Wednesday, July 15, 2009

The March on Tibet

The March on Tibet was a demonstration for Tibetan Independence and autonomy held during the preparations for the 2008 Olympics in Beijing. The demonstrations consisted of unfolding banners with the Tibetan Flag, rallying prominent persons to make announcement and generally embarrass China for its policy of ignoring the demand for national identity in the Tibetan region. The culmination of the March on Tibet was a literal march of many exile Tibetans and supporters to the Nepalese and Indian border with the Tibetan region of China.

The discipline of the march was non-violent in nature accompanied by non-violence trainers and guards. However, the spirit of the gathering was not that of the religious non-violence of Buddhism but the angry defiance of the young exiles who were impatient with the stagnation of negotiations of Tibetan exile government with China. They were openly for Tibetan Independence or at least moving toward that position. They went so far as to criticize the Dalai Lama, the monastic leader, of Tibet for Fifty years, for his non-confrontational ways in dealing with China. The Tibetan youth who participated in the March on Tibet presage a more militant orientation of the lay exile community who seek a new way to save Tibet under Chinese oppression.

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