50 years of Chushi Gangdruk Commemorated in New York City
Phayul[Tuesday, July 01, 2008 10:07]
By Tenzin Choephel

50th anniversary conference of Chushi Gangdruk in New York City on Saturday.
50th anniversary conference of Chushi Gangdruk in New York City on Saturday.
New York City, June 28 - Chushi Gangdruk, the first Tibetan organized voluntary resistance force to fight Communist China's occupation of Tibet commemorated its 50th anniversary at a function organized by the Dokham Chushi Gangdruk, New York at Club Sanm Hall, Astoria, New York City today where some of the founding members were honored.

Chushi Gangdruk was the first organized resistance movement inside Tibet against the Communist Chinese forces. It was formally established on June 10 1958 and was responsible for providing safe passage to His Holiness the Dalai Lama into India in 1959. They regrouped later in Mustang Nepal, established a military base with American support and waged a guerrilla war against Chinese forces for 13 years but ultimately had to disband. However, the legacy of the organization has now been passed on to younger generations who continue to struggle and do their part in the Tibetan cause.

Some of the surviving founding members of the organization were present at today's function to talk to the younger generation about the history and legacy of the organization. Other non Tibetan attending speakers were Wei Jinsheng, Chairman, Overseas Chinese Democracy Coalition, Ms. Rayilaa, daughter of President of Uighur American Association, Dr. Wen Yen Chen, Executive Director, Formosa Association for Public Affairs and Temtsiltu Shobtsood, Chairman, Inner Mongolia People's Party.

Drawopon Rinchen Tsering, one of the first founding members and former President of the organization was first to speak about the formation and history of Chushi Gangdruk under the leadership of Andruk Gonpo Tashi at Drukuthang, Lhoka, Tibet.

Doma Norbu, President of Dokham Chushi Gangdruk speaking on the occassion.
Doma Norbu, President of Dokham Chushi Gangdruk speaking on the occassion.
He said, "Chushi Gangdruk was formed for the protection of sovereignty and religion of Tibet."

Kongpo Thubten Dhargey, former Executive of Dokham Chushi Gangdruk speaking next said that he feels proud to see the younger generation take more involvement in the Tibetan issue. He also said, "It depends on Tibetans whether they want independence or not; all people of three regions of Tibet should be united".

Other speakers Juchen Thubten Namgyal, Pema Chonjor, Kelsang Gyatotsang and Sonam Wangdu expressed similar views on Tibetan unity at this hour. Other non Tibetan speakers representing their nationalities also spoke strongly on their opposition to the Chinese Government and support for the independence of Tibet, East Turkistan (Xinjiang), Inner Mongolia and Taiwan.

Jamyang Norbu, celebrated Tibetan writer also spoke on the occasion and said, "We should remember all the great people who have given up their lives for Tibet; Andruk Gonpo Tashi was a genius, we should think like him and adopt his strategies".

The day concluded with awarding of the honor plague by President of Dokham Chushi Gandruk, New York , Doma Norbu to three surviving members Gyatso Kelsang, Kongpo Thubten Dhargey and Drawopon Rinchen Tsering and late founding President Andruk Gonpo Tashi was honored posthumously and received by his son Drakpa. Later in the evening a young Tibetan artist Namgya Yeshi launched his new album '6 Million' and also presented some of his Tibetan rap full with heavy political undertones.