Not much new here: More arrests, as China says 660 “surrendered” in the wake of the protests. The Dalai Lama reiterated his pledge to resign if the violence goes on. The LA Times writes that this has shaken Buddhism. The LA Times article revives the bewhiskered “god-king” description of the Dalai Lama that journalists have been cutting and pasting for years. And unpack the following if you dare:
If he quit as political leader but still headed the faith, it would go against his religion’s centuries-old tenet of church-state unity.
Moving on to some Chinese propaganda about, among other things, how Tibet has “belonged” to China since the days of the Yuan dynasty in the 13th century. . . These kinds of things are instructive to those who can’t fathom the Chinese position. The E.U. invites the Dalai Lama to come speak. (Easy for them; they have a decent currency.)
Several EU lawmakers called for a boycott of the Olympics or at least of the opening ceremony. Several Greens, liberals and leftists brandished Tibetan flags in the chamber and some wore black T-shirts emblazoned with the Olympic rings transformed into handcuffs. Greens floor leader Daniel Cohn-Bendit, a leader of leftist student protests in France in May 1968, compared the Beijing Games with the 1936 Berlin Olympics staged by Nazi Germany. “The EU must altogether refuse to attend the opening ceremony, because it is a political act,” he told the house. British Conservative Edward McMillan-Scott accused China of committing genocide in Tibet and said that for politicians of principle, it was no long a question of “whether a boycott of the Olympics but what sort of boycott”.
Taiwan has used this crisis to put widen the Straits of Formosa a bit. The DL thanked Taiwan for its friendship and support (while calling the Indian government “too cautious.”) The U.S. has praised Taiwan recently as well, this time for the nation’s “moderation” in voting for a president interested in engaging, not antagonizing, the dragon (and for returning those misplaced missiles!) Wall Street cheered. The dragon licked its lips.
At a press conference held on March 18, Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao said Tibet and Taiwan are inseparable parts of Chinese territory, urging the Dalai Lama and Taiwan to accept the one-China principle. However, [new president-elect Ma Ying-jeou], despite a conciliatory reputation toward China, holds that “the Republic of China [Taiwan] is a sovereign independent country.” After seeing the bloody suppression of Tibet, the Taiwan people will have become more wary of China. As such, democratized Taiwan will have to maintain just the right amount of distance between it and China to ensure its survival.
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