Does Tibet really have an historical claim to independence?

A brief examination of Tibet's History and its claim to independence.

Map of the whole of traditional, independent Tibet. Tibet / Tibetan Plateau as seen from space - The Traditional Homeland of the Tibetan People

The price of Freedom is Eternal Vigilance -
and sometimes your Life!

Tibetans are a uniquely distinct Race, different from all the surrounding Peoples.

Tibetan GirlTibetan Girl

They inhabited their own Territory for many Millennia as a cohesive and homogeneous Race.

Tibet’s recorded History stretches as far back as 127 BC.
As with all great Nations on this planet, the interactions with its neighbours was numerous; sometimes violent, often they prevailed over their adversaries, and at times proved less successful.
Between the seventh and ninth centuries, the Tibetan Nation often defeated the T'ang dynasty in the many battles fought during this era.
Tibetan Girl
In 641 The T'ang emperor Taizong, 太宗, (貞觀) ceded Princess Wen Cheng plus a dowry of large quantities of gold and other treasures to King Songtsen Gampo of the Tibetan Yarlung Dynasty, which he demanded after the Tibetan army occupied large swathes of Chinese territories, and in an attempt to avert certain defeat at the hands of the Tibetans.

In 763, under the Tibetan ruler Trisong Detsän (Detsen), the Tibetan army captured Chang’an, the T'ang Dynasty’s capital and extracted a hefty tribute of 50,000 bolts of silk, plus an annual tax to the victorious Tibetans. The Tibetans installed a puppet prince who signed an agreement to fulfil this annual tribute; however he didn’t last too long on the throne after the departure of the Tibetan army.

During the era, 663 to 692, the Tibetans occupied vast swathes of T'ang Dynasty territories in the Tarim Basin, Dzungaria, Xinjiang, Qinghai and Gansu.

In 821 Tibet, under Ralpacan, and T'ang Dynasty under the Ruler Hwang Te entered into a Treaty as independent Nations.821 Treaty Pillar, one of three still standing in front of the Johkang Cathedral. The treaty signed between the ‘Chinese’ T’ang / Tang dynasty and the Tibetan nation.
The T'ang Dynasty had made many pacts and signed peace treaties with Tibet before, of which none lasted too long, until the powerful Tibetans clearly threatened the existence of the T'ang Empire and consequently this bilingual treaty was drafted and signed.

The Treaty in part reads:
"The two Nations, Tibet and China, shall keep the country and frontiers which they now possess. The whole region to the East of that being the country of Great China and the whole region to the West being assuredly the Country of GREAT TIBET, from either side there shall be no warfare, no hostile invasions, and no seizure of territory…………
And in order that this Agreement establishing a great era where Tibetans shall be happy in TIBET, and Chinese shall be happy in China shall NEVER be changed, the Three Jewels, the body of Saints, the sun and the moon, planets and stars have been invoked as witnesses."

This Treaty was engraved on three stone pillars of which one is still standing in front of the Johkang Cathedral.
[see Footnotes: a]

Tibet during T'ang / Tang Dynasty

During the 13th Century, China was conquered and subjugated by the Mongols, who established the Yuan Dynasty, and was ruled thereafter directly by Mongol rulers.
Tibet during the Mongol Empire / Yuan / Yüan / Mongol Dynasty

The Mongols divided the Chinese territory into twelve provinces for administration, and Tibet was not one of these.

By contrast, Tibet entered into an Agreement (Cho-Yon) with the Mongols, pledging allegiance, and in turn became their Spiritual Advisors and Mutual Friends.
The importance of this relationship is expressed in the fact that Kublai Khan invited the Tibetan Sakya Lama to become the Protector and Religious Figurehead to his Empire.

Tibet was ruled by Tibetan Rulers during the Mongol Empire.
The Yuan Dynasty was evidently a Mongol Dynasty ruled by Mongols, and the last Mongol emperor Toghon Timur Kham, 孛兒只斤妥懽帖睦爾, was only driven out in 1368.

Tibet left the Mongol Empire in 1354, well prior to China, as it was always treated as a separate State, with Chang-chub Gyaltsen assuming and reorganising governance over Tibet.
[see Footnotes: b]

After the demise of the Mongol Empire, during the Ming Dynasty, Tibet had little close associations with any other nation for 300 years and, as always, conducted its own internal and external Affairs. Tibet during the Ming Dynasty
The first Ming Emperor Hung-wu, 洪武, referred to Tibet as a Foreign Nation in explicit and unequivocal terms.
As the Ming emperor perceived any threat to be primarily coming from the north, namely the Mongols they courted friendly relations with Tibet in order to eliminate any threat from the west.
They were very mindful of the T’ang dynasty years where Tibet posed such a powerful threat and occupied vast swathes of T’ang territories.
Hung-wu was a devout and ardent follower of Buddhism and in 1378 sent a Buddhist monk to Tibet to collect as many Buddhist texts and artefacts he could gather.

Ming Emperors bestowed some honorific titles to Tibetan Lamas and religious figure heads, which conferred nothing else than an honour bestowed to an esteemed and revered religious leader and did not influence the independence and succession of temporal Tibetan rulers, who exercised effective and sovereign power in Tibet.
Such exchange of titles was a contemporary practice between sovereign nations and merely conferred respect and honour to the recipient nation.
[see Footnotes: c]

The Ming Emperor Yongle, 永樂, invited several Tibetan religious leaders, some of which declined the invitation by this foreign ruler.
in 1403 Yongle dispatched his envoy Hou-shien with a letter of invitation to the Fifth Karmapa.
The Fifth Karmapa Dezhin Shekpa accepted the invitation, and in 1407 in an extraordinary display of deference, Yongle travelled a fair distance out of his palace and town to greet the Karmapa, an honour only bestowed to the most revered and respected foreign Sovereign. The exalted treatment conferred on the guest was such that he was seated to the left of Emperor Yongle, the place of honour, and on a higher, more elaborate throne than his own, He was lavished with exquisite gifts and treated to exceptional deference during his stay.

During the 17th Century the Han Chinese were conquered again, this time by the Manchus, which established the Qing Dynasty. The Manchus today are a minority under Chinese occupation, the Han make up the largest ethnic group by far.

The Han Chinese regarded the Manchu Rulers as foreign occupiers, and in 1911 the Qing Dynasty was overthrown and Manchu rule came to an end.

In 1639 Tibet entered into another “Cho-Yon” as equal partners with the Manchu Emperor, well before the conquest of China by the Manchus.

In 1652 the fifth Dalai Lama accepted an invitation for a State Visit by the first Qing Emperor Shun Xi, 順治.
Upon arriving at the Chinese border the Dalai Lama requested the Emperor meet him at the border.
Shun Xi wishing to oblige agreed but would meet him inside the border of China at Chenlo’u, some distance from his palace. The Emperor also had a palace specially built for the visiting foreign dignitary at Kheritaka so he could rest on his way to see him.The Great Fifth Dalai Lama seated on the throne with the Manchu Emperor Shun-Xi / Shunzhi on his visit.

As a welcoming Gala, the Emperor hosted an unprecedented lavish reception for the visiting Dalai Lama, an honour and courtesy which no other foreign Sovereign or dignitary was treated to at the Emperor’s Court.
[see Footnotes: d]

During most of the reign of the Manchu Empire Tibetans fought their own battles with the Manchus assisting Tibet only for a short period of time.

Frictions between Nepal and Tibet was a constant irritant, which led to numerous skirmishes fought between the two adversaries.
In 1788 the Nepalese Army made some inroads into Tibet, encouraged by sectarian Tibetan rebel groups, who had a motive to destabilize the Tibetan central Government. The Nepalese retreated quickly after an Accord was reached.

In 1791 the Gorkhas launched another incursion and managed to occupy some major passes and sacked the monastery Tashilumpo in Shigatse. This incursion, on the request of the Tibetan Government, prompted the Manchu Emperor to dispatch a 15,000 strong contingent, who assisted the Tibetan army in repelling the Gorkhas back to Nepal.

This intervention under the Cho-Yon Agreement marked the pinnacle of Manchu involvement in Tibetan affairs, and was the fourth time the Tibetans requested military assistance under the Cho-Yon Agreement.
This resulted in the Qing Emperor Qianlong, 乾隆, issuing a 29 point paper of recommendations to improve Tibetan governance and the defence of Tibet.
[see Footnotes: e]

British Troops entering Lhasa
Thereafter the Qing Emperors never provided any assistance to the Tibetans.
The Tibetans fought their own war against the Dogras of Jammu in 1841 - 1842, which ended with the two adversaries signing a Peace Treaty, without any involvement of the Manchus.

Neither did the Qing Emperor provide any assistance to the Tibetans in their war against the Nepalese in 1854, Tibet alone repelled the Nepalese Gorkha and in 1856 Tibet signed a Peace Treaty with them, as a fully Independent Nation.
Tibet during Qing / Q'ing / Ch'ing Dynasty / Manchu Empire Through this treaty the Gorkhas attempted to assume the role of the protector of Tibet and replace the Manchus by de facto.

Nor did the Qing Emperor provide any assistance, which the reciprocal Cho-Yon relationship required, when the British invaded Tibet in 1903 - 04.

During the latter part of the Manchu Empire the Qing Emperor was never able to fulfil his side of the provision under the “Cho-Yon” Agreement, out of weakness.

[see Footnotes: f]

In 1911 Tibet expelled the Qing emperor’s forces out of Tibet and shortly thereafter the colonial Manchu Empire completely ceased to exist and any treaty it may have ever signed along with it.

In 1912 Tibet again reasserted and declared its Sovereignty & Independence.

During the Nationalist Government Reign the Chinese President Yuan Shih-kai, 袁世凱,
repeatedly 'invited' Tibet to join China, which Tibet steadfastly rejected.
Tibet in fact demanded that Territories of Greater Tibet be returned, which have come under foreign influence.

Then in 1931 the Kuomintang Army of the Nationalist Government attempted to invade and take by force the Tibetan provinces of Amdo and Kham, which the Tibetans successfully repelled.
In 1936 Tibet also drove Mao’s armed forces out of its own territory.

Then in 1949, Tibet expelled the last remaining Chinese Representatives.

During WWII, Tibet refused permission for the Allies to cross its Territory and maintained its declared Neutrality.

All up until the invasion by China, Tibet conducted its own Internal & External affairs without any interference from any other nation.

Tibet ran all its own public services:
• Postal Service
• Signed Treaties
• Collected Taxes
• Issued its own Currency!
• Foreign Affairs
• Issued Passports
• Even evicted the Diplomatic Representatives of the Kuomintang Government

Tibetan Post Stamps Poststamps issued by the sovereign Nation of Tibet.Post Stamps issued by Tibet

Tibetan Passport issued by the sovereign Nation of Tibet.
Passport issued by independent Tibet

Tibetan Bank Note Banknote Paper MoneyTibetan Banknote
[see Footnotes: g]

The Tibetan Passports were recognized by other Nations.
This specimen bears the stamps of many countries:
France, India, Italy, United Kingdom, United States, Switzerland

Before the Invasion there was to be found in Tibet:
• No Chinese judge
• No Chinese law
• No Chinese policemen
• No Chinese newspaper
• No Chinese soldier
• No Chinese writ which ran in Tibet
• Not even a Chinese Government Representative!

Tibet, just like every other Sovereign Nation, conducted its own Affairs and had the Status of a Sovereign, Independent Nation.

Mao declared, on having to cross Tibetan Territory on his “Long March” and being looked after and fed by local Tibetan People:

"This is our only Foreign Debt, and some day we must repay the Tibetans for their Hospitality and the Provisions we were obliged to take from them".

In 1950 the Chinese Communist Government negotiated with the Tibetans as an independent Nation and ‘offered' the 17 Point Agreement, alas at the point of the gun, as at the same time the Chinese Communist forces had already invaded Tibet.
While occupying vast tracts of Tibet, the Han Chinese Communists coerced, by threat of (more) violence, the signing of the “17 Point Agreement”, which was rescinded later.

Signing of the Sino - Tibetan 17 Point Agreement / Or China's version: Agreement on Measures for the Peaceful Liberation of Tibet. The Tibetan delegation did not have authority to sign but was coerced by the threat of violence, and the Chinese forged the Seal on this 'Agreement'.
Propaganda Photograph of signing.

This “17 Point Agreement” clearly has no legal basis in International Law.
It was imposed under duress, by unequal partners, the Deputation had no authority to sign, which was clearly conveyed to the Chinese by the Tibetan Delegation, and the Seal was forged by the Chinese.

Unable to declare their non-acceptance of the forced Agreement while under such forbidding occupation, the Dalai Lama finally repudiated this ignominious treaty on the 20th June 1959, once in freedom in India.

The Chinese Communists issued many pronouncements to the effect that they would never annex Tibet:
Mao Zedong ‘promised’ the Dalai Lama that the Chinese will leave Tibet once 'liberation' is complete.

In 1950, before full scale Invasion, China "assured" India that China had no intention of ‘incorporating’ Tibet into China by Force or Otherwise!

In 1956, Chou En-lai assured Nehru that China did not consider Tibet as a Province of China, but as an Autonomous Region.

The Geneva-based International Commission of Jurists, in its 1960 report, examined the legal status of the Tibetan Government and Nation:

“The view of the Committee is that Tibet was, at the very least, a de facto independent State when the Agreement on Peaceful Measures in Tibet was signed on the 23 May 1951, and the repudiation of this Agreement by the Tibetan Government on the 20 June 1959 was found to be fully justified.
In 1950, there was a people and a territory, and a government which functioned in that territory, conducting its own domestic affairs free from any outside authority. From 1913-1950 all foreign relations of Tibet were conducted exclusively by the Government of Tibet and countries with whom Tibet had practice as an independent State”.

The primary precept of International Law is the preservation and integrity of Sovereign Nationhood.
Therefore the existence of Sovereign Nationhood cannot be repudiated or invalidated by extraneous influences or events which may befall a nation.
The aggrieved nation always enjoys the presumption of continuation of independence and sovereignty.
The burden of proof is on the aggressor, the aggrieved Nation is not required to tender proof of its continued sovereignty.

In the case of Tibet, China clearly is bereft of any credible 'proof' to sovereignty over the Tibetan Nation.

International Law holds that recognition of a Nation’s Sovereignty can occur either by Explicit, or Implicit acts, including such as negotiations, treaties, and diplomatic relations.

In fact, the Tibetan nation has been explicitly recognized by many countries and enjoyed diplomatic relations with most countries prior to the invasion by the Han Chinese Communists:
United Nations UN Emblem
• El Salvador formally requested that China's aggression against Tibet be placed on the agenda of the U.N. General Assembly.

• During the four U.N. General Assembly debates on Tibet in 1959, 1960, 1961, and 1965, many countries including the Philippines, Ireland, Thailand, United States, Nicaragua explicitly stated that Tibet was an independent country, illegally occupied by China.

• Irish Representative to the UN, Frank Aiken, stated:
"For thousands of years, or for a couple of thousand years at any rate, (Tibet) was as free and as fully in control of its own affairs as any nation in this Assembly, and a thousand times more free to look after its own affairs than many of the nations here. "

• The Thai Ambassador to the UN stated: "The majority of states refute the contention that Tibet is part of China.”

• "Aggression" and "Invasion" were widely used terms to describe the Chinese occupation of Tibet during these debates.

• The U.N. passed three resolutions in 1959, 1961, and 1965 regarding Tibet, stating that Tibetans are deprived of their inalienable rights to self-determination through the illegal occupation by China.

• The Nepalese government in its 1949 application to the UN for membership listed Tibet as an independent country with which Nepal maintained full diplomatic relations. The Nepalese diplomatic mission in Lhasa maintained full embassy status, staffed with an Ambassador right up until 1962.
[see Footnotes: h]

• Mongolia explicitly recognized Tibet's sovereignty by signing the 1913 Treaty with Tibet called the ‘Treaty of Friendship and Alliance’, signed by both Nations.

• In a 1943 note to the U.S. State Department, the British embassy in Washington explicitly stated that, "Tibet is a separate country in full enjoyment of local autonomy, entitled to exchange diplomatic representatives with other powers."

• In December 1950 the U.S. State Department declared the following in a public statement:
“The United States, which was one of the early supporters of the principle of self- determination of peoples, believes that the Tibetan people have the same inherent right as any other to have the determining voice in its political destiny. The United States Government recognizes the de facto autonomy that Tibet has exercised since the fall of the Manchu Dynasty, and particularly since the Simla Conference. "
Tibetan Girl
The CCP themselves, in a draft constitution drawn up in 1931, stated the following: "National minorities may either join the Union of Chinese Soviets or secede from it."
This implicitly included the Tibetan Nation.

• Prior to the invasion, Tibet independently maintained diplomatic, economic, and cultural relations with various countries such as Mongolia, Nepal, Sikkim, British India, China, Russia and Japan.

• Britain, Nepal, Bhutan, India, and even China before their expulsion, maintained diplomatic missions in Lhasa. The Tibetan Foreign Office conducted talks with President Franklin D. Roosevelt when he sent representatives to Lhasa to discuss the allied war effort against Japan during World War II.

• China's own last Head of Mission in Lhasa, Shen Tsung-Lien, wrote after leaving the country in 1948,
"Since 1911 Lhasa (i.e. the Tibetan Government in Lhasa) has to all practical purposes enjoyed full independence".
Tibetan Girl
[see Footnotes: i]

China’s untenable claim over Tibet is based solely on the influence which the Mongols in the thirteenth, and Manchu emperors in the eighteenth century, with varying degrees, exercised over Tibet.
In the case of the Mongol Yuan Dynasty the claim is nonsensical, as already examined the two nations were separate entities under Mongol rule, separately administered and treated entirely differently.

And in the case of the Manchus the degree of influence at best was very limited, did not extend to governance of Tibet, and was so sporadic and short lived, that it is entirely meaningless as a claim to suzerainty over, let alone “ownership” of Tibet.

In any case, since Tibet enjoyed unfettered Sovereignty and independent Nationhood for so many decades prior to the invasion, de facto sovereignty is well established in International Law and therefore requires no explicit recognition by any other country, and distant historic events become irrelevant.

As members in the UN debates have clearly noted: Tibet has enjoyed and displayed unfettered independence to a much larger degree than most countries presently in the UN, and perhaps more so than “China” which always was at best a very fluid concept over the millennia and was ruled by foreign administrations for centuries.

If China's methodology were to be applied universally, most countries would have a claim over their neighbours, but more importantly, Tibet would have an equal claim to "ownership" over 'China'.

Presenting the facts in any other light is not only untenable, but is evidently in conflict with all the accepted historical data and International Law!

Tibetan Flag, also known as the Snow Lion Flag, adapted and designed by the 13th Dalai Lama in 1912.


History is written by the Victor -
But the Truth will never die.


In 1949 there were a unique, cohesive people, which inhabited their ancestral territory for millennia.

A fully functional, sovereign Government and Nation, which enjoyed unfettered independence for four decades, domestically, and on the International stage.

A sovereign nation, which refused to be allied to any other state, and was fiercely defending this right to stay neutral and independent.
A people, which refused to be subjugated by a foreign invader and rebelled against this occupier against all odds.

International Law is, beyond any reasonable doubt, on the side of the Tibetans; only the callous obduracy of the Chinese occupiers, and pusillanimous international expediency towards a powerful nation, economically and militarily, is preventing a fair solution to be implemented for the Tibetan populace - namely Independence.
Who after all have the inalienable right to self determination, enshrined in Law and signed by the occupying nation.

Today, Tibetans are deeply unhappy and live in a state of constant fear and terror, so much so that they risk their lives, lengthy prison sentences, torture and abuse, and very often their lives for just carrying a photo of the Dalai Lama, to protest the degradation and atrocities endured, or to defy the callous Chinese rule.
And every year several thousand flee their homeland to India in an attempt to escape a life of oppression and denigration and risk being shot like dogs by the Chinese border guards, if they are spotted on their way to Freedom.

A claim to self-determination by the Tibetan people clearly is unquestionably valid on all counts under International Law:

• As a distinct people
• As a people being ruled by an illegitimate government
• And continuing to be an occupied, independent, sovereign nation after having exercised unfettered sovereignty for at least the four decades prior to the invasion by Chinese forces, but effectively for two millennia of its proud existence as an Nation!

[see Footnotes: j]



a) The PRC under the CCP has systematically reinterpreted and rewritten Tibetan history, to the extent that most of the notable scholars on the subject are exasperated at the scope of distortion and fabricated untruths.

Every aspect of Tibetan history is used as a propaganda tool:

• To justify the occupation and annexation of Tibet
• To ‘prove’ Chinese “ownership” of Tibet.
• To portray Tibetan history as feudal, backward and barbaric who now should be grateful at being ‘liberated’.
• And to generally denigrate the Tibetans as a lesser people than the Han Chinese, who now ‘benefit’ from the economic development brought by all the Han Chinese settlers.
• Even their version of historic accounts employ this theme, and for instance portray Princess Wen Cheng as the source of all that’s civilized and notable about Tibetan culture and achievements.

Following is an inscription of an earlier Pillar, the “Pillar of the Zhöl Quarter”, relating events prior to 763, and giving some context to the 823 treaty:

“…..the two great commanders were ordered to carry war to Keng-shi. On the bank by the ford of Chi-hu Chir a great battle was fought with the Chinese. Tibet put them to flight …. many Chinese were killed. The Chinese King Kwang Peng Wan also fled from the fort to Sshem-ci’u…. Keng-shi was captured….”

The pillar inscriptions were deliberately damaged by the Chinese, with the missing words reinterpreted and the meaning of the text materially altered to suit their purpose.
However existing photographs and historical accounts of the inscriptions still relate the true context and meaning.

b) Chinese ‘historians’ today claim that the Mongolian Yuan Dynasty was in fact “Chinese” and hence the Ming emperors ‘inherited’ sovereignty over Tibet from this era, (the Mongols) but no other respected scholar can come to this conclusion, and is invariably described as 'nonsensical and absurd'.
This disregards that the Emperors were Mongols and the administration was Mongol, with no Chinese appointed to government positions, and most importantly, the Manchus were eventually overthrown and driven out.

c) The Chinese today claim to have installed the Dalai Lama lineage and bestowed them with their title and powers.

In 1577 the Mongol prince Altan Khan, on advice of his nephew, invited the famed Sonam Gyatso, head of the Gelupga, or Yellow Hat School, to visit him, and to impart his renowned and celebrated teachings to him.
The two met in June the following year, and as was customary, the two sovereigns exchanged honorific titles. And in doing so Altan translated the Tibetan word Gyatso, meaning “oceanic virtue”, into the equivalent Mongolian word “Dalai”, meaning ocean.
The Tibetan word Lama was always reserved for reincarnations of important Buddhist teachers, or Tulkus, and the first two “Dalai Lamas” were in fact never called such, but known as Gedun Drupa and Gedun Gyatso respectively.
This honorific title ‘Dalai Lama’ was then retrospectively and posthumously applied to the previous two Gyatso Lamas and so they became the first and second, and Sonam Gyatso the third ‘Dalai Lama’.
However, Altan merely translated the existing Tibetan title, Gyatso, into Mongolian, and to this day every Dalai Lama since the second, still bears the name Gyatso, as in the XIVth Tenzin Gyatso, so even the Mongolian “Dalai” does not amount to any granting of title, or honorific thereof, but was merely a Mongolian translation of the existing Tibetan title.

It was Gushri Khan, ruler of the Qshot Mongol tribe, who defeated the rivals of the Dalai Lama faction, and the ‘Great Fifth’ Dalai Lama, Ngawang Lobsan Gyatso 1617-1682, was enthroned in 1642, who had already been recognized as the incarnation of the previous Dalai Lama.
He ruled supreme over a unified Tibet, with the Mongols subordinate to him.

d) The Manchu Emperor’s ulterior motives were to curry favour with the influential Tibetans, and also to indirectly assuage the potential threat the Mongols posed. The Tibetans maintained a very close and mutual relationship with the Mongols, who still proved to be a feared military power, potentially threatening the Manchu empire.

e) In fact, that the ‘29 point decree’ amounted to nothing more than well intentioned suggestions under the Cho-Yon agreement is clearly evident in the Envoy General Fu K'ang-an’s statement to the Eighth Dalai Lama on presenting the paper:

"The Emperor issued detailed instructions to me, the Great General, to discuss all the points, one by one, in great length.
This demonstrates the Emperor's concern that Tibetans come to no harm and that their welfare be ensured in perpetuity. There is no doubt that the Dalai Lama, acknowledging his gratitude to the Emperor, will accept these suggestions once all the points are discussed and agreed upon. However, if the Tibetans insist on clinging to their age-old habits, the Emperor will withdraw the Ambans and the garrison after the troops are pulled out.
Moreover, if similar incidents occur in the future, the Emperor will have nothing to do with them. The Tibetans may, therefore, decide for themselves as to what is in their favour and what is not or what is heavy and what is light, and make a choice on their own".

This clearly demonstrates that:
• The 29 point edict was nothing more than nonbinding suggestions,
• The relationship between the Manchu Emperor and the Tibetans was not one of overlord and subordinate, but rather one of two nations on equal footing, associated by an Agreement, which, at the time, vexed the Emperor after the Manchus having to comply four times under the terms of the Cho-Yon Agreement with requests for assistance.(1720, 1728, 1751, 1792)
• The Amban, envoys of the Emperor’s court, had no say in the running of the Tibetan Governments affairs, and were merely Ambassadors to a sovereign Nation.

And to illustrate these points further:
The Amban Yu Tai related in 1903 to Mortimer Durand, the then Foreign Secretary of the Government of India that he were “only a guest in Lhasa, not a master” and he “could not put aside the real masters”, and as such he had “no force to speak of”.

The Tibetan Government paid only scant regard to this 29 point paper and electively followed the advice where it suited them, and disregarded other points deemed unsuitable for running Tibetan affairs.

An apparently minor, but vital point is that none of the Ambans were Chinese, each one of them was a Manchu, a distinction which highlights the personal relationship the Manchu Emperors maintained with the Tibetans under the Cho-Yon Agreement.

Early in the seventeen hundreds, a resident Jesuit described the Dalai Lama's and his temporal Government's role as follows:

"The hierarchy which exists in Tibet is not secular but superior to all temporal and regular government. Head of all is the Grand Lama of Tibet.
He rules not only over religious, but over temporal matters, as he is really the absolute master of all Tibet."

f) The Qing Emperors in essence never exerted any meaningful, or even extended control over Tibet, and the relatively short period of very limited influence after 1792 amounted to a tiny fraction of the 2,000 year time span of proud, recorded Tibetan history!

However, regardless of the duration, extent or nature of any control a nation may have exerted over another in the distant past, such becomes irrelevant once the subordinate state achieves independence and sovereignty over its affairs.
In the case of Tibet, which enjoyed such unfettered Sovereignty for four decades, and by all intents and purposes for at least two millennia prior, safe the interlude of the Mongol Empire where Tibet pledged allegiance, but governed itself and even became the Patron to the Mongol Empire, the question of past alliances is irrelevant.
This would be the case even if Tibet would have been to a degree subordinate to China, which was not the case.
The very limited degree of influence the Manchu Empire managed to exert falls a very long way short of control, suzerainty or sovereignty, as China today claims.
If this principle were to be applied, the law of the jungle would indeed prevail and just about every state could lodge claims over every other.

The Buddhist Dalai Lamas did not maintain strong armies for defence, unlike their predecessors of the powerful and feared Tibetan Kingdom, but relied on the Cho-Yon agreement for defence of their country.
This pacifist approach was to become a point of exploitation by the Manchus who sought to increase their influence over Tibet, but only marginally managed to exert some very limited degree of influence.
However the Tibetans never viewed the affairs between their states in this light, and always fiercely maintained their independence.
The intent of an aggressor, the Manchus in this case, could never legitimize any control they may have managed to exert over another, sovereign state.

g) Tibet commenced the issue of its own currency in coins, the Tamka, from 1792, which was based on the Nepalese currency as its model.
Paper Banknotes and Postage Stamps were issued from 1890 and both currencies were in use until 1950 after the invasion and occupation by China.

The coins and Banknotes bore the Government Seal of a Lion and the Date of Issue.

In 1947-8 the Tibetan Government sent a Trade Delegation to India, UK, US and China.
They were issued with official Tibetan Government Passports and travel documents which were recognized by every Government of all the countries visited. The UK issued them with diplomatic visas.

h) The Purposes of the United Nations are:

Article 1.2.
To develop friendly relations among nations based on respect for the principle of equal rights and self-determination of peoples, and to take other appropriate measures to strengthen universal peace;

In essence every member to the UN has singed up to the principle of People's right to Self-Determination, including China.

The “International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights” states the following in Part I, Article 1:

1. All peoples have the right of self-determination. By virtue of that right they freely determine their political status and freely pursue their economic, social and cultural development.

3. The States Parties to the present Covenant, including those having responsibility for the administration of Non-Self-Governing and Trust Territories, shall promote the realization of the right of self-determination, and shall respect that right, in conformity with the provisions of the Charter of the United Nations.

China is a signatory to this treaty and therefore bound by its covenants.

The UNESCO meeting of Experts on Further Study of the Rights of Peoples held in Paris in February 1990 stated the following conclusion:

"A People for the rights of peoples in International Law, including the right to self determination, has the following characteristics:
1. A group of individual human beings who enjoy some of all of the following common features:
a) A common historical tradition;
b) Racial or ethnic homogeneity;
c) Cultural homogeneity;
d) Linguistic unity;
e) Religious or ideological affinity;
f) Territorial connection;
g) Common economic life;

2. The group must be of a certain number who not be large (e.g. the people of micro states) but must be more than a mere association of individuals within a State;
3. The group as a whole must have the will to be identified as a people or the consciousness of being a people - allowing that groups or some members of such groups, though sharing the foregoing characteristics, nay not have the will or consciousness;
4. Possibly the group must have institutions or other means of expressing its common characteristics and will for identity.

The Experts concluded that the Tibetan People satisfied these requirements as a distinct and homogenous people for International Law purposes.

It was also noted that even the PRC explicitly treated the Tibetans as a distinct People, in law, under the Constitution, and in establishing the TAR.

The Tibetan people however are denied the right to self determination they are entitled to under International Law

UN Resolutions 1353, 1723 and 2079 recognized the Tibetan People as a distinct people under International Law, and Resolution 1723 and 2079 explicitly express the right of the Tibetan People to Self Determination.

i) China was enthusiastically in favour of Timor Leste achieving independence and argued that “the choice of the Timorese people should be respected”.
A fundamental right, enshrined in the UN Charter and the ‘Covenant on Civil and Political Rights’, both of which China is a signatory to, but which the Tibetan people are denied by their occupiers.

j) China claims that the right to self-determination was never designed to facilitate secession, and claims that it can not be used to undermine its territorial integrity. A claim it clearly only wishes to apply to its 'own territory', but not for others like Indonesia in the case of Timor Leste, or Serbia for Kosovo, who both rightfully gained their independence, to which China lent its explicit support.
Firstly, as already examined, the PRC can not demonstrate that Tibet ever was an integral part of what today is considered as “China”.
Secondly however, a government has to be the legitimate representative of a people to use this claim, but even then, the Tibetan people, being a distinct and cohesive race and having occupied their ancestral lands for millennia, still always have the right to self-determination.
An illegitimate government can never raise a claim of territorial integrity.
A government who engages in conduct contrary to International Law, Treaties and Conventions, which does not originate from the will of the people it governs, and does not abide by universally enshrined Human Rights and Freedoms, is not the legitimate government of these people.

China clearly is not the legitimate government of the Tibetan people, as it has, and continues unabated, to grossly violate all these conventions, treaties and covenants China has signed up to and is legally bound by.

A claim to self-determination by the Tibetan people clearly is unquestionably valid on all counts under International Law:

• As a distinct people
• As a people being ruled by an illegitimate government
• And continuing to be an occupied, independent, sovereign nation after having exercised unfettered sovereignty for at least the four decades prior to the invasion by Chinese forces, but effectively for two millennia.


Tibetan Paintings: Pratapaditya Pal
The Circle of Bliss: John Huntington, Dina Bangdel, Robert Thurman
China's Tibet Policy: Dawa Norbu
Early Ming policy toward Tibet: Elliot Sperling
Tibet: Robert McCorquodale, Nicholas Orosz
Chinese Sculpture: Angela Falco Howard, Li Song, Wu Hung, Yang Hong
Secret Visions of the Fifth Dalai Lama: Samten Gyaltsen Karmay
High Frontiers: Kenneth Bauer
Tibetans in Yüan China: Herbert Franke
History as Propaganda: John Powers
Empire of Emptiness: Patricia Ann Berger
The Cambridge History of China: Denis Twitchett, John King Fairbank, Frederick W. Mote
United Nations
Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights
Center For World Indigenous Studies
Tibet and Nationalist China’s Frontier
Die Weltwoche


A horrendous story of one too many….

.... for the Road!

It is estimated that each year over 1.2 million people are killed in road crashes globally.
Additionally, 20-50 times that number suffer from serious injuries.

This translates into 3,300 deaths and over 70,000 serious injuries each day, or over 2 road deaths per minute.

The cost of these casualties is estimated to be over half a trillion US Dollars.

For males aged 15 to 44 road fatalities account for the second leading cause of death behind Aids.

The Asian region accounts for 45% of all deaths, with a share of 16% of all motor vehicles.

In developing countries like Thailand and Vietnam, a very high proportion of road deaths are alcohol related, with 50 to 60% of all victims showing alcohol in their blood.

A study in Ireland found that 90% of all crashes where the driver was under the influence of alcohol, that driver was male. 37% of all fatal crashes involved alcohol as a leading cause, but in 62% of all single vehicle crashes alcohol was a factor.

Other studies found that drivers whose blood alcohol level is measured at 80mg/100ml are three (3) times more likely to be involved in a crash than drivers with a zero level. Above the 80mg level this risk increases exponentially.
Over half the fatal drivers had levels of over 150mg/100ml blood alcohol.

The combination of alcohol and speed is a particularly toxic mix.
With almost half the alcohol related fatal accidents speed is part of the cause.

Drunk driving is a mainly male problem, with global estimates of 85% to 95% of drunk drivers involved in fatal crashes being male.

The question is how tolerant a society should be towards this antisocial behaviour of drinking and driving?

One person’s freedom stops where another’s starts; the freedom to drive and not having to tolerate the additional, and unnecessary risk of being killed by a (male) Drunk Driver.

Every society must have rules which safeguard one section’s freedoms, and needs to restrict another’s to allow all citizens to enjoy maximum safety and quality of life.

We all are at one time members of one group enjoying freedoms, and at others we belong to a group ceding a small portion of our ‘freedoms’.

The most worrying aspect is that young people are becoming less responsible and more reckless, with a culture of excess drinking, binge drinking and alcohol related problems at an alarming increase.

So, should there be zero tolerance for blood alcohol levels for motor vehicle drivers?
And how severely should offenders be disciplined for transgressions?



Tibet, the real, new Shangri-La!

If one wanted to know what life in a Utopian society feels and ‘tastes’ like, one would have to live there for some time and be a member of that society, and live through all their experiences, as if being one of them. Live all their hopes and fears, their anxieties and joys, and their frustrations and pains.

Tibet is a very fortunate country, indeed.
Tibetans have the Han Chinese who take care of pretty much everything for them.

The Han Chinese build roads, and railways, so that their military can be deployed at much faster rates, and be on the spot almost instantly wherever the Tibetan people need them for their protection.
These same roads also facilitate the movement of Han Chinese settlers who will charitably occupy the land which the Tibetans have so willingly and generously donated to the Han Chinese Communist Government.
In return the Tibetans enjoy the privilege of having the option of buying into nicely grey tinged, walled in housing complexes in remote areas, which are too far for any work to commute to. In these housing complexes they enjoy the protection of the PAP, People’s Armed Police, day and night, just in case some untoward event should befall the Tibetan community while herded into this walled in reservation, lacking any such awful modern distractions, as running water, electricity or a reticulated sewerage system.
Of course, if the Tibetans don’t opt into this scheme, then they will enjoy the gracious custody of the Han Chinese in a more smallish confinement.

Tibetans don’t have to bother with their ancient, awkward language, for it will not get them anywhere, anywhere at all. Mandarin is the language of this paradise and Tibetans can enjoy everything they need to know on tv, radio, or print, all in Mandarin, right there pre-digested and in simple form, so all can understand the profound truths they convey. They’re also reminded not to be so foolish to ever use their deprecated language for any purpose whatsoever in Tibet, for this might not be the most prudent thing to do.

Tibetans are also spared the bother of wasting their time queuing up for any social services, government schemes, or health care services, for more often that not they’ll always find Han Chinese in front of them, regardless how long hey wait. These services were never meant for Tibetans anyway, and they wouldn’t be able to afford any such scheme in any case. Great time saver indeed, and in reality an inverse discrimination!

The Han Chinese also take care of all the natural resources on behalf of the Tibetans, they will extract these for them, and use those very roads to ship them away from Tibet into the safe hands of Han Chinese, out east. These same Han Chinese also have already clear felled just about all the ancient forests and left the hillsides denuded and open to erosion, so that the Tibetans don’t ever again need to worry about some ‘evil spirits’ living in the woods.

The Han Chinese also have, free of charge, rendered huge tracts of land, and groundwater supplies so contaminated with nuclear and chemical waste that Tibetans don’t have to worry about cultivating this land ever again, or using the groundwater for irrigation, drinking or any purpose whatsoever, for eternity. Really a great boon to the Tibetans this, when they have so much land and so few people to take care of it.

The Tibetans also enjoy free patriotic education during their working time, when they would otherwise have to work to earn a living, that is, if they are unfortunate enough to be in employment.
This free education will really get their employment prospects up, being able to say “the Dalai Lama is a separatist and splittist”, and “the CCP is our real Buddha”, and “the Motherland will never be split by the evil DL clique”, very useful – and free of course. They can pass a test after this education programme to prove their academic prowess in being able to repeat the Han Chinese’s highly intellectual musings.
Every Han Chinese employer can check this diploma and decide how useful it is for the job applied, or already held. Though it is not the norm that Han Chinese would employ Tibetans, for the Han Chinese will rather employ other Han Chinese, so that the Tibetans don’t have to work and can enjoy a long, healthy fast.
Of course if they happen to fail that test then, being a monk for instance, they wouldn’t need to go back to arduous monastic life, or as an employee, go back to their boring jobs.

And the Tibetans don’t need to run their own government, the Han Chinese do it all happily for them.
The Han Chinese will tell them how to run every aspect of their lives, what is allowed and what is tolerated, and what will get them into First Class Han Chinese accommodation, where they will enjoy some very special massages and electric titillation, how kind and convenient of the Han Chinese.
Tibetans rarely come back to tell of this wonderful experience they’ve enjoyed while in the care of the Han Chinese. Their relatives are also spared the expense of a burial, and the sight of their love one, for this could really upset them. The Han Chinese will take care of the body for them, free of charge of course.
Most often the Han Chinese won’t upset the relatives by informing them about the untimely departure of their love ones, for this would only cause them grieve.

The Tibetans don’t even have to write their own history for the Han Chinese have already kindly written it for them, a great service for the Tibetans, for they had a very contrary, and obviously erroneous account of their own history.
They foolishly thought, along with all the eminent historians and international law experts, that they were an independent and sovereign country.

Tibetan women don’t have to bear more than one child, for even though they are exempt from the one child policy, they get sterilisation on the spot from roaming Han Chinese teams catching them like some stray dogs on the road.
They don’t even have to go to a clinic, for this treatment, it is carried out on the spot by wonderfully unqualified teams of Han Chinese, who out of the goodness of their hearts, will give this service freely so that Tibetans don’t multiply beyond their own ‘good’ for their creed. It would be a shame if there would be too many recipients of such Han Chinese generosity in this paradise created by them.

Now just recently the Tibetans are the lucky beneficiaries of a Closed Circuit TV, CCTV, surveillance system, the SkyNet.
This system allows the Han Chinese to oversee the whole of Tibet, every prefecture, every town, every village, all over, everywhere where Tibetans live there are CCTV systems installed, just to ensure their safety, day and night.

In fact, Tibetans are really well taken care of, right now there are thousands in the pampering care of the Han Chinese, and almost all have enjoyed their special massages and electric titillation, some even have been treated to a special kind of water treatment.
Many, many more have already been through this treatment and have already been released again.
Many of the released Tibetans now no longer need to work, for their wonderful experience has given them a special yearning, and now they are just looking forward to their early departure from this incarnation, just as many already have departed, thanks to the special treatment by the Han Chinese.

Sadly, soon there won’t be any Tibetans left to enjoy all these benefits bestowed by the Han Chinese, for the plans the Han Chinese have for them and their land they so erroneously think of as their homeland, will see them rendered invisible, a minute forgotten minority, a creed delivered into oblivion, razed from their land and erased from the world’s conscience.

Now if this is a Utopian society, and Orwell has not, in his wildest imagination, envisaged anything like this ever being visited upon this planet, let alone in the enlightened 21st century, then how can anyone know what it would feel like to live there?

Of course this a is a very abridged account of life in this Utopian society, there are many more benefits these people, called Tibetans, are able to enjoy.

Like free Fear, real Fear, Fear down through to the bone, Fear day and night, Fear of what is going to happen next, will they be arrested for no reason at all and end up enjoying this special Han Chinese treatment they give so freely while in their tender care, and from which they most likely will never emerge again ………

Well, as enunciated before, just a Utopian Society!

Such unspeakable barbarity could never be perpetrated by one creed against another, be it out of wanton callousness, greed, and or ignorance.
Ignorance of the circularity of one’s deeds, the karmic dividends ensuing from every thought, utterance and deed!

Humans would never be capable of descending to such depraved depths, a hell below, and beyond animalistic behaviour, not in the 21st century, not ever, surely?

And in case you’re wondering, of course, this is all just made up; a CIA / USA / Western Powers / Media Propaganda beat up, lies, lies and more lies to besmirch the benevolent Han Chinese Communists who are not really barbaric and racist like this at all. This is just all part of a vile Western conspiracy to vilify the wonderful Han Chinese and put them back into their place!

And yes, all the Tibetan eyewitnesses, the people with first hand experiences, Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch, all the Independent Researchers, all the people who fled from this Shangri-La and related their first hand accounts about life there, of course they are all in on it, they too are all unconscionable Liars ; for there is no truth like the CCP’s own sweet, palatable truth!

Just a Utopian Society, obscured and hidden from the conscience of the world by mist and clouds, behind the world's highest mountains!

Continue reading here:
Can the Olympic Spirit survive?
Fervent Chinese Nationalism?
In the spirit of the Olympics, indeed!
Letter to Hu Jintao
Of Patriotism and Motherlands.
Cultural Genocide?


The rape of Tibet

The CCP’s Propaganda machine is in overdrive telling the world what China is ‘investing’ and spending on ‘developing’ Tibet, and how much it is helping Tibetans to achieve better living standards!
Here are some sobering facts behind this propaganda drive:

By Partha Gangopadhyay

China is incurring huge expenditure in transferring and consolidating the Chinese population in Tibet. Massive investment has been made to build a network of modern highways all over Tibet. China can also boast of having laid the highest railway track in the world that connects Lhasa with Beijing. In fact, China often complains that its "civilizing" mission in Tibet is costing the government and people of China large amounts in terms of subsidies to an under-developed region. According to official Chinese statistics, the level of annual subsidies to the Tibetan Autonomous Region (TAR) in the late 1980s was around 1 billion yuan or $270 million. However, all the infrastructure that China has built in Tibet has not made the lives of the native Tibetans any better; it has only taken the exploitative apparatuses of the Chinese government deeper.

China's Ministry of Land and Resources has announced monumental new resource discoveries all across Tibet. The findings are the culmination of a secret seven-year, $44 million survey project, which began in 1999. More than 1,000 researchers were divided into 24 separate groups and fanned out across the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau to geologically map the entire Tibetan region. Their findings have lead to a discovery of 16 major new deposits of copper, iron, lead, zinc and other minerals worth an estimated $128 billion. These discoveries add to Tibet's proven deposits of 126 minerals, with a significant share of the world's reserves in lithium, chromite, copper, borax, and iron. "Lack of resources has been a bottleneck for the economy," Meng Xianlai, director of the China Geological Survey, had once complained in his statements. The discoveries in Tibet "will alleviate the mounting resources pressure China is facing."

Tibet is now said to hold as much as 40 million tons of copper - one third of China's total, 40 million tons of lead and zinc, and more than a billion tons of high-grade iron. Among the Tibet discoveries is China's first substantial rich-iron supply. A seam called Nyixung, is alone expected to contain as much as 500 million tons. That's enough to reduce Chinese iron import by 20 per cent. The new copper reserves are no less substantial. A 250-mile seam of the metal has been found along Tibet's environmentally sensitive Yarlung Tsangpo Gorge. One mine there, called Yulong, already described as the second-largest reserve in China, is now estimated to hold as much as 18 million tons, according to the government news site Xinhua and could soon become the largest copper mine in the country, helping to feed China's increasing demand of the metal used for electrical wiring and power generation. China, which until now has imported much of its copper from Chile, is estimated to hold 5.6 per cent of the world's copper and is its seventh largest producer.

The riches that China expects to extract from Tibet in the near future, perhaps better explains the money that China annually spends on Tibet than the empty claims of modernizing Tibet.

In fact, an official web site of China has itself disclosed that "Once-quiet, northern Tibet has become a scene of bustle and excitement since a number of inland enterprise marched into the region in response to the government call for speeding up the development of western China. Northern Tibet has more than 200 mining areas with 28 kinds of mineral ores, and is rich in oil and hot springs."

The China National Star Petroleum Corporation and the China National Oil and Gas Exploration and Development Corporation have recently dug up the first oil well in the Lunpola Basin, which has a proven oil reserve of three million tons. This reserve is in addition to the over one million tons of crude oil that Amdo's oil fields produce per year. Further, the Chinese have opened two alluvial gold mines in Nagqu and built a gem processing plant in Lhasa. Soinam Dorje, an official of the Nagqu Prefecture, has welcomed inland and foreign investors to exploit the gold, oil and antimony resources on the plateau of northern Tibet. This also goes far to explain the need to invest in infrastructure all over Tibet. Apart from its rich mineral wealth, Tibet has many other resources that may provide China the edge in its race to emerge as the world's richest economy.

The volume of timber that China has taken away from Tibet itself far exceeds the amount that it has spent to build the infrastructural facilities in Tibet. In 1949, Tibet's ancient forests covered 221,800 sq km. By 1985 they stood at 134,000 sq km - almost half. Most forests grow on steep, isolated slopes in the river valleys of Tibet's low-lying south-eastern region. The principal types are tropical montane and subtropical montane coniferous forest, with spruce, fir, pine, larch, cypress, birch, and oak among the main species. The tree line varies from 3,800 mt in the region's moist south to 4,300 mt in the semi-dry north. Tibet's forests were primarily old growth, with trees over 200 years old predominating. The average stock density is 272 cubic mt/ha, but U-Tsang's old growth areas reach 2,300 cubic mt/ha - the world's highest stock density for conifers. Once pristine forests are reached, the most common method of cutting is clear felling, which has led to the denudation of vast hill sides. Timber extraction until 1985 totaled 2,442 million cubic mt, or 40 per cent of the 1949 forest stock, worth $54 billion.

Deforestation is a major source of employment in Tibet: in the Kongpo area of the TAR alone, over 20,000 Chinese soldiers and Tibetan prisoners are involved in tree felling and transportation of timber. In 1949, Ngapa, in Amdo, had 2.20 million hectares of land under forest cover. Its timber reserve then stood at 340 million cubic mt. In the 1980s, it was reduced to 1.17 million hectares, with a timber reserve of only 180 million cubic mt. Similarly, during 30 years, till 1985 China exploited 6.44 million cubic mt of timber from Kanlho Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture. As new roads increasingly penetrate remote areas of Tibet, China is finding new excuses to increase the rate of deforestation in the region.

China's primary objective of constructing roads in Tibet is to deploy occupying forces like the People's Liberation Army, along with defence materials, and immigration of Chinese, as well as to exploit the natural resources of Tibet, which are transported primarily to China. Roads may run through most Tibetan villages, but a public transport system is almost non-existent in the majority of rural Tibet. The Chinese modern means of transport do not benefit the majority of Tibetans. Tibetans in most places continue to use horses, mules, yaks, donkeys and sheep as modes of transportation. Thus, the Chinese claim of investing heavily in "civilizing" the Tibetans is one of the most shameless lies that one can perpetuate.

The Tibetan plateau gives birth to some of the longest rivers of the world; The Machu (Huang Ho, or Yellow River), the Tsangpo (Brahmaputra), the Drichu (Yangtze), and the Senge Khabab (Indus). Tibet also has over 2,000 natural lakes spread over a combined area of more than 35,000 sq km, some of which are sacred and play a special role in local culture. Steep slopes and the abundant water of these rivers and lakes make them extremely valuable as sources of hydroelectric power. Tibet has an exploitable hydropower potential of 250,000 megawatts, the highest of any country in the world and the TAR alone has a potential of 200,000 megawatts. China has built some large hydroelectricity projects all over Tibet. These projects are designed to tap Tibet's hydro potential to provide power and other benefits to the Chinese population and industries both in Tibet and China.

While the Tibetans are displaced from their homes and lands, tens of thousands of Chinese workers are brought up from China to construct and maintain these dams. Take the case of the Yamdrok Yutso hydropower project. The Chinese claim that this project will greatly benefit the Tibetans. The Tibetan people in general, particularly the late Panchen Lama and Ngapo Ngawang Jigme, opposed and effectively delayed its construction for several years. The Chinese, nevertheless, went ahead with the construction and with the help of more than 1,500-strong PLA troops are guarding the construction area and no civilians are allowed near it. But the environmental, human and cultural toll of these hydroelectricity projects will have to be borne by the Tibetans. Tibet also possesses high solar energy potential per unit only after the Sahara, an estimated annual average of 200 kilocalorie/cm, as well as significant geothermal resources. Despite such abundant potential from small, environmentally-benign sources, the Chinese have built huge dams, such as Longyang Xia, and are continuing to do so, such as the hydropower station at Yamdrok Yutso. Tibet is made to play a pivotal role in fulfilling the huge demand for power in China at the cost of its own helpless, poor natives.

Furthermore, Tibet has been made a hub of nuclear facilities. This reduces the radioactive risks that China could suffer if an accident takes place in such installations. Again, since such facilities are located in a colonized region, the Chinese authorities do not take the necessary precautions that are mandatory for such facilities. Official Chinese pronouncements have confirmed the existence in Tibet of the biggest uranium reserves in the world. Apart from Amdo, since 1976 uranium has been mined and processed in the Thewo and Zorge regions of Kham also. According to reports, the uranium mining and processing in Tibet is done with unforgivable callousness. The Ninth Academy, China's Northwest Nuclear Weapons Research and Design Academy in Tibet's north-eastern area of Amdo, is reported to have dumped an unknown quantity of radioactive waste on the Tibetan plateau, according to a report released by International Campaign for Tibet, a Washington, D.C.-based organization:

"Waste disposal methods were reported to be casual in the extreme. Initially, waste was put in shallow, unlined landfills... The nature and quantity of radioactive waste generated by the Ninth Academy is still unknown... During the 1960s and 1970s, nuclear waste from the facility was disposed of in a roughshod and haphazard manner. Nuclear waste from the academy would have taken a variety of forms - liquid slurry, as well as solid and gaseous waste. Liquid or solid waste would have been in adjacent land or water sites."

Given the fact that underground water supplies in Amdo have been diminishing at a rapid rate and usable underground water is very limited, the radioactive contamination of groundwater is of great concern in the region. Many local Tibetans have died after drinking contaminated water near a uranium mine in Ngapa, Amdo. They have also reported deformed birth of humans and animals.

The existence of Chinese nuclear bases and nuclear weapon manufacturing centres in Tibet has been reported from time to time. China is reported to have stationed approximately 90 nuclear warheads in Tibet. (The Northwest Nuclear Weapons Research and Design Academy or the Ninth Academy, the most secret organization in China's entire nuclear programme and an important and high security military weapons plant, is based at Dhashu (Chinese: Haiyan), which is in the Haibei Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture. It was responsible for designing all of China's nuclear bombs through the mid-70s. It served as a research centre for detonation development, radiochemistry and many other nuclear weapons related activities. It also assembled components of nuclear weapons. Several missile bases are located to the south of Lake Kokonor in Amdo, and Nagchukha. Another nuclear missile site in Tibet is located at Delingha, about 200 km south-east of Larger Tsaidam. It also houses DF-4s, and is the missile regimental headquarters for Amdo, containing four associated launch sites. It has been reported a number of times that China has carried out chemical defence manoeuvres in the high altitude zones of Tibet. There are also reports that China has been conducting nuclear tests in several areas of Tibet in order to determine radiation levels on the human population.

Not only is its economy, China's military might too is growing because of its colonization of Tibet.

China is exploiting far more from Tibet than what it is giving back. While China is proudly hosting the Olympics with its spectacular stadia and dazzling shows, the future of Tibet is turning gloomier.


- Partha Gangopadhyay


Buddhism an anti religion Religion?

Religion is a belief system based on faith in a supernatural being, power or entity, or the plurals thereof, which is usually regarded as omniscient, omnipotent and the creator or originator of all that we perceive.

These attributes imply that everything, our every thoughts and deeds, are under the scrutiny of this supernatural agency.
This leads to a prescribed set of conduct for the faithful to follow, and to the ceremonial worship of this deity, to please and appease it through rituals and practices.

Through the supernatural properties attributed to them, these deities acquire the exalted status of being considered divine, infallible, sacred and sacrosanct.

All this formalizes and institutionalizes the belief system into a religion, where followers have a prescribed framework of spiritual practices, beliefs, set of answers, and a code of conduct to lead their lives by.

Followers of religions usually find that their practise provides a measure of solace, succour, belonging, direction and meaning to their lives. And this is probably the core essence most followers would derive and behold of religion, though this may not necessarily concur with the intended function by the originator(s) of the religion.

Inherent in any belief system is the implicitly assumed quality of intrinsic wisdom, truth or knowledge it contains and provides.
Though some religions go beyond the simple prescription of dogma and explicitly claim exclusive rights to such ‘truths’, and also concurrently create demarcations for their followers from ‘non believers’, brandishing the latter as “infidels, heretics, judases, godless, agnostics, or any such label designed to denigrate non followers and to elevate their own flock.

One of the definitions of a meme/cult is the explicit insistence of exclusive tenure to the truth; in whatever guise this truth may manifest itself with the religion in question.
This is manifested in circulatory self attestation; a train of reasoning reliant on acceptance, at blind faith, of any one of the arguments in the circle.
One other defining notion for a cult is the portrayal of their dogma as being the true, primary essence of the core religion it derives its canon from; i.e. fundamentalism.
A third element employed by cults is fear; if a member does not wholly acquiesce and dedicate his life to, and faithfully follows the dogma, wrathful vengeance will be incurred.

Most religions contain elements of circulatory reasoning, fundamentalism and fear, so there is a fine borderline between a religion and a cult.

Belief systems and religions per se, and cults in particular, have a tendency for their followers to acquire traits of self righteousness, exclusivity, condescension and derision.
Their religion/belief becomes an all consuming aspect, point of reference, and the meaning of life itself.

Nothing has any meaning until we, us sentient beings, attach any such meaning to it.

And this really is the essence.
To make sense of, or understand anything with our ordinary mind, meaning thereof can only be derived through reference to past experiences, acquired knowledge, or accepted truths at faith.

As per the last point, belief in any religion or dogma literally is a leap of faith; for to believe is to subordinate logic, reason and analytical thinking to faith in the veracity of prescribed answers and meaning. Answers which are readily provided and enshrined in organized religions.

Now what if there were a framework which dispensed with prescribed dogma, would negate the existence of intrinsic truth, and would not even tender prescribed tenets unless they could be verified as bona fide by the practitioner itself?

A framework where the practitioner is the discoverer, judge and verifier of truths him, or herself all in one, and progress on the ‘spiritual path’ is not advanced unless such verification has been accomplished at each step along the way.

Where referential thinking quintessentially is anathema, and deemed an encumbrance, and contrary to arriving at the truth.

Where in fact the conquest, and escape from the tyranny of the genes and memes is the prime, and quintessential focus of the practice.

Now, such a framework would in fact have to liberate the mind, allow unconditioned, analytical investigation and examination of any issue concerning mankind.
It would facilitate unprecedented personal growth, for humanity to achieve a new level of comprehension, interaction and approach to dealing with hitherto intractable problems besetting humanity.
If practised universally, this framework could even lead to mankind achieving a harmonious existence; humanity living in peace with itself, and in harmony with nature!

Buddhism is fundamentally at variance with the accepted definitions of religions.
It is indeed all of the above, and more.

Buddhism is:

• Non theistic; there is no supernatural, almighty being commonly referred to as God, Allah etc.

• Unquestioning faith is anathema to Buddhism. (see above)

• One’s fate is the result of one’s own actions: karma. There is no fate in the sense of punishment or reward dished out by a benevolent or vengeful deity.

• There is no surrender to any god, dogma or practice. It is in fact unconditioned, single pointed, mindful practice which is required.

• There is no dogma, word of god, or holy scripture transmitted through any agency, such as a prophet. The Dharma exists independent of any framework, it may be discovered by any sentient being.

• It is not enough to just do good with reward in mind. Compassionate deeds require true altruistic motivation for merit to arise. Attachment to good deeds defiles the actions and their karmic dividends.

• Buddhist compassion and considerations extend to all sentient beings; animals are part of our ambit of compassionate responsibility.

• Buddhism has neither heaven nor hell. The various realms described in Buddhism are the result of karmic effects. Just as this incarnation is a mind attached to a biological body, the mind can undergo experiences in different realms, hellish or heavenly, according to one’s karma. (dreams are but an indication of these realms the mind can undergo)

• Buddhism is not prescribed as a doctrine or dogma one needs to follow for ‘salvation’, and if a practitioner strays from the path there is no revenge or retribution.

• No almighty god is enacting upon, or interfering in our lives, or the universe. Dependent Origination, or Conditioned Arising explains all physical and psychological phenomena in scientific terms.

• No concept of blasphemy, desecration, sin, or infidel, for there is no sacrosanct dogma, relic or sacred deity.

Taking all the main points of difference into account, Buddhism in essence is diametrically opposed to religion.

Buddhist practices explicitly involve:

• The abandonment of all referential thinking. No truth to be accepted unless it is personally experienced and verified.

• The training of the mind to conquer the tyranny of the memes and genes; to be one’s own master; be in control of one’s destiny.

• Take responsibility for one’s own actions, for karmic effects will ensue from every thought, pronouncement and deed. There is no escape from karma. No vengeful god, fate or bad luck.

• The training of the mind to abandon all attachments and aversions, and pursue compassion with indiscriminate detachment. The four Immeasurables: Love, Compassion, Equanimity, Joy are a practice to clear the mind of preconditioned and ingrained desires and disdains arising from conditioned and referential thinking.

Buddhism in essence is the anti religion ‘Religion’ (or ‘Framework’, for want of a better expression), the Science of the Mind, and the tool for the liberation of one’s mind.

Alas, it seems that humanity is not ready to have that comfort soother religion pulled out just yet.
And the practice of Buddhism is, by any measure, but iron discipline & self control, and extremely diligent, arduous practice!

Buddhism is self deprecating in the sense that it lays no specific claim to any truth or knowledge. In fact it describes itself as merely being the finger pointing at the moon, and once the moon is spotted the finger becomes redundant.

The appearance of Buddhism as a religion with ritualized worship, ceremonies and offerings by the masses is merely superficially valid.
Buddhas are the liberated minds of Buddhist practitioners having attained enlightenment; the objective of Buddhism. They chose to remain in this realm to assist and guide other sentient beings through their endless cycle of incarnations.
The reverence paid to the Buddhas is an expression of gratitude, as in the case of Buddha Sakyamuni for the discovery and dissemination of the Dharma, and Buddhas generally are revered for their guidance and compassion. Of course there are many variances in the many different traditions, but on the whole all the above points are applicable to Buddhist traditions in general.

It is apparent that Reincarnation, and the realm of Becoming, the state in between incarnations, has amply been validated through scientific research. Jim Tucker is but one such exponent, and has made his research available in his book ‘Life before Life’.


Can the Olympic Spirit survive? Atrocities in Tibet belie the glitz and glamour!

When on the 8th of the 8th of 08, yes superstition lives on, the head of state of China opens the Olympic Games, and the world’s “Dignitaries” are at his feet, over one billion Chinese citizens are glued to their TV screens in adulation of their country’s glory, and the world at large has tuned in to watch this spectacle, he will bask in the grandeur of many who have gone before him in opening the ‘Nobel Games’.

This is the pride and glory, the country of the Han Chinese, will claim as recognition of their rightful place in the sun.
How rightful is this place?
Are the ‘dignitaries’ disgracing themselves by even attending these Olympics?
Should the Olympics have been awarded to China in the first place, and is China a worthy host for such a prestigious event?
The Chinese chose “One World one Dream” as the motto of these Olympics, so let’s see what sort of dream they’re referring to.

Here is a small selection of news reports which give but a tiny glimpse of a side of China many may not be aware of, or by all accounts, apparently do not really care about:

“On 15 July, Kunsang Tsering, a 22-year-old monk from Dhargye Langna monastery in Karze county, undertook a peaceful protest in front of the county Public Security Bureau (PSB) office. He was shot during his arrest by the PAP.

Tenzin Lhamo, a girl from Ugyen Mey village in Gaden Choekhor township, Lhundrup county, was given arbitrary sentence to 10 years of imprisonment for merely participating in a peaceful protest in Lhundrup county on 16 March. Samdup, a man from the same locality, was also sentenced to 13 years in prison.

Similarly, three others, including Kalden from Dhey village in Jangkha township, Lhundrup county, were sentenced to 20, 17 and 12 years in prison. Their details are not available.

Lobsang, a monk from Dzongkar monastery in Rebgong county, Tibet, was arrested in March from Lhasa. He was studying at the Drepung monastery in Lhasa during his arrest. Currently, he is being held in a prison in Gormo (Ch: Golmud) where he was also severely beaten.
Similarly, his friend Jigme Phuntsok was also arrested from Drepung monastery as reported earlier and then transferred to a prison in Gormo. It is reported that he died on 22 June from torture in prison.
Ngodup Dorjee, a 25-year youth from Phuk-Yi-Nang-Tsek-Lek village in Lhopa township, Karze county, staged a peaceful protest in the market of the county at 10:30 a.m. on 23 June.
During the protest, he shouted slogans such as “His Holiness the Dalai Lama should be invited to Tibet. We want religious freedom. Tibet belongs to Tibetan.” He was horribly beaten with metal batons by the People’s Armed Police (PAP) and then taken away.

From ABC Radio Australia reporting on a visit to Tibet by Dr. Powers:
Speaker: Dr Powers, a scholar in Tibetan religion and culture at the Australian National University

POWERS: Well, the most striking one was from a monk that I met at a Buddhist pilgrimage spot in China, who had escaped from a monastery in Eastern Tibet and he said that when he was there at his monastery, this was in late March, after the demonstration, some Chinese troops came into his monastery and started shooting the monks, randomly so it wasn’t that they were looking for people in the protest. It was pure retaliation for the fact that they protested. He said that three of his closest friends had been shot dead right in front of him. He started running, and he heard more shots and more monks falling and then he managed to escape travelling by night over the next couple of weeks and he has no idea of what actually happened, because he hasn’t been able to get any information in or out to his monastery.”

In June, Wanglo, a monk from the lower division of Tachok-tsang village in Serthar county, Tibet, was horribly beaten and arrested by the Chinese authorities concerned for taking photo of the ongoing “patriotic re-education” class in his village. When requested by his relatives for his release, the authorities demanded 20,000 Yuans as a punishment. Detailed information is not available.

Jigme Phuntsok, a 22-year monk from Drepung monastery, died from torture in a prison located in Amdo on June 22.

Media reports about transfer of a huge number of monks, who were arrested from Lhasa, Tibet, in March, to Gormo, Lanzhou, and other places are being confirmed.

On June 15, Tenzin was sentenced to 15 years for being one of the leaders of March protests, and Tenzin Gyatso for 13 years for replacing the Chinese flag with the Tibetan flag in a school in Dho-khor township.

Tibetan escapee recounts the horror of Chinese inhumanity

“There were gun shots and mass chaos while the streets were filled with smoke. I saw people around me fall down and my friend Nyima, was shot in the chest. A nun died in front of my eyes as did six others during the course of the demonstrations. The Army tanks were quick to come and clear up those who were either wounded or dead to dispose of any physical evidence.”

The Chinese raided our houses and confiscated our belongings. I had some 30-40,000 Chinese Yuan from my small business which the officials took away. My family in my native village later told me they had confiscated our ancestral property after they learned I had escaped into India,” he further added.

“Chinese officials torture Tibetan prisoners and extract false confessions out of them. They would only release Tibetans when there is no hope of the victims surviving from the wounds inflicted on them. Needless to say, they die in a day or two after being released from Chinese prisons.”

"In the beginning, many injured Tibetan protesters were taken to Chinese hospitals, where they were treated. Later, when injured Tibetans were taken to hospitals, they were detained instead of receiving medical attention. In fact, on the second day of the protests, even Tibetans who had bruises were treated as suspects and detained. So Tibetans who were injured had no choice but to wait for death … "

"Now, the situation for Tibetans in Lhasa is very tense. If a Tibetan argues over prices with a Chinese grocery-shop owner, the shop owner calls the police and the Tibetan is detained as a suspect. Any Tibetan without a residence permit is also detained. Even elderly Tibetans who cannot walk straight and Tibetan schoolchildren are searched. The Han Chinese don't need residence permits. Their spoken Mandarin language is itself their permit."

A report from multiple local sources the following day (also in Times of London) told the actual story. Police descended on the area, where hundreds of Tibetans were taking refuge in the mountains (after hundreds of others had been taken away by the security forces). Police had come to arrest a 22 year-old monk, Choetop, and shot him dead right then and there.
All this because Choetop had pulled down a Chinese flag a month earlier. The mouthpieces had called him an "insurgent leader."

"When I went to fetch some water for him, I saw another Khampa who had been hit and was bleeding. Later, I heard that the young boy died. He was only around 16. He had not even been in the protests. Even Lhakpa Tsering, who was killed, had gone to the hospital to see his mother and was shot on his way back. There was also a young girl of about 16 who had been shot. Her whole body was covered in blood—we could see only her white hand. Her mother was crying, since the girl was her only child. When other Tibetans tried to console her by putting some money in a box, she threw the box away. She said that her daughter had died in a good cause and that she had no regrets."
One night, I saw a Tibetan whose hands had been tied and pulled up behind his back. As he was being dragged away, he stumbled over a drain and fell. They beat him, and I heard them saying in Chinese, 'Shoot him!' 'Kill him!' On March 14 and 15, gunshots could be heard going off just like fireworks during festivities. We weren't allowed to go out. I also saw many young Chinese and Tibetan girls and women dressed in Tibetan clothes. I was told that they were all Chinese informers and that several of them had been 'planted' in the community."

"...My brother, who suffers from tuberculosis, my sister and two uncles, who have never been involved in any type of demonstration or protest, were detained without cause... My brother and sister were first taken... beaten with rifles, kicked and thrown into a truck. They were taken out of the city to an unknown location, and were put into a small concrete room with 400 other Tibetans. There were no washrooms, and they received no food, nor water for two days and nights. Hardly anyone could stand up by themselves because of the beatings.
When they released my brother and sister, they kept my brother's watch and his rosary, which had some semi-precious stones, and all the money they had (they don't use banks and keep most of their money on them)..."
“There may not be any more uprisings: There are troops in every town that has paved roads.
The army marches through town streets three times a day, paralyzing the Tibetans with fear. Surveillance cameras were installed in places that don't even have running water.”

Most of the Tibetan families whose loved ones were killed could not be traced. It was difficult to know whether they were alive or dead or under detention. Most of the dead bodies were taken away and disposed of by the Chinese."

Four Tibetans were killed by sniper fire while they were marching near Kirti monastery… Then a little later, another three were killed. They were shot from a distance.

"Five Tibetans succumbed to injuries at the nunnery hospital in Lhasa—it's the Tsangkhug nunnery in Lhasa. Two Tibetans who were at the hospital were injured and they complained their legs were broken. The body of a young boy is still lying here unclaimed. Several other dead bodies were brought, and many of them were claimed by relatives."—

Today when the Tibetans were demonstrating, many Tibetans were killed. We Tibetans had no weapons to fight back. When the Tibetans were gathered in front of the Jokhang [temple], the Chinese fired at us. I have personally seen more 100 Tibetans killed when the Chinese fired at the Tibetan crowd. It was the Chinese army who fired and that happened in Lhasa and I personally witnessed the tragedy. Many of those killed were young Tibetans, both boys and girls. ...It started around 10 a.m.

Tibetan businessmen across China have also been targeted with harsh restrictions. Reports from Beijing indicate that as many as 300 Tibetans in Beijing’s Sunday Market have been told to sell their homes and leave Beijing in the lead up to Olympics, implying that they’re being kicked out for good.”

The fate of thousands of monks and ordinary Tibetans remains unknown.
These people disappeared after being arrested, and their whereabouts or wellbeing is unknown.
Chinese authorities don’t inform relatives of arrested people, this way there is no trace back to summary executions and people who succumb to their torture while in custody of the Chinese.
The bodies of all so deceased torture victims and secretly executed detainees, are being withheld by the Chinese authorities and immediately cremated to avoid proof and photographic evidence being gathered.

The scale of the atrocities in Tibet is immense indeed, the entire Tibetan population of 7 million is being subjected to the most horrendous harassment, intimidation, wanton arrest, dispossession, disenfranchisement, summary execution, and much more.
The arrested are routinely, and almost without exception, tortured in the most horrific ways and countless have been rendered life long cripples, or have died as a result of the injuries sustained.
As a particularly insidious policy and ‘technique’, the occupying Chinese aim to inflict as much internal injuries, so as to render the victim certain to die from internal bleeding.

Is this the sort of county the IOC should have honoured with awarding the Olympics?

The world has been cowered into the most craven servitude to a regime which knows no scruples, shame nor civilities.
The Han Chinese CCP’s rule over a “China’, which is an imperial empire occupying huge swathes of lands which are ethnically distinct and sovereign countries in their own right, is far more brutal and racist than the old South Africa ever was.
The Uighurs, Mongols, Tibetans are not part of this self-assured China, and are unlikely to celebrate this feat of having the entire world cravenly at your feet; all for the sake of lucrative trade with the most populous nation.

Has the IOC ever contemplated the implications of being the facilitators of an Olympics, held under the darkest of clouds of the most overt racism, oppression and secretive mass murder?

These, indeed are the Han Chinese Games of Shame, though this nomer now seems ever more a gross understatement!

The Han Chinese populace is obliviously complicit, and has unwittingly been manipulated into this racist malevolence, and their culpability extends as far as their fervent, zealous denial, and their explicit support thereof.

It is time for an honest re-appraisal, and profound soul-searching on part of the perpetrators of such acts of barbaric atrocities in the 21st century.

We all need to constantly assess our own place, and the soundness of our actions, for if we let ourselves to be (mis)led, we will stray into dangerous territory bereft of conscious accountability, though accountability never ceases.

One world, one Nighmare.

Credits and news sources:

Continue reading here:
Fervent Chinese Nationalism?
In the spirit of the Olympics, indeed!
Letter to Hu Jintao
Of Patriotism and Motherlands.
Cultural Genocide?