Hi guest, Register | Login | Contact Us
Welcome to Phayul.com - Our News Your Views
Thu 18, Oct 2018 03:26 PM (IST)
Search:     powered by Google
 MENU
Home
News
Photo News
Opinions
Statements &
Press Releases

Book Reviews
Movie Reviews
Interviews
Travels
Health
Obituaries
News Discussions
News Archives
Download photos from Tibet
 Latest Stories
Landslides, flooding in Chamdo due to China’s excessive mining and construction projects: rights group
Odisha Tibetans at mercy of aid as Cyclone Titli destroys 90% of crops
CTA holds “Thank You Himachal Pradesh,” in Shimla
9th Tibet Film Festival held in Dharamshala, Zurich
China set to build “world’s most challenging” railway line in occupied-Tibet
Karmapa title claimants meet, express willingness to heal divisions in the lineage
Repression on multiple fronts in Tibet, says report by US Commission on China
Second Tibetan wins China's singing reality show
"Altitude and tough climate” reason for denying access into Tibet, Chinese Ambassador says
Tibet Support Group formed in lower house of French Parliament
 Latest Photo News
Winner of the Miss Himalaya Pageant 2018 Ritika Sharma, First Runner-up Palak Sharma and Second-Runner-up Ashima Sharma wave to the audience during the Miss Himalaya Pageant 2018 in McLeod Ganj, India, on 6 October 2018, Photo: L. Wangyal
His Holiness the Dalai Lama arrives to begin his four day teaching on the request of a Taiwanese group, Tsuglakhang courtyard, Theckchen Choeling, McLeod Ganj, October . 3, 2018. OHHDL Photo/Ven. Tenzin Jamphel
Tibetan spiritual leader His Holiness the Dalai Lama addresses the gathering during the 50th year celebration of Tibet Insitute Rikon. The event was attended by around 4000 people from all parts of Europe. Around 4000 people have come to attend the function organised by Tibet Institute Rikon with support of Tibetan Community in Switzerland and Liechtensein. Winterthur, September 22, 2018. Phayul photo/Norbu Wangyal
more photos »
Advertisement
Celebrating the Dalai Lama, Tibetan freedom, Wisconsin values
The Capital Times[Wednesday, July 16, 2008 21:23]
By John Nichols

The Dalai Kama, shown here at the Kohl Center in May, will return to Madison this week. (photo by: File photo)
The Dalai Kama, shown here at the Kohl Center in May, will return to Madison this week. (photo by: File photo)
When Madison Mayor Dave Cieslewicz and the City Council decided to welcome last year's visit by the Dalai Lama with the "appropriate placement" of Tibetan flags in his honor -- including a Tibetan flag above the City-County Building -- the Chinese consul in Chicago, Zhiyuan Ji, wrote a letter to the mayor in which he declared himself to be "astonished" that Madison's city government would take official action to welcome the Tibetan leader.

The diplomat complained that the Dalai Lama is "not merely a religious figure, but a political figure who has long been engaged in activities of separating Tibet from China."

On his precise point, the consul was correct.

But if the consul knew anything about Wisconsin's history, he would not have been astonished by the decision of officials in Wisconsin's capital city to show their solidarity with the Dalai Lama and the Tibetan people.

His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama, Tenzin Gyatso, who will again visit the Madison area in coming days, is not merely an inspired and inspiring spiritual leader. He is, as well, the head of a state in exile.

The nation of Tibet, one of the most ancient yet persistent jurisdictions on the face of the planet, was invaded and occupied in the 1950s by the Chinese military.

It has been a colony ever since.

And Wisconsin does not abide by colonialism.

Few tenets were more central to the thinking of this state's greatest political leaders, Robert M. La Follette, John Blaine and La Follette's sons Phil and Robert Jr., than the principle that imperialism -- whether practiced by the United States or its allies -- was at odds with the deepest values and the highest ideals of the American experiment. The United States was founded in revolt against the British empire and the imperial reach of its monarchy.

A country that threw off the shackles of colonialism in the 18th century, the Wisconsin progressives believed, could not be party to the fitting of a new set of shackles on a new set of colonies in the modern era. "(No) country which has established liberty and equality of opportunity within its border will join in a movement to deny those rights to the people of the rest of the world," declared La Follette in 1920.

"If we are to stand as a just and righteous nation before the world," La Follette explained, "we must thwart the imperialistic schemes of our masters of finance."

That counsel was not taken by most American leaders. Today, the United States is engaged in its own career of empire -- careening about the oil-rich nations of the world with an eye toward establishing an empire of influence every bit as unwieldy as a previous King George's monstrosity -- and it is supporting the empires of other powerful nations, especially that of China.

But Wisconsin will have no part of conquest.

So we fly the flag of Tibet. We welcome the Dalai Lama. And we celebrate the peaceful resistance of the Tibetan people to an occupation of their homeland that is as brutal as it is illegal.

The facts of China's colonialism, like all before it, are horrifying. An estimated 1.2 million Tibetans have been killed by the Chinese. The Tibetan language has been replaced by Chinese. Thousands of Buddhist monasteries have been destroyed and tens of thousands of Tibetans have been imprisoned, relocated and tortured. Tibet's natural resources have been exploited by the Chinese.

But more powerful than the reality of Tibet's oppression is the example of the Dalai Lama.

Forgiving and flexible, even gentle, in his challenge to the Chinese, he has in the tradition of Gandhi and Martin King preached pacifism and patience. In so doing, he has forged an international consensus in favor of Tibetan freedom.

This summer, as Beijing invites the attention of the world by hosting the Summer Olympics, the Dalai Lama has offered the Chinese government space in which to negotiate. The Tibetans have made reasonable demands that allow the Chinese to save face while at the same time advancing the cause of self-determination.

It is to this cause that the heirs of Wisconsin's progressive tradition, U.S. Sen. Russ Feingold, U.S. Rep. Tammy Baldwin, and state Rep. Joe Parisi, have pledged their support as they have stood in solidarity with the Dalai Lama and the Tibetan freedom struggle.

When we fly the flag of Tibet and welcome the Dalai Lama in coming days, no one should be astonished.

We are merely upholding Wisconsin's legacy of opposition to the imperial enterprise and all of the pathologies that extend from colonialism.

John Nichols is associate editor of The Capital Times.
Print Send Bookmark and Share
  Readers' Comments »
FREEDOM ! (karzetsultrim)
Salute (painter)
Wonderful (Yardol)
Your Comments

 Other Stories
Celebrating the Dalai Lama, Tibetan freedom, Wisconsin values
TYC refutes Chinese Communist Party’s allegations
Tibetans see little point in more talks with China: envoy
The Fear in Lhasa, as Felt in Beijing
Advertisement
Advertisement
Photo Galleries
Advertisement
Phayul.com does not endorse the advertisements placed on the site. It does not have any control over the google ads. Please send the URL of the ads if found objectionable to editor@phayul.com
Copyright © 2004-2018 Phayul.com   feedback | advertise | contact us
Powered by Lateng Online
Advertisement