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Readers' Comments on "China transfers Tibetan filmmaker Dhondup Wangchen to a women’s prison"
After suffering harsh treatment and months of solitary confinement at the Xichuan labour camp in Siling, eastern Tibet, Tibetan filmmaker Dhondup Wangchen has been shifted to a women’s prison. Calling it “an unusual move,” the Switzerland based group Filming for Tibet...
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Location: nz
Subject: Chagna Dorje
Jan 25 2013 05:04 PM

Dasang Damdul Tsarong, the reincarnate Chagma Dorje has always been an inspiration. A seasoned battle commander, the likes of which we seem to be sadly lacking in the current era. A campaign in China would need the cooperation of many Chinese. They seem to stop after a few protests. Still living with the memory of Tienanmen.

Location: ari
Subject: omze's "finish Tibetans"
Jan 24 2013 05:14 PM

Tibetans, this is a scare tactic - that line Omze posted about China unleashing her military and finishing you off. You will be exterminated anyway. I never said start a revolution in Tibet. I think you should start a revolution in CHINA.

Location: ari
Subject: re: omze / violence
Jan 24 2013 05:12 PM

With all due respect Omze la, violence is not "against" the Buddhist way. particularly in the Vajrayana. As long as one is not a monk, it's more a question of the circumstances around the violence than the act itself. For example, we can look at Lhalung Pelgyi Dorje. In the Drikung area, there was a historical protector figure regarded as an emanation of Mahakala or something - he fought. I am sorry I forget his name. So, even tulku-emanations can get violent for a righteous cause. Worldly men can too. It would be highly offensive to suggest the many men of Gonpo Tashi Andrugstang's "Chusi Gangdruk" were not Buddhist, just because they got violent in self defense*. Japan, I am sure, would get violent to defend its sovereignty - however rest assured many of their military leaders and soldiers are good Buddhists. In tantric tradition, there are also "violent" rituals to exterminate evil deities through tantric ceremony - these can only be performed by highly qualified ngakpas. So, there's even violence in the "spirit world."

I can not endorse a Shangri-la notion that Buddhism is non-violent, unless you accept this: violence is not ultimately defined by an exterior action, but by an internal posture of mind. It's simply foolish to suggest that huge swaths of Asia, and the men and women therein, are non-violent just because they practice Dharma.

I'm VERY non-violent myself. But if I see you trying to rape an old lady or a kid, I will use as much violence as needed to stop you, without caring how badly you are hurt. So, c'mon - being nonviolent - except for monks and nuns - it's really not even desirable!

There's a lot of myths about non-violence. Let's not perpetuate them just because Gandhi had some success, or because His Holiness shows the example of a perfect monk. I'm not Gandhi, nor am I Chenrezig, nor do I want to be. What about you?

Location: nz
Subject: Fears
Jan 24 2013 07:46 AM

Much as I feared the worst possible reasons for taking so many young monks, those reasons have been echoed today in the article re comment from the EU. I fear terrible thing have been done to Dhondrup. I can think of only one reason why the Chinese would put him in a womans prison. I believe there is a lack of understanding, internationally, as to why Tibetans continue to allow such atrocities and do not fight back in the conventional manner. This may be hampering support. Violent conflict is all the rest of the world knows and understands, even though it is fundamentally against Buddhist way, some of what Mr BrentWerner says, is probably true. Unfortunately the geographical position of Tibet makes it impossible to conceive any kind of combat help from outside. If Tibetans were to start a violent campaign, China would unleash all it's armed might and finish Tibetans.

Location: ari
Subject: accolades and truth
Jan 23 2013 04:52 PM

I applaud this very courageous film maker. The problem is that there's not much use making films if your countrymen, and the world at large, do nothing about the problem except burn themselves alive, which saves China the trouble.

When African-Americans fought for civil rights in America, it was somewhat different. There were lynchings and evil, but the system was not designed to literally obliterate the race persee. Thus, for example, Stokely Carmichael was able to be arrested around 30 times in a matter of years; the sentences were briefer. There is no such luxury in China. Moreover, when the original Black Panther Party armed themselves in accordance with the law, they overtly resiste police brutality including participating in famous exchange of gunfire. In Tibet, such overt resistance is possible. So, what do you do?

You are living in a country (your own) where you can not protect your own women, children, intellectuals, and artists. You are living with an occupation that rapes and tortures you while your exile government thinks negotiation will change things. Clearly, you need an underground that will hold China to account.

Now, how to make an underground? Well, first, note that although the world is dependent on China, they have betrayed basic principles of their own Communist system. They are merely bourgeoisie exploiters of their own people who rule through terror. So, you would have more common ground with Democratic Socialist revolutionaries than you would with Capitalists protecting economic interests with China.

The advantage to networking with underground revolutionaries involves access to China. What is China going to do - monitor every Black or Latino or European individual with access to China?

The predominant responsibility of putting in work falls on Tibetans. You can not expect others to assist what you are unwilling to do. I personally believe there is almost never (and hopefully never) reason to torture. There is certainly never any need to use brutal torture, or rape, as the CCP does. But there is a time to end the life of an oppressor.

You can not expect respect until you begin to fight for your rights. I feel you are betraying Tibetan culture, in some aspects, when you don't protect your women, children, and artists. Imagine what a traditional Khampa would feel if he heard that, in 2013 in Tibet, Khampa people did not retaliate when the Chinese raped nuns with cattle prods?

Lhasang Tsering famously says "there is a lot you can do with a book of matches." That is true. Lhasang la surely did not mean burning oneself alive to save China the trouble.

These are merely thoughts; useless perhaps, but perhaps useful in understanding how others see you. For me, violence is the worst thing on earth. I abhor it. I hate it. It makes me sick. And that is why I realize that sometimes, one must use force, wrath, and "violence" to overcome a greater atrocity. If you don't like my thinking, take it up with Lhalung Pelgyi Dorje.

I hope this humble thoughts prove somewhat useful in assessing national policy for the struggle for your nation, which, regardless of the whining of America and other complicit and pansy nation, DID exist as a great and independent kingdom.
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