Tuesday, March 18, 2008


That giggling gowk known as the Dalai Lama says the riots and protests in Tibet are not down to him. He claims it is a new generation who are rising in revolt against Chinese rule.
Though it’s hard to believe that he and his clique didn’t have a hand in encouraging it somewhere or at least knew about it in advance - riots and demonstrations on the Lhasa scale are invariably planned and never spontaneous - what he seems desperate to deny is that the protest is as much about how he has let the Tibetans down as it is about the rule of the Chinese government.
While they have wanted independence, he’s been piddling around trying to negotiate an autonomous region which is anathema to them.
The truth is the Dalai Lama knows very little about tough life is on the ground in Tibet today. Since he fled Lhasa nearly fifty years ago in 1959 he has led a privileged life in neighbouring India and giggled his way around the world - looking more like a failed, exiled politician than the spiritual leader of the people he abandoned to their grisly fate.
He has revelled in being feted in Western capitals with his endless self promotion on their celebrity circuits.
Now as he calls for an ‘international investigation’ in Tibet, he knows full well there is no chance this will happen.
Like Zimbabwe, there is no oil in Tibet to inspire an American invasion. Besides the US can’t afford another war and is up to its eyes in hoc to China which, as a permanent member of the Security Council, can veto any proposed UN action.
The Chinese government also pays bonuses to people to go to work in Tibet and has built a new high speed railway from Beijing to Lhasa to foster the ‘Chinatisation’ of the region.
No other country is going to intervene and as the Shadow Conservative Foreign Secretary, William Hague, recognised this week, different countries do things differently and while other nations may disapprove they have to respect these different ways.
But the Dalai Lama has seen the chance to raise his profile once again by getting in on the publicity for Beijing’s Olympic year and his face in front of the TV cameras of the international media.
If he has any remnant of caring left for the people he abandoned nearly half a century ago, he should butt out from the cameras and shut up.
If he has to show his face again it should be to apologise for the way he has let down the people who have looked to him in vain for leadership for so long. Copyright © Rebecca Hamilton 2008. All Rights Reserved

Labels: ,