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Home: What's the price for capitalizing on foreign backing?

June 22, 2008

People's Daily ((People's Republic of China)
June 19, 2008

Britain has had great, longstanding ties with Tibet in history and
should shoulder the mission of advancing and reforming the history on
Tibet issue, claimed the Dalai Lama in British parliament recently.
And he also urged various sectors in British society to render even
greater support and attention on the Tibet issue.

The man who made these remarks to Britons was not Colonel Francis
Younghusband, who forced his way into the holy city of Lhasa at the
turn of the 20th century, but a monk of Tibet ethnicity, the revered
Dalai Lama, who had gone on prating "on behalf of the Tibetan
people". If he is not entirely ignorant of traditions of his own
country or has a very poor memory, he is indeed shameless and
impudent with his vain attempt to capitalize on foreign backing for
increasing his own capacity.

In history, Tibetans and their fellow countrymen of the Han ethnicity
had long been thrown in a state of grief, humiliation and
indignation, as they were immersed in an abyss of suffering inflicted
by Western aggressors. No one can expect someone would make such an
awful fuss at the parliament of the former "British Empire" when the
Chinese nation has totally rid itself of a yoke of aggression and
oppression and are erected on an equal footing in the family of nations today.

After having received some applauses from some members of parliament,
how can the speaker face to those heroic Tibetan martyrs, who laid
down their lives in battles against intruding British soldiers and
"whose death is heavier than Mount Tai, and how can the speaker face
to the great Chinese nation, which had been trampled underfoot by the
eight-power allied forces of Britain, the U.S. Germany, France,
tsarist Russia, Japan, Italy and Austria in the year 1900 and had
been imbued with the deepest hatred for the attempt to rely on
foreign support to increase weight.

Here, we might as well recall the great, longstanding ties between
Britain and Tibet, on which the Dalai Lama lavished praises.

Britain brazenly launched armed invasions into Tibet in 1888. More
than 1,000 British armed soldiers sent to Tibet intruded into Gyangze
with sufficient ammunition. The Tibet forces battled courageously
against the well-equipped intruders with only limited matchlocks, or
harquebuses, bows, arrows, swords and spears at their disposal.

On March 31, 1904, the British forces faced off Tibetan troops in a
mountain valley, and more than 1,000 Tibetan infantrymen were killed
or wounded. Gyangze county fell on July 7, and the remaining 500
Tibetan soldiers jumped off cliffs to death. On August 3 of the same
year, British forces invaded and forced into Lhasa, the first time
this ancient holy city was overtaken, and the entire city was
permeated with burning hatred. "Look, how they hated us," wrote War
Correspondent Edmond then. "If we fall into their hands, I'm sure
they will tear us to shreds."

When British troops looted or ransacked the Purple Palace (or
temple), Colonel Francis Younghusband ordered to open fire with
artillery, and some 60 Buddha halls collapsed with all Buddhist monks
inside killed, and all the property or valuables they looted were
carried away by 400 ass-pulled carts.

Have the Dalai Lama forgotten the history or attempted to stand facts
on their heads when he was addressing the British parliament?

What's the price for capitalizing on the backing from overseas? Now,
let's hear what foreigners say. Patrick French, a British scholar and
author of the book "Tibet, Tibet: A Personal History of a Lost Land",
said without any hesitation that it was "aggression". Even former
British Prime Minister Tony Blair has acknowledged that the Dalai
Lama is not only a political figure but also a spiritual leader, who
has his own political agenda...

What's the price for capitalizing on the backing from overseas? On
this question, the 14th Dalai Lama, who has appealed for Britons to
render Tibet still greater support and attention, may as well hear
what his predecessor, the 13th Dalai Lama, had said at the start of
the last century: All Tibetan monks were ready to make the heavy,
maximum sacrifice and to fight to the bitter end with the British
intruders, the arch foe of Buddhism.

What's the price for capitalizing on the backing from overseas? Let
the Dalai Lama, who has traveled frequently to Western nations like a
heavenly steed, talked with great fervor to press media and harangued
in the British parliament, listen to what Lamas of the early last
century say. "They have harbored a deep hatred for us, and a monk
among Tibetans named Qiangba has never uttered a word," as quoted in
a diary of Colonel Younghusband.

By People's Daily Online, and the author is Ye Xiaowen,
vice-president of the China Association for the Preservation and
Development of Tibetan Culture (CAPDTC)
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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