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"Canada can, within a positive friendly atmosphere, ask the Chinese government to resolve the Tibetan situation."

US pays tribute to Dalai Lama's warriors

September 16, 2010

Sify News (India)
September 16, 2010

Hundreds of Tibetan warriors who doggedly fought
a 15-year guerrilla war against the Chinese in
Tibet after being trained and armed by the US
Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) now have a
memorial that is likely to ruffle Beijing.

The US has, for the first time, paid a tribute to
the resistance forces and acknowledged the CIA's
role in training them as the agency is erecting a
memorial plaque at Camp Hale, a training base in
Colorado for US troops during World War II.

Unknown to the local residents, who were told it
was an atomic testing site, Camp Hale served as a
training camp for nearly 2,000 Tibetan warriors
who were taught the art of guerrilla warfare by
the CIA from 1957 to 1972 to fight China's
People's Liberation Army that attacked Tibet in
1949 and annexed the Buddhist kingdom within two years.

The event last week saw former CIA agents,
Tibetans involved in the operation, and
representatives of the US Forest Service and the
Tibetan-American community in Colorado gather at Camp Hale.

The plaque reads: 'From 1958 to 1964, Camp Hale
played an important role as a training site for
Tibetan Freedom Fighters. Trained by the CIA,
many of these brave men lost their lives in the
struggle for freedom. 'They were the best and
bravest of their generation, and we wept together
when they were killed fighting alongside their
countrymen.' This plaque is dedicated to their memory.'

When China attacked Tibet under Mao Zedong, the
American government, regarding Beijing as a
potential exporter of communism and threat to US
allies and interests in the region, trained
Tibetans and air-dropped them into occupied Tibet.

The guerrillas also had the support of the Indian
government. Some of them operated from Mustang,
Nepal's northernmost district sharing the border with Tibet.

'Like many CIA operations, the US involvement
with Tibetan guerrillas, including the training
programme at Camp Hale, has not officially been
acknowledged by the US government previously,'
said the New York-based International Campaign for Tibet (ICT).

'The history of this era is increasingly being
written about by academics, journalists, and
those who participated in it, both Tibetan and American.'

'We commend Senator (Mark) Udall for his lead in
the US Congress and for working with the US
Forest Service to provide proper recognition of
the historic US support rendered in the name of
Tibetan freedom and the heroism demonstrated by
many Tibetans who fought for their country,' said
Todd Stein, director of government relations at the ICT.

But the tribute is bound to ruffle the feathers
of Beijing that still remains suspicious of
Mustang, regarding it as a base from where the
'Free Tibet' movement could start again and has
begun a campaign in Nepal to intensify patrolling along the border.

Beijing has also prevented efforts by the US to
offer asylum to Tibetan refugees in Nepal who are
especially vulnerable to Chinese attempts to have them deported.

The Tibetan resistance ended after Tibetan ruler
Dalai Lama, who fled to India in 1959, sent a
message to the warriors, asking for an end to it.
CTC National Office 1425 René-Lévesque Blvd West, 3rd Floor, Montréal, Québec, Canada, H3G 1T7
T: (514) 487-0665   ctcoffice@tibet.ca
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