Posts Tagged ‘Dalai Lama’

“Dalai Lama to meet with Donald Trump”

December 3, 2016

That headline hasn’t been written yet but don’t be surprised if it happens,  and soon, sometime before Trump’s inauguration.

Trump needs to rile China as much as possible while minimising any real retaliatory actions. What he does now, before his inauguration, can only lead to threats of retaliation but not any real actions. His mere acceptance of a call from Taiwan’s President has caused large waves. Something the US administration for 40 years has not had the courage to do. Maybe I attribute too much sense to Trump’s team, but I suspect that they have calculated quite well. They have thrown the current Obama administration into a bit of a spin and rendered them effectively impotent in their China posture.

The time before his inauguration is is a unique opportunity for Trump to make statements, meet people and indicate actions which he can later walk away from. It is the time for outrageous trial balloons. Few President-elects have had the nerve to do this before. I note his skillful, and almost Machiavellian, use of the selection process of “possible” members of his administration to confuse and mislead a hostile press.

The liberal/left press still don’t get it. Democracy is all about populism. It may be a trifle stupid but that is what democracy is about. The liberal “elite” – or any elite – cannot prevail in a democracy. They can no longer expect to be blindly followed by the unthinking plebs. They need to court popularity. I suspect there has been a lot more real thinking (whether by heart or by brain) by the Trump voters in deciding to vote for him than those who blindly followed their “elite” leaders in voting for Clinton.

Trump needs, while minimising the consequences, to rile China, India, France, Germany, Mexico, Canada and a few other “socialist” countries. He did Mexico during the campaign. He continued with India with his apparently effusive telephone conversation with Nawaz Sharif of Pakistan. Now he’s done China. The French/German/British investment in – and creation of  – some of the rebel groups now losing in Aleppo has been part of the US strategy disaster in Syria. A losing strategy that Trump will want to move away from. And that he will do by means of contacts with Putin.

It is more unlikely but I would not put it past him to make contact with Iran.

But meeting with the Dalai Lama is an easy decision to take.

Dalai Lama impersonating Trump (Good Morning Britain)

Dalai Lama impersonating Trump (Good Morning Britain)


When the Pope meets with the Mufti of Istanbul but lacks the courage to meet the Dalai Lama

December 15, 2014

Though I have fond memories of the Jesuits who ran my school, I have not a very high regard for the courage of the Catholic Church. Pope Francis has apparently been a breath of fresh air but I am having second thoughts. All his apparent actions on trying to combat the paedophilia that is inherent in the celibate church and his apparent attempt to be inclusive of homosexuals and even gay marriage, now seem to me to be more concerned with damage control and of improving the image of the church rather than with effecting any real change.

It may be that even this “superficial” behaviour by an “outsider” in the Vatican shows a level of personal courage that is unusual and commendable. But I now begin to think that Pope Francis too is more concerned with being seen as politically correct. The Nobel peace prize winners have been at a congress in Rome and the Dalai Lama requested a meeting with the Pope only to be rejected.

BBC: Pope Francis will not meet the exiled Tibetan leader the Dalai Lama because of the “delicate situation” with China, the Vatican says. The Dalai Lama, who is visiting Rome, had requested a meeting. A Vatican spokesman said that although the Pope held him “in very high regard”, the request had been declined “for obvious reasons“.

The “obvious reasons” had everything to do with political appeasement of the Chinese government and nothing to do with ethics or spirituality or even any sense of right or wrong. There are almost 100 million Catholics and 25 million Muslims in China. The Chinese government sees terrorists among their Muslim minorities but the Catholics mainly as being deluded but not as subversive. The Pope has no problem in visiting mosques and meeting Muftis. The rejection of the Dalai Lama must be put into the perspective of his other meetings. I’m quite sure that in both these cases he is following the instructions of the Cardinal bureaucrats of the Vatican.

Pope Francis prays with Rahmi Yaran, Mufti of Istanbul (right) during a visit to the Sultan Ahmet mosque, popularly known as the Blue Mosque, in Istanbul, on Nov. 29, 2014. REUTERS/ Osservatore Romano


Humans as paradox

January 27, 2012

h/t Jimmy

Will Tibet see a “Facebook” demonstration in March?

March 7, 2011

On 15th March 1959, the Dalai Lama fled from Tibet, on foot from Lhasa, and reached India on 31st March. It was also last year on March 14th when Tibet saw the most wide-spread protests and demonstrations in over 20 years. Demonstrations also took place in 2008 and travel bans -especially of foreigners – to and in Tibet are a regular occurrence.


Now the Chinese Government is watching the developments in North Africa with a great deal of sympathy for the regimes which are being toppled. Foreign journalists, the internet, mobile networks and social media are being monitored very closely and any gathering is being quickly broken up throughout the country. Now the Chinese government has once again forbidden the visit of any foreigners to Tibet.

Chinese travel agents organizing trips to Tibet said Monday they have been ordered not to receive foreign visitors around the March 14 anniversary of a bloody anti-government riot in 2008.

Beijing Youth Travel Service saleswoman Li Jianyue said the order was conveyed verbally, as is often the case with official directives that the government does not wish to defend or explain. …. Tourists from outside the country were banned entirely for more than a year following the 2008 riots in Lhasa that left at least 22 people dead and set off a wave of protests across Tibetan areas of western China.

China responded with a massive military crackdown in which Tibetan rights groups say nearly 140 Tibetans were killed. China blamed followers of Tibet’s exiled Buddhist leader the Dalai Lama for fomenting the disturbances, a charge the Buddhist leader denies.

Chinese officials announced plans to take a hard line with foreign journalists on Sunday, as Beijing braces against calls for Middle East-style popular protests.

Li Honghai, vice director of Beijing’s Foreign Affairs Office, said reporters must apply for government permission before gathering news within city centres, making explicit guidelines police began imposing more than a week ago.

Security crews have been closely watching journalists near sites in Beijing, Shanghai and other Chinese cities, where anonymous Internet postings have been calling for residents to gather in peaceful protest.

Onlookers, media and heavy security gathered at proposed protest sites on Sunday, although no demonstrations have appeared since the posting began appearing online three weeks ago.

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