China’s Cultural Zoo

Image:cleveland

The United States, having invaded and militarily occupied Afghanistan, imagine it then enforcing the English language upon the Afghani people, facilitating a mass colonization of that country with American settlers, imposing draconian restrictions on religious freedoms and practice, establishing a regime that governs through martial law and denying political and civil freedoms, decides in Washington DC to construct an ethnological theme park to enable tourists to ogle at traditional Afghan culture. Such a scenario would invite charges of racist colonialism and inevitably draw parallels with the ‘model villages’ set up by Hitler to convince international opinion that Jewish culture was respected and flourished under the ‘care’ of  Nazi-Germany.

Nazi Propaganda Village-Theresienstadt In Then Czechoslovakia

Image:archivenet

There was of course a troubling period during the establishment of the United States which witnessed a brutal assault upon the cultures of indigenous peoples, marginalized, oppressed and under siege from westward expansion, their lands stolen, traditions and culture suppressed. Similar colonial aggression and racist intolerance was imposed upon peoples within the British Empire during the 19th Century. Such actions derive from a darker side of humanity, which some claim have been consigned to history by ‘progressive liberal nations’, not sure the people of Fallujah in Iraq would agree, poisoned by Depleted Uranium courtesy of the Pentagon!  The chaotic aftermath of the Second World War, and emergence of human rights and international law, along with the creation of the United Nations (UN) was (in theory at least) to seek an end to colonialism and the suppression of peoples.

Cold War Cartoon

Image:archivenet

Unfortunately in drawing up UN charters and statutes, during the highly polarized and politically charged climate of the Cold War, definitions and agreements as to what constituted ’colonialism fell into two basic camps, one defined by former colonial powers such as Britain, whose empire was an overseas possession, and communist powers such as the Soviet Union and China, who argued forcibly to ensure political control and sovereignty over peoples and lands they had subjugated, such as Tibet and East Turkestan. They were happy to agree to an end of colonialism, but only the blue-water variety, where the dominant power controlled nations overseas. On that dubious basis they were unwilling to accept that their annexations and rule over Tibetans, Uyghurs, Mongolians, or Kazakhs, and all the occupied nations of Eastern Europe and Central Asia, were colonial. It was not in their ideological, political and economic interest to acknowledge that reality.

This resulted in subsequent UN Charters on colonialism and the rights of peoples, in terms of national self-determination (independence) essentially supporting the political and territorial integrity of states, in which peoples were not afforded the right under international law or UN Charter to independence per se, but were granted minority rights such as autonomy. This left both the Soviet Union and China in complete, unchallenged control of territories that had been annexed and beyond international or United Nations interference.

Colonial Propaganda Staged In 1960’s Occuped Tibet

Image:meltdowntibet

With the collapse of the Soviet Union the world was left with one last great land empire, communist China. Under the socialist flag of China’s expansionist aggression and colonialism continues to suppress formerly independent peoples, such as Tibetans and Uyghurs, while imperialist policies exploit and erode those cultures. Like other empires there is a racist component to Chinese rule, in which the professed superiority of Han China presides with arrogant and violent patronage over so-called minority peoples. One very nauseating example of that attitude, and not too removed from the imaginary scenario that opened this post, is the so-called ‘National Ethnic Minorities Park’ in Beijing. Supposedly designed to protect so-called ethnic heritage, at this claimed anthropological museum, Tibetans, Uyghurs and others peoples are employed to daily perform, against a culturally themed architectural backdrop, various traditions for the benefit of tourists.

Directions For Communist China’s Cultural Zoo

Image:archivenet

Sitting there, watching the sickening burlesque of propaganda performance, are visitors aware of the manipulation and distortion they are exposed to? Is there any recognition that the very cultures on display are violently imprisoned and abused by the same communist regime which claims to be protecting such peoples. Anyone possessed of intelligence and integrity would of course not endorse this obscene mockery of Tibetan and Uyghur culture, and be opposed to any action that may legitimize China’s colonialism and exploitation of occupied nations such as Tibet and East Turkestan.

4 thoughts on “China’s Cultural Zoo

  1. F_Le_Rulz says:

    Imagine if European settlers came to a strange continent with strange peoples. They forcefully convert those indigenous peoples to Christianity, then sterilize them without their knowledge if they go to hospital for treatment, and force them onto reservations. I guess that’s the very scenario that you’re condemning?

    Except it’s happened. The result is of that is what is now known as the United States of America. If you’re going to make accusations, you might want to cover the whole picture instead of singling out a certain regime. It doesn’t make what is happening to Tibetan civilians right, but it also is not justification for independence. If Tibet deserves independence, then the USA should give up all its territories back to the indigenous peoples. The same can go for any country that was established through colonization. Is that a viable idea? Of course not. So why not create a better China, one in which all voices are heard? That will benefit the Tibetan people, the Uyghur people, the Han people, and everyone who is now suffering under the CCP.

    • While there is an interesting analogy between the history of the European, later American, conquest of First Nations of North America, it is not prudent to take that too far. Besides perhaps you are aware that is a favoured parallel of China and its apologists since it slyly proposes an inevitability, the succession of a supposedly ‘primitive’ culture by one seemingly more advanced. Such colonialist justification also seeks to create a precedent that implicates American critics of China with the same crime that China is committing. China’s bogus claims over Tibet, with their crass distortions of history, draw also upon a similar thinking to that proposed by the notion of America’s ‘manifest destiny’ used to justify the brutal assault against native peoples. Of course all imperialist aggression and violent expansionism is without question indefensible, no matter how many reasoned excuses are offered, China’s illegal occupation with its decades of tyranny and vicious oppression has graphically demonstrated that only Tibet’s national freedom can provide the Tibetan people with a meaningful and secure guarantee against the colonization, exploitation and state-engineered violence, which China has visited upon Tibet since invading in 1950. Moreover, it should not be forgotten that Tibet’s people have a justified claim to restore the rightful territorial and political independence of Tibet, it was after all a nation which enjoyed de facto, and some argue, de jure independence. Within that context the future status of Tibet should be determined by their common political aspiration and will, as demonstrated by the continuing resistance to China’s illegal presence, Tibetans have shown consistently a heartfelt desire to rid themselves forever of China and restore their independence. Within international law Tibet remains an independent nation under illegal occupation, while China has no legitimacy to occupy or rule in Tibet, hence its ideological efforts to rewrite history; the people of Tibet will not be so foolish as to surrender their rights to national self-determination and independence in exchange for the dubious benefits of economic reward under China’s bloody maw, no matter its political complexion.

    • Please note we have been required to block comments from a Chinese ‘contributor’ who is seeking to abuse our site for the purposes of spreading China’s propaganda. While we welcome serious and balanced comments from people, and value greatly free and open debate, this site is not a chat room for those with a pro-China agenda.

      • A Note To China’s Apologists and Propagandists

        This site is not a debating forum but a platform with the operating policy of promoting Tibetan independence and exposing the injustice. tyranny, and atrocities inflicted by China’s illegal occupation of Tibet. As such we do not publish China’s propaganda. There is a sufficiently well resourced and active machine of disinformation operated by China’s Regime to permit such distortions are aired across the internet, this website will not be debased or exploited for such corrosive purposes.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s