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International Amnesia And Case Of Lost Freedom: Tibet And Chinese Occupation – OpEd


t is now 57 years since Tibetans revolted against the occupation of Tibet by China and March 10, 1959 is considered the Tibetan uprising day.

After the Chinese forcibly occupied Tibet, claiming it to be part of China and ruthlessly putting down the natives who opposed the Chinese army moving into Tibet to take over the country, this once independent nation is now completely under the Chinese government’s thumb. Now, China has total control of Tibet, making this once independent and peace loving country one of the provinces of China.

The Dalai Lama had to helplessly run away from Tibet and seek asylum in India along with his followers and disciples, when Chinese military entered Tibet. This is now part of history. At that time, while some countries protested and humanists and fair minded citizens around the world severely criticized China for its act of taking over Tibet forcibly, nothing much happened beyond this. Today, Tibet remains as a country in distant memory for the world and as a case study of force and violence succeeding, with the world opinion becoming virtually indifferent and impotent.

While many Tibetans are now living as refugees in different parts of the world and are dreaming about a day when Tibet would become a free country once again, there is no sign that their dream would be realized now or in the immediate future.

With China becoming economically, militarily and industrially strong country, countries including USA and several European nations are keen to maintain strong and positive relationships with China and are looking forward to further promote business and economic opportunities with the rapidly advancing China. None of these countries do anymore think about Tibet and their credentials as advocates of liberty and freedom are certainly under the cloud of doubt now.

Obviously, the world now seems to have reconciled itself to the view that ‘might will only be right’, and the only way of preserving territorial integrity of any country is to make itself militarily strong. Tibet has paid the price for being a country without any army worth its name and for totally devoting itself to philosophy of Buddhism, which advocates peace and harmony as the sole desirable criteria for the humanity.

People around the world, including the ardent admirers of Tibetan culture and philosophy and those who swear for triumph of good over evil, appear to think that Tibet is now part of world history. This is more than evident from the fact that the world media has failed to remember Tibet on March 10, which is the day hailed as the Tibetan Uprising day. No leader of world government including that of USA and India have thought it necessary to greet the Tibetans living in Tibet and in exile around the world and recognize the fact that Tibet is a victim of expansionist philosophy of aggressive neighboring country.

Now it looks that Tibetans can get back Tibet as free country, only if there would be change in the mindset of the rulers in China, who would realize that Tibet has been wronged by China. This is very unlikely as things stand now.

Today, Tibetans remain as orphaned and helpless people feeling with bitterness that the world conscience is conspicuous by silence as far as the plight of Tibet is concerned. In any case, the civilized world cannot accept a situation when military force have silenced unarmed peace loving people, with the world community simply watching or at best uttering some rhetoric that have no significance.

It is important that the hope of freedom for Tibet should be kept alive by peace loving people around the world, constantly recalling the wrong that has happened to Tibet and deploring the victory of violent and military methods. Tibetans should not lose hope and they should keep the great tradition and value cherished by Tibet in mind all the time and strive for freedom for Tibet by ‘waking up the world conscience’, wherever they are.

The Tibetans need to organize themselves more effectively and constantly remind the world about Tibet’s lost freedom, hoping that one day the right will triumph over wrong and Tibet will see the light of the day.

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N. S. Venkataraman

N. S. Venkataraman is a trustee with the "Nandini Voice for the Deprived," a not-for-profit organization that aims to highlight the problems of downtrodden and deprived people and support their cause. To promote probity and ethical values in private and public life and to deliberate on socio-economic issues in a dispassionate and objective manner.

One thought on “International Amnesia And Case Of Lost Freedom: Tibet And Chinese Occupation – OpEd

  • March 16, 2016 at 5:16 pm

    Great post Sir … Thanks a lot For your great insight to the reality of Tibet Now.


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