In terms of progressing the cause of justice, equality and human rights, would that noble cause not be assisted if more people had a capacity to empathize with the suffering of others, or a genuine sympathy based upon shared experiences of oppression? In an ideal world it’s natural to consider that say a person, organization or country that’s suffered some great injustice or tyranny would be predisposed towards expressing a solidarity with others who endure the violence of a tyrant or foreign occupier. Take Denmark for example, which was to come under Nazi-German occupation in 1940. After a period of economic cooperation with Germany eventually in 1943 the Danish government
“..refused further co-operation and its navy sank most of its ships and sent as many of their officers as they could to Sweden. During the war, the government was helpful towards the Danish Jewish minority, and the Danish resistance performed a rescue operation that managed to get most of them to Sweden and safety shortly before the Germans planned to round up the Danish Jews. Denmark led many “inside operations” or sabotage against the German facilities.Danish doctors refused to treat German citizens fleeing from Germany, which resulted in the deaths of 13,000 people.” https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Denmark#Early_modern_history
Given that Denmark, its people,culture and history has directly experienced occupation by a foreign tyranny it would in an ideal sense not be too unreasonable to imagine it unlikely for Danish individuals or corporations to easily engage in partnerships with a totalitarian regime such as China’s. Ah but that innocent and overly simplistic hope ignores the corrosive allure of economics and how the prospect of business and profitable bank balances can sideline, into some dark corner beyond conscience, any ethical concerns.
Perhaps that explains how a highly respected Danish corporation such as Alectia is partnering a Chinese company ‘Tibet Glacial Mineral Water Company Limited’ which is extracting water from Tibet’s endangered glacial system.
“Tibet Glacier Mineral Water Co. Ltd. has asked ALECTIA to undertake an investigation and site audit in order to document the present operations. ALECTIA has come up with a number of recommendations for the future of Tibet Glacier Mineral Water Co. Ltd., and a program for frequent QA audits has been established.” http://www.alectia.com/eng/news/mineral-water-from-the-glaciers-of-tibet/
Clearly a collaborative partnership has been established, but what of the worrying questions that surround any such cooperation with China and its companies, particularly in occupied Tibet, where Tibetans are so violently denied freedoms, rights and civil freedoms that Denmark’s own people were refused when their country was invaded and occupied? Beyond such major ethical concerns what about the disturbing environmental record of Chinese companies, who see Tibet as a resource for unfettered exploitation, how can a corporation such as Alectia be content to collaborate with a company that is wantonly exploiting a glacial system, already under serious risk of retreat and denudation? Tibet’s grasslands and pastures, which are home to a range of animals pollinating insects and fauna are dependent upon the ground-flow and through-flow of water from surface and underground sources. Surely this Danish company can see the ecological risks?
We hope you may agree these are valid and important questions, which should be placed before a responsible and environmentally aware and ethically based company such as Alectia. Moreover we would be very interested to note its response to the following:
Imagine a Nazi-backed German corporation operating in occupied Denmark, offering employment to German colonizers, and exploiting Danish natural resources for sale to the free world. Would Alectia care to offer its thoughts on that and why it is engaged in such a morally troubling partnership with that Chinese company?
For the purposes of fairness we invite Alectia to offer their view on this matter and will happily publish their rejoinder, should they choose to provide a response. Meanwhile, for anyone wishing to ask this corporation about their involvement in occupied Tibet, featured on their publicly available website is the following contact details: