A traditional way-of-life which has flourished on the high grasslands of Tibet is being silently strangled through policies which can only be understood as a form of cultural genocide, as hundreds-of-thousands of Tibetan nomads are being forced from their land. Communist China decided to ‘modernize’ Tibet’s ancient pastoral and nomadic economy, which has co-existed with the unique habitat of the Tibetan Plateau for millenia.
However operating behind the propaganda claims of ecological protection and improving the conditions of Tibet’s nomadic population, is a policy that seeks to imprison some 2 million Tibetan nomads and exploit Tibet’s natural resources. Aimed at satisfying the needs of mainland China, the huge economic potential of Tibet’s considerable reserves of gas, oil, minerals, water and timber provides no benefit the Tibetan people. Who, driven from their lands by communist China’s jack-booted paramilitary thugs, now find that open skies, yak-hair tents and snow-capped horizons have been replaced by barbed-wire and what are effectively concentration camps. Traumatized, confused and intimidated they are abandoned to grieve at the loss their lifestyle.
This state-engineered ethnic-cleansing operates on a scale not witnessed since the insane policies of Stalinist Russia, when countless numbers of Crimean Tatars, Kalmyks, Chechens, Ingush, Balkars, Karachays and Meskhetian Turks had their land forcibly confiscated. The deportation of Tibetans into concentration settlements shares similar totalitarian objectives, to eradicate cultural and national identity and exert greater political and military control. Such aims were revealed by remarks made last year by Tibet’s communist overlord Zhang Qingli who noted in an internal Chinese journal that the “peace and contentment” that nomads derive from so-called improved housing “is the fundamental condition for us in holding the initiative in the struggle against the Dalai clique,” .
Beijing is determined to crush resistance to Communist Chinese occupation and is investing considerable money into the creation of Tibetan reservations and concentration settlements. According to an October 2008 official communist Chinese report, the authorities occupying Tibet’s eastern region of Kham (which was annexed and renamed into Sichuan Province) declared that some 470,000 nomads would be resettled, from an estimated total of 530,000 nomads. In the neighboring region of Amdo (annexed and renamed as Qinghai Province) during 2004 the communist regime demanded that by 2011 all Tibetan nomads would deported from their traditional lands.
The planned extinction of Tibetan nomadism by Communist China has shamefully attracted little concern from the so-called international community, history screams from the sidelines and once again liberal democratic societies remain silent.