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On Tuesday, the 20th of October 2015, two days after the Tibetan exile leader polls had closed, the Tibetan Exile Election Commission announced on Tibet.net that a new rule had been enacted whereby the second and final stage ballot would be limited to just two candidates, unless the third candidate came within 20% of the vote total of the second candidate.  The date of the announcement in all the reports was Tuesday 20, October.

This ‘move’ ruled out any chance of the sole Independence candidate, Lukar Jam, from participating in the final round of the election process. Formalising the historically significant event whereby Tibetans in exile were forbidden from voting for a leader who supports the sovereignty and political independence of Tibet.

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Apso was horrified to read about the Islamist murders in Paris ིin relation to the French satirical publication ‘Charlie Hebdo’. Their crime? Poking fun at insane, religious, patriarchal, misogynist homogeny and po-faced, hypocritical, morally corrupt preachers and institutions.

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Sadly, many well-meaning, yet deluded, Left-liberals and those on the Religious Right have attempted to ‘blame’ or ‘justify’ the murders by stating that Charlie Hebdo’s cartoons were ‘racist’ and that Muslims were ‘rightly’ offended.

Talk about racist double standards. Anyone remember the Islamist destruction of the 1700 year old Bamiyan Buddha statues in Afghanistan and the lack of a violent, angry reaction to it by Buddhists? Has everyone forgotten about the decades of murder, torture, oppression, imprisonment and colonisation of Tibetan Buddhism and Tibetans by the Communist Chinese government? I have yet to read of any mass killing spree by devout Tibetan Buddhists, have you? Yet the world remains largely indifferent to Tibetan suffering. Crazy, ‘Allahu Akbar’ shouting gunman mercilessly murdering innocent people with an AK47 on the streets of Paris and they bend over backwards to defend and justify them. What kind of message is that sending people? Violent murder gets sympathy and headlines? What a crazy, old world this is.

Murder is murder. No matter how ‘offended’ you are, no religion worthy of being called a religion condones killing people in its name. If it does, then it deserves to be relegated to the dustbin of history. As the great Tibetan Buddhist leader, 17th Karmapa, Orgyen Trinley Dorje said about the destruction of those ancient statues:

In 2001, the huge Bamiyan Buddha statues in Afghanistan were intentionally demolished. From a certain perspective within Islam, these statues were offensive instruments of idol worship, while to Buddhists they were reminders of sacred principles and the very best of our innate human potential. Basically, we Buddhists use physical images in our spiritual practice, while Muslims worship without images. Clinging to either position was creating a wall between people. But they are just statues. Allowing ourselves to be pitted against each other over a statue – now that is really clinging to biases.

Personally, I do not see a basis for treating religious differences this way…..Walls come up between people when we attach more importance to the form of our religious identities than to the substance of what they teach us. When spiritual beliefs are used to build up walls between people, this is a total misunderstanding of the purpose of spirituality. Spirituality should mean coming closer to yourself. When this happens, you become closer to others, too. Spirituality and religion should dismantle discrimination and labels, not shore them up. It should break, not create, barriers between people.

from the book “The Heart Is Noble: Changing the World from the Inside Out”.

Silence or excuses in the face of injustice is tantamount to supporting it. Something Tibetans understand far better than most. Let no one ever become too complacent though. As renowned Tibetan scholar, Tsering Shakya lamented today:

Sadly, the tradition of satirical songs (in Tibetan society) has disappeared and leaders are rarely lampooned. Now we are learning to be offended and less critical of our own tradition.

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Michelle Obama is currently visiting China on a state-sponsored tourist junket to see the Great Wall and patronise some ‘minority’ areas.

The Chinese government informally stated (ie insisted) they are delighted to host Mrs Obama as long as she doesn’t say anything ‘political’ (e.g. anything about respecting basic human rights).

Before Obama’s visit, Chinese officials held top-secret meetings discussing how they could hoodwink Mrs Obama into becoming yet another victim of their re-education campaign on Tibet. Part of the plan involved a highly orchestrated trip to a ‘Tibetan’ restaurant in Chengdu (i.e. Tibet), where the first lady was served Yak meat by some smiling people in Tibetan dress holding Tibetan scarves.

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As Chinese activist and dissident, Rose Tang pointed out though:

The hotel where Michelle Obama ate her Tibetan meal is proud of its background, as its website (http://www.th-hotel.com) states: “The Chengdu Tibetan Sky Lake Hotel (成都西藏天湖宾馆) hotel was established in 1956 as the No. 2 Guest House of the Representative Office of the People’s Government of the Tibetan Autonomous Region.” It goes on saying former President and Communist Party Secretary Hu Jingtao visited the hotel in 1990 when he was the party secretary of Tibet. 

 

Hu and four other senior Chinese Communist Party leaders last month were given Interpol arrest warrants by Spain’s National Court on charges of “genocide, torture and crimes against humanity”. Hu was the party secretary in Tibet in 1988-1992 and ordered some of the bloodiest crackdowns in Tibet’s history. Does the First Lady know that?

The Chinese government were reportedly relieved that Mrs Obama did not express any desire to visit the black ‘minority’ community in China. ‘It’s easier to pass off a Chinese person as a Tibetan than ‘blacking one up” stated one Chinese official.

When Mrs Obama made the faux pas of asking why the menu of the ‘Tibetan’ restaurant was written in Chinese and English, instead of Tibetan, a government official snappily retorted that the first language of Tibetans is Mandarin Chinese and always has been. 

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Although no ‘blacking up’ was required for this propaganda stunt, the Tibetan restaurant photo op was just as offensive and racist. Whatever will the Obamas do next? Perhaps a full Crimean banquet with Putin is next on the agenda. It’s enough to make anyone want to vomit all that yak meat up.

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A Chinese protester is detained by police outside the Concert Hall in Stockholm. Chinese artists protested that Nobel peace prize winner from 2010, Liu Xiaobo, is still in prison in China. Picture: AP Source: AP

Apso is in a serious mood today. Yesterday was 64th anniversary of International Human Rights Day and the annual award of the Nobel Peace Prize in Stockholm. Four nude Chinese dissidents tried to cross police cordons minutes before the Nobel ceremony in Stockholm, in a bid to draw attention to the continued imprisonment of Chinese dissident Liu Xiaobo and his family. The nude men were writers Liao Yiwu, Wang Yiliang, Bei Ling and artist Meng Huang. This is their statement, also signed by Wang Juntao, scholar and Chairman of Democratic Party of China:

“We’re running nude here, because this place was where Chinese Communist Party writer Mo Yan, a stern guardian of censorship, was awarded the Nobel Literature Prize.

We’re reminding this forgetful world: there’s a fierce critic of censorship, an eye witness of the Tiananmen Massacre of June 4th, 1989. His name is Liu Xiaobo, also a Nobel Peace Prize Winner, he was sentenced to 11 years in jail. He’s still in prison.

We’re reminding this forgetful world: there’s also a poet and outstanding artist named Liu Xia, who’s uninterested in politics. She’s been under house arrest, just because she’s Liu Xiaobo’s wife.

We’re reminding this forgetful world: there’s also an ordinary Beijing resident named Liu Hui, he’s uninterested in politics. He’s serving an 11-year jail sentence, same length as that of Liu Xiaobo, just because he’s Liu’s brother-in-law. He passed on a little information of his family to the outside world and was arrested by domestic security bureau for “economic crimes”.

We’re reminding this forgetful world: persecution is continuing. Liu Xia is on the verge of a nervous breakdown. According to the current Chinese laws, she should not be a criminal, despite that she’s married to a jailed man. She needs to breathe air of freedom to heal the wounds in her heart.

We’re running nude here, it’s because when such horrific political persecution based on family ties happens, the propaganda machine of the Communist Party is running with much fanfare, using the Nobel prize ceremonies hosted by the Swedish Academy. Universal human values are facing an unprecedented challenge. Since the winter of 2012, countless people became prisoners of conscious, 122 Tibetan have self immolated. Isolated in her home as if in another world, Liu Xia cries: “They are Nobel prize winners, why are they being treated differently?”
(Statement translated by Rose Tang)

English-language news report about the nude protest:http://www.news.com.au/world/watchdog-organisation-for-the-prohibition-of-chemical-weapons-recieves-noble-peace-prize/story-fndir2ev-1226780232005

To celebrate the award of the Prize to HH Dalai Lama in 1989 and the struggle for Tibetan freedom, what did Tibetans in exile get? A conservative, dry, factual speech by the Tibetan leader in exile in front of the elite and a traditional Tibetan song and dance. In the words of renowned Tibetan scholar Tsering Shakya:

”Has Arundhati Roy been invited on stage to introduce Sikyong or share a platform with the Dalai Lama? Has Chomsky ever met a Tibetan leader? Tarig Ramdan, one of the leading progressive Islamic scholars at Oxford was a member of SFT and spent time in Dharamsala when he was student. He has declared publicly his support for Tibet in his writings. He is now black listed by the Americans. Why haven’t the Tibetans reached out to him and honoured him as a guest speaker at Tibetan functions? The Tibetan elite will never fraternize with intelligent and progressive people like Arundhati , Chomsky and Ramdan, because of fear of American reaction.

At a recent address to the Tibetan Community in NY, who was invited to introduce Sikyong, who was given prominent place on the stage? A second rate Hollywood actor! Is this an image of political sophistication? The question is not can the Tibetan issue have universal appeal, but why have we failed to articulate it in a language that speaks of freedom struggle. For many the call for the return of the Dalai Lama to Tibet is no different from Iranian royalists wishing for the return of the rule Pahlavi dynasty!”

A few days ago, the great freedom fighter and rebel Nelson Mandela passed away. Brutal imperialists and dictators from the US, China and so on were quick to claim Mandela as their own hero despite the fact Mandela went to jail for his political acts and was renowned for his dislike of neo-liberal capitalism, the US and mainstream politics. As many others also stated, we should remember Mandela for the person who was hated by the establishment and stop the ‘rightwashing’ of his legacy. He was not a man who chose diplomacy or appeasement as the route to freedom.

The redeeming event in Tibetan exile yesterday was a rock concert organised by the Tibetan Center for Human Rights and Democracy and Voice of Tibet, at which famous Indian rock band Parikrama performed. As Neil Young sang ‘Keep on Rocking in the Free World’! Rocking for freedom of speech in exile and in Tibet!

Who needs satire when this is happening in China?

The headquarters of the Chinese propaganda mouthpiece People’s Daily in Beijing has been likened to gigantic part of the male anatomychina reports Shanghaiist. A gold-plated knob to further f**k Tibetan and Chinese citizens with their ‘news stories’.

A People’s Daily spokesperson said: ‘Well we are so sick of the world saying Asian men have small dicks, now we can say we have the world’s biggest dick.’

As if this were not enough knobbishness, the Chinese government has issued a 64-page handbook, called the ‘Guidebook for Civilised Tourism’, to stop Chinese tourists from damaging the country’s image abroad.  The code of conduct for Chinese travellers includes advice about not picking their noses in public. Shock, horror.

Left out of the guidebook by the Chinese censors was advice for Chinese travellers  when faced with ‘awkward’ foreigner questions about Chinese politics. Offensive responses such as ‘Tibet has always been a part of China’ and ‘there are no human rights abuses in China’ were still felt to be appropriate, despite the fact such statements make the Chinese sound like a bunch of brainwashed idiots.  How about a ‘Guidebook for the Civilised Treatment of Chinese and Tibetan citizens’, please?

Meanwhile, the government have now suggested spending $40 billion on a cable car over the Great Wall of China so celebrities and VIPs, like Justin Bieber, do not have to undergo the humiliation of being carried by servants.

D**ks!

It’s Middle Way or the Highway

Posted: September 30, 2013 in Uncategorized

So, peace, unity and confidence have been restored to Tibetan politics in exile.

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Gu Chu Sum have changed their policy of Independence to Middle Way autonomy for Tibet.

The Tibetan Youth Congress are considering the same.

Karma Chophel has written a letter of apology to the Dalai Lama, and pledged not to speak on this issue in the future.

Everyone is still welcome to air their views and opinions in this fully functioning, liberal, secular democracy.

“Doublethink means the power of holding two contradictory beliefs in one’s mind simultaneously, and accepting both of them.” ― George Orwell, 1984

“Zombies, believe me, are more terrifying than colonists.” ― Frantz Fanon

There’s a new political creed and mantra in exile politics these days. A small, yet vocal, group of ethnic Tibetans – most of whom don’t speak a word of Tibetan and have spent most, if not all, their lives in North America or Europe – are now trying to convince Tibetans in Tibet and exile that aImage major root of their problems is not Chinese communists but white, westerners.

Apso has recently been targeted by one such rabid zealout who writes a blog called Angry Tibetan Girl. In it ‘she’ falsely accuses Apso of being a ‘white feminist racist’. While I’m proud to admit that I’ll happily love any bitch whatever their pedigree, breed, fur color, (like any progressive Tibetan male would) I doubt  Angry Tibetan girl is so open and ‘liberal’. Rumor has it that her hatred of whites (especially women with Tibetan boyfriends) stems from being lonely and single. Whatever the truth is, the day ATG marries a black or Indian guy and takes him home to Apa and Ama la, is the day she cannot be accused of  ‘kettle calling the pot black’.  In the meantime, let’s hope she keeps up those Sunday school classes in Tibetan language and culture and that the progressive institution of the ‘arranged marriage’ comes to her rescue. Woof!

Sadly, this is not just an isolated incident. Recently on social media, a member of the Tibetan exile Science department angrily accused whites who come to Dharamsala of being imperialists who are ‘good for nothing’ ‘know it all’s’, collectively responsible for colonialism yet who try and ‘teach us something’. One such white imperialist scientist, who regularly attends and speaks at the ‘Mind and Life’ conference and ‘Science for Monastics’ program, had this to say:

‘Well, frankly the majority of Tibetans in exile know little about biology, chemistry and physics. That’s why I was invited. Now they’re calling me a racist and imperialist for doing so. Its confusing alright!’

Yet, this small minority of exile Tibetans when asked about the recent Tibet Film Festival poster (and its ‘cultural appropriation’ of the most famous ‘yellow head’ sex symbols, Marilyn Monroe) argued vehemently that is was art and a symbol of progress. Hmmmm (scratches head)….

One Tibetan tried to defend such views by saying:

‘It’s not that we hate all white people. We will happily befriend and welcome anyone who says ‘yes’, smiles and agrees with whatever we say, even if its blatantly wrong.  Even if the ‘yellow-head’ is a rampant careerist and Orientalist do-gooder, it’s fine too. What we won’t accept is anyone who dares to challenge us on anything!’

The Chinese government were quick to capitalize on this trend by issuing the following statement:

‘It’s true, white people are the enemy and must be defeated. They keep trying to convince the world that Tibet is a nation that they should have autonomy, freedom and human rights. We actively commend and support any TIbetan who criticizes these pesky, interfering, long-nose, yellow head, big eyed, too tall, white-faced monkeys. They should stay out of Chinese internal politics!’