Times Colonist: April 2008 Archives
In the latest article filed to the Victoria Times Colonist, "Rising anger as Chinese feel under attack," I take a look at how far apart the pro-Tibet and pro-China sides are, and how this divide (and lack of understanding) has played into the anger surrounding CNN pundit Jack Cafferty's remarks:
On Tibet, both sides have completely different narratives. Westerners generally believe the Chinese military invaded sovereign territory in 1950, forced the Dalai Lama into exile, began a system of "cultural genocide" and eliminated religious freedom and human rights. To many westerners, this is black and white.
The Chinese see it in black and white too. They believe they liberated Tibet from a backward feudal system and have invested in economic development to lift many Tibetans from poverty. They also believe Tibet has historically been a part of Chinese territory and that foreigners have caused China endless suffering (the Opium Wars, annexation of Hong Kong, foreign settlements in Shanghai, Tianjin and elsewhere; burning and looting historical sites in Beijing).
And they believe that as China's one moment to shine -- the Olympics -- approaches, foreign powers are again trying to rip the country apart and keep it from succeeding.
China has a victim complex. Talk about severing part of its territory is like ripping open a still-bleeding wound.