CSN Condemns Rising Tibetan Death Toll;
HRW Raises Fears of Detainee Torture;
JPK Calls Again for Condoleeza Rice to Resign
1. CSN Condemns Rising Tibetan Death Toll and Lies of China's Regime
Protests have wracked the Himalayan region of Tibet, beginning on March 10, 2008 which was the 49th anniversary of Tibetan National Uprising Day -- an occasion in 1959 when Chinese troops cracked down on a Tibetan uprising, and forced the Dalai Lama, Tibet's spiritual and temporal leader, to flee into exile. Prior to the rise of communism in China, Tibet was historically a theocracy of Tibetan Buddhism. As the head of Tibetan Buddhism, the Dalai Lama was or is the "god-king." With no separation of church and state, he was or is the head of church and the head of state for Tibet.
On March 14, protests turned violent, and Chinese "People's Armed Police" killed an estimated 80 Tibetans while putting down protests in Lhasa. Sympathy protests have recently spread to other parts of China, and the death toll has risen. The China Support Network (CSN) is a group established in the United States in 1989, and supports freedom for all regions afflicted by the dictatorship of the Chinese Communist Party. Stated another way, we are anti-communist and we support the Tibetans as well as all of the religious denominations and ethnic groups who are persecuted by Beijing.
At this time, CSN estimates the death toll in a range from 110-117. The number of deaths will inevitably be matched by a number of wounded with injuries. A realistic number to match the death toll suggests 400-500 wounded. Arrests could be in the thousands. Further, this incident is not over and done with. There is every chance that another week brings another tragedy in the ongoing saga of China's brutal occupation and cultural genocide in Tibet. It is understandable that Tibetans are angry. They are dealing with a case of "Grand theft, country."
Even one death -- untimely and needless, by gratuitous government fiat -- is too many. From 1950 to the present, Communist China has killed over a million Tibetans, and destroyed some 6,200 monasteries. The Communist Premier, Wen Jiabao, held a press conference on March 18 and became the regime's point man for demonizing the Dalai Lama, whom he blamed for the violence. A Connecticut newspaper, the Hartford Courant, directly rebutted Wen's charge, saying "No, it was incited by unacceptable Chinese repression of Tibetan religious and cultural practices and aggravated by Chinese security forces too eager to attack."
On March 14, the dissident-controlled China Interim Government urged Tibetans to "drive out the CCP's representative in Tibet – Zhang Qingli, acting Party Secretary of the Tibetan Autonomous Region." On March 19, Zhang Qingli, said in a published editorial, "The Dalai Lama is a wolf wrapped in a robe, a monster with human face and animal's heart." The China Support Network denounces the statements by Wen Jiabao and Zhang Qingli. "History will remember the CCP as the epitome of evil. Civilian Tibetans would be unarmed, but for stones or homemade implements. The bullet holes can only come from triggermen on the side of the CCP. When evil people do evil things, it is not a valid excuse to say 'The Dalai Lama made me do it,'" observed John Kusumi at the China Support Network.
Kusumi underscored, "The killings are acts of commission, and the Communist Party is guilty. As for another regime lie, I would ask Wen Jiabao, 'If, as your propaganda says, Tibet was always a part of China historically, then why was there a need for Chinese troops to invade in 1950? Indeed, there are eleven earlier generations of Dalai Lama. It was they, not China, who ruled Tibet. Your propaganda is flat wrong -- and around the world, Tibetan Buddhism is known as a religion of non-violence. It reveals a political tin ear to be demonizing a man who holds a Nobel Peace Prize.'" The China Support Network condemns inaccurate propaganda which perpetuates the in-house myths of the Communist Party.
2. HRW Raises Fears of Detainee Torture, Calls for International Monitor Access
The Chinese government should immediately permit independent monitors to have access to the large number of Tibetans detained in Tibet and adjoining provinces in the aftermath of public protests, Human Rights Watch said today. The government should publish the names of all individuals detained and their places of detention.
Unconfirmed reports suggest that hundreds have been arrested. Chinese authorities have not specified the number of detainees. Human Rights Watch and others have previously documented torture and ill-treatment of detainees in Tibet, especially those accused by the Chinese authorities of “separatist” activities.
“Given the long and well-documented history of torture of political activists by China’s security forces there is every reason to fear for the safety of those recently detained,” said Brad Adams, Asia director at Human Rights Watch. “Only by giving access to independent monitors can China give the world some confidence that detainees are not being tortured or mistreated.”
Chinese officials announced that those who had been involved in the protests must “surrender” to police by midnight on March 16 and that they would be shown leniency if they did so. The officials insisted that the detention of protesters was necessary to ensure public security.
The Chinese government has virtually sealed off Tibet, expelling or turning away foreign journalists and tourists. The Chinese government has long banned independent human rights observers from Tibet and punishes Tibetans who send information out of the country regarding the human rights situation.
“The exclusion of independent monitors and expulsion of foreign media from Tibet only suggest that China wants to retaliate against these protesters unfettered by global scrutiny,” said Adams. “China is in direct violation of its commitment to the International Olympic Committee to allow foreign journalists free access to the whole country, a point the IOC should be making publicly if it is to retain any credibility.”
3. JPK Again Calls for Condoleeza Rice to Resign
by John Kusumi
I've previously called for U.S. Secretary of State, Condoleeza Rice, to resign. The first time in late 2006, I said that it was "ludicrous, unwarranted and disconnected from reality" when the State Department removed Vietnam from its Countries of Particular Concern list in the area of religious persecution. Vietnam remains a regime with deadly religious persecution. To remove that designation was a display of incompetence, or of mere pandering to communists, dictators, tyrants and thugs, with whom the U.S. Government should not be smitten.
Now a more recent outrage prompts me once again to call for Rice to resign. The matter was well stated in an editorial by the Hartford Courant. "The United States, regrettably, has recently removed China from its list of the 10 worst human rights violators. China should go back on the list." My thanks to the Hartford Courant because they said it -- China should go back on the list. And, just as with Vietnam, this maneuver was ludicrous, unwarranted, disconnected from reality, and revealing of incompetence or pandering.
The fresh slaughter of Tibetans has made the case already, to support the return of China to the list. Indeed, the fresh slaughter of Tibetans is also making the case that the Summer Olympic Games and their advertisers should be boycotted, if the games will be under this same Beijing regime. On March 19, Wei Jingsheng published an op-ed in the Washington Post. It was aptly titled, "China's True Face: The Host of the Olympics or the Thug of Tibet?" Wei correctly excoriates the President of the International Olympic Committee, Jacques Rogge.
Within his piece, Wei Jingsheng says, "The old lies and propaganda don't work anymore." That is an excellent point that is lost on out-of-touch world leaders, and even some newsrooms. Hooray for Wei Jingsheng! And boo hiss for Wen Jiabao, Zhang Qingli, and Condoleeza Rice!