If this is an honest attempt to see His Holiness Tenzin Gyatso the 14th Dalai Lama of Tibet from the perspective of the people of Tibet, then the new Chinese leadership is showing stunning clarity capable of breaking down decades of unnecessary misery and misunderstanding.
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|U-turn on Dalai Lama attacks
Hong Kong Standard
Beijing has loosened restrictions that kept Tibetan monks in two provinces from openly revering theDalai Lama. Authorities in Sichuan province said people can display pictures of the Buddhist spiritual leader and ordered officials not to criticize him …
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|Beijing eases ban on Dalai Lama’s image
Radio Free Asia‘s Tibetan service reported that permission to venerate the Dalai Lama openly again – as a religious but not as a “political” leader – is being introduced in areas of Sichuan and Qinghai provinces, which have large Tibetan populations.
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|Reports Say Worship Of Dalai Lama Allowed In Sichuan And Qinghai, China
International Business Times
Chinese authorities have announced that two provinces with ethnic Tibetan populations will be able to openly venerate the Dalai Lama for religious purposes, in what seems to be a step toward the central government relaxing its attitude on the exiled …
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Tenzin Gyatso, the exiled spiritual leader of the Tibetan people found himself at the centre of a political controversy today when it was revealed that he had neglected to enter a number of gifts and good deeds done to him by fellow Buddhists in the Official Register. Since the so-called Cash for Reincarnation Scandal of the late 90s, it has been mandatory that senior Buddhists report all gifts, considerate deeds or just kindly thoughts of which they have been the chief beneficiary.
‘The karma register was devised to ensure that powerful Buddhists were not abusing their position – but it has got the stage that you can’t even hold a door open for the Prime Minster of Sri Lanka without him having to make a note of it…’ claimed a spokesman for the Dalai Lama.
Among the specific charges against the spiritual leader of Tibet is that on 13 February he left his umbrella in a restaurant but was reunited with it when a fellow diner came rushing out after him having noticed his absent mindedness. ‘There is no record of this random act of kindness’ said the Official Karma Watchdog; ‘Nor of the occasion when his holiness mentioned that he liked early Britpop, and one of his office support staff did him a compilation CD of Blur, Pulp and Oasis.’ Under the strict rules laid down in an appendix to the Kangyur or sacred texts, all samsaric good karma must now be declared.
‘People have been praying for him, sending their figurehead best wishes and good luck messages and only a fraction of this good karma appears in the official record,’ said the Karma Czar. ‘We have a copy of a letter from an Glastonbury woman who said she was sending out positive energy to the Tibetan leader, but he has not recorded how much positive energy he received nor the dates on which he sensed it.’
A spokesman for the Dalai Lama claimed that this ‘very minor scandal’ had been whipped up by the Chinese authorities to try and deflect from their own oppression in Tibet, but added ‘Anyway, failing to register the good karma is bad karma, so the karma is cancelled out and he’s back to where he was in the first place.’
According to Tibetologist Melvyn Goldstein, the Tibetan system under the Dalai Lama met all the requirements of feudalism, under which:
1.) Serfs inherited their social position.
2.) A serf, unlike a slave had rights and possessed but did not own productive resources (land).
3.) The lord had the legal right to command his serfs, including judicial authority over him or her.
There is a mountain of historical data showing that in pre-1950 Tibet, aristocratic lamas and secular landowners controlled the vast majority of the country’s resources, while the rest of the country lived in poverty and were often subjected to torture, otherwise known as judicial mutilation. There’s a good article in the Guardian on this very subject. What we don’t hear about Tibet
As for the Dalai Lama himself, he was more like a monarch of a theocratic system and the only difference between him and other monarchs is that the monarchy was not hereditary but based on religious ritual. So it’s more like if the Pope were to rule an entire country rather than just Vatican City.
So in short, the Dalai Lama isn’t exactly this saintly holy man like many in the West think. At best he’s just an exiled leader who wants his power back and at worst, he’s a tool of the West backed by the National Endowment for Democracy, which itself is funded by the CIA. Whether that has any bearing on the Tibetan people‘s right to self determination is a different matter entirely.
Last year Tibet’s revered “spiritual leader” the Dalai Lama visited Toulouse in France for a festival celebrating Tibetan culture, while the Chinese government celebrated 60 years of communist rule in Tibet. The Tibetan spiritual leader gave lectures on the principles of Tibetan Buddhism; tolerance among religions and international peace. As a mark of respect for the Dalai Lama, the city of Toulouse was draped in the colours of the Tibet separatist movement.
But who exactly is the Dalai Lama? Why does the Buddhist leader have such a following in Western countries and why do the same Western countries support the Tibetan separatist movement? More importantly, what is the political significance of the annual Tibetan Buddhist festival in France, a country which claims to champion secular, republican values?
In order to answer these questions, we will have to look at some interesting facts about the Dalai Lama and the particular form of Buddhism he promotes in the context of the current geo-political game North Atlantic Treaty Organisation countries are playing with China.
Tibet: From Serfdom to People’s Democracy
Although universally presented as a paragon of human rights, tolerance, democratic values and peace, the true story of the Dalai Lama and the Tibetan separatists is rarely discussed in the mainstream media.
Buddhism was introduced into Tibet in 640 AD when Srongstan Gampo married a Chinese Buddhist wife. In the 13th century the Mongol Emperor Kubla Khan created the title of Grand Lama for the puppet ruler of Tibet.1
The title “Dalai Lama” was first given to Soman Gyatso, a monk of the Gelugpa (yellow hat) school of Tibet, by the ruler of Mongolia, Altan Khan, in 1578. The word “dalai” is a Mongolian translation of Soman Gyatso’s name which in Tibetan means ‘ocean of merit’.
Although recent Hollywood films and popular culture in general tend to present Lamaist Tibet as an idyllic Shangri-la, the reality was rather different.2 The Tibetan Lama theocracy was arguably one of the cruelest, most despotic kingdoms in the history of humanity. The monastic Lama class ruled over a majority of serfs whose living conditions were often worse than those of animals.
The Tibetan monasteries were extremely hierarchical. The upper Lamas lived in opulent palaces, took children as sex slaves and lived off the labour of the lower lamas who, in turn, lived off the labour of the starving serfs. The punishment meted out to disobedient serfs included gouging out of eyes; evisceration; the severing of hands and legs and other more hideous forms of torture.
Professor Micheal Parenti writes:
In 1959, Anna Louise Strong visited an exhibition of torture equipment that had been used by the Tibetan overlords. There were handcuffs of all sizes, including small ones for children, and instruments for cutting off noses and ears, gouging out eyes, breaking off hands, and hamstringing legs. There were hot brands, whips, and special implements for disemboweling. The exhibition presented photographs and testimonies of victims who had been blinded or crippled or suffered amputations for thievery. There was the shepherd whose master owed him a reimbursement in yuan and wheat but refused to pay. So he took one of the master’s cows; for this he had his hands severed. Another herdsman, who opposed having his wife taken from him by his lord, had his hands broken off. There were pictures of Communist activists with noses and upper lips cut off, and a woman who was raped and then had her nose sliced away. 3
This is not quite the idyllic paradise of Hollywood lore! Serfs often had to carry their owners on their backs. As a result, a large number of serfs were stooped and crippled. It would not be incorrect to say that before the arrival of the Chinese People’s Liberation Army in Tibet in 1951, the land of the Lamas was hell on earth. Over 70 percent of the population was comprised of poor illiterate serfs and nomads; they had absolutely no rights and no value.
The ruling government, (Kashag), the monastic class, and the manorial lords constituted a tiny minority of the country who arrogated all the wealth to themselves. Religious doctrine determined that the suffering of the serfs was in accordance with divine law.
Among the thousands of articles and news reports about the Dalai Lama, Tibetan independence, “democracy”, “human rights”, and “Chinese communist repression”, one will search in vain for the actual facts about the tyrannical dictatorship of the Lamas when they had “soley sovereign sway and masterdom” in Tibet.
Nor will one ever learn about what the Chinese People’s Liberation Army actually did when they entered Tibet in 1951. When the PLA arrived in Tibet, the upper lamas tried to portray them as cannibals and vandals who were intent on destroying Tibetan culture.
But the lower level lamas soon realized that the PLA’s purpose was to implement democratic reform, and that this was also in their own interest as they had themselves suffered much from the upper Lamas and the cruel autocratic Dalai Lama. Education in the monasteries was reserved for the top lamas such as the gesi. Most of the lower-level lamas could neither read nor write and were the sons of serfs.4
Pedophilia and sexual abuse was also rampant throughout Tibet’s monasteries. It was not until 1959 when a tiny minority of Tibetan lamas, backed by the CIA, rose up against the communist government that the Tibetan people finally freed themselves from the yoke of tyranny. The Lamas were forced by Tibet’s liberated serfs to go into exile in India.
Once the Dalai Lama and his cohorts had been exiled, celebrations followed in Lhassa as the title deeds of the manorial lords were burned in bonfires. The freed Tibetan serfs received title deeds to land, cattle and tools for farming.5
The liberation of Tibet permitted other minority ethnic groups such as Loba, Monba and Deng to play an active role in society for the first time. Over half the secretaries in the Tibet Autonomous Region’s Party Committee were Tibetan. The people of Tibet had never known so much autonomy and freedom in their history.6
For the first time in the history of Tibet, the majority of the people were taught how to read their own language. The communists constructed thousands of schools and hospitals throughout the country providing free health and free education for the Tibetan people. Tibetan Women were given equal rights to men. Quoting from his field research notebooks, historian Mobo Gao writes:
A former serf declares that without the CCP there would not have been a life for serfs like him. Another interviewee, the son of a well-known living Buddha and the most outstanding Tibetan photographer, states he really believed in Mao and thought everything said by Mao was the universal truth. In the 1980s when he was received by His Holiness the Dalai Lama (outside China) he told his Holiness that it was the truth that the majority of the Tibetans supported the CCP because the CCP really liberated the serfs. The first interviewee, an ordinary Tibetan woman in Lhasa, states that Mao helped a lot of people, that the world cannot do without people like Mao, that Tibet used to be unfair when some were rich while some did not have enough to eat and that Mao’s revolution changed everything.7
Rapid industrialization followed the liberation of Tibet. The communists built roads and infrastructure and local industries were developed. By 1974 Tibet had, for the first time in its history, grown enough grain to feed its people.
Under the despotic feudalism of the Lamas where famine was common, Tibet’s population declined by over 1 million in the 200 years preceding the liberation. By the mid 70s, however, Tibet’s population had grown by 400,000 and minority ethnic groups of Loba, Deng and Monbas, who had been the most oppressed under the Lamas, were also growing in numbers.8
When the Chinese People’s Liberation Army arrived in Tibet in 1950, thousands of serfs rose up against the tyranny of the nobility and the lama monks. Many monasteries were attacked and vandalized. Exactions and retribution by liberated serfs against their former oppressors were common.
However, the Chinese Communist Party discouraged such actions and concrete measures were implemented to protect temples and monasteries from vandalism. Article 3 of “The Resolution on Carrying Out Democratic Reform in Tibet Adopted by the Second Plenary Session of the Preparatory Committee for the Autonomous Region of Tibet” on July 17, 1959, reads:
The policy of protecting the freedom of religious belief, protecting the patriotic and law-abiding temples and monasteries and protecting the historical cultural relics must be strictly adhered to in the democratic reform as in the past. A campaign must be launched in the temples and monasteries against rebellion, feudal prerogatives and exploitation.
The policy of “buying out” is to be followed in dealing with the land and other means of production of patriotic and law-abiding temples and monasteries. The livelihood of the lamas is to be arranged for by the government. Subsidies will be given where the income of the temples and monasteries is not sufficient to meet their proper spending.9
Not only did the CPC outlaw vandalism against Tibetan monasteries and culture, they actually restored many monasteries that had been neglected during the reign of the Dalai Lama.
Although pro-Tibetan separatist propaganda in the West claims that it is a separate country, Tibet has been part of China for centuries. Since the publication of Halliday and Chang’s book, Mao, the Unknown Story, in 2005, a concerted attempt has been made to demonise the Chinese communists and Mao Tse Tung, in particular.
However, in his book The Struggle For China’s Past, Chinese scholar, Mobo Gao, identifies hundreds of unsubstantiated claims, inconsistencies, lies and distortions in Chang’s book. According to Professor Gao, the book ignores the most basic procedures of academic writing. Needless to say, Chang’s Mao, the Unknown Story, has become a best seller in the West and has had a phalange of reactionary historians praising its merits. “Mao is the greatest monster of them all,” declares Simon Sebag Montifiore.10
Referring to a detailed academic critique of Chang and Halliday’s book, Gao writes:
to demonise Mao is the right politics of course. When someone pasted some criticism of the Chang and Halliday book on the Amazon sales website, it was immediately attacked as ‘ugly Chinese propaganda’(Jin Xiaoding 2005). On the other hand, Jin’s critique of the book was met with absolute silence by the Western media (no Western media outlet was ready to publish the 17 questions raised by Jin). WQhen the Chinese version of Jin’s critique appeared on the Chinese language website duowei, there was a lively debate. Jung Change had to admit, when asked, that Jin’s 17 questions are good questions but refused to provide convincing replies to them.
For Western media it does not matter as long as the politics is right, and the right politics is that Mao must be discredited.11
The Dalai Lama, Nazi War Criminals and Historical Falsification
The French press has been devoting considerable attention to China over the last year. The Edward de Rothshild owned Libérationnewspaper has published articles promoting the French translation of the Chang and Halliday book.12
The editor of Le Monde newspaper and this years’ Bilderberg conference attendee, Eric Israelowitcz, is no friend of China. He recently wrote a much-publicized book entitled l’Arrogance Chinoise which advocates a more aggressive stance from the West against China.
According to Israelowicz, China has become too powerful and arrogant and needs to be taught a lesson by the West. This extremely hostile, belligerent and biased view of China is reflected in the editorials and news reports throughout the Western media complex.
In this context Tibet is routinely depicted as a country that has been colonized and oppressed by China. We are never told the facts about pre-communist Tibet. Although Libération has published articles in the past which reveal some uncomfortable truths about the Dalai Lama, these facts are subsequently ignored when dealing with the Tibetan leader’s quarrels with Beijing.
For example, on 25th of April 2008, Libération journalist, Laurent Dispo, published an article on the story of an Austrian mountain climber and Nazi SS man, Heinrich Harrer, and his relationship with the Dalai Lama. Harrer was a famous mountain climber in the Third Reich. A close friend of Heinrich Himmler, the Nazi SS official was sent to Tibet in order to establish links there with the ruling class so as to prepare the terrain for possible Nazi collaboration. Harrer wrote about his experiences in the Chinese province in a book entitled Seven Years in Tibet. The book was adapted into to a film by French director Jean Jacques Annaud in 2006.
Dispo concluded his Libération article by stating that the Dalai Lama’s connections with Nazism were sufficient reason for Western leaders to withdraw their support for his nationalist cause.
The controversial article did not go unnoticed by the supercilious academes of the Dalai Lama’s French fan club. On May 6th, 2008, a response to the allegations of the Dalai Lama’s Nazi connections was published in Libération by the crème de la crème of French academia: Anne-Marie Blondeau, director of studies at the École Pratique des Hautes Études; Katia Boutrille, anthropologist at the École Pratique des Hautes Études; Heather Stoddard, a professor at INALCO’s Tibet section; and Francoise Robbin, a teacher at the same institute.
To the general reader, the formidable qualifications of these people should put one in no doubt about the weight and import of their argument. The group-authored article argued that there was no evidence to suggest the Dalai Lama or Tibetan authorities ever met with top Nazi officials.
The notion that Harrer was sent to Tibet by the Nazi government, the professors pointed out, is not supported by any documentation. Rather, they averred, it was Ernst Schaefer, a German zoologist, who was sent by the German government to do some scientific research.
They went on to argue that Schaefer met with some Tibetan officials but the meeting was of little consequence. Harrer, they claimed, only met the 14th Dalai Lama in 1949. The distinguished professors concluded that the Nazi interest in Tibet was minimal and that there were no real connection between the Lamaist theocracy and Nazi Germany.
Dispo’s article was therefore an egregious example of, as they put it, “conspiracy theory” and had no basis in rigorous historical research. The authors went on to suggest that it was no surprise to see a pro-Chinese article in the Western press given the lies and propaganda being spread by the Chinese government to distract from the human rights allegations being leveled against them before the Olympic Games. 13
It would therefore appear, following the logic of the Dalai Lama’s defenders, that any criticism of his holiness amounts to a Chinese conspiracy of demonization against their bête noir. But, of course, there is no documentary evidence of such as Chinese conspiracy.
However, there is strong and irrefutable evidence of the Dalai Lama’s connections with Nazi war criminals and terrorist groups. These have been well documented and do not need any help from “conspiracy theorists” nor from the Chinese government.
Speaking on radio France Culture on September 10th, 2006, French historian George André Morin revealed that contacts between Nazi Germany and Tibet were quite extensive and profound.
According to Morin, Schaefer and Harrer participated in a German expedition to Tibet as part of the Ahnenerbe SS project to research the origins of the Aryan race. The solar symbol of the swastika on the Nazi flag was inspired by the swastikas of Tibetan monasteries. The thirteenth Dalai Lama, even personally undertook the translation of Hitler’s Mein Kampf into Tibetan.
The British attempted to conquer Tibet in 1904. This prompted the thirteenth Dalai Lama to flee to China. Tibet subsequently became internationally recognized as part of China. It was not until the Japanese occupation of Manchuria in the 1930s that Tibet claimed some independence. But it was only the fascist dictatorships of Europe and the Vatican which officially recognized the Tibetan state. 14
Apart from Tibet’s cultural value, the Nazis were hoping to explore Tibet as a strategic base from which to conquer British India and parts of China.
As Mobo Gao has argued, Tibet was recognized by the international community as part of China before the Chinese revolution of 1948. It was only when land was being redistributed to the poor peasantry by the Chinese communists that the capitalist ‘international community’; that is to say, the United States and its allies, began to talk about Tibetan “independence”, “Tibetan freedom” and, of course, the all-important meme of imperialist discourse, “human rights”.
In 1994, the current Dalai Lama attempted to organize a meeting with some of his closest friends in London. Among the sweet and cuddly Dalai Lama’s closest friends were ex Waffen SS man Heinrich Harrer, Bruno Beger, a former Nazi ethnologist who worked in Auschwitz, and the Chilean neo-Nazi Miguel Serrano. Serrano happens to believe that Adolf Hitler was a god. 15
Neo-Nazi dictator of Chile, Augusto Pinochet, was also a close friend of the Dalai Lama, who personally intervened in Spain to get the Butcher of Chile off the hook when he was about to be tried for crimes against humanity in 1998.
Another important friend of the Dalai Lama is the Japanese Shoko Asahara, a religious cult leader who was convicted of terrorism in Japan in 1995 after having organized a poison Sarin gas attack in the Tokyo subway.
Asahara has been a close associate of the Dalai Lama since meeting him at a ceremony of the Ashun-Su sect in Tokyo. Since then, Asahara met with the Dalai Lama several times and was deeply influenced by the Tibetan leader.
Sarin gas was first developed in Nazi Germany. Asahara’s insane cult hoped to seize power in Japan by spraying the poison gas into the Japanese parliament from a helicopter. The first part of the terrorist attack involved murdering people in the Tokyo metro with the Sarin gas. The following is apparently the hymn Asahara’s followers sung:
It came from Nazi Germany, a dangerous little chemical weapon,
If you inhale the mysterious vapor, you will fall with bloody vomit
from your mouth,
Sarin! Sarin! Sarin — the chemical weapon.
Song of Sarin, the brave.
In the peaceful night of Matsumoto City
People can be killed, even with our own hands,
Everywhere there are dead bodies,
There! Inhale Sarin, Sarin,
Prepare Sarin! Prepare Sarin! Immediately poisonous gas weapons
Will fill the place.
Spray! Spray! Sarin, the brave Sarin.16
On February 10th, 1999, Julie Campbell, a Scottish Buddhist nun, revealed that she had been a sex-slave for years to the Buddhist guru Kalu Rinpoche, the teacher of the 14th Dalai Lama.17 Sexual abuse figures prominently in the legacy of Lamaist Buddhism.
The more one considers the Dalai Lama’s friends and followers, the more the connections with neo-Nazism become apparent. One is tempted here to resurrect the cliché which states that one can judge someone by the friendship he keeps.
The Dalai Lama: Religious Tolerance, Human Values
According to the Toulouse Tibetan festival website, the purpose of the Dalai Lama’s visit to the French town was to engage in dialogue on the promotion of human values, the promotion of tolerance among religions and the well-being of the Tibetan people.
The official press reports of the Toulouse Tibetan festival were relayed by the French media without any discussion as to their validity or veracity. It is well known, for example, that the Dalai Lama has outlawed the Dorje Shugden sect of Buddhism in Dharamsala, India, the city which is home to the separatist Tibetan government in exile.
In 2008, France 24 broadcast a report from Dharamsala where they filmed Dorje Shugden monks being shunned by the local community on the Dalai Lama’s orders. The report showed how signs are regularly put on many shops in the region forbidding the entry of Dorje Shugden worshipers. According to the report, whole families have been ostracized due to their belief in the traditional Buddhist god Dorje Shugden.
Although the Dalai Lama claims that Dorje Shugden is a demon and that the cult is a deviation, the worship of the Dorje Shugden is widespread throughout traditional Tibetan Buddhism. Since the Dalai Lama’s decision to outlaw this practice, thousands of monks have been excluded from visiting temples. In fact, the Dalai Lama’s dictatorial campaign against the Dorje Shugden religion threatens to exclude over 4 million Tibetans from practicing their religion.
According to the Dalai Lama, the Dorje Shugden are traitors to the cause of Tibetan independence. Such is the Tibetan leader’s “tolerance”. The Dalai Lama’s violations of human rights are rarely, if ever, mentioned among the cacophony of hysterical “free Tibet” sloganeering in the mass media.
Death threats and the ostracism of whole families who practice this traditional form of Buddhism are common in Dharamsala. Thousands of people have had to flee Dharamsala due to the “tolerant” Dalai Lama’s commands. Many people have been murdered.
The French documentary made it abundantly clear that the Dalai Lama functions as an absolute dictator in Dharamsala. The French film crew was even prevented by Tibetan officials from recording a dispute between a Dorje Shugden monk and his pro-Dalai Lama opponent.
Breaking with official orthodoxy, the France 24 report admitted that the Dalai Lama and his independence movement has no popular support in Tibet and that many Tibetans actually fear a return to the days of Lama autocracy. One of the thousands of Doje Shugden practitioners who fled from Dalai Lama worshipers told France 24 reporters:
If he’s really Buddha, if he’s really god, you know, he won’t create so many problems, you know, he won’t give us such trouble. I believe if he is a Buddha, he won’t create any problem for one human being, so we have changed our mind now, we don’t see him as we saw him earlier.
The Dalai Lama’s problem with these Buddhists is simply that they worship the symbolic god Dorje Shugden and not “his holiness, the Dalai Lama”. The exiled leader is persecuting Buddhists for not worshiping himself and his insatiable desire to become the puppet dictator of a ‘free Tibet’ under NATO hegemony. Any worshiper of Dorje Shugden is, then, automatically dismissed as an ‘agent’ of China.
The France 24 report also admitted that the Dorje Shugden community constitutes the majority in Tibet and that they were almost all pro-Chinese government.
In France we tend to associate Tibet with the Dalai Lama but there are many Tibetans who are Buddhists, who think that China actually contributed something to Tibet.
The reporter adroitly omitted the “quelque chose” which Tibetans thank the CPC for; namely, the liberation from serfdom!
After the reportage, the France 24 presenter asked one of the correspondents Capucine Henry:
So just how taboo is it to criticize the Dalai Lama?
To which Madame Henry replied:
It’s completely taboo. Actually our shooting of the reportage was very difficult because we had our camera smashed in. The Dalai Lama is considered as a living god. He has achieved a level of clairvoyance that means that every decision he takes is the rule of law. If you criticize the Dalai Lama, you are judged to be a Chinese spy.
In spite of the fact that such revelations have been made by the mainstream French press in the past, it is astonishing that none of this was mentioned during last year’s Tibetan Festival in Toulouse, as the Tibetan dictator was presented to the French public as a benign philanthropist who supports “human rights”, “tolerance”, peace, and “Tibetan freedom”, while politely spreading the word about “Chinese cultural genocide”. Nothing could be further from the truth.18
Yet Stéphane Hessel, grand old man of France’s bourgeois intelligentsia, and one of the drafters of the UN declaration of human rights, debated ‘human values’ with the Dalai Lama in Toulouse last year, where he praised the Tibetan tyrant as a paragon of humanity and pacifism. Could Hessel really be that ignorant? The Tibetan dictator’s conference in Toulouse was attended by 7,000 people, with big screens for those who could not find seats in the packed Zenith auditorium.
Is it possible that Stéphane Hessel, who was himself deported by the Nazis to Buchanwald during World War Two, could be unaware of the Dalai Lama’s links with Nazi war criminals, neo-Nazis and terrorists? How could one of the drafters of the UN declaration of human rights not know that Tibetan serfs of the Lamaist theocracy were treated worse than animals and that the Dalai Lama denies this well-documented history?
Among the dignitaries present at last year’s Toulouse festival were Corrine Lepage, president of France’s Ecological Party. During the 1980s, Europe’s ecological hippies tended to see Lamaist Tibet as an ecological paradise under the rule of the Dalai Lama. The historical reality was, unfortunately, quite the opposite. As one historian remarks:
The Lhasa of tradition, for instance, capital of the Lamaist world, could hardly be described as an exemplary ecological site but rather, as a number of world travelers have reported, was until the mid-twentieth century one of the dirtiest cities on the planet. As a rule, refuse was tipped unto the street. The houses had no toilets. Everywhere, wherever they were, the inhabitants unburdened themselves. Dead animals were left to rot in public places. For such reasons the stench was so penetrating and nauseating that the XIII Dalai Lama felt sick every time he had to traverse the city. Nobles who stepped out usually held a handkerchief over their nose. 19
Vegetarians, ecologists and bourgeois feminists have all been seduced by the Dalai Lama’ specious demeanour and saccharine rhetoric. None of them seem to realize that the Lamas treated women no better than Afghanistan’s Taliban, that they regularly ate meat and had nothing but contempt for the environment; nor that the Dalai Lama is himself an avid meat eater, yet he proscribes the eating of meat among his subjects in Dharamsala. The Western power-elite’s marketing of the Dalai Lama must surely count among one of the most impressive frauds of modern history.
In 1997, Tibetan Buddhists in exile published the following letter to the Dalai Lama:
The cause [of the despotism] is the invisible disease which is still there and which develops immediately if met with various conditions. And what is this disease? It is your clinging to your own power. It is a fact that even at that time if someone would have used democracy on you, you would not have been able to accept it. … Your Holiness, you wish to be a great leader, but you do not know that in order to fulfill the wish, a ‘political Bodhisattva vow’ is required. So you entered instead the wrong ‘political path of accumulation’ (tsog lam) and that has lead you on a continuously wrong path. You believed that in order to be a greater leader you had to secure your own position first of all, and whenever any opposition against you arose you had to defend yourself, and this has become contagious. … Moreover, to challenge lamas you have used religion for your own aim. To that purpose you had to develop the Tibetan people’s blind faith. … For instance, you started the politics of public Kalachakra initiations.
Normally the Kalachakra initiation is not given in public. Then you started to use it continuously in a big way for your politics. The result is that now the Tibetan people have returned to exactly the same muddy and dirty mixing of politics and religion of lamas which you yourself had so precisely criticized in earlier times. … You have made the Tibetans into donkeys. You can force them to go here and there as you like. In your words you always say that you want to be Ghandi but in your action you are like a religious fundamentalist who uses religious faith for political purposes. Your image is the Dalai Lama, your mouth is Mahatma Ghandi and your heart is like that of a religious dictator. You are a deceiver and it is very sad that on the top of the suffering that they already have the Tibetan people have a leader like you. Tibetans have become fanatics. They say that the Dalai Lama is more important than the principle of Tibet. … Please, if you feel like being like Gandhi, do not turn the Tibetan situation in the church dominated style of 17th century Europe.20
In Dharamsala, no one is allowed to question or criticize the god-king and those who do not worship him are threatened, harassed and sometimes killed. Names of Dorje Shogdun practitioners appear on the doors of shops, warning people not to talk or serve them. Articles have appeared in the local media in India encouraging violence against practitioners of Dorje Shugden. When the Dalai Lama was confronted with written proof of this by a Swiss documentary maker, he haughtily dismissed it as “idle rumour.21
Yet, none of this seems to bother the French intelligentsia who bow down before this fraudulent Tibetan tyrant like feudal subjects. How could such intellectual imbecility reign in the land of Diderot, Condorcet, Voltaire and Sartre? How could a symbol of ruthless theocracy find favour in a culture that promotes rationalism, science and philosophy? What we are now witnessing in France and throughout Europe is the promotion of a post-modern, neo-feudalist ideology, an all-pervasive “pensée unique”, a closing of the European mind. The triumph of globalised hyper-capitalism has pushed humanity back into pre-republican modes of thought. We have entered a new dark age.
Pacifism Equals Covert Terrorism Against China
In Stéphane Hessel’s dialogue with the Dalai Lama, the retired French career diplomat praised the Dalai Lama for his insistence on pacifism and non-violent resistance. “la non-violence’ is a favourite catchphrase of Hessel, who, last year, gave full support to NATO’s “humanitarian” Blitzkrieg on the Great People’s Socialist Libyan Arab Jamahirya, a brutal bombing campaign that murdered thousands of innocent civilians and reduced Africa’s richest state to rubble and internecine civil war.
When the rebellion of the Tibetan aristocracy against the Communist Chinese administration failed in 1959, the CIA helped the Dalai Lama and his cronies to escape to India where he set up a ‘government-in-exile’. In 1998, the Los Angeles Times reported that declassified US government documents prove that the Dalai Lama’s Tibetan Independence movement was a CIA operation. The article stated:
The budget figures for the CIA’s Tibetan program are contained in a memo dated Jan. 9, 1964. It was evidently written to help justify continued funding for the clandestine intelligence operation.
Support of 2,100 Tibetan guerrillas based in Nepal: $500,000,” the document says. “Subsidy to the Dalai Lama: $180,000.” After listing several other costs, it concludes: “Total: $1,735,000.” The files show that this budget request was approved soon afterward.22
The US government wanted to use Tibet to weaken China and the same concerns are driving the ‘Free Tibet’ scam today. Europe and the United States are promoting the Dalai Lama in order to demonise China, whose development the West fears. According to the Los Angeles Times article, the Tibetan separatist guerillas were trained in Colorado USA and in Nepal with the help of Indian intelligence. The Dalai Lama is a militant not a pacifist, a religious fanatic not a moderate, a tyrant not a democrat. The covert war being waged by the US against China has erupted intermittently over the years.
On March 18th, 2008 rioters took to the streets of Tibet’s capital Lhasa looting shops, burning schools and attacking innocent civilians throughout the city. Chinese state television showed horrific pictures of Tibetan rioters stoning people to death on the streets. Smashing peoples’ skulls was the Tibetan “protestors” preferred form of execution. The Tibetan hooligans set fire to over 200 residential houses and shops and more than 80 vehicles. Even Chinese fire fighters were the object of aggression with fire engines being set on fire.
Meanwhile, our so called “free press” presented the Tibetan aggression as a violent “crackdown” by the big bad Chinese government on the “peaceful” Tibetan protestors. The BBC and CNN manipulated images to portray the Chinese police as the aggressors.
The German newspaper Die Berliner Morganpost published pictures of police officers rescuing Han Chinese from Tibetan aggression as more evidence of a “brutal” Chinese “crackdown” on the “peaceful protestors”. In a reductio ad absurdum worthy of Monty Python, German RTL television published pictures of police aggression in Nepal to accompany their reports of the Chinese “crackdown”!
The Free Tibet scam also receives funding from the Frederich Neumann Foundation in Germany and various NGOs linked to American intelligence.
A Canadian-Tibetan by the name of Lladon Tethong is the director of the international Tibet student movement, which has chapters all over the world. The 2008 riots apparently marked Tethong’s first ever visit to her beloved country.
Human rights groups funded by US government agencies claim that the Tibetan people are being repressed by the Han Chinese. They regularly cite such examples as the Chinese law that states that students can only enter the monasteries if they are over 18 years of age. This, according to Tibet Watch, is a violation of human rights.
What Tibet Watch fails to tell the public, however, is the fact that atrocious child sexual abuse was widespread in Tibetan Buddhist monasteries for centuries. That is why the Chinese government will not allow children to enter Tibetan monasteries before the age of 18. This is one of the typical omissions one regularly encounters when dealing with spurious “human rights” discourse on Tibet.23
Tibet Watch also believes that China is committing a human rights violation by encouraging Tibetans to respect the authority of the Chinese state rather than the Dalai Lama. In that case, all the modern secular democracies of the world are also guilty of human rights abuses by encouraging their citizens to respect the laws of the state rather than the laws of their respective religions!24
The jihadist violence that Western imperialism is now spreading throughout North Africa, the Middle East and Central Asia is also spreading across the Pakistani and Afghanistan borders into China.25 This aspect of imperialist destabilization of China, focusing on Uighur Islamism, merits a separate article.
But China is likely to face more problems from Tibetan fundamentalist separatists in the coming months, with full intelligence, logistics and media backing from the West.
On August Monday 15th, 2011 a Buddhist monk poured petrol on himself in Sichuan in West China which has a large Tibetan population, in an apparent protest against Chinese rule.26 Many self-immolations have followed and extremist journalists in respectable Western news outlets have encouraged such acts of terrorism with the Guardian’sPatrick Barkham claiming that “self-immolation inspires in others a belief that individual suffering can set in motion changes far greater than one horrifying death.27
Self-immolations are acts of violence and terrorism. The promotion of these barbarous acts is another worrying indication of the moral degeneracy of the Western press.
One should not forget that self-immolations were said to have caused the US backed regime-change uprisings in Tunisia and Egypt. There is reason to believe that covert warfare on China will be the next objective on NATO’s bellicose agenda
American ambassador to China John Huntsman was caught on camera last year attending a protest as North Africa was erupting in chaos during the US-fomented “Arab Spring”. When a netizen asked him what he was doing there, Huntsman replied:
“Just having fun’’
To which the Chinese netizen retorted.
“You’d like to see chaos in China wouldn’t you?”28
Huntsman furtively departed the scene, followed by his security henchmen.
Chaos is precisely what the US government and NATO would like to see in China, chaos and civil war, in order to drive China back to the semi-colonial status it had in the nineteenth century or the radical disunity of the Warring States Period in the 5th century BCE.
But what the Western neophytes in global imperialism fail to understand is that the Chinese civilization-state has existed for millennia and will continue to flourish long after the West consumes itself in hubris, war and moral corruption.
A. Tom Grunfeld, The Making of Modern Tibet rev. ed. (Armonk, N.Y. and London: 1996). [↩]
A. Tom Grunfeld, The Making of Modern Tibet rev. ed. Armonk, N.Y. and London: 1996 [↩]
Michael Parenti, Friendly Feudalism: The Tibet Myth, Updated and Expanded Version, January 2007 [↩]
Anna Louise Strong Reference Archive, When serfs stood up in Tibet, Appendix II [↩]
Anna Louise Strong Reference Archive. When serfs stood up in Tibet, Appendix II [↩]
Mobo Gao, The Battle for China’s Past-Mao and the Cultural Revolution, London, Pluto Press, 2008, pp. 27 [↩]
Anna Louise Strong Reference Archive. When serfs stood up in Tibet, Appendix II. [↩]
Mobo Gao, The Battle for China’s Past-Mao and the Cultural Revolution, London, Pluto Press, 2008, p. 65 [↩]
Mobo Gao, The Battle for China’s Past-Mao and the Cultural Revolution, London, Pluto Press, 2008, p. 80 [↩]
Pascale Nivelle, “La clique maléfique“, Libération, August 2011 [↩]
Anne-Marie Blondeau et al, “Réponse sur les liens entre le dalaï-lama et les Nazis“, Libération, 6 May 2008 [↩]
Laurent Dispot “Le Dalaï Lama et les Nazis”, Libération, 25 April 2008 [↩]
© Victor & Victoria Trimondi The Shadow of the Dalai Lama – Part II – 13. The doomsday guru Shoko Asahara and the XIV. Dalai Lama [↩]
Paul Vallely, “I was a Tantric sex slave”, The Independent, February 10, 1999 [↩]
france 24 Dalai lama versus Dorje Shugden (second part). [↩]
© Victor & Victoria Trimondi, The Shadow of the Dalai Lama – Part II – 16. Tactics, Strategies, Forgeries, Illusions [↩]
© Victor & Victoria Trimondi, The Shadow of the Dalai Lama – Introduction [↩]
3/3. from SwissTV. The Dark Side of Dalai Lama [↩]
Jim Mann, “CIA Gave Aid to Tibetan Exiles in ’60s, Files Show”, Los Angeles Times, September 15, 1998 [↩]
Broken promises, Human rights violations in Tibet since China was awarded the 2008 Olympic Games, Tibet Watch 2008 [↩]
Broken promises, Human rights violations in Tibet since China was awarded the 2008 Olympic Games, Tibet Watch, 2008 [↩]
Chris Buckley, “China blames Muslim extremists for attack in Xinjiang”, Reuters, August 1, 2011 [↩]
“Tibetan monk dies in self-immolation protest, group says“, Reuters, August 15, 2011 [↩]
Patrick Barkham, “Self-immolation: the ultimate symbol of protest?” The Guardian, 7 March 2012 [↩]
‘Jasmine Revolution in China’? Epic Fail! American Ambassador got owned (02.20.2011, Beijing). [↩]
Gearóid Ó Colmáin is a political analyst based in Paris.
France 24 report
In a speech given last January the Dali Lama bans the Buddhist deity of Dorje Shugden as he considers it to be a malevolent force. “I have meditated and considered (My decision to put aside the Shugden) at length in my soul and spirit before coming to the right decision”, he said. People have killed, lied and fought each other and set things alight in the name of this deity. These monks must be expelled from all monasteries. If they are not happy, you can tell them that the Dalai Lama himself asked that this be done and it is very urgent
About 4 million Tibetans revere this deity. A few weeks after the speech Shugden monks could no longer enter their monasteries. A Shugden monk says. On One hand, he is always preaching freedom of religion and compassion, but on the other, he is forbidding us to worship the God we choose.
Posters of Shugden leaders are posted on city walls branding them as traitors. Followers are banned from shops and official places. In India, followers have had to go into hiding after being threatened with violence and death.
Whoever reveres Dorje Shugden?
…”must be targeted and firmly opposed. We must bring them before the public. They have to be killed
The master of a monastery received the following letter
“… You will be dead in 7 days time
After expressing concern about the Dalai Lamas ban. This retired monk was attacked with a knife. He barely survived.
Houses have been attacked and destroyed on so on…..
Question to the Dalai Lama
Reporter: Why don’t you simply advise people not to worship the deity Dorje Shugden and instruct others to be tolerant and avoid violence to those who continue to worship it?
Dali Lama: Nobody harming! Nobody harming on them!
R: But I have seen the calls for violence in the newspapers
DL: No, no, no.
R: But I have seen it with my own eyes
DL: No, I think rumors!
Swiss TV has a documentary relating to the above it can be found on YouTube
What we have now is apartheid in Buddhist land.
A lawsuit is now pending in the Indian high court against the Loola for religious discrimination
Asahara the leader of supreme truth cult in Japan donated in excess of 1 Million dollars. This is the same man who was responsible for the sarin nerve gas attack on the Japanese underground-
Tibet’s only female living Buddha says-The sins of the Dalai Lama and his followers seriously violate the basic teachings and precepts of Buddhism and seriously damage traditional Tibetans normal good order and reputation- she went on to say , old Tibet was dark and cruel, the serfs lived worse than horses and cattle
As seen through the eyes of Kelsang Pema
Kelsang Pema – birth name: Helen Gradwell, born and brought up in Carlisle, England – is a leading member of the Western Shugden Society, a group of Buddhists who worship the ‘wisdom deity’ Dorje Shugden. Buddhists, especially in Tibet, have been saying the Dorje Shugden prayer for more than 350 years. Pema tells me ‘the prayer becomes your life, your breath’. Buddhists call on Dorje Shugden to ‘help us develop pure qualities’, she says, ‘including love, compassion and patience’. There’s only one problem: the Dalai Lama, head of the Tibetan government-in-exile in northern India and considered by many Buddhists to be a figurehead of their faith, effectively outlawed the worship of Dorje Shugden in 1996 and overnight transformed Shugden-following Buddhists into heretics and untouchables.
In March 1996, the Dalai Lama decreed that the worship of Dorje Shugden was ‘evil’. In what is believed to have been part of an internal power struggle in his fiefdom-in-exile in Dharamsala, northern India, the Dalai Lama ordered all worshippers of Dorje Shugden to leave his temple on 21 March 1996. A week later, on 30 March 1996, the Assembly of Tibetan People’s Deputies (the parliament in exile) passed a resolution banning the worship of Dorje Shugden by Tibetan government employees, and the Private Office of His Holiness the Dalai Lama issued a formal decree for everyone to stop practising the Dorje Shugden prayer. The New Internationalist reported that the Lama’s office wrote to every monastery in northern India and Tibet demanding that they ‘ensure total implementation of this decree by each and everyone… If there is anyone who continues to worship [Dorje Shugden], make a list of their names, house name, birth place… Keep the original and send us a copy of the list.’ (1)
‘After the Dalai Lama’s decree, anyone who continued to follow Dorje Shugden got it in the neck’, Pema says. By 1998, two years after the Dalai Lama described Dorje Shugden as ‘evil’ and instructed monasteries to collect the names of those disobedient Buddhists who continued worshipping it, an Indian human rights lawyer, PK Dey, had collected 300 statements from Tibetans in exile in India who had been either threatened or attacked for failing to comply with the Dalai Lama’s orders. ‘Those worshipping Shugden are experiencing tremendous harassment’, said Dey. ‘This is not in any particular part of the country but everywhere there are Tibetans.’ (2) In December 1996, one 72-year-old woman, Sonam Bhuti, whose family had worshipped Dorje Shugden for generations, reported to the Office of the Notary in Delhi (a civil law institution) that Tibetan officials had ransacked her and others’ homes, ‘forcibly taking out the idols and paintings [of Dorje Shugden]’ and ‘burning’ and ‘breaking’ them (3).
The Dalai Lama’s officials sought to expel Dorje Shugden worshippers from positions of power and responsibility in both northern India and Tibet. On 18 April 1996, the Tibetan Department of Health wrote to doctors and threatened to sack any who continued worshipping the deity: ‘In case there is anyone who doesn’t abide by the addresses of His Holiness to give up Shugden worship… such persons should submit their resignation.’ (4) On 19 May 1998, the Tibetan Department of Religion and Culture advised welfare and settlement officers of the conditions under which Tibetan monks and nuns could leave Tibet or northern India to travel to other parts of the world. Condition no.3 required ‘attestation from their monastery that neither the host [nor the] invitee is a devotee of Dhogyal [a derogatory name for Dorje Shugden]’ (5). In 1998, the New Internationalist reported that there was little point in Dorje Shugden worshippers protesting against their maltreatment – one group of worshippers was told by Tibetan officials that ‘concepts like democracy and freedom of religion are empty when it comes to the wellbeing of the Dalai Lama’ (6).
Into the 2000s, the Dalai Lama has continued to harry the remaining Shugden followers. The German newspaper Suddeutsche Zeitung reported recently that ‘in Tibet, many practiced e Shugden only “discreetly”, since their practice has been rejected by the Dalai Lama… as evil’ (7). In January this year, the Dalia Lama held a referendum among Tibetan monks to decide whether it is acceptable to worship Dorje Shugden. Yet Pema says it wasn’t a referendum ‘in any democratic sense’. Instead, monks had to choose a red stick or a yellow stick from a basket, publicly and in front of their superiors; they picked the yellow stick if they opposed the worship of Dorje Shugden and the red stick if they supported the right of people to worship the deity. Perhaps not surprisingly, given the Dalai Lama’s decrees against the worship of Dorje Shugden and the public, archaic nature of the referendum, the yellow sticks won (8). ‘In Britain and America, the Dalai Lama is a religious hero. But for many he is a religious dictator’, says Pema.
Some denounce the Dorje Shugden followers as mouthpieces for China. Pema denies it. ‘Anyone who criticises the Dalai Lama is written off as a Chinese puppet’, she says. ‘It’s just another way of shutting down debate. People in the West look upon Tibet as this ideal place, but Tibetans find it hard to have serious debates or to stand up to the Dalai Lama. It’s almost medieval.’ Others have made a similar point about the way the Dalai Lama’s unquestionable status as high representative of the Tibetan people and all things Buddhist stifles the development of Tibetan public life. In her book The Tibetan Independent Movement: Political, Religious and Gandhian Perspectives, Jane Ardley argued that in terms of the development of internal political life in Tibet and Dharamsala, ‘[It] is apparent that it is the Dalai Lama’s role as ultimate spiritual authority that is holding back the political process of democratisation. The assumption that he occupies the correct moral ground from a spiritual perspective means that any challenge to his political authority may be interpreted as anti-religious.’ (9)
Others claim that the ‘Dorje Shugden clique’ is a cult. They do indeed have cultish qualities, devoting their life and love to an archaic Buddhist deity. But then many Buddhist and other religious groups could be described as ‘cultish’. The most striking thing about the Dorje Shugden story is the Western media’s lack of interest in it. Pema has had meetings with British MPs – yet while some ‘were interested’, she says ‘they knew that criticising the Dalai Lama would damage their reputations’. She has held press conferences ‘but they are usually poorly attended’. The media do, however, turn up to the Western Shugden Society’s anti-Dalai Lama protests – such as the one that will take place at the Royal Albert Hall on Thursday this week – but usually only so they can publish stories about ‘mad Buddhists attacking the Dalai Lama’, she says.
The state of denial in the West about some of the Dalai Lama’s alleged power-tripping, or at least the unquestioning attitude towards the Dalai Lama and everything that he does, highlights the role that he plays for many Western celebs, commentators and politicians today: he’s a cartoon ‘good guy’, giggling, pure and righteous, who apparently should be unconditionally applauded for standing up to the ‘Evil Chinese’. All of the Dalai Lama’s bad points – his origins in the stifling medievalism of 1930s Tibet; his archaic practices; his disregard for ‘concepts like democracy and freedom of religion’; his backing from the CIA in its Cold War with the Chinese – are simply ignored, as His Holiness is invited to guest-edit French Vogue, attend charity auctions with Sharon ‘Look at My Vagina’ Stone, and rub shoulders with Richard Gere. Pema shows me the Independent on Sunday, published the day before we met, which has a feature about the Dalai Lama ‘charming the West’. There are around 12 photos showing him meeting celebrites and other do-gooders. Yet in two of the photos, it isn’t the Dalai Lama at all; it’s a different Lama. Maybe these Tibetans all look the same to British picture editors.
‘He’s just a photograph and a symbol to many people in the West’, says Pema. ‘But the reality is very different.’
The Serfs Emancipation Day takes place on March 28 every year. On March 28, 1959, the central government announced it would dissolve the aristocratic local government of Tibet and replace it with a preparatory committee for establishing the Tibet Autonomous Region.
That meant the end of serfdom and the abolition of the hierarchic social system characterized by theocracy, with the Dalai Lama as the core of the leadership. About 1 million serfs and slaves, accounting for 90 percent of Tibetan population in the1950s, were thus emancipated.
Quote from the Hindu, India’s national paper commenting on emancipation day
Tsondre retired 69-year-old farmer
“I was born to a serf’s family and was made a monk in the Sera monastery when I was young,” he said adding he would never forget this tragedy. He was at the lowest strata in the monastery; doing all kinds of chores throughout the year and did not get enough food.
“due to starvation many people like me went out to beg for food; but if we were discovered by the monks at upper levels, we would be clubbed or cowhided.
A further report-
Slaves wailed and begged from passers by, some had their legs chopped of by their landlords, some had their eyes gouged out and some were without hands, the landlords lived in Luxury.
“In their houses hung whips, knives, and shackles he added”.
March 28, is an annual holiday in the Tibet Autonomous Region, which celebrates the emancipation of serfs in Tibet. The holiday was adopted by the Tibetan legislature on January 19, 2009, and was promulgated that same year. In modern Tibetan history, March 28, 1959, was the day that the Tibetan government was declared illegal by the People’s Republic of China, which according to official Chinese history, liberated Tibetans from feudalism and theocracy. The head of that former government, the 14th Dalai Lama, calls the holiday a diversion from current problems in Tibet.
BEIJING: China accused the Dalai Lama of allying with Japanese right-wingers in an island dispute as a way of attacking China and blamed him for glorifying a wave of self-immolations among Tibetans. The comments came as another Tibetan set himself on fire to protest Chinese rule, Tibetan exiles and a rights group said.
Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Hong Lei said the Dalai Lama’s comments in Japan on the island dispute showed his “reactionary nature” and determination to split China apart under the guise of religion.
“To achieve his separatist goal, he associated with the Japanese right-wing forces. Chinese people despise him for what he did. We are firmly opposed to any country’s providing a stage for him,” Hong said.
Chinese media have said the Dalai Lama called the islands by their Japanese name during a news conference in Yokohama last Monday but an Associated Press review of a tape of the event showed he referred to them only as “the islands.”
In Okinawa, the Dalai Lama criticized Chinese media for making up a claim that he sided with the Japanese.
Tensions have run high over the islands, known as Senkaku in Japanese and Diaoyu in Chinese, since the Japanese government nationalized some of them in September in a bid to prevent Tokyo’s right-wing governor from buying them. Violent anti-Japanese protests broke out in a number of Chinese cities, and Beijing has sent ships to conduct near-constant patrols near the uninhabited rocks.
Hong also attacked the Dalai Lama for reportedly accusing the Chinese government of failing to investigate the root cause of despair and hopelessness among Tibetans that many say have prompted people to take their lives as a form of protest. China has long accused the Dalai Lama and his supporters of inspiring such acts, despite his condemnation of all forms of violence.
“Not only did the Dalai not condemn them, but he actually glorified these acts, which are against the national law and religious principles,” Hong said.
The remarks came as a 24-year-old Tibetan man set himself on fire at a prayer ceremony in Tongren county in western China’s Qinghai province, becoming the seventh person in six days to self-immolate in the region, the rights group Free Tibet said.
Nyingkar Tashi is reported to have died in the protest in which he called out for freedom in Tibet and for the longevity of the Dalai Lama, the group said. A statement from the self-declared Tibetan government-in-exile in Dharmsala, India, provided similar details.
A Tongren government official who picked up the phone said he could not comment, while Ma Chunyin, head of the Tongren Communist Party Propaganda Department, said he did not know about the reported self-immolation.
Tibet support groups overseas have said the increase in protests in recent days is meant to highlight Tibetan unhappiness with Chinese rule as the country’s leaders hand over power to younger successors at a party congress in Beijing.
“Throughout the 18th Party Congress the new unelected leaders have been reminded on an almost daily basis of Tibetans’ rejection of Chinese rule, and of the terrible failure of policies to cement the occupation,” Free Tibet Director Stephanie Brigden said.
The Dalai Lama fled to India following an abortive 1959 uprising against Chinese rule over Tibet. He denies seeking the region’s independence, saying that he wishes Tibetans to enjoy real autonomy and protection of their traditional Buddhist culture.
Tibetans committing self-immolations were in principle practising non-violence as they had the courage to sacrifice their own life for a cause they believe, Tibetan spiritual leader Dalai Lama said on Sunday.
“I consider these Tibetans burning — certainly these people have courage and determination to sacrifice their own life, so they can easily harm other people — but I think these people, although they practised a little bit of violence, but I think in principle they still practise non-violence,” the Dalai Lama said.
He said that the younger generation of Tibetans in Tibet these days have stronger determination as compared to earlier generations.
The Nobel Peace laureate cautioned that the situation in Tibet is serious. “Now, things are serious. Whether Chinese government agrees or not, there are problems and these problems are neither good for Tibetans or for the people of China. So, we have to find a solution based on mutual understanding and mutual respect,” he said.
He was addressing the members of Tibet Support Groups from all over the world who have gathered here to discuss the ongoing situation in Tibet.
The TSG pledged to mobilise the international community to press the Chinese government to find a lasting and mutually-agreeable solution to the Tibet issue.
On the concluding day of the Special International Tibet Support Groups Meeting organised here from November 16 to 18, the TSG members expressed solidarity with Tibetans inside Tibet for their unwavering determination to non-violence.
Over 200 members of the TSG from 43 countries carried out extensive discussions to find solutions to the Tibet issue.