Are you persuaded by the stream of images released across social media and the internet showing Tibetans in various happy poses, framed in a context of contented modernity? Well the Chinese regime sure hopes so, as it wages a 24/7 psy-op to win your attention and lead you to conclude that Tibet is thriving and developing under China’s occupation. Yet everything is not as it seems in such staged shows of happiness. As indicated in the image above, behind the faked-smiles and flag waving lies the ever present hand of Chinese tyranny.
On Tuesday, September 3 the Chinese regime authorized in Lhasa, occupied Tibet what was reported to be an ‘international fashion show’. There are many such events promoted by China’s propagandist outlets, across social media and the internet.
It’s a clever deception targeting a western audience, a cynical psy-op to mislead and distract from the traumatizing reality of Chinese rule in Tibet. Fashion, after all, is considered a form of high culture, a beauteous design reflecting modernity. To stage such shows in Tibet offers the oppressors and torturers of the Tibetan people an opportunity to cement in the perception of an occidental mind the notion that China has brought positive development and economic progress.
It also provides the vultures of commerce a chance to profit, which no doubt explains why the following fashion brands were actively involved in the Lhasa event: Chopard, Max Mara, Lane Crawford, Dazzle, Ports 1961, Brunello Cuccinelli, Mikimoto, Mr & Mrs Italy
Yet as their designers, costumers, cosmetic artists, hair stylists and photographers assembled in Lhasa what consideration was given to the condition and suffering Tibetans beyond the show’s security perimeter?
Of course we know the answer, right? A willing collaboration with the Chinese authorities reveals a cold indifference to the misery, injustice, tyranny and torture inflicted upon Tibetans, beyond the four-star venue and hotels which accommodated these companies.
Next time you go to the mall, keep an eye open for products from those fashion brands and ask yourself if anyone supporting freedom and human rights would in all conscience be comfortable with buying any of their products?
Reports from occupied Tibet this week reveal the ongoing assault against Tibetan culture, a number of images showing Tibetan infants being militarized at a local propaganda event aimed at glorifying the Chinese regime’s military. These are of course the very same forces which violently oppress the Tibetan people, in a drive to indoctrinate Tibet’s children they are also deployed as brainwashing units. Holding up China’s occupying army as heroes and ‘protectors of the people’.
Meanwhile in Lhasa on May 15 Chinese surveillance personnel and propagandists were pumping out the latest edicts from the Chinese regime as part of the relentless psyop against Tibetans.
Look right from the get go we’re going to make it plain. We’ve little respect for academics specializing in Tibetan culture and history, who (usually for the purposes of career and research enhancement) collaborate with the Chinese regime. Why? Because there’s always a dangerous compromise on the facts, there has to be. Don’t forget it’s a totalitarian authority which demands compliance to its official narrative on any aspect of Tibet. Unless a scholar signs-off on that there’s no deal, applications for visas are denied, cooperation from Chinese universities and research bodies is not extended. So what do you do? After all you have a passion for your area of study? It would be a real shame not make progress on that project you’ve been considering, right?
So the justification begins, and any concerns on partnering with a regime that you know is brutalizing the Tibetan people and eradicating their cultural and national identity, is rationalized away. With the support and encouragement of intellectual colleagues, the prospect of exotic field trips, and dreams of acclaim for that paper you will now be able to complete and publish, it becomes remarkably easy to ignore the harrowing reality endured by Tibetans. That’s the great thing about being inside the bubble; you are insulated the work becomes everything, while a remnant of concern may remain it’s pushed away into some neglected junkyard of your thinking.
The Chinese authorities will prove extremely helpful and generous, facilitating your research in Tibet, such support and cooperation comes with a price! The work you produce has to conform to standards expected and dictated by a number of government bodies including; Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, Tibet Academy Of Social Sciences and China Tibetological Research Centre. You will be required to use certain phrases when describing Tibet, its culture, regions, place-names and people, these of course are propaganda constructions to emphasize China’s bogus claims that Tibet is part of China. At first including such terminology in your writing is awkward but that feeling soon passes and it becomes natural, it also ensures your visa gets renewed!
Image: Eric Baculinao
Field trips are arranged, monitored, controlled and carefully selected and approved, you will liaise on a regular basis with a Chinese academic ‘partner’, At a number of sites you will meet with Tibetans, who will no doubt inform you of the great progress being made in occupied Tibet, while addressing the subject of your researches. The monastery you have access to seems thriving, new buildings and unrestricted Buddhist practice, the perfect location for your study!
An experience no doubt encountered by Professor Agita Baltgalve (University of Latvia/Latvian Society for the Study of Religions). On May 8 she was a key speaker at the screening of a propaganda film shown at the Chinese embassy in the capital city of Riga, Latvia. Her comments clearly met the approval of Xinhua, the official mouthpiece of China’s regime, who reported her as saying: ‘..Latvia has seen visits of several Tibetan delegations, now the documentary films provides an opportunity to learn more about the land and people of Tibet by means of cinematography. ‘. Anyone watching a film on Tibet authorised by Xi Jinping’s regime will be educated with disinformation and falsehoods, not that this seems to trouble Ms Baltgave!
She is an active collaborator in endorsing and promoting Chinese propaganda, seemingly content with the engineered illusions presented to her during visits to a handful of selected Tibetan monasteries during 2018. Her report ‘Current Situation of Tibetan Monasteries in China’(note the title wording) no doubt fails to mention the paramilitary presence at such sites, the asphyxiating control from China’s ideological storm-troopers who dominate and control every aspect of daily life at Tibet’s monasteries. Missing too will be the transformation of once Buddhist centers of study into indoctrination camps, where the political thoughts of Xi Jinping and the Chinese Communist Party are forced upon Tibetans.
We wonder how Ms Baltgave would have responded to news of a documentary film being shown at an embassy of the Soviet Union which portrayed Christianity as thriving in Latvia during the time it was under Soviet occupation? How would she have regarded a western academic’s willing participation in promoting such propaganda? Such ethical considerations appear to be of no importance to Tibet academics who choose to collaborate with the Chinese regime.
It’s never enough for a fascistic, totalitarian oppessor simply to invade and brutalize your country and culture, nothing less than total assimilation is demanded. With all traces of cultural and national identity eliminated. Propaganda is of course a major weapon in such an offensive, especially when used to rewrite history into a narrative dictated according to the ruling ideology. Tibetans inside occupied Tibet know this all too well having been force-fed disinformation, lies and fabricated versions of their country’s past.
The image above was taken from a TV broadcast in Lhasa on April 22, 2019, Tibetans on Chinese strings performed a grotesque and politically authorized interpretation of daily life supposedly endured by the people of Tibet before China ‘arrived’ to introduce ‘liberty’ and ‘progress’. In terms of historical accuracy it’s a crude distortion, cultured in the laboratory of China’s ministry of deception.
Tibetans are exposed to such indoctrination on a daily basis, a meticulously calculated psyop is waged upon the thinking of Tibet’s people through a number of television and radio channels. The internet too is saturated with similar propaganda messages, while streets across Tibetan towns promote official slogans from the Chinese regime. It’s a war of mind-control.
When thinking about Tibet as it suffers under the oppressive grip of Chinese rule there’s a few key phrases to consider.
Image: Melong publication XXiii, 11, November 1956
The military strategy that seeks to destroy any assets or resources which might be of use to an enemy. These usually include water and food supplies, industrial centers, transport infrastructure, communications, and most chillingly people are also a target. Such objectives were central to the Chinese army when it invaded and occupied Tibet in 1950, and in the face of armed Tibetan resistance eventually realized.
Having secured complete control this policy was not concluded, instead its objectives were shifted to Tibetan culture, which was deemed by the Chinese regime to be backward and in need of what it termed ‘reform’. A euphemism for the cultural genocide which was inflicted upon the Tibetan people.
The Oxford English Dictionary, citing the use of the term in a 1946 New York Times report on the destroyed city of Hiroshima, defines ground zero as “that part of the ground situated immediately under an exploding bomb, especially an atomic one.” . The cost of Tibetan lives and decades of misery, starvation and persecution which followed the Chinese occupation of Tibet was as if a nuclear bomb had been dropped upon Tibet’s culture and freedom.
The reconstruction has been dictated by China’s regime, central to which has remained a merciless and brutal enforcement of dogma. Inflamed by the ideology of Marxism the Chinese tyranny saw its colonialism of Tibet as a progressive stage in the evolution from a supposed feudalism, of what it insisted was a stagnant culure. In Marxist language Tibetans were “relics of peoples” undeserving of national freedom, incapable of economic or political independence. Tibet was, under such ‘reasoning’, a valid target to be refashioned.
A new ‘social harmony’ was to be engineered. From the smouldering ruins of China’s brutal violence against Tibet would emerge a Tibetan population ‘liberated’ from a supposed ‘class exploitation’ and ‘local nationalism’. The methodology employed to assist Tibetans realize such a political consciousness included: forced labor camps, mass arrests, torture, destruction of Tibetan monasteries and a mass population transfer of Han Chinese into Tibet!
The poisonous cocktail of Marxist-Leninist doctrine with China’s traditional assimilationist ideology continues to terrorize the Tibetan people. Their culture having suffered the ravages of scorched earth and a nuclear-like assault is being redefined according to the political objective of China’s regime. Tibetan children are the experimental subjects, groomed into what is hoped will be a generation that knows only loyalty and gratitude towards the Chinese authorities.
Image: China’s Ministry Of Propaganda
To realize such a mindset Tibet’s past has been recreated, censored and sanitized in accord with the approved political ideology. Within that perversion of the facts China becomes a savior, arriving as the hero to bring freedom to sorely oppressed Tibetans, denied social and political development by a cruel and feudal elite. This meticulous propaganda is drip fed to Tibet’s children each day.
There is no Dalai Lama, no history other than the one fabricated by the Chinese regime. It’s a ‘new Tibet’ which is taught, with a doctrine that asserts before Tibet was ‘liberated’ existed only cruelty, exploitation and slavery. Now, thanks to the ‘enlightened’ policies of China’s government, Tibetans enjoy the modernity and progress of a socialist paradise. They are so the propaganda would have you believe, ‘masters of their own affairs’!
Such is the thought-control applied within indoctrination centers (schools and what monasteries are left) across occupied Tibet. China is assiduously destroying Tibet’s past, brutally controlling its present and attempting to possess its future!
Anyone with an interest in Tibet will eventually come across online references to Tibet being a part of China or claims insisting that since ancient times Tibetans have been ruled by China or under its control and influence. Such assertions promoted by propaganda mouthpieces such as Xinhua, Global Times and China Daily are usually accompanied by three deceptions and distortions. Which we take great delight in exposing below:
The ‘Ancient Tibetan King Had A Chinese Wife Claim’
The recorded claim that Wencheng, a Chinese Princess married the 7th Century Tibetan king Songsten Gambo is one of the devices used to press the falsehood of China’s claims over Tibet. Arguing that her marriage with a Tibetan ruler established a legitimacy regarding Chinese claims on Tibet. This specious reasoning is of course a nonsense. The Tibetan ruler in question also received a Nepalese wife at the same time, so perhaps Nepal should counter China’s cynical and baseless claims!
To further understand how ridiculous these bogus assertions are we need to look, not in 7th Century Tibet, but medieval France and its rival England. At a time equally marked by power politics and alliances. It is around the year 1122 and Éléonore de Guyenne was born. She was to become one of the most powerful and richest women in Europe. Receiving the title Duchess of Aquitaine, and eventually queen consort of France (1137–1152) and of England (1154–1189). Eleanor of Aquitane, as English historians recorded her name, married on May 18 1152 her cousin, Henry Plantagent, who was to become two years later the King of England.
The marriage lasted some thirteen years during which she bore Henry eight children: five sons, three of whom would become kings, and three daughters. Clearly a dynastic alliance and important to note one involving family members, all of whom were French, including England’s ruler! Now if we apply China’s distorted ‘reasoning’ that asserts legitimacy over Tibet, on the basis of ancient allegiances and marriage, then we must now consider that France could lay claim to the United Kingdom due to the historical truth of Eleanor’s marriage to Henry II of England!
The ‘Tibet Was Under The Control of The Yuan Dynasty Claim’
The so-called Yuan Dynasty during which China’s regime insists Tibet was part of China was in fact a time (nearly a hundred years in duration) when China proper was controlled, occupied and ruled by the Mongolians. Who while extending influence over, never conquered Tibet. Chinese historians and its present regime try to conceal the historical fact that China was part of the Mongolian Empire (dominated by non-Han rulers) by naming it as the ‘Yuan (new) Dynasty’.
China’s propagandists argue that as Tibet was within the territory ruled by so-called Yuan Dynasty is evidence that it historically is an inalienable part of China. Oh boy! The truth is that on the reasoning of conquest and political power it is Mongolians, the foreign rulers who occupied and ruled China at that period who can more legitimately claim that Tibet belongs to Mongolia!
The ‘Tibet Came Under The Patronage Of A Chinese Emperor Claim’
The final falsehood employed to press claims of legitimacy of Chinese rule over Tibet uses the argument of ‘previous control’. However this assertion derives from the Qing Dynasty when the Emperor K’ang Hsi (who was himself was a Manchu being Central Asian and not Chinese) intervened in Tibetan affairs, most particularly relating to Buddhism. Establishing what China’s regime claims was a condition of suzerainty over Tibet.
Well a few important considerations here, firstly the Dynasty in question (like that of cynically renamed ‘Yuan’) was not Chinese but Manchurian, a people and culture who had more in common with Tibetans than the Han society. Secondly although Chinese forces established military victories in some parts of eastern Tibet, large parts of such territory was regained by Tibetans in 1865 and later Chinese control was ended there when Tibetans expelled Chinese forces in the early 20th Century.
So there we have it folks, next time you see any hysterical (no mispelling there) claims that Tibet has always been a part of China you know what to say to such BS.