[permaculture] Young Tibetans reject Dalai Lama's lead - CNN.com
Lawrence F. London, Jr.
lflj at intrex.net
Tue Mar 18 10:13:46 EDT 2008
(CNN) -- While the Dalai Lama is the spiritual leader of Tibet, many younger Tibetans do not follow him on a crucial
question -- whether Tibet should have genuine autonomy or independence from China.
Tibetan spiritual leader the Dalai Lama gestures during a press meeting in Dharamsala, India, on Sunday.
The young activists who have organized "Free Tibet" marches around the world demand independence for a homeland most of
them have never seen. Born in exile, they reject the Dalai Lama's "middle way" of seeking "meaningful autonomy" -- not
independence -- from China.
The youth activists also call for an international boycott of the Beijing Olympics, something the Dalai Lama does not do.
The Chinese government considers Tibet an autonomous province, but many Tibetans say it is autonomous in name only. The
Dalai Lama says the Chinese often treat Tibetans as second-class citizens in their own land. He argues that Tibetans
need full and genuine autonomy to protect their cultural heritage.
The Chinese government rejects international calls that it talk with the Dalai Lama, insisting he is a "separatist" and
that his "clique" masterminded protests that convulsed Tibet last week and have spread to three neighboring Chinese
Tenzin Tsundue, a 32-year-old Tibetan activist and writer, said the Dalai Lama's demand for authentic autonomy from
China was "wishful thinking."
In a 2005 interview published by the Tibet Society of South Africa, Tenzin said it was "highly unlikely" China would
ever make the changes called for by the Dalai Lama.
"Because the return of the Dalai Lama to Tibet would inspire and unite the Tibetans so powerfully, that there'd be a
revolution, and China can't have that happen," Tenzin said.
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