that any Chinese against Dalai Lama must have been brain washed. It is really an insult to assume Chinese goverment is behind all those outrages against the Western news coverage. But u are not going to win the argument if u behave like an aplogist for the CCP, which is no better than Dalai Lama in my eyes.

Anonymous:

"But I have not seem the same kind of emotion toward the Iraqis." I'm not sure where you're coming from.. this has always been a most unpopular administration.. many, perhaps most, never supported this foolish Iraq invasion. Try expressing similar sentiments in China, "Give me a break".

yyyzzz:

The U.S. has spent billions of dollars in Iraq to "rebuild" the country, most Iraqi do not have steady access to electricity after 5 yrs of invasion. Many of them do not even have access to gas in this oil rich country! Many Iraqis are dying each day as a result of the invasion. No one knows exactly how many died. But I have not seem the same kind of emotion toward the Iraqis.

While I agree that the Chinese government is authoritarian in nature, not all what they do are wrong. There are too many mistakes in the media coverage of this event, which leads many to question the motivations of the reporters and the news media!

The conservatives would chastise the liberal media if they had provided the same coverage of the Los Angeles riot. But the conservatives do like China either. In this case, the conservatives are silent. They no longer care about the liberal biases, because they are all hypocrites!

The Kurds want independence. The Shiites want independence. Native Hawaiians want independence. Native Americans want independence. Look what they got?

Give me a break!

Berverly:

chinese and china:

The CCP provided"a peaceful and harmonious society", but this is not really relevant to Tibet.

Did the Jewish get Israel through the UN ? They got Israel through determination, US support, ingenuity, good military, and a diaspora much larger and better educated than the palestinian population on the ground. Tibet, on the contrary, is faced with settlement from China, which has a much larger population, infinitely more financial resources, and a huge army.

"Please leave China alone. The Chinese government will solve and is capable of solving Tibet issue to the best interest of Tibetan people in Tibet "
The whole point is of course that the Tibetans should decide on the issue. Everybody would prefer to leave China alone. But it simply does not set a good international precedent to let it settle and exploit Tibet at the expense of the people who were living there in 1950. Even if the US has done the same in history, we want to go forward in the world, and not back.

ff:

"You just reason and reason but just do not let your troop totally get out of Iraq. You talk high but do low."

Yeah, because it's my personal decision to keep the troops in Iraq. Maybe you could point to a single instance of my supporting putting troops in Iraq in the first place before you call me a hypocrite? Let's also recall that Bush, the guy who *could* order a withdrawl, *isn't* doing much protesting about Tibet. The Western leaders who ARE complaining about Tibet happen to be the same ones who *opposed* invading Iraq. So you don't really have much of a point, although you are doing a good job of demonstrating how reductive and insular your worldview is.

"This let us question your credibility when you point fingers to others."

Speaking of credibility, how's that authoritarian dictatorship treating you? These lectures on sovereignty, legitimacy and history would be a lot more convincing if they weren't delivered in the service of a Party that rules through naked force.

"Reading Tibet history,you will know Han Chinese and Tibetan Chinese had a intertwined history so the complexity is well beyond your guys' head to understand China."

The thing about history is that all those people are dead. No reading of history can deprive a nation of its right to self-determination.

"So if individual human right can rationalize individual independence claim, why your country's media just cannot tell the minority group that you have right to be independent instead of telling so to other country's minority group?"

My country isn't telling anyone anything. Rather, it is me telling you that nations have the right to self-determination, and that it's wrong to interfere with that. That you can't seem to respond to this simple statement without introducing a mass of confusion about who is saying what on behalf of whom does not recommend your position highly. I do not speak on behalf of "America" or "the West"; only myself. So go ahead and assert historical authority or list whatever complaints you can dig up about Western countries: none of it is relevant, and none of it is going to distract me.

"Exciting news from occupied Turtle Island. The Lakota People have renounced their U.S. citizenship and withdrawn from all treaties with the illegitimate U.S. government (founded upon conquest and genocide), denouncing them as “worthless words on worthless paper,” and have established an autonomous liberated territory."

Yes, and....? Try again when the US government starts firing into crowds and kicking out the media. Not that the Lakota independence movement is at all comparable to Tibet, but it's humorous that you think this example backs up your stance.

Andrew Liu:

Don't be emotional on this. Cooler heads prevail. Let's put some facts and be simple.

Do you know that the suffix of the current The Dalai Lama? It is XIV. The 14th and 13th Dalai Lama is living and lived through their adulthood, respectively. The first emperor of Qing Dynasty Shunzhi started to approve the 5th Dalai Lama. There were 8 of them between the 5th and 13th.

If you're quick in math, you can figure out that if The Dalai Lama started from his infancy and lived through his adulthood and longevity, there shouldn't be that many of them in 250 years of Qing Dynasty. The unutterable history is that many of them didn't make through their early ages. One after another they were poisoned to death.

Why? That's the politics. Regents were the de facto rulers of Tibet when The Dalai Lamas were still young.

To make it short, why the child got poisoned to death? Because that's the politics as usual! Just like any other societies, you have right and left and you have different interest groups. If you murder this baby Dalai Lama, you get change to find and install another reincarnation of your own preference, and therefore against your political opponents.

Now before we talk about human rights, where is our Children's Rights?! Why an innocent child has to be selected to suffer through a life otherwise not belongs to him?

In my opinion (nothing official here), if Tibet is not under the Communist Party's rule, or if Tibet has its great autonomy, or if Tibetan people is a progressive people as I believe they are, they would've adopted the separation of state and church themselves long time ago.

What an ironic encounter of the Communist rule and the Tibetan Dalai Lama regime!

Vote with your pocketbook:

A boycott of chinese made goods is a good way to enhance the chances for real change in China, and by extension, the rest of the world. Even before the latest proof of this Chinese government's Totalitarianism, a boycott was warranted. China is a country whose government allows and encourages the exploitation of its own people, denies them basic human rights, has had very little qualms about environmental degradation of Chinese land, air, and water, thus making very large contributions to global warming; attempts, and often succeeds in stealing trade and defense information, and manipulates its currency for additional competitive trade advantage, etc., etc.

When we purchase Chinese made products we are implicitly endorsing these evils by giving vital financial succor to the Totalitarian Chinese regime. It would be clearly immoral, even illegal, to produce goods under Chinese conditions virtually anywhere in the Western world, yet we are free to purchase these goods.. There's something profoundly and fundamentally wrong with this picture!

But lookout!! As soon as we talk boycott, Western business leaders and their lackeys will cry, "Protectionism!" They will then trot out their short-sighted arguments about how we all benefit from "Free Trade". Well, as I said, perhaps in the very short run, but the intermediate and long term costs, are, and will prove to be very dear, indeed! And, this is certainly not 'Fair' trade!

Another "by-product" of this "low-cost" Chinese manufacturing could very well be something I refer to as, an "economic draft". This is in regard to large demographic groups currently serving in Iraq. Many come from the upper midwest where manufacturing has been decimated by this devious "competition". In time, scholarly studies should determine this one way or the other, but I am inclined to think that many of the members of our "volunteer" armed forces could have had little alternative employment opportunities when their formerly decent paying manufacturing companies moved operations to you know where..

The Chinese people are not afraid to rebel, and a boycott could engender conditions conducive to rebellion, and could lead to a democratic governance and a more civil Chinese society, which would be much healthier (pun intended) for us all.

Chinese and China :

To: Michael Benjamin English: enjames

Thanks for addressing my comments.

Yes, our government does not give us freedom of choice like you said. But most of us are not asking for it either. Those who wants the freedom maybe be is less than 0.5% of the population. The time will come when we are all READY to ask for the freedom of speech and CCP is ready and happy to give. I sympathize with Tibetan exiles still living in India. I believe that Chinese and China welcome them back. However, they are not asking for visa. They ask for the independence of Tibet and other Chinese territories where Tibetans are mixed with other Chinese which include half of the province I grew up. Then I suggest that they go to UN or wait after the Chinese government is done with the Olympic game. Didn’t Jewish get Israel through UN resolutions? Tibetan exiles have over 40 years to lobby UN which is not controlled by China.

As the member of the generation participated the 1989 Tiananmen Students Movement, we had our political studies in the western ways in western world, the ways you talked about and we liked about, not the CCP ways. It is the western way of independent thinking taught us to be fair with and to credit what CCP did for us: free college education, free housing, free medication and most importantly, a peaceful and harmonious society with the exception of the recent tragedies in Tibet. We learned to move on and to forgive the atrocities CCP did during the Cultural Revolution and various political campaigns to our parents’ generation because we see CCP was, has remained and proved to be the capable party that has the guts and strength to admit its errors openly to its people, to defy outside pressures and to lead China for good. CCP leaders, old fashioned Chinese, do not talk Dalai Lama talks, do not walk Dalai Lama walk and do not have Dalai charisma. It even embarrassed us by sending security guards to surround the athletes in the international torch relay. But it has done many good things for its people, including Tibetan people in Tibet. The CCP’s contributions in preserving Tibetan culture and improving the living standard of Tibetan people are facts that no Tibetans in Tibet can deny.
Freedom of speech and election are important. But it is more important to know who we are, where we are from, where we are heading and what we should do to avoid errors and make the world a better place to live. I am sorry to say: Please leave China alone. The Chinese government will solve and is capable of solving Tibet issue to the best interest of Tibetan people in Tibet not the Tibetan exiles. If it cannot solve it well this time, it will learn its lesson and do a better job next time.

Reason:

Sutapas Bhattacharya,

By pronouncing China as the No 1 enemy of India, you lost all your credibility to criticize China, because everything you say are just emotional and irrational.

You appear to be well read, but you does not seem to connect to reality very well. Tell me do you really think India is a democracy, seriously, with only dynasties occupying the governments? What is the fraction of the Indian population that is illiterate? How many can afford even the minimal health care? Is India the only major country which still have plague? In such a society, does the ordinary people have any say in the government? Does the poor have any chance at all? There is serious equality problem with India, and your government is very well aware of that.

Chinese people would never consider India as an viable enemy. So please do not compliment yourself by declaring China as enemy No.1. By thinking that way only harms Indian's opportunity for prosperity.

Anonymous:

ff:

"See what happened and is happenning in Iraq when Bush said Saddam was ill-treating his people and got rid of him?

[...]

Just mind your own business. If you do not like how others are behaving, don't have anything to do with them."

Indeed, those are all very good reasons for China to leave Tibet to its own devices.

------------------------------

You just reason and reason but just do not let your troop totally get out of Iraq. You talk high but do low. This let us question your credibility when you point fingers to others.

Reading Tibet history,you will know Han Chinese and Tibetan Chinese had a intertwined history so the complexity is well beyond your guys' head to understand China.

You just cannot use your own reasoning on the legitimacy of your own country.So if individual human right can rationalize individual independence claim, why your country's media just cannot tell the minority group that you have right to be independent instead of telling so to other country's minority group? Do not tell me your countrymen do not think so unless your media do the same thing.

Give you a link to see if Indian ask for independence in U.S.
http://shiftshapers.gnn.tv/blogs/26363/Lakota_Break_Away_From_U_S_Form_New_Country

"Exciting news from occupied Turtle Island. The Lakota People have renounced their U.S. citizenship and withdrawn from all treaties with the illegitimate U.S. government (founded upon conquest and genocide), denouncing them as “worthless words on worthless paper,” and have established an autonomous liberated territory."

Lart from Above:

Street protests in Europe won't change the policy of the regime in Beijing. What they can do is force current or future governments in Europe to consider human rights in dealing with China. Governments can influence China on trade and other issues.

China's regime is certainly using the Olympics for the political purpose of promoting its standing in the world. The protests inside (and around) Tibet are just reminding the world that China still has issues to deal with before it can be considered a moral and social equal among the world's nations.

Joseph:

To really fight China, it is called ECONOMIC BOYCOTT But meanwhile, the USA continues to import billions of dollars from China, mostly from corporations owned by the Peoples Liberation Army and many managed by the Chinese Communist Party. The workers earn pennies, but USA enterpeners and importers make millions. This is the only thing that will work, otherwise protests mean nothing.

ff:

"See what happened and is happenning in Iraq when Bush said Saddam was ill-treating his people and got rid of him?

[...]

Just mind your own business. If you do not like how others are behaving, don't have anything to do with them."

Indeed, those are all very good reasons for China to leave Tibet to its own devices.

San Ying:

Why is the West always telling the others how to behave? See what happened and is happenning in Iraq when Bush said Saddam was ill-treating his people and got rid of him? Bush revealed that his soldiers could leave Saddam far behind in torture. And he proves himself as more inhuman and evil than Saddam in his approval of torture for America's suspects.
See what happened in Vietnam? In Mai Lai? Etc, etc.?
Just mind your own business. If you do not like how others are behaving, don't have anything to do with them. We are all a mixture of good and evil. But the West thinks it is ALL GOOD.

Joe Zhou:

Mark Twain II said it best!

As long as the US, Britain, France, and Japan are viewed by many as countries with "impeccable human right records" "through out their history", China can justify its actions. What these four nations have done thru colonization, wiping out of natives, and atrocities during the War, are simply staggering and just as soon all forgiven. China is simply counting on getting away with less in due time.

Scary thing is I am not even sure whether Mark Twain II wrote what he did as sarcasm or not. Even scarier is that many here appear to actually believe what he wrote at face value. Just shows how soon China's transgressions will be forgotten and forgiven as well.

Adam Smith:

Mark Twain II said it best!

ff:

"Will Tibet be better off under the governance of monks?"

This is the wrong question. The correct question is: "is anyone other than Tibetans entitled to make this decision for them?" And the answer, of course, is no. All nations are entitled to self-determination. If Tibetans want to remain an autonomous region of China (as the Dalai Lama has repeatedly avowed), that's fine by me, but I'd also support them if they want to be independent. It's insulting for China to suggest that the forcible seizure of Tibet is legitimate because they know what's best for those backwards Buddhists. Especially when the vaunted development investment amounts to sending in armies of Hans to set up resource-extraction industries for the benefit of the Han heartland.

"There will be ethnic conflicts for a long time just like Yugoslavia. And I do not think the monks will show mercy on other ethnic groups."

Possibly, but that issue is neither here nor there when Tibetans are forcibly prevented from excercising self-determination. I'd have no problem criticizing the abuses of a Tibetan government, but to refocus the discussion on the hypothetical problems of such a government is simply another smokescreen to distract us from the very real problems of the PRC government that actually controls Tibet. As long as China suppresses Tibetan self-determination, Tibetans will rightly despise them for it.

This whole "Tibet is better off under our thumb" argument is something I hear from a lot of Chinese (not just PRC mouthpieces) and they seem oblivious to how poorly it comes off. When someone is accusing you of being an imperialist, the LAST thing you want to do is sound paternalistic and condescending. Clearly, y'all are desparate for some legitimacy to cover up the fact that it is power, and power alone, that underpins your relationship with Tibet.

BubbaInVA:

Well, there's a hole in your logic there Mark Twain II, in regard to allowing only a handful of countries with impeccable human rights' records to host the Olympics: several of the countries you name do not have particularly wonderful human rights records. The USA, for example, isn't allowing people in its custody to seek either domestic or international legal recourse (e.g., Guantanamo Bay). It brings to mind the old advice to avoid throwing stones if you live in a glass house. Granted, China's current status in re: human rights is far worse than the United States' -- but it is worth noting that the USA still has some improving to do before it can claim the high ground.

JamesB:

Beverly:

As Alex points out, the US have done in N America, what the Chinese are doing in Tibet. So what ? You cannot raise the American Indians to life again. But you can try to prevent that the Tibetan's land will be taken from them. Even if you realize that the odds are against you.

---------------------------------------------

Beverly: You do not have to raise American Indians to life again.They are struggling for their independence today. Hope your high moral standards will drive your action for their cause. Here is what they say and the link to the website.

lakota independence:"The Lakota People have renounced their U.S. citizenship and withdrawn from all treaties with the illegitimate U.S. government (founded upon conquest and genocide), denouncing them as “worthless words on worthless paper,” and have established an autonomous liberated territory."
http://shiftshapers.gnn.tv/blogs/26363/Lakota_Break_Away_From_U_S_Form_New_Country

Mark Twain II:


The Olympic games should always be in the United States, Great Britain, France or Japan, as these are the only nations having impeccable human rights records, as well as non-agression toward neighbors, throughout their history. Each of these nations, as a rising power, consistently was highly respectful of the sovereignty of other nations, as well as fully implementing liberal humman rights policies for all people living in their countries. The notion of using military force against weaker countries, for any reasons, was thoroughly repugnant to the leaders of these four countries throughout their history.

The people in these countries always supported only other democratic nations that similarly had strong human rights policies. Their people were patriotic, but never became nationalistic or xenophobic. Indigenous people were always treated fairly and their culture was respected. There never developed in any of these countries imperialistic or colonial ambitions, let alone policies by the government.

Whenever a minority of disaffected persons within these countries used violent protest, the governments always used maximum restraint, even if the rioters caused great property damage and considerable loss of life. These nations represent the paragon of civilized behavior and believe other nations should always emulate their history.

Steve:

I disagree with the notion that China's internal control over its citizens is the only important measure of the outcome of these protests. The Chinese government's rule may become stronger through a reflexive nationalistic backlash against the protestors, but the rest of the world matters too. Our multinational corporations will sell their souls to do business in China at any cost, as we have seen, but to do so, they need China to maintain a fig leaf of respectability.

For better or for worse, the Olympics are putting China onto the front pages, and will continue to do so through the summer, so there is a harsh spotlight trained on the Chinese government right now. The whole world is watching...

Anonymous:

To meihui55:

You wrote: "What if China uses nationalism to attack democratic Taiwan, a sovereign country which China always teaches its people to identify as a runaway province?"

Uhm. An interesting post from one of the CSP/DPP followers. Tibetans have a much more solid agreeement for independence than Taiwanese. Tibet had been an independent kingkom for hundred of years until the Manchurian Empire conquered the most of the areas that constitute the present-day China. Under Manchurian rule, Taiwan was a province, without any arguement to the contrarary. Tibet, on the other hand, was still autonomous. Perhaps by the stroke of luck, the Manchus stopped at the present day borders with the Vietnam, which had been a province of the Chinese Empire for nearly a thousand years. So now the Vietnam is a independent country while Tibet is under Chinese rule and the Taiwan is still struggling with its own identity. Eight years of the DPP rule failed so miserably and the KMT is essentially handed the total dormination by the voters. It is not neccesarily a showcase for the Democracy in Asia.

Alec Lin:

There is a fundamental difference between the Tibetans in exile and the Chinese in how to read the Chinese history.
Firstly, some basic outlines of Chinese history. The land that the majority of Chinese reside on now first came to formation in the Han Dynasty – hence the name of Han people – around 2000 years ago.
Now something novel to some readers. China substantially expanded its territory by BEING CONQUERED by other peoples, most notably by the Mongolians in late 13th century (Yuan Dynasty) and by the Manchurians in mid 17th century (Qing Dynasty). Mongolians also conquered Xinjiang, where Uighurs reside now, and annexed it to the Chinese territory they were ruling them. Tibet also became part of China in 1297 in Yuan Dynasty. Actually around that time, the Han Chinese were considered inferior to Mongolians, Tibetans, and even Caucasians (called SeMuRen, or colored-eyed people). For example, no marriages were allowed between Han and Mongolians, and between Han and Tibetans, but marriages between Mongolians and Tibetans were allowed. Tibet continued to remain within China in Qing Dynasty, and there was even a position of Tibet Minister – directly translated as the Minister Stationed in Tibet (Zhu Zang Da Cheng) - in the cabinet.
Tibetans in exile claim that Tibet has been a colony of China in Qing Dynasty (if not earlier). When the Qing Dynasty collapsed, Tibetans naturally re-gained their independence. Some Tibetans also make the argument that China was also a colony then when the Han Chinese were ruled by the Manchurians. If both Chinese and Tibetans successfully broke from the Manchurians rule at the beginning of the 20th century, each should be entitled to their independence, and one cannot claim the other, just as the Americans cannot claim India as part of USA just because both were once under the same rule of the British Empire.
And now a different reading from the Chinese textbook. Even though the Han Chinese were conquered by the Mongolians and then by the Manchurians, it is just part of the succession of dynasties in the long Chinese history. Both dynasties moved their capitals to Beijing after conquering China. Did Britain move its capital to Delhi? China was not a colony ruled by Mongolians in Yuan Dynasty when Tibet first joined the circle even though the top rulers were not ethnically Chinese then. Neither was China a colony of Manchurians when Tibet remained part of China. As a matter of fact, Genghis Khan is still revered as one of the founding-father figures for the Chinese nation. China did lose some land to other nations, most notably a large part of East Siberia to Russia, but Tibet remains within the map. Dr. Sun Yat-Sen, the founding father of Republic of China – still the official name of Taiwan – introduced equality between ethnicities by comparing Han, Mongolians, Tibetans, Uighurs and Manchurians to five fingers in one hand, all indispensable to form a Chinese nation. This was in 1910s, and this reading of Chinese history persists till today and will continue.
If each sticks to his or her own reading of history, the controversy will go on forever. If put to competition as going on currently, it is always the more mighty that settles the debate.

pseudotriton:

Pomfret makes it sound like the strategy of generating perceived foreign threat in order to bolster a government's grip on power is uniquely Chinese. To find examples of other gov't and people doing the exact same thing one needs to look no further than the US war on terror, or its blaming of free trade for its own poor economic performance. The US is a master of painting a picture of itself always as the victim, even though it is completely unrivaled both economically and militarily.

Kevin in DC:

Lived in USA for 5 years, I want to say most of the time the Media is objective. But when it comes to China, they do take side. To reach a judgement upon Tibetan issue, I have to compare reports from both sides and also reports and vedios of foreign tourists. Here is my two cents:

1. How many Tibetan poeple want the independance? A few hundreds or millions? We do not have the statistics and many of us just assume they all want it. According to my friends in Tibet, most of them neither enjoy the governance of Chinese Government, nor are they so eager to throw away the investment from Beijing. Most Tibetans are just indifferent, ordinary people who want to mind their own business. It is not like many Americans imagines, that Tibetans struggle to push away the Chinese government like the Afganistan people wanted to drive away the Russians.

2. Is this protest truly peaceful? The vedeos shot by the foreign tourists shows exactly the contrary. In fact, this unrest can be pretty much defined as an middle-scaled ethnic conflicts between the Hans and some of the Tibetans. Why some Tibetans are hostile against Han busnessmen ? I think the reasons lies in the development of capitalism in Tibet in recent years. The minority Hans, like the successful Jewish businessmen, toke more advantage of capital investment and become the richest people in Tibet. The concentration of wealth in ethnic minoirties always create hostility from the majority, as demonstrated by human history again and again.

3. Why Monks are pissed off and acting violant. To be frank, I am not really proud of Chinese government' ruling of Tibet. But I am definitely not a fan of these Tibetan Lamas. They are definitely not ordinary monk who cares only about the other world. As the former slave-owners, they appeared to be rather passionate about their political power. It would not be exagerating to compare them with the roman cathelic in the mediaeval time. And it is my belief that anytime when religion desire to grab political power, there will be blood. And I do think the separation of religion and politics in the First Amendment does exist for some reason.

4. How Chinese Government should act? No person here has suggested any constructive approach for Chinese government. Should the police just standby and watch the civilians being beaten and killed? Actually they did refrain in the first two days until the things got really worse. However, I will blame the government for cracking down free speech and failure to address equity problem in its development plan in Tibet.

5. Are Tibetan people oppressed in China? There are two groups of widely known super citizens in China, one is Tibetan, another is Huis (the muslins). Those are tough guys no people in China want to mess with. And they enjoy much broader rights than other 54 ethnic groups in China. For example, the notorious one-child policy does not apply for them.

6. Will Tibet be better off under the governance of monks? I do not think so. There will be ethnic conflicts for a long time just like Yugoslavia. And I do not think the monks will show mercy on other ethnic groups. I do not want to debate the history of Tibet sovereignty because it is a huge mess, and poeple with different political theories would understandably come to different conclusion.

meihui55:

Chinese Nationalism

I am neither Tibetan, nor a witness in the recent Tibet uprising. Neither will I want to discuss anything about western media's standard. All I care about is HOW THE CHINESE NATIONALISM IS RAISED THROUGH MEDIA? No matter whether it is stoked by Chinese themselves or the government purposely. The sina.com.cn petition against foreign media's coverage in Tibet has almost reaching the number of 3 million.

The nationalistic outrage toward western media has formed already. At this point, it's matter of nationalism, not the matter of TRUTH.

Yes, while most of the western media are screaming about Tibet, human rights, censorship, Darfur, Taiwan has peacefully elected the next President Ma Ying-jeon and stepped toward another phase of democracy. Ma is expected to improve relations with China, starting from economic issues.

But there are some intimidating facts between Taiwan and China:
(1) China deployed more than 1500 missiles aimed at Taiwan.
(2) China has been squeezing Taiwan in the international arena. Taiwan's efforts to enter international organizations, such as World Health Organization, are continuously impeded by China. For this year's World Health Assembly May 19, China even explicitly said that Taiwan won’t get any chance to enter WHO.
(3) China will use force if Taiwan declares independence.

What if international media values Taiwan democracy in the conflict of cross strait?
What if China uses nationalism to attack democratic Taiwan, a sovereign country which China always teaches its people to identify as a runaway province?

Beverly:

As Alex points out, the US have done in N America, what the Chinese are doing in Tibet. So what ? You cannot raise the American Indians to life again. But you can try to prevent that the Tibetan's land will be taken from them. Even if you realize that the odds are against you.

Internationally, wealth comes from power. The US are a mature world power. Facing China, it will have to retire one of these days, and live on its amassed capital. So, we would not like to be pushed into a corner by the growth of China. Sutapas gives us one option: Build alliances towards India. Maybe taking along Europe, and the Near East with its oil. This is a logical way to counter China's growing influence. The parallels between Indian political thought, and ideas in the west are evident. That will make it a lot easier, not just to assert ourselves economically, but also to keep up our way of life, which has given us our quality of life.

The other option ? Is more or less where we are headed. For all people, food, and a home come first. Rights issues tend to surface when the population starts to get a bit more wealthy. We integrate our economies with the Chinese one. We keep the pressure on, as far as human rights are concerned, and we wait until they are rich enough to care. The question remains how long this will take, and if our own standards would survive.

Han Chinese:

The one thing I find most sickening about this whole Tibet issue is the stereotypical western, and in particular American Bush way of characterising everything in terms of black and white. People are either Good or Bad, with us or against us.

The second issue is the portrayal of Han Chinese as racist xenophobic brutal dictators bent on world domination. This is extremely insulting, and mind-numbingly stupid. It is the equivalent of calling the entire US population a group of war-mongering oil thieves - a statement perhaps more true than the Han equivalent, given that Bush WAS elected.

Westerners have a tendency to view Tibet through rose tinted glasses, akin to the Shangri-La of lore. Reality however, bears the facts that Tibet was and remains one of the poorest regions in the world, with a spectacularly low life expectancy. Whilst the CCP has meted out severe punishments to any actions impinging on its rule, it has also subtlely introduced benefits as well. Heavy investment in infrastructure, along with ironically, cultural preservation - the CCP requires primary schools to teach in Tibetan and has funded numerous preservation and restoration projects.

The problem is not the deliberate malevolence of the CCP, but the conflict between a profoundly religious people, and a party that sees religion itself as a threat. It is not a Han v Tibetan issue at all, however the CCP may have overplayed its hand by stoking nationalism.

The CCP's failure has been in its understanding of the Tibetan psyche, and its reluctance to permit religious freedom. However, this should not detract from the fact that sovereignty has and will never be a topic for discussion, given the sensitive geopolitical location of Tibet.

Lastly, there is this slightly strange notion that this vague concept of 'freedom' will alleviate all problems and suffering. Freedom is important, but peace even more so. Democracy can only be relied upon to achieve progress in a peaceful environs - witness the immediate election of Hamas in Palestine. The aim of the Chinese govt (be it the CCP or some other form in the future) should be to integrate, not assimilate Tibet into a Chinese union. We (as all Chinese) want Tibet to be Wales, not Palestine.

On a personal level, I have visited Tibet and love the place and its people. I sincerely hope that the Tibetans will forgive the excesses of govt and join the rest of China in solidarity. After all, govt oppression is not restricted to Tibetans alone, and drastic action may reverse the general trend of the CCP moving in the right direction.

American Abroad:

thank you for correcting my error, Anonymous. that the political tie in the form of a marriage occured under a yet more ancient tibetan dynasty, predating even the earliest form of lamaism, seems to only further weaken china's modern claims to sovereignty, which are ultimately rooted not in the consent of the tibetan people but in the force of chinese arms.

Anonymous:

Dear Chinese and China:

Indeed, I agree with you: the decision as to whether or not the Chinese Communist government should survive is indeed one that only the Chinese people have a right to make. However, the Chinese government does not allow the Chinese people to make that choice in any meaningful way.

It does not allow anyone attempting to create an alternative government to organize for that purpose. It does not allow people to argue for that purpose. Instead, it persecutes and imprisons anyone who disagrees openly with the state, and particularly anyone who attempts to expose actions by state officials which the populace at large might disagree with. This is why the world pays so little attention to the opinions of the Chinese people- until the people of China have the ability to form their own conclusions with all available evidence, their opinions will not carry the same weight as everyone else’s.

I must also point out several problems with your argument as expressed in paragraph 3 of your letter. First, speaking as one who lives in a country with the protections of free speech, I have never found political study to be useless. When sitting through my classes in high school and college (classes which I took because I chose to take them), I could always count on hearing multiple viewpoints and on being allowed to form my own conclusions. I would not have taken the classes I took if that had not been the case. I found them to be of great value, from Mr. Daniels’ American History class to Mr. Hurtgen’s Political Theory class. I LIKED my teachers. (Mrs. Daniels, on the other hand, was a nightmare. Boy, was she tough!)

Second, it is a highly self-serving argument to claim that the only people who have a right to speak out against unfair treatment are the victims of that treatment. For one thing, it prevents those victims from ever stopping their mistreatment. Historically, virtually all groups of people who receive unfair treatment require some form of outside assistance to stop that mistreatment. Claiming that the matter is entirely internal is effectively the same as demanding the right to continue the act of mistreatment indefinitely.

Instead of asking the west to ignore what China is doing to the people of Tibet, perhaps you would care to justify China’s actions? Or do you believe that China is NOT attempting to marginalize or eradicate the Tibetans’ culture? Again, arguments to that effect would be more convincing if China had not banned the scrutiny of foreign journalists- and if someone within China could give a counterargument (like mine) without risking jail.

Third, it may surprise you to learn that most countries (my own included) have methods of dealing with the grievances of its citizenry that do not involve overthrowing the government. That is one of the great advantages of a multi-party system which guarantees the right of free speech. Indeed, the very term “overthrow the government”, in most countries, has come to mean voting out members of one party and replacing them with members of another party- one which is bound by the same rules of conduct so that it cannot prevent the old party from making its case once again. Something like that just happened in 2006, when the American Democrats gained a majority over the Republicans in the Houses of Congress. We succeeded in doing this without bloodshed, even when the Republicans violated numerous laws. And make no mistake, though we will fix the damage they caused, we have no intention of repeating their crimes.

I suspect that you are using the term “overthrow the government” in its older meaning. Nowadays, most modern countries can do better than that- even when they are being run by their worst leaders in decades.

I would also point out that no one has ever asked nor expects the Falun Gong movement to speak for the people of China. What we have asked is that the Chinese government stop persecuting Falun Gong practitioners for simply expressing their beliefs. If you like, I could copy a few leaflets of their material onto this forum so you can learn more about them. I can’t say I know much about them myself, but hey, we can learn together. Just reply in the forum, if you’re interested…

under your real name.

Sincerely,

Michael Benjamin English

Chris:

Tibet separatists are no different than Mohammed Atta and al qaeda terrorists. They need to be destroy. Some of the uncle Tom's on this board need to be destroy also.

Sutapas Bhattacharya:

To Smoothnoodles who thinks it is the West versus the Rest and that most Asians support China, see my posting on Indian situation below. The PRC is our enemy No.1 whatever the Indian govt. says to appease them. We know that the West has a very bad colonial history in Asia. George Kennan, whom George Marshall appointed as special policy advisor to State Dept. in late 1940s wanted to maintain the gross US disparity in wealth vis a vis Asia (ignoring human rights and democracy etc.). 3 million Bengalis died in 1943 as UK exported rice while peasants starved. Brits created famines throughout Raj (as US historian Mike Davis has written about). UK stopped US plans to buld planes in India to fight japanese in WWII as they didn't want India to have industries to compete. USA and UK urged India not to build steel mills in 1950 and stick to its 'traditional' economy (i.e. the plantation that Brits had turned India into after deindustrialization and plunder of our wealth, opium growing to sell in China etc.). USSR helped build first Indian steel mill at Bhilai and West only gave us 'aid' to stop us going into Soviet camp.
But times have changed. Mao Zedong was as bad as Brits in creating artificial famines that killed millions. Chinese in Tibet and Uighur territories are just as much colonialists as Westerners and Japanese were. Indians would much rather side with open society of West which has become far less neocolonialist in recent times than with PRC which is stuck in totalitarian and nationalist mindset. we are not against the Chinese people whom we respect, we are against tyranny and colonialist exploitation. We want to see all the peoples of Tibet, Uighurs, North Korea, Burma, Zimbabwe and even the Han Chinese themselves enjoy freedom and democracy.

Voice of a Chinese Minority :

To John Pomfret:

I am a Chinese educated in China and the U.S. and I am also a Chinese minority, the BAI minority. In my province, there are 25 minority races that do not really care about their identifies and cultures because of the assimilation. It is similar to the assimilation of Western culture by many people around the world. In China, it is really the Chinese government that has been spending money to preserve the minority culture and to make minority distinctive so that it can say we are a country of “56 races/nationalities”. We blend well with people of all races since we all look same like Han people. All other minorities other than a few have been assimilated by Han not because of the cultural genocide because of advancement in science and technology and the open minds always prevail than isolation. When the Mongolians conquered China and began its ruling of Han people in the name of “Qin dynasty”, the Mongolians immediately assimilated themselves in Han culture except keeping a few things such as ording Han men wearing “pig tails”. Many Han men were killed because they refused to wear their hairs long and braided it like a tail.

My ancestors live peacefully with Han people for thousands of years. We used to be an independent kingdom historically until 20th century when our king decided to join Chinese government and changed his kindom into a province. Most Han people should have heard about BAI minority and Dali Kingdom through history classes and Martial arts books. Whenever I tell a Chinese or a westerner that I am a minority BAI, I feel as proud as a giant Panda. Other than Chinese government’s efforts in preserving our culture, the central and local government have many policies to encourage us to have more than one child, lower our grade requirements for college entry examination and give us priority in job offer just because we are RARE in population.

All I can say is that as a minority myself, I don’t differentiate myself because I look the same like Han but originated from different ancestors. I won’t consider I am being culturally genocided since I love mandarin, love English language and anything that is good about western world and western people. But I am very proud of being a Chinese like any American being proud of being an American. I consider peace, mutual respect and an open mind the most important things in life.

Anonymous:

To American Abroad,

You wrote, "just because a tibetan dalai at one point married a chinese princess"

Dalai was not in existence at the time the chinese princess married the king of Tibet. As a matter of fact, budhism had just been introduced into Tibet at that time, by the Nepalese and the Chinese Princesses who were among the royal consorts of the Tibetan King. It took another 100 years for the Budhism to estabish itself in Tibet and another 6 hundred years for the first Dalai Lama to be officially recognized.

ra7137:

At least this time the chinese in China and around the world are firmly united together, which may wonder lots of Westerners. The chinese government would really like to take this opportunity, may not be comfortable from them right now but it is good for the China future.

ra7137:

At least this time the chinese in China and around the around are firmly united together, which may wonder lots of Westerners. The chinese government would really like to take this opportunity, may not be comfortable from them right now but it is good for the China future.

Anonymous:

I generally agree with Alec Lin's comments but I would disgree with him about his assessments of the action of US and European media in the present Tibet coverage.
I would argue that the media coverage is essentially substandard in several aspects. One, the editors and reporters seem to lack the simple understanding of the basic facts. It is inexcusable to confuse the Nepalese police with the Chinese police and use those photos to create drama for the story. Second, many reporters simply became the mouthpiece of the Tibetan exile government, replaying their press release as independent reporting. You would see many stories with a byline by someone stationed in Beijing but the whole story just simply retell a new story released by the Tibetan exile government in India. This is arguably an violation of the journalistc standards.
The reporters, when confronted with these issues, blamed the chinese goverment for their censorship. It is not really a convincing argument in this case as I had memories of many great reporters reporting under much tighther controls during the Mao era in China and they still manage to do their jobs effectively.
The bigger issue is the self censorship in the U.S media. The world view presented by the U.S. media is a skewed one, I am currently relying on the Ecomnomist to get a more balanced view. It is not incidental that the only "western reporter" in Lhasa at the time of the demonstration and riots was one from the Economist, who reported the events there in a professional way.

Bama Mike:

The Chinese are naturally proud to see their flag attached to orbitting spacecraft, the olympic logo and the burning homers of Tibetians. This is a nationalistic boner for them... one of the first they've had with any legitimacy for centuries.

All the rah-rah fervor will burn itself out as their air becomes more and more unbreathable and their airable soils corrupt and unyeilding.

Yes, these things too must pass... they just don't talk about it openly.

For the moment though, the Reds have the pulse of their nation and there's not much anyone can do about it.

Living in US 15 years:

Are u a liberal, do you think Fox News is fair and balanced?
Are u a conservative, don't you feel the main street media is controlled by the liberals?
Don't you still remember the fake story about Private Jessica Lynch's "heroic fight" at this newspaper, Washington Post?
If so, how come the same media suddenly becomes so objective when it comes to stories about Tibet?
As one Arabian editor in the film "Control Room" said, every news organization has an agenda.
So when you think the Chinese are brainwashed at home, is it possbible you are at least hypnotized as well?
While the Chinese at home may not always has the ability to listen to the other voices, u do! And shmea on u , if you let yourself brainwashed when u don't have to!

Troy:

All I have to say is that if the west is so bad then go back to China then we won't have to read your BS on these message boards because you won't be able to access them.

You are missing the point, Mr. Pomfret.:

You are missing the point of the protests, Mr. Pomfret.

The protesters did not confront China for the purpose of making China change through the act of protest. That almost never happens- certainly not in America, and doubly so for China.

They gathered together for the same reason that activists gather in America- for the purpose of forming a cohesive group that can work in other ways.

Those protesters have seen each others' faces. They know who was willing to take risks on behalf of their cause. That sets the stage for acts of political opposition and civil disobedience later. And it also announces to the world that they have grievances which can no longer be buried under state propaganda.

The act of protest will not change the world, but it is often a necessary precondition for doing so.

I would also point out, Mr. Pomfret, that China right now is in a unique position. For the first time, the things China does to the people under its control have economic repercussions. China's increasing power is a consequence of world trade. Less trade- particularly less trade as a consequence of the world's reactions to the conduct of the Chinese government- hurts China. That means that, yes, the protesters really can do a lot of damage to the Chinese government- provided we pay attention and react to it with something other than futile indifference.

Alex S.:

I don't support the Chinese in their suppression of Tibet and the Han-centric nationalistic fanaticism of the Chinese government and the Chinese people (including ones who have lived here in the West for 16 years).

But I do think Western criticism of China without action is very unproductive and so hypocritical that it is no wonder that even Chinese who have been living 16 years in the West are resentful and ending spiritually supporting the Chinese government.

What do I mean by action? Not once in any of the reporting here in the western (esp. American) press, has anyone tried to truly and insightfully give the west an understanding of the Chinese position by drawing a parallel with the colonization of the U.S, Canada, and Australia. Are there any history books in any of these countries that unabashedly put emphasis on the degradation and oppression of native peoples instead of celebrating a "how the West was won" mentality with just a buried footnote on the unfortunate effects on the natives? Would the Washington Post, Sydney Morning Herald, or Globe and Mail editorialize about how white Americans/Australians should be restricted from being able to move to certain states or provinces and overwhelming native cultures, and perhaps even advocate for the secession of New Mexico, Arizona, Utah, Colorado, British Columbia, and Queensland into new independent states?

Do you know what would happen? I guarantee you the goverments and peoples of those countries would react just as the Chinese do now. Can you imagine if the Chinese government started funding the Navajo, Aborigines, and other "first nations" to agitate for such ends?

I'm not defending China, I'm saying the West has a long way to go, too. And until someone really sits down and is willing to put his/her money where their mouth is, you've got to be joking if you think hypocritical criticism is going to have any effect on the Chinese.

Chinese and China :

Chinese are wired to take criticism from its own government, not western media in light of its history and culture, particularly the oppression endured after losing the Opium War. Chinese government governs China exactly in the same manner most Chinese parents govern the life of their children. We hate the ways our parents controlling our life and our ability to make a decision. But it is purely our domestic and internal matters. Any country that experienced joint military invasion of 8 western countries will not bend easily to outside pressure.

Whether Chinese communist government should survive is the decision of its people, not international community. The western media angered Chinese who can read English language and get access to its media because the media presumes that we, the Chinese people, listen to our government without our own independent thinking and judgment.

Not being a native Tibetan or a Tibetan monk, no Chinese should not get involved with the dispute between the government and the Tibetan monks and native Tibetans. We do know one thing: Political study is stupid, silly and useless, but it can never brainwash anyone who sits there through those stupid sessions. But it does not worth the life and blood of the people to overthrow the government simply because we are told to be loyal not to protest against the ruling Government and not to say things that the ruler does not want to hear.

We now support this regime not because we are/were brainwashed but because there is no other capable party that can give Chinese people a better life than the current government. Do we, the Chinese people, want the leaders the Chinese Democratic Party that has an awfully shabby and obscure office in Flushing, NY, the leaders of the Fun Long Gong practitioner and the political dissidents to form a government to take care of our future? NO!!!!

So I believe whatever grievances Tibetan natives and Tibetan monks have, Chinese government has the will and the ability to solve like the way it is solving the grievances of Chinese peasants. By cornering the Chinese government before the Olympic Game, nothing can be achieved rather than angering the educated Chinese population, which is one of the best weapons of Chinese government.

If Western countries and western people do not like China and Chinese people for various reasons, they are welcome to boycott the Chinese product, the Olympic game, the tours and even the friendship with individual Chinese. It is indeed a free world. But telling Chinese government and Chinese people what they should do or voicing on behalf of Chinese people is not wise and nice.

smoothn00dle:

international acceptance?? China has 100+ out of 192 UN nations' support in this matter. Support countries include all of Asia, Central Asia, Africa and South America and Russia. This put Japan in a strange situation. Of course, in Westerners' eye, those countries doesn't count because they are not democracy but nevertheless, those countries have natural resources the Western countries need. Also, not a single Middle-East country speak against China. On the other hand, the countries that support Tibet only a hand full of western countries and they bombard us with their 24/7 media to convince that the world is with the Tibet. Truly is the West vs the Rest showing here. Because of that, this event will push the world minus Western countries into an alliance. We are seeing this in Asia, many Asia countries support China openly. In Asia region, this clearly is a sign to tell the West get blend. If Chinese stand firm, this Olympic can establish us as the leader of the world without the West.

american abroad:

the line of argument that westerners are not in a position to critize chinese policy because our governments act in ways that are contrary to our ideals is utter balderdash. equally so the argument that all westerners are ignorant of chinese history--even if it were so, it's equally clear that many chinese themselves are ignorant of any but the party's history of events in tibet, as well as that of much of the rest of the world. given the lack of free information within mainland china we might forgive them this failing, and they might, in turn, forgive many westerners for not having an interest in history, chinese or otherwise.

just because a tibetan dalai at one point married a chinese princess and maintained diplomatic relations with beijing to counterbalance the interest of the Russians and British, who were vying for control of Afghanistan, does not mean that tibet was ever a "part" of china. clearly, it is now. as mao once said, "political power comes out the barrel of a gun." it wasn't until mao's army defeated and split the nationalist army (one contingent ending up in burma, then thailand--the other larger one in Taiwan) that the chinese even had the military strength to back up any such claims of ownership. for most of tibet's history tibetans possessed sufficient military might to send the chinese packing if need be, and were feared widely for their ferocity in battle until a british expedition to Lhasa near the turn of the 20th century demonstrated the tibetan military's weakness. not to mention the political ineptitude of the dalai lama at the time.

to return to the point about the chinese line of argument regarding western hypocrisy, take for example china's support of the burmese military junta (a brutal abuser of human rights that far exceeds china's own abuses), their persistent xenophobia (c.f. the attitude of many han chinese toward southeast asians, africans, indians, or generally anyone with a dark complexion--certainly not unique to china), collusion with the sudanese government (taking a page from the Bush administration's willingness to put oil interests ahead of doing the right thing), persecution of falung gong for no discernable reason, and so on, and so on.

that said, none of china's failings ought to compromise a well-reasoned chinese critique of errant western policies that conflict with our fundamental principles. nor should the west's failings in any way compromise a cogent critique of the chinese government's failings to live up to its own ideals--as well as those of the wider international community, which has long since embraced the principle of universal human rights. ad hominem arguments are specious and don't serve the interests of clear thinking and certainly don't solve conflicts of any sort, much less conflicts this muddied by so many divergent interests and enflamed passions.

Tibetans deserve better, as do all of China's ethnic minorities, and so does the rest of China.

of course, nothing will change until it has to. and, as they say, necessity is the mother of invention. so for my money, i expect things to get much worse before the get better, unfortunately.

Sutapas Bhattacharya:

In response to comment from Paul R in New York that China is a culturally isolated world unresponsive to change, I say learn some history. Hu Shih, who was Chinese ambassador to the USA wrote that India conquered China without sending a single soldier over the Himalayas. India's conquest was cultural. 35,000 Chinese words come from Sanskrit and pali. Kung Fu originated in India with the Keralan martial art of Kariyappa which an Indian monk Boddhisattva introduced to the Shaolin monastery. Similarly Feng Shui comes from the Indian system of geomancy called Vastu and Chinese Herbal Medicine from Ayurveda. Wooden block printing was introduced from India with the Buddhists.
Although the Indian govt kowtows to the bullies from Beijing, the educated people of India recognise China as the main threat. Nehru extended a hand of friendship to China but Mao and the PRC wanted to show India who was the No.1 power in Asia and have done their utmost to destablize India. China occupies part of Kashmir since 1962 and even has the gall to claim Arunachal Pradesh. Of course Tibet and Uighur territories are not historically true parts of China. Look where they built their Great Wall, it does not include these 'barbarian' territories. Tibet invaded India c.600 C.E. and was driven back taking Indian Tantric Buddhism with it. Tibetan language and culture has nothing to do with Chinese.
China supplied Pakistan with the nuclear blueprint and, via N.Korea, with missiles to threaten India. China backs separatists in India's North East etc. Thus it is clear that Mao and the PRC fear the rise of India as a rival giant in Asia and want to hold it down. They are aided in this by the Indian Communists who cling on to outdated Marxist-Maoist delusions. The weak UPA coalition in new Delhi relies upon the support of the CPI(M) which has ruled West Bengal (my home state) for 30 years. In fact the CPI(M) stays in power through the vote bank of millions of illegal Muslim Bangladeshis (hence the expulsion of writer Taslima Nasreen from Kolkata). Thus illegal muslim immigrants have hijacked Indian policy through the coalition system relying upon regional parties!
China's rise may be compared to that of Sparta compared to India's Athens, one has brute military force and little creativity due to the totalitarian stifling of free thought and enslaving other races (which Sparta did to a much greater extent than Athens).
Historically India has had the greater influence in Asia, India. Not only conquering China culturally but from Korea, where they remember their Indo-Aryan queen of the first Karak king, to Brunei (from Sanskrit Varuna) and through S.E. Asia (once known as Greater India)it was Indian culture that spread and influenced the first civilisations (note the Yogyakarta, Sukarnoputri etc. Sanskrit names in Indonesia). Of course Indian culture massively influenced the West as well. Greek philosophia originated in Jain Yoga (see Thomas McEvilley's The Shape of Ancient Thought), Westerners forget that Pythagoras, Plato etc. were mystics believing in reincarnation etc. So-called 'Arabic numerals', algebra, arithmetic, infinity, zero, solutions to general equations etc. (without which modern science would have been impossible) are Indian inventions (see Charle's Seife's book Zero). As British historian A.L. Basham pointed out, the medieval Arabs called mathematics Hindisat.
A rising India will not continue to kowtow to the bullies in Beijing who imprison North Korea, Tibet, Uighurs, Burma etc. China is building naval bases in Burma on the Bay of Bengal. Given India's root Sanskritic culture is Indo-European we share a lot with the Westerners in terms of openess, freedom and plurality. Hindu India gave sanctuary to the Jews fleeing Babylonian exile 2,500 years ago and Zoroastrians fleeing Mohammedan persecution in Persia (the Tatas are such Parsees). We are proud of giving sanctuary to the pereceuted Tibetans in spite of Chinese propaganda saying that these Tibetans are hurting India's interests. India's interests lie in the long term in standing up for freedom and democracy. We shall stand with the West, ASEAN, Japan etc. in containing Han imperialism.

Chinese forever:

To John:

1. yes the press is controlled. but we can access your western media very easily using tricks, and there are a huge number of chinese abroad.

2. seriously, how much do you know about china?i feel sorry for you. at least i speak another language and i've seen other parts of the world, then i have my own judgment. you are brainwashed and know nothing about the world except america.

3. before i came to america, toured around europe, i was quite westernized and longing for western world. now i don't. i am disappointed by gettos, by the ridiculous president election, by crime rates, iraq war, inequalities, arrogance, ethnic discrimination... please mind your business first then judge other people's life!!

ondelette:

Fine with me if the Chinese government pulls out all the propaganda stops. While I believe they must be criticized and if possible stopped on their oppression of groups like the Tibetans and Uighurs (and Falun Gong and the Mongolians, and...), outside of the oppression domain, let their propaganda soar.

It would be good for the sycophants among the U.S. news media, the economists, the phony racial justice advocates and all the others around the world that jump to China's defense every time they are criticized to see full and face on what many people that have paid attention have known for years: The Han Chinese are extremely nationalistic (similar to pre-World War II Japan), and are very xenophobic and racist. Xenophobia and racism aren't neat little cultural oddities that we ascribe to people, they are practices that are considered unacceptable in the modern world.

What's wrong is wrong. It doesn't become a precious piece of cultural heritage just because the perpetrator is non-Western.

Gerard K:

The West is quite clueless with regard to China. It is quite silly how we expect China to put pressure on Myanmar for their treatment of their political opposition. China itself does not even hAve a political opposition. Although China does care for its reputation, there is no good reason to believe, that it sees any value at all, in civil or human rights. The West does not just have these rights because their societies and economies work very well with them. They also simply add to our quality of life. And they do, just compare Singapore to Germany.

Our standards are slipping nowadays, as has been pointed out by other comments here. But that is not a good reason to hold China to lower standards. We should be working on both fronts.

Hao:

Stop buying Chinese, it requires courage, but we have to stop giving strength to the unworthy. We have made the Chinese strong, we can make them listen to us too.

Zi:

"A great country measure by how many people want to be in and how many people want to be out."-Tony Blair. No matter how one try to defend for China's actions. The protests aldready tell the truth.

John:

The Chinese government controls the media. Chinese citizens only see the world through the prism of their oppressive Communist dictatorship. Anyone who disagrees with the government is punished. How does this reflect the Olympic spirit?

For the world to remain silent would be a crime. The idea that China won't change so why protest is typical of propagandists. Protests can change the consciousness of the world. Imagine if Dr. King, Gandhi or Mandela never spoke out in protest.

Hypocritical Western nations don't want to lose the cheap labor China forces its people to perform. That's the only reason China was awarded the Olympic games.

Paul R in NY:

No Westerner will ever directly change China. China is a world and culture unto itself

Chen:

This is all about Money. The Tibet issue was started much earlier by German. The German have being expected a contract years to build the high speed railway between Beijing and Shanghai after the experimental railway in the city of Shanghai. A success of Beijing and Shanghai high speed railway could lead to China to build a railway network (could be a trillion dollar project) based on German technology, which will be a huge economic favor for Germans. Last year, China rewarded Japan to build the high speed railway between Beijing and Shanghai. Since then, the German started their retaliation using Tibet issue. China further punished German by rewarding France $30 billion potential commercial contract when Dalai Lama was met by German chancellor. Now, the French is using the Tibet issue to press China to materialize those $30 billion contracts. Depending on the negotiation of progress on those contracts, the French could come with further louder support for Tibet. The US has a bigger plan. With its trade deficit to China, value loss of dollar, economic recession, a crisis in China can solve all its problems. Over 150 years ago, the British had a huge trade deficit with China. The British forced China to buy drugs (opium) to balance its trade. US sold some (over $10 billion ) sub-prime mortgage to China. But this is not enough to cause financial crisis as it happened in late 1990s in south eastern Asia. A large social unrest in China could cause the $1.5 trillion USD out of China, which can instantly strength the dollar. Depending on how bad the recession goes, US could also further press China very hard.

TheFunnyThingIs:

The funny thing is that china's international image is already tarnished with what has happened already.

The West will continue to buy up their goods however... As well as the rest of the world... But I guarantee you they just set themselves back 50+ years in terms of international acceptance in general.

Harry:

This is all about Money. The Tibet issue was started much earlier by German. The German have being expected a contract years to build the high speed railway between Beijing and Shanghai after the experimental railway in the city of Shanghai. A success of Beijing and Shanghai high speed railway could lead to China to build a railway network (could be a trillion dollar project) based on German technology, which will be a huge economic favor for Germans. Last year, China rewarded Japan to build the high speed railway between Beijing and Shanghai. Since then, the German started their retaliation using Tibet issue. China further punished German by rewarding France $30 billion potential commercial contract when Dalai Lama was met by German chancellor. Now, the French is using the Tibet issue to press China to materialize those $30 billion contracts. Depending on the negotiation of progress on those contracts, the French could come with further louder support for Tibet. The US has a bigger plan. With its trade deficit to China, value loss of dollar, economic recession, a crisis in China can solve all its problems. Over 150 years ago, the British had a huge trade deficit with China. The British forced China to buy drugs (opium) to balance its trade. US sold some (over $10 billion ) sub-prime mortgage to China. But this is not enough to cause financial crisis as it happened in late 1990s in south eastern Asia. A large social unrest in China could cause the $1.5 trillion USD out of China, which can instantly strength the dollar. Depending on how bad the recession goes, US could also further press China very hard.

Harry:

This is all about Money. The Tibet issue was started much earlier by German. The German have being expected a contract years to build the high speed railway between Beijing and Shanghai after the experimental railway in the city of Shanghai. A success of Beijing and Shanghai high speed railway could lead to China to build a railway network (could be a trillion dollar project) based on German technology, which will be a huge economic favor for Germans. Last year, China rewarded Japan to build the high speed railway between Beijing and Shanghai. Since then, the German started their retaliation using Tibet issue. China further punished German by rewarding France $30 billion potential commercial contract when Dalai Lama was met by German chancellor. Now, the French is using the Tibet issue to press China to materialize those $30 billion contracts. Depending on the negotiation of progress on those contracts, the French could come with further louder support for Tibet. The US has a bigger plan. With its trade deficit to China, value loss of dollar, economic recession, a crisis in China can solve all its problems. Over 150 years ago, the British had a huge trade deficit with China. The British forced China to buy drugs (opium) to balance its trade. US sold some (over $10 billion ) sub-prime mortgage to China. But this is not enough to cause financial crisis as it happened in late 1990s in south eastern Asia. A large social unrest in China could cause the $1.5 trillion USD out of China, which can instantly strength the dollar. Depending on how bad the recession goes, US could also further press China very hard.

qd:

one china

Fred:

The only thing these protest will do is encourage China to give a big FU to the world. What's with you white people, by the way, that compels you to lecture people all the time for the same, hypocritical actions that you do?

stan grant:

We in the west should stop thinking the government of china need take into account our opinion in the west. chinese public opinion is more important. the chinese have more numbers. its simply the poor northern americans that dont like thier competition. And whilst there are CIA secret flights, guantanamo, abu garib, and blackwater immunity the states should shut up re: Tibet. because northern americans have thier own worldwide human rights issues to deal with. good luck to the olimpics in china. other non sporting issues should be dealt with elsewhere.

A Chinese of reason :

A few comments.

1) Equating the Han people in general to KKK racists is ridiculous at best. Such a statement reveals the author as merely another "China hater" rather than a rational thinker.

2) There is a very nice article in Time today about how the Olympics would affect China. It is a much better analysis than this one.

3) Protests will certainly help to push the Chinese government to better respect human rights in the long run. But blindly supporting one side of an ethnic conflict will only bolster the support of the hard liners in the CCP.

4) The only way that will help the Tibetans to achieve their goal is to calm down and start negotiations for Dalai's return. Violence from Tibetans will only make the situation worse, especially after the Olympics when the media attention shifts off China.

5) As for human rights in general, we should not expect the improvement to come from the government. In fact, the Chinese constitution states that people have the rights of free speech, free press, freedom to demonstrate, and freedom of organization of political parties. The problem is that the government has so far ignored these terms in the constitution. There are increasing number of legal professionals in China who start to use the constitution to defend people in court. Many law professors and lawyers have offered legal help to Tibetans arrested in the recent events to ensure fair trial. These are real progress in human rights in China. We should expect to see more of it in the future.

Alec Lin:

I was an active participant in 1989 demonstration in Tiananmen Square when I was a junior student in a university in Beijing.
Shortly after I came to Illinois to pursue a graduate degree in 1991, the campus Chinese Student Association invited Yan Jiaqi, a celebrated dissident, to give a talk on the future of China. Mr. Yan was accused by the then Chinese government of being one of the instigators for student demonstration.
Mr. Yan mentioned in the speech that some Tibetans in exile had paid visits to his office in the US. They pleaded for independence for Tibet, although Mr. Yan did say what Dalai Lama intended for a “Great Tibet” goes beyond the current Xizang (Tibet) Autonomous Region, which could be potentially problematic.
At that time, I was truly sympathetic towards the cause of Tibet independence.
However, after 16 years of living in the US, my attitude has completely reversed. If the 1989 crackdown on the student demonstration in Beijing put the majority of Chinese people and almost all overseas Chinese at antagonism, the current crackdown in Tibet – or called restoration of order by the Chinese government – has won tremendous support domestically as well as overseas. In 1989, the Chinese students studying in various US universities bussed to protest in front of the Chinese embassy and consulate offices. In 2008, they rallied in Toronto, Vancouver, Seattle and other cities to show their support for the Chinese government.
Why is the change? I believe other readers have explained it more eloquently than I in this thread of posts. But let me sum up in a few points:
1) The hypocrisy of US (and maybe also European) politics, especially after witnessing how the presidential election is run. The Iraqi war and the use of gay marriage as a wedge issue in 2000 and 2004 US presidential elections let one see through the true nature of politics here. In a word, politics is all about interests, and the Tibet issue is no exception;
2) Disillusion after witnessing failed experiments of democracy in some countries, especially in such large countries as Russia and in India. Here one has to bear in mind that India has been a democracy since late 1940s and her economy has not picked up until lately, and the revival of Russian economy in recent years is largely helped by the rise in oil price;
3) The restored confidence in China, with her ascending economic power and expanding influence on the globe. Of course here it is debatable whether the rising nationalism – conveniently called patriotism in a US context – will be potentially more beneficial or detrimental to the nation;
4) Collective ennui towards the monotonous and condescending lecturing and chastising by western politicians and media about democracy, human rights, etc. for nearly two decades. This is part I feel saddest about as I actually agree with a lot of what they say, although not this time regarding the coverage on Tibet. If the West intends to continue the effort of changing China, they need to invent a new lexicon other than the one in current popular circulation, like those repeated by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi.
If I had been brainwashed by the propaganda of Chinese government till 1989, I also know that I came to a drastic awakening that year. Sixteen years’ of living in the US would only reinforce my disgust and detestation towards the Chinese government since we are now living in a country of democracy now, but I and many Chinese friends around feel exactly the opposite.
One can argue that those Chinese living in China are still subject to the brainwashing by the Communist propaganda, but can the same be said to those who are now studying and living in the US? After all, we are totally exposed to free flow of information here. If we disagree with the information pumped out by the media in a democracy like US, doesn’t it say something about the quality/validity/reasonableness of such information? I am surprised that nobody has addressed to this, except simplistically labeling us as “hirelings by the Chinese government.’ If so, how come I do not remember getting any stipend from the Chinese government? Please feel free to report my possible tax evasion to IRS. And I can vouch the same for all of my Chinese friends around, especially those who have left posts online.
I believe changes in China can only be effected by the Chinese people, not by any pressure from outside. The Chinese do not like the current Chinese government, but they do not trust any foreign pressure either (to understand this better, one does need to spend time in reading the Chinese history since 1840s). The current call for Free Tibet voiced from various directions would only further distance the Chinese people and rally them around the Chinese government once again. Last two times I remember this happening was when US and Britain jointly voted out China to host the 2000 Olympics and when US accidentally (?) bombed the Chinese embassy in Yugoslavia.
And so far as changing the mentality of Chinese people is concerned, the efforts put out by vociferous western media and organizations (US Congress, various NGOs, etc.) have been a grotesque failure, although I disagree with some of my Chinese fellows in that all western media or organizations harbor ill intentions towards China ; from my personal experience, many of them are good-hearted idealists and progressive values should always be treasured in any society. But to say they are completely out of touch with the contemporary psyche of the Chinese people is not an overstatement. The call for boycotting Beijing Olympics just adds another bad example.
P.S.: Being a homosexual myself, I have often been asked by some well-intentioned American friends whether gays and lesbians are being put into prison in China (some would not even ask, just assume so). The notion itself reveals how much they understand contemporary China. And they all feel surprised to learn that China de-criminalized gay sex in 1997 and deleted homosexuality from the list of mental disorders in 2001, and there are gay bars in almost every city.
In 2003, when NPR was covering the Gay Pride in Taipei, it did not forget to attach the following line at the end: “In China across the strait, homosexuality is still a crime.”
The above is just another example of how bias can be caused by lack of understanding of the changing China by western media.


uuuu:

u western people are brainwashed. don't over think yourself, see what you did to others. what a lie!don't act like you know something, you know nothing about china and other part of the world!
i don't necessarily think the damn olympics is a big deal, but i don't like you people against my country. it's time that all chinese people around the world speak up and defend our country, it's time that all chinese people working abroad realize how brainwashed these westerners can be and go back, making our country stronger!!

bardonaut, seattle:

So China wants to convey to the world the image of a unified, happy and powerful nation and these protests are going to help? i don't see it. This creates a real problem for Beijing; the Western world they are trying to impress and their own populations want them to engage in directly opposite actions.

To me this only appears to help the exiled "government" (are they recognized as having sovereignty over any region?), whose cause has been dying on the vine of late. The real activity of Tibetan Buddhism has moved to India and the West, and Tibet's former politicos in Dharamsala are seeing their opportunity to exploit this noble tradition for their own benefit fading like so much feudal gossamer.

Bai Wei:

This is brilliant, any pro-Tibet people are expressing their freedom of speech, any pro-China people are brainwashed nationalistic mannequines parotting every word of government propaganda, or good heavens, racists (according to a fellow blogger)!

For half a century in beginning 1900, China has been weak, parts of China has been invaded/occupied by Japan, UK, France, Germany, America... the list goes on. Tibet was under UK rule by the way, before that, it has been under Chinese rule on and off. Now that China is strong enough to hold on to its territories, of course it will have the people's support.

Of course it's silly to think that NGOs have an agenda to weaken China, it just happens to be a by-product of a free Tibet. Speaking of weakening China, the Dalai Lama's been on CIA's payroll for decades. Maybe the same guys who set out the Bay of Pigs had a change of heart when it comes to Tibet, they just trained Dalai and his followers, and threw money at him in the hope that he will come to a peaceful submission to China's rule. The result: 1959 armed uprising against Chinese rule.

Cosmic Rabbit:

Personally...I am hoping that freedom fighters inside of China take out some of the almost completed infrastructure, while outside of China protestors get lucky and seize the bus/van that is carrying the Olympic Flame. In the mean time, if political leaders had any balls, nations would be pulling their athletes out of the games and boycotting teh Olympics in droves.

moutamanni:

well, it seems that the 'west' or at least part of it is till follonig the same double-standard policy: calling for democracy in china and supporting dectatorship in pokistan; preaching human rights for huamn ringhts in sudan and practicing war crimes in iraq; feeling angry for the death of few people in tebet and turning a blind eye on the whole sale massacres against children in palestine, and the list goes on. stop hypocracy.
this, however, should not justify oppression of tebetanbs or by any other poeples.

Robeste:

If you really want to change china, STOP BUYING THEIR GOODS [or more accurately, their crap]. Always look at the label!

Asian American:

Andreus Wang, would have the reader believe that those who are protesting about cultural genocide that is taking place in Tibet is only due to western ignorant of the "real" history of the region. Although his first name is a disguise, his temperament represent a fanatic Chinese Nationalist. To say that China did not have imperialist past and is currently does not aspire to become an imperialist nation is naïve.One thousand years of unbroken Chinese rule in Vietnam is enough to dispel this myth. Annexation of Tibet, war with India, support of Khamer Rouge, imperialism in Burma, and desire to takeover Taiwan militarily if necessary. To the Chinese, you do not possess the moral rectitude to lecture the West about imperialism.

Free Tibet:

It's ironic that majority if not all barbaric Han Chinese think they liberated Tibet from the Daila from the barbaric Han's "standard". Let's me ask the Han Chinese this way, what do you think if the CIA rid of Hu Jintao and free you guy from his dictatorship according to the Western standard of democracy?
What you want them (Tibet) to have is not what they want to have? Respect for other culture's differences. Remember, when you push the kindest dogs to the corner, they will come out and bite you, no matter how nice the dogs are. They don't need your money and they don't need your fake freedom either. Get out of Tibet!

Andreus Wang:

Well written.
Western media and western youth probably does not take time to study history or other country' history except themself and not interest in reading western colonism in China, Tibet when they are in school. They have no idea what kind of tibetan slay system was
and what real Buddism teaching is about.
Even US in the cold war period, train Tibetans to make trouble.
A ungrateful politician hunger for power rather then the welfare of his people is not worthy of Nobel peace prize.

ting_m_1999:

Just to inform the uninformed that the crackdown in Tibet was approved by the majority of the world countries. Those who protest are the usual few countries left over from the past anti-China axis of evil led by USA. During the Cold war era, China was weak and poor and yet lonely surived the military , political and economic onslaught brought on by USA and its allies. China is not the same China as before, being stronger and more prosperous. The media is wrong in saying that Olympic is meant to shine a spotlight on China's economic and political power. China just tries its best to preserve the tradition of the Olympic and to elevate it to a higher cultural level . It is so sad that the torch was extinguished in Paris where the idea of freedom was first prolaimed during the French revolution and where the Olympic freedom symbol was extinguished now by a minority of protesters. Any further disruption of the Olympic flame in the West only demonstrates to the rest of the world the deadly human frailty and moral bankruptcy of Western culture in adhering to what it claims to be: freedom , democracy, human rights. If the West wants to trash and insult it, let them do it. If the West wants China to wreck it, China can do better. After all the Olympic event is a pillar of Western tradtion, not Chinese.


Tenzin Boepa:

Pomfret is right that the trend in China so far has been that the more the Chinese Government feel pressured, the stronger their clampdown is. Even in the present crisis in Tibet, they have sought recourse to this approach.

However, the development in Tibet has wider political implication irrespective what the nature of the Chinese Government's initial response is. China now clearly knows that it has a "Tibetan" in addition to a "Tibet" problem (from its perspective). The fact that most of the demonstrations took place in traditional Tibetan areas outside of the Tibet Autonomous Region is something the Chinese policy makers will have to review. China can no longer only talk about the Tibet Autonomous Region.

China's heavy handed response to the demonstrations cannot last long, if China is to follow its plan of being a leading power. As it is the Chinese Government's response to the Tibetan crisis has taken China back a couple of years, if not more, in terms of international image building.

Lastly, from the Chinese Government's response in Tibet it is clear that China considers Tibetans as part of "they" and not "us." This will come to haunt China in the coming days.

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