Tibet Diary: Trekking along the CCP Propaganda Mission
On June 19, 2009, Chinese Communist mouthpiece, Xinhua attempts to report on "Tibet Diary" a documentary film made by two Americans, Katy and Moge.
As mentioned in that peice, Moge says "I want to give some advice to people who visit Tibet: open your mind and cast aside your connatural concept on Tibet." I believe it is a valuable advice given but taking their "Tibet Diary" into consideration, they both are trapped into the the pool of Chinese propaganda and did not project the true reality of Tibet. So, their action speaks in contrary to their conception of not bounding to connatural ideas.
Moge and Katy, both first time visitor to Tibet have no background knowledge of Tibetan history and socio-political issues prior to their visit and unfortunately, even after the visit. But, they made a documentary on Tibet which tells what they saw, under the watchful eyes of China. I appreciate their effort but I am doubtful that China might have got a hind of their ignorance and used it in their favor. When Tibetans in exile were asking China to make way for the world medias to enter freely in Tibet, many of prominent medias were not permitted to enter Tibet. Few group medias were allowed, but were strictly guided by the Chinese local officials during the whole tour. Tibet Dairy misses it's charm when someone who did not know about Tibet and tries to prove that he/she knows. It sucks!! Some may wonder, How can I know that they are not knowledgeable about Tibet even after going to Tibet. Here is just a simple fact which is so basic about Tibet. This is what Katy says, "I have learnt new things there. The Tibetan Buddhism has five sects and the Yellow Sect of the Dalai Lama is just one of them." To clarify her mistake, Tibetan Buddhism has only four sects consisting of Gelug, Nyingma, Sakya and Kargyu. Even though Dalai Lama belongs to Gelugpa sect, Dalai Lama is a supreme spiritual leader of Tibet. He promotes nonsectarianism as he is committed for years. More in detail at his official website, www.dalailama.com.
Seeing is believing: Wrong judgement
Katy acknowledged that she learnt so many new things in Tibet and perhaps she is right. But she is confused just like any other people who are less informed about Tibet. That's why she was not sure and puzzled about what is really happening in Tibet. She wrote, "so many Tibetans may be uninterested in Dalai Lama's alleged 'political freedom."
In Tibet, Chinese government strictly restricted Dalai Lama's photo, and many Tibetans were caught and imprisoned for possessing his photo. Fear of persecution is very much prevalent in Tibet. Mere absence of Dalai Lama's photo does not necessarily mean that the people have lost their reverence and faith on him. Rather, Tibetans are forced to remain silent under the vigilant of merciless Communist regime. It is evident as we witnessed over the years that Tibetans in Tibet are becoming vocal in support of Dalai Lama. Here are few of the past events which prove in contrary to what Katy criticized about Dalai Lama. During last year's massive demonstrations in Tibet, many have requested the Dalai Lama to return to Tibet and raised slogan like 'Long Live Dalai Lama". Even during the His Holiness Birthday, people gathered silently to pray for him. In 2007, when the U.S. congressional Gold Medal was awarded to the Dalai Lama, many Tibetans in Tibet were overjoyed by the news and we have witnessed the incense burner filled with huge smokes and fire, which was never seen before at Jorkhang Temple in the midst of Lhasa, capital city of Tibet. Years before, during the kalachakra initiation, Dalai Lama called Tibetan people to stop using animal furs, and in support of this call, many in Tibet had launched campaigns. Mass burning of furs used for clothes were burned in areas. Though, Dalai Lama is physically out of Tibet, but the people's faith is as strong as mountain. Over the past 50 years, The Chinese regime had systematically used many cheap tactics to dissociate the two unseparable bond (Tibetans and Dalai Lama), and they failed to crush it. More over, people in Tibet are becoming more vocal in support of Dalai Lama. I think, Moge and Katy need to go to Tibet once again to check the invisible passion of the people, which is boiling and ready to bust at any moment.
On the surface level, Tibetan cities were sophisticatedly built into a modern city. Visitors are astounded by its modernity which is a master plan of Chinese policy to show to the world that Tibet is developed and remains no more a pre-medieval feudalistic system which they always complained about old Tibet. Many people got carried away by this modernity of Tibet, but did not understand the hard reality behind the scene. Tourism is promoted and considered one among the pillars of Tibetan economy. Potala Palace, once the winter residence of Dalai Lama is presently labelled as a fancy backdrop of Tibet tourism, so to generate income for Beijing Administration. Railway lines linking Mainland China and Tibet was started . While on the journey, many were amazed by the beauty of Tibetan landscapes but did not realized how many of Chinese immigrants were on board traveling and settling in Tibet for their own good. Mainlanders visit Tibet for economic prosperity which has been consistently promoted by the Chines regime to assimilate Tibetan identity and to dominate the economy. Millions of Chinese are already settling in Tibet amidst meager Tibetan indigenous people. With the policy of favoritism in Tibet, Tibetans are loosing its ground on socio-cultural, politico-linguistic affairs. It threatens the very survival of Tibetan race and identity. Most of the shops and malls in Lhasa and many other places are owned by the Chinese immigrants. Tibetans are merely a second class citizen in her own homeland.
Tibet reality: A pragmatic role
After making the documentary film, Moge says "Before going there, I felt that Tibet's getting independence was right and proper. After talking with many local Tibetans, I don't feel that Tibet needs to be independent from China. And I don't think the vast majority of them hope for Tibet's independence, either. " It is obvious that the unified voice of Tibetans and supporters worldwide regards Tibet as an independent state which was aggressively occupied by China in 1959. For decades, Tibetans in Tibet and elsewhere proclaimed Tibet independence as a legitimate right and even continue to do so. And it is the historical fact. However, when he mentioned about talking politics with many local Tibetans, as 'Independence' word itself is a politics and uttering a word of Tibetan independence is considered a serious crime against Chinese national security. So, it is natural that the Tibetan people will not openly say yes to independence. it is a matter of their survival and the threat is undoubtedly imposed upon them. 'Tibet Diary' is a diary of Moge and Katy's journey to the roof of the world, but they politicized their travel diary to impress China and to convey a wrong message to the world. Knowlingly or unknowingly, they became a part of Chinese propagandist tool. It exactly goes with the Chinese traditional saying, "if you tell lies thousand times, it will become truth".
Whatever may be the case, the Tibetan Government in Exile, under the leadership of Dalai lama, consistently urged China to give Genuine Autonomy for the Tibetans, rather than independence in order to preserve their culture, identity, environment and religion. But, China fears that if the Dalai Lama allows to returns to Tibet, CCP will loose its grip in Tibet. So, the Chinese leaders show their deaf ear to the international communities, supporters and Tibetans within and outside Tibet by not negotiating with the exile Tibetan representatives. Till now, eight round of talks were held, nothing positive was yielded rather the talk went dead lock last November. These talks were just a mere confidence building measures and the real negotiation is no way near. Chinese leaders are buying time and waiting for the Dalai lama to die. But, does it solves the Sino-Tibetan problem. I bet, the Chinese leaders need to understand that the Tibet issue is a national issue and not a private issue of the Dalai Lama. The welfare of all Tibetans must take into consideration. Otherwise, the Sino-Tibetan problem will not be resolved for years which will lead to more resentments from the Tibetan side. So, the most rational and the pragmatic way to solve this crisis is to negotiate with the Tibetans by granting them Genuine Autonomy within China.