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Russian Scholar Depicts The Independence Status Of Tibet


 
Title: Hidden Tibet: History of Independence and Occupation (pp. 541 & 180 pictures)

Author: Dr. Sergius L. Kuzmin, Russian Academy of Sciences, Moscow

Publisher: Publication A. Terentyev, St. Petersburg, 2010

Publication sponsor:   Save Tibet Foundation, Moscow


Review and summary by Nawang Rabgyal

The latest book in Russian on Tibet entitled  HIDDEN TIBET: HISTORY OF INDEPENDENCE AND OCCUPATION,  authored by Dr. Segius L. Kuzmin, Senior Scholar of Russian Academy of Sciences, was released on March 10, 2010, on the occasion of the 51st anniversary of the Tibetan National Uprising Day.

The book contains 12 chapters in 541 pages and 180 photographs, starting from geography of Tibet and origination of Tibetan people up to the present situation in occupied-Tibet. It is the most comprehensive and convincing work in Russian language devoted to the question of Tibet. It  depicts the history and development of Tibetan culture and religion, which makes very clear that Tibet had its own independent and unique national identity. The book analyzes  the Chinese traditional and geopolitical views as well as politics in respect to "national minorities", and thus makes very clear why China misinterpreted Tibet as a state subordinate to China, or even the part of China, and why it is wrong. It analyses legal argumentation of the Tibetan question and depicts very clearly that according to international law Tibet has never  lost her statehood and thus uneqivocally Tibet is an occupied country.

The book disproves some erroneous views on history of Tibet. In summary the author writes " Tibet has never been a part of any other state. At the time when China was an inseparable part of Mongolian Yuan Empire and Manchu Qing Empire, Tibet was a separate  country but not a part  of these empires. It was not a part of Chinese Tang and Ming empire. Statement that Tibet was a part of neighboring empires is related to ancient Chinese conception of the emperor's global power. Its principles are being wrongfully transferred onto a nation state model in post-revolution China. Inclusion of Tibet into the People's Republic of China was not legitimate. Tibet is an occupied country."

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New Chinese Voices in Sino-Tibetan Negotiations - By Thubten Samphel

New Chinese Voices in Sino-Tibetan Negotiations

By Thubten Samphel

Dharamsala and Bejing: the Negotiations that Never Were by Claude Arpi
Published by Lancer Publishers and Distributors, New Delhi, 2009
pages 294, price Rs 795
 
 
 Claude Arpi's judgement of the dialogue process between Dharamsala and Beijing is 
 clear from the title of his latest book. Despite its loud doubts, The Negotiations that
 Never Were will serve as an essential reference book for researchers and third
 parties interested in the intermittent Sino-Tibetan dialogue, which, according to the
 author, began as far aback as 1973 when some Xinhua (official news agency of China)
 reporters based in Hong Kong used George Patterson, a Scottish missionary- turned
 writer, as a conduit to establish ties with Dharamsala.

 The book is enriched by the author's deep access to all those Tibetan principals
 involved in the dialogue process and the actual negotiations. It is also enriched by the
 author's own extensive research on a subject much commented but little researched
 on. The Negotiations that Never Were will form the basis of future Sino-Tibetan
 negotiations literature because the book's enduring contribution to this literature is
 the blow-by-blow accounts it gives of all the contacts and discussions between
 Dharamsala and Beijing.

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China’s Other Minority, Seen by One of Its Own - One Woman’s Epic Struggle for Peace With China

   Rebiya Kadeer/Photo by Sahlan Hayes
One Woman’s Epic Struggle for Peace With China
By Rebiya Kadeer with Alexandra Cavelius
Illustrated. 423 pages. Kales Press. $28.95.
 

It is the awkward fate of China, more than any other country, to be arriving late to any number of parties where most other revelers are either long gone or leaving, having declared the celebrations déclassé. Such is the case with China’s booming smokestack economy and with its ardent new fling with the automobile, with its desire for a deep-water navy built around aircraft carriers, and with its ambition for a space program that will land on the Moon.

China is also just beginning to grapple with the creation of what most in the developed world would recognize as a modern legal system and acceptable standards for human rights, and it is in much the same position with its cobbling efforts to reinvent the welfare state.

Most anachronistic of all, though, is the country’s treatment of its two largest minorities, the Tibetans and Uighurs, both old, non-Han indigenous civilizations that claim meaningful autonomy in China’s vast, resource-rich and sparsely populated west. Our Western legacy of land expropriation and slaughter of native peoples by European settlers and imperial armies may give us little to cluck about, but in today’s world the rights and interests of native peoples have rightly won greater recognition.

In this memoir, “Dragon Fighter,” part defiant political tell-all, part engrossing personal saga, Rebiya Kadeer paints a vivid picture of her life as a mother of 11 and a businesswoman who spent nearly six years in prison on her way to becoming the Uighur people’s most prominent dissident.

Since its Communist revolution of 1949 China has employed a brimming catalog of tactics to bring its western region to heel. These include invasion; disappearing of political leaders; gerrymandering to disperse minorities across new, eccentrically redrawn provinces, flooding the cities with subsidized Han immigration; limits on worship, government control of clergy, desecration of temples and harsh repression.

Even Westerners who pay relatively little attention to China will be at least vaguely familiar with the plight of Tibetans, whose religious leader, the Dalai Lama, has been lionized by the Nobel committee and received at the White House.

Such is not the case with the Uighur, a central Asian people who are distant relatives of the Turks and native to what China calls the Xinjiang Uighur Autonomous Region, or the New Frontier, an area three and half times as large as California, whose indigenous people look all but set to join the ranks of history’s great, overrun losers.

One thing the Uighur, spelled Uyghur in this book, have never had is a leader with great recognition outside China, like the Dalai Lama, who has contributed a brief introduction for this memoir of Ms. Kadeer. She writes: “Politicians and human rights organizations from all over the world were active on behalf of Tibet. The conditions in the Uyghur nation were much the same. But interest from abroad in the two, though literally we were next-door neighbors sharing a common border and both under Chinese occupation, could not have been more dissimilar.”

Nor, she might have added, scarcely could the plight of these two neighboring peoples, both of which have long maintained cultural and often political autonomy on the periphery of imperial China, be more fundamentally similar. That the Uighur have never enjoyed anything like the global sympathy extended to Tibetans stands out as a historical oddity that may have something to do with their predominantly Muslim culture, which evokes little of the warm feeling engendered by Tibet’s red-robed, incense-burning, sutra-chanting Buddhists.

 

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Tibet: The Lost Frontier and Missed Opportunity

    Tibet: The Lost Frontier
    By Claude Arpi
    Lancer Publishers, New Delhi, 2008
    Pages 338, Price Not Specified

French born writer, Claude Arpi, is a zealous student of the history of Tibet, China, India, and their status in international politics. He has been living in Auroville, India, where he is married to an Indian. Today, he is well known for writing authoritative books and articles about geopolitics, environment and Indo-French relations. Tibet: The Lost Frontier unfolds the history of the Roof of the World and her political contacts with two giant neighbors, India and China. Arpi notes that history of these three nations demonstrate that Tibet and China constantly had a relation on the basis of force and power while Tibet and India had more of a cultural and religious relationship based on shared spiritual values. From the emergence of Buddhism during the reign of king Lha Thothori Nyatsen in the fifth century (AD) to border issues over Arunachal Pradesh between India and China in the 21st century, this book elaborates the importance of the Tibetan plateau, which not only holds the key to the well-being of Asia, but it also has a huge impact on the relationship between India and China.

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New Book Chronicles Horror of Chinese Opression in Tibet 1959 Onwards

 When Chinese troops suppressed a nationalist uprising in Tibet’s capital city Lhasa in 1959, a curtain came down over Tibet. Thousands were killed in fighting across the country or vanished into labor camps and jails—where many died from illness, overwork, or starvation.

Now, a Tibetan survivor of those events has released an account of them in English translation.

Tubten Khetsun’s Memories of Life in Lhasa Under Chinese Rule, published in 2008 by Columbia University Press, details the author’s experiences in Chinese prisons and as a forced laborer on state-run construction sites and farms from 1959-79.

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The Tibet Factor

Tibet continues to be a thorn on the side of an improving India-China relationship, shows a new book

The Tibetan Saga for National Liberation
by Pranjali Bandhu, Odyssey, Rs. 350

TG JACOB

The Qinghai-Tibet railway line in Qinghai Province, western China

In the current scenario of the increasing thaw and growing economic relations between India and China, the Tibet factor in this relationship needs re-examination in clear perspective. The existence of a Tibetan government-in-exile in India, the continuing stream of a refugee population, active ‘Free Tibet’ campaigning—all these represent thorns between the two governments. The Tibet issue is closely linked to the border issue, which despite several sessions of talks in the last quarter of a century has remained intractable. The nature of India-China trade relations is also not entirely satisfactory from India’s point of view. Last but not the least is India’s dependency on the US, which has only deepened with time.

In fact, India’s granting of asylum to the Dalai Lama in 1959 was done with the concurrence and support of the US government. Nevertheless, the Indian government has from the time of Chinese invasion and occupation of Tibet accepted Chinese suzerainty and sovereignty over Tibet. It has endorsed the ‘one China’ principle and has never publicly upheld Tibetan independence after its occupation by the Chinese. It is, however, pertinent to keep in mind that the border issue—delineating and demarcating the border between India and China—actually involves Tibet on the Chinese side. This is a fact that is being completely overlooked and sidelined at present, both at the political level and by the mainstream media because Tibet is held to be an inalienable part of China.

Can the right of Tibetans to determine their border with India be proclaimed without India simultaneously conceding the same rights to the nationalities inhabiting the Indian side of the border, namely, the Kashmiris, the Ladakhis, the Sikkimese, the Arunachalis (including many tribal groups), the Nepalis, the Lepchas and so on? This would involve acknowledging the right to self-determination up to the right to secession of the various peoples, which neither the Indian nor the Chinese government is prepared to do. It would mean that the Indian government would have to openly acknowledge its annexation of Sikkim; it would have to own up that a wide swathe of territory from Ladakh to Myanmar including Tawang was actually politically and culturally Tibetan or stood under Tibetan influence, and it was first the British and then Nehru, who followed a forward policy in this region.

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Confessions of a Tibetan Doctor

Book Review.

My life My Culture is the autobiography of Dr. Lobsang Wangyal la, who dedicated his whole life to the cause of Tibet by serving as personal physician to His Holiness the Dalai Lama, spiritual and temporal leader of six million Tibetans. The book, which is jointly translated by Buchung D. Sonam and Dhondup Tsering, is divided into two parts. The first part concerns the early life of the author, in which he narrates in vivid detail how he became physician through sheer combination of undying passion, hard work and perseverance; his initial training as a medical student under the tutorship of Khenrab Norbu, a famous medical scholar and personal physician to the Great Thirteenth Dalai Lama; his rigorous imprisonment by the communist Chinese who accused him of "splitting the Motherland and colluding with western imperialists"; and finally after overcoming torture and starvation of the madness called Cultural Revolution how he decided to leave Tibet and come to India on pilgrimage that took him to many sacred Buddhist sites, including Dharamsala, seat of the exile Tibetan administration and residence of the Dalai Lama. It was here at the heart of Tibetan Diaspora, after seeking an audience with His Holiness, that he decided not to return to Tibet, so as to practice his medicine more widely and freely.

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