So, I’ve been reading about the Chinese-Tibetan conflict and have already learned two things that have surprised me, in fact, it’s the first two things I’ve read.
First, I’m surprised at the number of conflicts and wars that the Tibetan’s have fought in their history. Some of these conflicts began as early as 620, with the Emperor Gampo, then with Tridu Songtsän, and all the way up to 1904. I guess it shouldn’t have surprised me, but nonetheless, I had falsely assumed that Tibet had always been a peaceful nation.
Secondly, the relationship between Tibet and China is very long and complicated. I’ve seen relatively short websites that tend to simplify the conflict and others that are very intimidating. What have found out tonight is that it’s pretty easy for China to claim authority over Tibet. Tomorrow I’m going to read more about the Tibetan claims to sovereignty, but when you read about the treaties, the 3rd party nations that made treaties with Tibet through China, and the fact that there are over 56 unique ethnic groups in China that can claim independence if they wanted to.
This by no means justifies the recent violence of the Chinese government or the status of the Dahlia Lama, but rather, makes me realize that this issue isn’t as black and white as I once though.