The Dalai Lama is an honest man, a certain Western politician once said. Is that true? Let's look at the Dalai Lama's recent "appeal to the Chinese people" and find out.
In his appeal on March 28, the Dalai Lama said he can guarantee ethnic Han people "he has no intention to split Tibet from the country or cause a rift between the Han and Tibetan peoples".
On the contrary, he "has occasionally pursued a solution to the Tibet issue on the basis of lasting and mutual benefit between the Han and Tibetan groups".
"No matter how hard I worked to avoid separation of Tibetans from the one big family, some Chinese leaders still continue to bombard groundless censures and criticisms at me", he said.
Anyone without some knowledge of the history of Tibet or without studying the Dalai Lama's speeches over the past decades would possibly believe how much he has suffered unfair treatment, and how much he has harbored goodwill and sincerity in improving Han-Tibetan relations and worked for harmony between the two ethnic groups.
Now consider the recent violence in Lhasa, capital of Tibet, and regions beyond it.
It is not difficult to see that the beating, smashing, looting and burning by rioters were mainly targeted at either the Han or Hui ethnic groups.
The remarks that "Tibet has been integrated into the Han ethnic group", that "the fortune of Tibet has been plundered by the Han people", that "China has settled other ethnic groups to Tibet", that "the Chinese government has deliberately caused a rift in the Han and Tibetan people", and other such accusations that the Dalai Lama have spread are nothing but inflammatory lies aimed at causing ethnic friction.
The purpose was in fact to encourage ethnic minorities, including Tibetans, "to snatch more power and benefits" from the larger Han group.
In his March 28 appeal, the Dalai Lama also said he was firmly confident that "a lot of important issues including those related with Tibet, Xinjiang and Inner Mongolia can be resolved". The remarks indicate a new trend in the Dalai Lama's activities, that he has not only focused on "Tibet independence", but also shown "extra care" for the people of Xinjiang and Inner Mongolia. In the speech, the Dalai Lama exposed his attempt to "unite" with terrorist organizations such as "Xinjiang Independence" and "Inner Mongolia Independence", which have emerged in recent years, and form a "unified front" in the path to splitting with China.
The Dalai Lama's "efforts to pursue a solution to the Tibet issue on an enduring and mutually beneficial footing" have also been proven as sheer lies. In his "Five-Point Peace Plan", put forward in a United States Congress human rights panel in September 1987, and the "New Seven-Point Proposal" distributed to participants of the European Parliament in 1988, the Dalai Lama asserted that non-Tibetans should move out of Tibet.
Are these the Dalai Lama's so-called efforts to work for lasting mutual benefit for the Han and Tibetan ethnic groups?
A glimpse at the Dalai Lama's March 10 speech over the past decades will also easily uncover within his words his deep hatred toward the Han group, although he had used different wordings and angles to suit the international situation and China's clout in the international arena.
During the 1960s and 70s, "red Chinese" was one of the words the Dalai Lama used to lash out at the Han group, while in the 80s, he accused the Han people of "regarding Tibetans as slaves and lower-grade humans over the past three decades or longer". It is well known to all that it was the Dalai Lama and its government, then ruler of Tibet, that looked upon Tibetans as slaves and low-grade people.
In the notorious official 13-Article Code and 16-Article Code under the very rule of the Dalai Lama over Tibet, Tibetans were divided in different grades and ranks and the inequality of different humans was stipulated in the legal framework. Serfs were called "tools that can speak" during that period.
Compared with the old feudal serfdom, today's Tibet, however, has experienced vast improvements in all aspects since its 1959 democratic reform. But the Dalai Lama has tried to belittle the progress of Tibet by cooking up lies.
"It is not surprising that a deep distrust exists between Tibetans and the Chinese people and it won't disappear overnight," the Dalai Lama said in a statement when he was in the US in 1998.
In China, both the central government and the government of the Tibet autonomous region follow an important guiding principle of ethnic relations - the Han people cannot be set apart from the Tibetan people and the Tibetan people cannot be set apart from the Han people. All ethnic minorities cannot be separated from each other. The ethnic harmony of Tibet benefits from this principle, so does the development of Tibet.
A Tibetan writer who attacked the Han people with harsh words in her articles was also highly praised by the Dalai Lama. In doing so, is he again making efforts to promote unity between the Han and Tibetan people or is he inciting ethnic hatred?
But why has the Dalai Lama stirred up conflict between the Han and Tibetan people? Since the establishment of the Tibet autonomous region, the central government has adopted a national policy to aid Tibet - by pouring huge amounts of funds and manpower into the region. In the past five years, government aid and subsidies to Tibet amounted to 95 billion yuan ($13.5 billion), twice that of the previous five years. Since 2001, government enterprises and ministries have also participated in the effort with financial support worth 6.7 billion yuan. Together, they have initiated 2,876 projects and sent 2,479 officials to aid Tibet's development.
The development of Tibet relies on the support of people from all ethnic groups, including the Han. The Tibetan people today live in a big family united by friendship and harmony. Many Tibetans say they are now enjoying the best times in the history of the development of Tibet.
Such a harmonious, happy and serene situation in Tibet is what the Dalai clique has long been worried about, because it means it will lose the opportunity to achieve "Tibet independence" and lose public support of their secessionist activities. It is not difficult to understand why the Dalai Lama wants to exploit the recent violence and create ethnic conflict.
The Dalai Lama is very good at disguising himself. He fabricates lies to deceive and mislead people who do not know much about Tibet. However, it is easy for us to expose his political lies and deceptive propaganda when we look at his behavior, statements and the real situation of Tibet. Why would an increasing number of well-known businessmen, scholars and political leaders abroad otherwise consider the Dalai Lama a "political monk"?
Ulterior motives are found behind lies. The recent violence by the Dalai Lama clique is meant to achieve "Tibet independence" in the long term, and to pressure the Chinese government by disrupting the Beijing Olympics in the mid-term.
Its immediate goal is to make the "Tibet issue", marginalized in the international community, a hot issue. To that end, the clique has not hesitated to beat, smash, loot and burn, at the expense of the happy and peaceful lives of the Tibetan people and at the cost of innocent lives, including an eight-month-old baby.
From all these, it is apparent that we have absolutely no reason to believe that the Dalai Lama, a so-called peace-lover and advocate of non-violence, is an honest man.
The author holds a PhD and is with the Central University for Nationalities
(China Daily 04/03/2008 page8)