Dharamshala — The Chinese President Xi Jinping’s commitment to “Ethnic Unity”, “Economy Development” and “Social Stability” in Tibet under the banner of “Peaceful Liberation”, nether seeks a peaceful solution nor a signal for a new reform of more openness. But it clearly shows China is further strengthening an integral element of another “cultural revolution” project in Tibet. One must say Xi is revealing the true nature of a Communist regime in Tibet, a similar sense of strategic inviolability characterized by the 20th century’s greatest mass murderer, Mao Zedong.
Invaded by China in 1949, the independent country of Tibet was forced to face the direct loss of 1.2 million lives that came from military invasion and, soon after, the loss of universal freedoms that stemmed from Communist ideology and its programmes such as the Cultural Revolution (1966-76). However, it is erroneous to believe that the worst has passed. The fate of Tibet’s unique national, cultural and religious identity is seriously threatened and manipulated by the Chinese authorities in the past six decades.
Chinese government’s policy of occupation and oppression has resulted in no more or less than the destruction of Tibet’s national independence, culture and religion, environment and the universal human rights of its people. Time and time again, the infliction of this destruction sees China break international laws with impunity, while attempting to transform Tibet’s 2.5 million square kilometers into complete China.
On the 50th anniversary of the so called “peaceful liberation”, Chinese President Xi Jinping continued the government’s efforts in “Promoting Economic,” “Ethnic Unity” and “Social Development” in Tibet, shows no different claims, revealing the unpredictable nature of a regime bent on maintaining stability even through terror, exposing the depth of China’s present illness. Xi’s concepts of repressive policies reflect the deep uncertainty that aim at the core of another “Cultural Revolution” strategy in further colonisation in Tibet, showing the whole world once again the real terror nature of the Communist regime.
Ever since its colonial project was set in motion, the “Cultural Revolution” has insisted that it seeks to colonize Tibet “peacefully”, indeed that its colonization of the country will not only not harm the Tibetan population, but that it was successful to be of benefit to millions of illegal Chinese settlers. The main reasons behind the dirty politics of why Xi is “calling for more educational campaigns to promote ethnic unity and a sense of belonging to the same Chinese nationality,” is that Tibetans would become real Chinese and must speak Mandarin, allowing coexistence with the Chinese settlers who would be happy and grateful for being colonized and civilized by the communist regime; and a secret, logistical and practical strategy to vanquish the Tibetan population from Tibet, a practice which threatens the very existence of Tibetan culture, religion and national identity.
The impacts of mass immigration of Ethnic Chinese into Tibet was and is a barbaric act with aim to destroy Tibet completely— a target for the worst excesses of the Chinese regime. Tibetan exiles claim 7.5 million Chinese now live in Tibet overwhelming the six million Tibetans. These figures are unconfirmed, but recent Chinese figures suggest this trend is accurate. Mass murderer Mao Zedong killed an estimated 49-78 million people during China’s Cultural Revolution between 1966 and 1976. From Mao to Hu Jintao, one after another, the Chinese dictators have taken full control over the lives of their citizens. The similarities shared with previous dictators from Mao to Hu, Xi’s approach of declaring peaceful intentions for “Ethnic Unity and “Economy Development” behind which he sought to hide Mao’s “Marxism” inherited from “Sovietism”, a violent strategy of conquering and terrorizing the land of Tibet into pieces, adopting wholesale thenceforward, which continues to be the cornerstone of the repressive policy to the present.
Chinese hard line policies in creating a new socialist paradise, seeking hearts and minds with Tibetan people will never fulfill its dreams. Indeed, within the framework of the 17 Point Agreement between China and Tibet, the PLA troops marching into Tibet shall abide by all the above-mentioned policies and shall also be fair in all buying and selling and shall not arbitrarily take a single needle or thread from the people. However, in the past six decades, Tibetans are denied of the basic rights of expression, speech, movement, and religion under the hard-line policies, including political repression, economic marginalization, environmental destruction, cultural assimilation and denial of religious freedom.
As China became the 3rd of the top ten militaries in the world, according to “Global Firepower”, why China’s strategists have increasingly acknowledged that the stability in Tibet is central to China’s national interest, and particularly as present as the early 1980s. The term “Economy Development” and “Stability” has nothing to do with Tibetan people. But the Tibetan plateau, dubbed the “Third Pole”, holds the third largest store of water-ice in the world and is the source of many of Asia’s rivers. The glaciers, snow peaks, rivers, lakes, forest and wetlands of Tibet provide major environmental services to Asia, from Pakistan to Vietnam to northern China.The climate in Tibet generates and regulates monsoon rains over Asia. An estimated 70% of water in China is heavily polluted from uncontrolled dumping of chemicals. Instead of dealing with this the Chinese regime is diverting water from Tibet to north and west China to supply over 300 million Chinese people. It is also damming rivers to generate hydroelectricity which is in turn used to power industrial developments in China. Dams on rivers and their major tributaries cause massive interruptions to wild mountain rivers and the ecosystems dependent on them. They also give China strategic power over neighboring countries.
Chinese state owned mining companies are quickening their extraction of copper, gold and silver in Tibet. These mines are usually based close to rivers. Tibet is also rich in other resources including lead, zinc, molybdenum, asbestos, uranium, chromium, lithium and much more. Tibet is China’s only source of chromium and most of its accessible lithium is in Tibet. These raw materials are used in manufacturing of household goods, computers and smart phones, among much else.
China is the world’s largest producer of copper and the world’s second biggest consumer of gold. The World Gold Council predicts that the consumption in China will double within a decade. Tibet’s reserves of copper and gold are worth nearly one trillion dollars. Chinese companies have traditionally mined on a small scale but now large scale extractions are taking place, mainly by large companies, owned by or with close links to the state. More importantly, in connection with the size of Tibet it needs to be pointed out that the so-called ‘Tibet Autonomous Region’ – which is what some parts of world mistakenly see as ‘Tibet’ – is only the truncated half of Tibet. The North-Eastern Province of Amdo; has been separated from the rest of Tibet and renamed ‘Qinghai.’ Also; large parts of Eastern Tibet; the traditional Kham Province; have been incorporated into neighboring Chinese Provinces.
Economic growth mostly benefits The Chinese settlers and businesses and workers, as most workers in Tibet mines are Chinese and the extraction takes place without regard to the local environment and areas of religious significance. Most of Tibet is vulnerable to earthquakes and highly volatile. Threats posed by this instability are exacerbated by mining and damming projects. In 2013 a landslide in the Gyama Valley is a great example, which highlighted the fatal destruction of Tibet’s environment. In almost all areas in Tibet, Tibetans have frequently protested against Chinese government, where there are mining projects in Tibet, particularly in recent years. China has recently drilled a 7 km borehole, to reach and explore Tibet’s oil and natural gas resources. China National Petroleum Corporation estimates the basin’s oil reserves at 10 billion tons.
As well as global climate change, industrial projects such as mining, damming and deforestation are leading to the Tibetan glacier melting at a faster rate, contributing in turn to further global warming. Before the Chinese occupation there was almost no Tibetan industrialization, damming, draining of wetlands, fishing and hunting of wildlife. Tibet remained unfenced, its grasslands intact, its cold climate able to hold enormous amounts of organic carbon in the soil. China has now moved millions of Tibetan nomads from their traditional grasslands to urban settlements, opening their land for the extraction of resources and ending traditional agricultural practices which have sustained and protected the Tibetan environment for centuries.
The mining companies also benefit from state financing of railways, power stations and many other infrastructure projects. Much of China’s significant transport infrastructure developments in Tibet have been intended to facilitate the movement of military forces into the country and the removal of natural resources from it. companies also benefit from finance at concessional rates to corporate borrowers, tax holidays, minimal environmental standards and costs, no requirement to compensate local communities and subsidized rail freight rates to get concentrates to smelters or metal to markets.These above valid reasons for saying Tibetans inside Tibet will never sense happier life in a so called “Maoist socialist paradise.” Instead, we have, and always had the fears and sense of the totalitarian nature of Chinese regime.
However, the authoritarians in Beijing always have popularized the expression of Tibet as a “Peaceful Liberation” since the occupation in 1949— the totalitarianism understood well that its colonial strategy depended on a deliberate and insistent confusion of the binary terms “Liberation” and “Unity”, so that each of them hides behind the other as one and the same strategy: “Unity” will always be the public name of a colonial war, and “Liberation”, once it became necessary and public in the form of total invasions, would be articulated as the principal means to achieve the sought after “ethnic unity”.
Why Xi said the country should “firmly take the initiative” in the fight against separatism, vowing to crack down on all activities seeking to separate the country and destroy social stability. Waging colonial war under banner of “Unity” is so central to totalitarianism and Chinese propaganda that China’s 1949 invasion of Tibet, which killed 1.2 million Tibetans and destroyed over six thousand monasteries and temples and historical structures looted and all beyond repair, was termed the “Peaceful Liberation of Tibet”. “Liberation” and “Ethnic Unity”, therefore, are the same means whose only and ultimate strategic goal is Chinese colonization of Tibet and the subjugation and expulsion of Tibetan population.
To bring about the expulsion of the Tibetans and the establishment of the Chinese settler colony, the CCP sought the patronage of the powers that controlled the fate of Tibet. Mao to Xi whereas their assiduous efforts to court the Mao’s old leadership and persuade to grant them a charter failed, however the soviet style leadership after Mao adopted the same strategy under various banners and successfully secured the patronage of world, and became the master of Tibet.
Tibet remained largely isolated from the rest of the world’s civilizations. After 1949, the CCP successfully secured support for their colonial project. After more than 40 years the world recognize that Mao was responsible for genocide of millions of Chinese, Tibetans, Mongolians and Uyghurs. Even Deng Xiaoping actually believed that Mao was about 80% wrong, proving not only that mass massacres happened from 1959-61 but also that these were mainly the result of policy errors that the current regime continues to draw from. None of these, however, were morally justifiable and acceptable, but a true nature that the deadly ideology of communism while abandoned their public claims that their “peaceful liberation” colonization of Tibet would not be harmful to the Tibetan people while employing, at the same time, the most violent means to evict the Tibetans off their land.
The totalitarian leader, Mao, following Stalin’s strategy of securing the patronage of major world powers articulated the Sovietist position thus. Sovietist colonization must either stop, or else proceed regardless of the native population. Which means that it can proceed and develop only under the protection of a power that is independent of the native population - behind an iron wall, which the native population cannot breach. That is repressive policy; not what it should be, but what it actually is, whether we admit it or not. We clearly understand why Xi is calling for more “patriotic education campaigns” to promote “ethnic unity” and a sense of belonging to the same “Chinese nationality”.
Despite officially introducing more environment-friendly policies in recent years, China continues to flood Tibet with potentially destructive mega development projects such as railway routes, oil and gas pipelines, petrochemical complexes, hydro dams, construction of airports, highways, military bases and new cities for migrants from Mainland China. Is this for a sense of belonging to the same “Chinese nationality”?
What need we, otherwise, of the Peaceful Liberation? Or of the Mandate? Their value to us is that outside Power has undertaken to create in the country such conditions of administration and security that if the native population should desire to hinder work, they will find it impossible. It was, in fact, this regime’s commitment to “peaceful liberation” with the Tibetans, whose land they sought to totally control, that provoked the ire of terror group that gradually transformed the CCP. The CCP leaders’ assumption that the Tibetans were bribe-able, that they could be bought, and that they would accept Chinese domination in exchange for nominal economic benefits was challenged by Mao. He once stated that the communist army’s “only foreign debt” was that incurred to Tibet and its people while on the Long March in 1930s.
The idea of peaceful liberation of Tibet was a means to establish more colonial conquests, continued to be entrenched in Maoist considerations, it would be pursued alongside invisible war even after 1949, as evidenced by the multiple invasions of Tibet in the 1950s, and in the new century. These wars would be waged explicitly as part of China’s pursuit of “peaceful liberation” to achieve its colonial aims, and Nor-eastern Tibet capitulated completely to Chinese colonialism, while continuing the war against those Tibetans who continued to resist Maoist colonial logic.
Human rights monitoring and protection has become an unusual challenge to the de facto impunity of the government system. Acquiring accurate information from the so-called ethnic minority regions of Tibet had become extremely difficult due to the secretive nature of operations and so called lack of transparency. Tibetans in their own home country have become victims of deep-seated prejudice. A carefully chiseled policy has led to a cultural genocide in Tibet due to denial of basic fundamental rights, freedoms and justice over a period of 60 years. The Human Rights situation has not improved in Tibet.
The ongoing suppression of the Tibetan people has been openly carried out whether intentionally or unintentionally. The Chinese government continues to accelerate the political, economic, social and geographical integration of Tibet into China. There is no let-up on many unpopular measures of control imposed by China on the Tibet region such as the “Patriotic re-education Campaign” under policy of “Unity and Peace,” despite how-many-ever protests from Tibetans. This Chinese policy with the active support of the military presence in Tibet, at least a quarter of a million strong, strictly governs the territory, after all China still claims a “peaceful liberation” of Tibet and President Xi Jinping vowed to follow same old way. Is this what China really wanted the whole world to witness in an occupied Tibet in the 21st century?