Wednesday, 2 April 2008

A Year in Tibet

This is a truly fabulous and important programme of what is left of a way of life that will soon be gone forever. BBC4's series about life for ordinary Tibetan people under Chinese rule. A very well-timed airing too, with the Beijing olympics coming up, and the recent terrible troubles in Lhasa and other places. It's all done good from a point of view of getting Tibet in the national and international eye, but *will anything happen*????? This has been going on since 1951, with the world turning a blind eye to the appalling atrocities committed by the Chinese in the name of making Tibet an autonomous region of China. My attentionw as first drawn to it back in 1987; we had just moved into our first house,a nd I was confronted with truly awful picture of Tibetan monks being beaten during a peaceful and non-violent protest. I immediately joined the Free Tibet Campaign, which I have supported ever since, and various other Tibet related charities over the years. Shootings, children being given guns and told to shoot their parents, fleeing refugees shot and left for dead int he mountain passes as they try to escape, enforced sterilisation of Tibetan women, ethnic cleansing of huge proportions, the decimation of thousand of cultural artefacts, refusal to respect their religion and religious rights and beliefs, destruction of hundreds on monasteries, torture and rape and worse of nuns and minks - I could go on. The Dalai Lama has offered to go to China for talks, but I fear this will come to nothing. When he dies, that will be the end of Tibet, I fear, and the country will be taken over wholesale by the Chinese. I live in dread of that day, and feel genuine distress and fear for Tibet, her people and her future.

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