Hey, Tibet�s been part of China for 700 years plus!
By Jerry Mazza
Online Journal Associate Editor

Apr 9, 2008, 00:19

One of the more trendy, if not senseless, causes of our time is the so-called oppression of China against Tibet, whose struggle for �independence� was led by the �heroic� Dalai Lama. To all those true believers, I would suggest a look at the article, China, Tibet and Chinese Nation for the other side of the tale -- or should I say US CIA myth to Balkanize Asia�s greatest power.

Tibet, you will find, has been part of China for more than 700 years. China contains some 56 ethnic groups without a history of racism. The Tibetans are one of those groups and immigrated from another part of China several thousand years ago. Flash forward to 1951 when the Red Army entered Tibet to recover not invade that part of China. Before that, feudal lords in Tibet made up of the 5 percent of the population who owned 95 percent of the means of production -- and were oppressing the people. That�s what this is about.

Buddhism was in fact brought to Tibet from China proper before it assumed its faux role as defender of Tibet against Chinese oppression. The facts are that Britain and America had been working hard trying to separate Tibet from China since the 19th Century. Britain invaded China�s Tibet twice, in 1888 and 1903. The Tibetan army and civilians did resist but were defeated. In a second war against Tibet, the Brits occupied Lhasa and the 13th Dalai Lama was forced to leave the city.

The invaders forced the Tibetan local government to sign the Lhasa convention. But the ministry of external affairs of the then Qing government believed the Lhasa convention would damage national sovereignty. And thus its high commissioner stationed in Tibet refused to sign, leaving the convention ineffectual.

Britain, in fact, exploited the political chaos in China after the Qing Dynasty�s collapse and the birth of the Republic of China in 1901. It presented the Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs a five-point demand, which included the denial of China�s sovereignty over Tibet, which the Chinese government rejected. In 1913, the British government further pushed its nose into Chinese business, wheedling certain Tibetan authorities to declare independence with British supervision and support.

In summer 1942, the Tibetan local government, supported by the British, declared the creation of a �foreign affairs bureau,� and carried out �Tibetan independence� activities. Can you imagine the Chinese doing that in Scotland against the Brits? The Chinese people condemned these actions. The national government issued a warning. Under pressure, the ersatz Tibetan government withdrew its decision and reported so to the national government.

Nevertheless in 1949, America newspapers announced, �The United States is ready to recognize Tibet as an independent and free country.� In 1950, weapons were shipped into Tibet through Calcutta in order to resist the Chinese entry into Tibet. US Secretary of Sate Dean Acheson openly slandered what amounted to China�s liberation of its own territory, Tibet, as an �invasion.� The US prodded additional countries to propose intervention at the United Nations on behalf of (China�s) Tibet. That scheme was unsuccessful.

Enter the CIA

First, enter former President George H.W. Bush, declaring that coastal areas of China, plus Tibet, Xinjiang and Inner Mongolia, would split. Then enter the US CIA with a $245,000 investment which would entrust the University of Hawaii to research whether the tense situations in ethnic areas of China would lead to a split of the country. Actually, the research results disappointed their aim.

Prior to that, in 1957, the CIA culled six young men from Tibetans living abroad and sent them to Guam, a US territory, for training in map reading, radio transmission, arms and parachuting. The US trained 170 �Kamba guerrillas� in batches in Hale Camp, Colorado, later air-dropped or sneaked into Tibet to carry out CIA plans. In May '58, two American-trained Kambas brought a transceiver to the headquarters set up by rebel leader Anzhugcang Goinbo Zhaxi in Shannan to keep in contact the CIA.

The US air-dropped arms and ammunition to the rebels in the Chigu Lama Thang plateau and, at the same time, the US clandestinely shipped large amounts of arms and ammo overland to rebels dug in the Shannon areas. The 1959 Tibetan rebellion was just another CIA operation on behalf of the US government. If you think that�s just the Chinese talking, catch this.

The CIA�s Secret War on Tibet

This information is corroborated in Kenneth Conboy and James Morrison�s book, The CIA�s Secret War on Tibet, published by the University Press of Kansas (March 2002), ISBN-10 0700611592.�s book description reads �The CIA's Secret War in Tibet takes readers from training camps in the Colorado Rockies to the scene of clandestine operations in the Himalayas, chronicling the agency's help in securing the Dalai Lama's safe passage to India and subsequent initiation of one of the most remote covert campaigns of the Cold War.

�Conboy and Morrison provide previously unreported details about secret missions undertaken in extraordinarily harsh conditions. Their book greatly expands on previous memoirs by CIA officials by putting virtually every major agency participant on record with details of clandestine operations. It also calls as witnesses the people who managed and fought in the program -- including Tibetan and Nepalese agents, Indian intelligence officers, and even mission aircrews.

�Conboy and Morrison take pains to tell the story from all perspectives, particularly that of the former Tibetan guerrillas, many of whom have gone on record here for the first time. The authors also tell how Tibet led America and India to become secret partners over the course of several presidential administrations and cite dozens of Indian and Tibetan intelligence documents directly related to these covert operations.

�As the movement for Tibetan liberation continues to attract international support, Tibet's status remains a contentious issue in both Washington and Beijing. This book takes readers inside a covert war fought with Tibetan blood and U.S. sponsorship and allows us to better understand the true nature of that controversy. . . ."

A Chinese-American�s point of view

So from Bejing to Kansas, we have a very informed but different view of events concerning �Tibet�s liberation.� Returning to the article, we can scroll past a history of China to History According to Hollywood by Bevin Chu, an American architect of Chinese descent registered to practice in Texas. As of 1998, Chu was living and working in Taiwan, the son of a retired high-ranking diplomat with the ROC, Taiwan government.

In his opening paragraph Chu writes, �Humanitarian Interventionists and Benevolent Global Hegemonists, most of whom lack even a rudimentary understanding of China's long and complex history, share a particularly nasty trait. Many of these Globocops imagine because they have downloaded a few pages of separatist propaganda from, and shed a tear or two while watching �Seven Years in Tibet,� that qualifies them as China experts. They believe this qualifies them to pass judgment about whether China �deserves� to remain intact or be forcibly Balkanized by the World's Only Remaining Superpower. Their attitude rivals that of the most contemptible 19th century imperialists.�

Chu also points out in his, �Tibetan Chinese Are Not American Chinese,� that there is 1.5 billion or a 91.5 percent Han-Chinese majority (Han being the largest ethnic group) in contrast to some 5.4 million Tibetan Chinese. Nevertheless, both the large and small ethnic groups were . . ."Conquered by Genghis Khan and his grandson Kublai Khan in the 13th century.

�A century later it was replaced by a Han-Chinese dominated Ming Dynasty, which inherited jurisdiction over the Mongol empire, including the Tibetan region. This is how Tibet, and of course Mongolia, became part of China.� So we are talking about a deep, long-standing relationship between all of these groups to China, and not a �victim-victimizer� point of view as offered by the West. These points are powerfully underscored by NZKOF�s YouTube video.

As Chu points out, �The bottom line is that Tibet was not �invaded� or �annexed� by China in 1959. Because by then the Tibetan region had been part of China for seven centuries. . . . One does not �invade� or �annex� what is already one�s own territory. Bejing dispatched troops to prevent secession by the serf-owning elite which objected to the abolition of slavery, not to implement annexation. Hardly the same thing.�

Perhaps the most salient wrap-up comes in the Chu piece, �If This Be Genocide, Make The Most of It,� in which he points out that if the Chinese Communists had been racially motivated to oppress the Tibetans, they could have cynically left Tibet�s ancient regime in place. He is referring to Tibet�s traditional theocracy, Dali Lama et al, which imposed a policy that sucked up �enormous numbers of hapless Tibetan boys to the priesthood.� Here they would �remain celibate for life. This draconian policy resulted in an alarming decline in Tibet�s population in recent centuries.�

And, much like the Shaker sect in America, centered in the Berkshire Mountains of Massachusetts, one I�m personally familiar with, the sect eventually became extinct due to its ban on sex. As Chu says, �Bejing emerges an unlikely hero in this respect. Yet Bejing is ritually reflexively accused by self-styled do-gooders of �genocide,� both �cultural� and racial. Ironies abound.�

The CIA-attempted Balkanization of China has already come with its own blowback of anger at the US from China. And, whatever you think of China, remember we owe them nearly $300 billion in loans. They lent us the money for Bush�s recent rebate. Bottom line, it�s pointless that the US and other Western nations keeps creating impressions that the Chinese are hitting on Tibetans, when in fact recent the recent video from China showed just the opposite, Tibetans in their region attacking Han Chinese who live there.

Each YouTube video underscores earmarks of a divide-and-conquer strategy, which has gotten the US in trouble in so many places. In fact, the first insight of this came to me from a Chinese-American friend, fluent in both languages and cultures as Chu is. He set me straight. My hat is off to him once again.

Jerry Mazza is a freelance writer living in New York. Reach him at

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