BUDDHA STUNNED – SUNNING OF THE BUDDHA IN OCCUPIED TIBET
Buddha “Stunned” by Darkness while Tibetans celebrate “Sunning of the Buddha” ceremony in occupied Tibet. The Darkness of Occupation prevails in Tibet for The Red Dragon swallowed the Sun.
YOGURT FESTIVAL STARTS IN TIBET
Photo shows the scene of the traditional “sunning of the Buddha” ceremony at Drepung Monastery in Lhasa, Tibet, Aug 11, 2018. Celebrations for the traditional Shoton Festival, or Yogurt Festival, began in Lhasa on Saturday. This year’s event will feature the traditional “sunning of the Buddha” ceremonies, with huge Thangka paintings bearing the image of the Buddha displayed on the hillsides near the Drepung and Sera monasteries, as well as Tibetan opera performances, horse riding performances and an ethnic costume show. [Photo/Xinhua]
Celebrations for the traditional Shoton Festival, or Yogurt Festival, began in Lhasa, on Saturday.
This year’s event will feature the traditional “sunning of the Buddha” ceremonies, with huge Thangka paintings bearing the image of the Buddha displayed on the hillsides near the Drepung and Sera monasteries, as well as Tibetan opera performances, horse riding performances and an ethnic costume show.
“My family and I arrived here at 4 am, and we are heading to Sera Monastery to watch the Thangka painting after paying tribute here,” said Soinam Doje, a 71-year-old herder from Maizhokunggar county, while standing in front of the Drepung Monastery in Lhasa.
The festival will last for one week from Aug 11 to 17.
Shoton Festival, which literally means “yogurt banquet festival,” is one of the most important festivals for Tibetans.
It dates back to the 11th century when it began as a religious ceremony for local residents to offer yogurt to monks finishing their meditation retreats.
TIBETAN NATIONAL SECURITY PLAN – NEGOTIATE WITH A TYRANT FOR PEACE
In the absence of Tibetan National Security Plan, Tibetans are left with no choice. To keep their mortal existence, the Tibetan people may have to negotiate with a Tyrant for Peace.
DALAI LAMA SAYS TIBETANS NOT ASKING FOR INDEPENDENCE, CAN LIVE WITH CHINA
Tibetan spiritual leader the Dalai Lama courted controversy by stating that Tibet is ready to be part of China provided Beijing agrees to guarantee certain rights.
Tibetan spiritual leader the Dalai Lama addresses during “Thank You Karnataka” an event to mark the 60th year of Tibetan arrival to India, in Bengaluru on Aug 10, 2018. (Photo: IANS)
Two days after he triggered a major controversy by praising Muhammed Ali Jinnah over Jawaharlal Nehru, Tibetan spiritual leader the Dalai Lama stoked a political flame by stating that Tibet is ready to be part of China provided Beijing agrees to guarantee certain rights.
Speaking at an event organized by the Central Tibetan Administration (CTA) in Bengaluru, the Dalai Lama said, “Tibetans are not asking for independence. We are okay with remaining with the People’s Republic of China, provided we have full rights to preserve our culture.”
At the “Thank You Karnataka” event, the 83-year-old Nobel Peace laureate said, “Several of Chinese citizens practicing Buddhism are keen on Tibetan Buddhism as it is considered scientific.”
Only two days ago, the 14th Dalai Lama enraged many by saying that India would not have been partitioned had Pakistan’s founding father Muhammed Ali Jinnah become the Prime Minister instead of Jawaharlal Nehru.
During an interaction with students in Goa, the Dalai Lama said, “Mahatma Gandhi wanted to give the prime ministership to (Mohammad Ali) Jinnah. But Nehru refused. He was self-centered. He said, ‘I wanted to be Prime Minister’. India and Pakistan would have been united (had Jinnah been made Prime Minister at the time). Pandit Nehru was wise and experienced. But mistakes do happen.”
As his remarks triggered outrage, the Dalai Lama on Thursday tendered an apology. “My statement has created controversy, I apologize if I said something wrong,” he said.
“I had a close relationship with Nehru, who suggested having separate schools to preserve the Tibetan thought. He (Nehru) supported the Tibetans’ cause,” the 14th Dalai Lama said.
Born in Taktser hamlet in northeastern Tibet, the Dalai Lama was recognized at the age of two as the reincarnation of the 13th Dalai Lama, Thubten Gyatso. He fled to India from Tibet after a failed uprising against the Chinese rule in 1959.
China annexed Tibet in 1950, forcing thousands of Tibetans, including monks, to flee the mountain country and settle in India as refugees.
Since then, India has been home to over 100,000 Tibetans majorly settled in Karnataka, Himachal Pradesh among other states.
NATIONAL SECURITY BILL FOR TIBET – GOD HAS A PLAN FOR TIBET
On August 10, 1949, the US President Harry Truman signed The National Security Bill creating The Department of Defense to prepare the United States for Cold War as containment of Communist Expansionism requires a complex strategy.
Tibet declared full independence on February 13, 1913, taking advantage of the downfall of the Qing Dynasty or Ch’ing, or Manchu Chinese Empire during 1911-1912.
Tibet never had a National Security Plan or Security Strategy to defend its existence. During 1948-49, Tibet experienced the first major threat to existence with the spread of Communism to mainland China during World War II. It is no surprise to find Tibetans unprepared. In the absence of National Security Plan or Strategy, Tibet has become dependent upon The US National Security Bill and its execution by different US Administrations.
Tibetans are very fearful of Chinese people as Chinese ruled over Tibet with the utmost brutality, unlike the Mongols who had earlier ruled over Tibet for a long time. Tibetans are not concerned about the political ideology of Chinese people. Tibetans are simply afraid of the Chinese race known for their arrogance and unjustified use of power to subjugate innocent, undefended Tibetan people.
Living Tibetan Spirits trace their American Support from the period of Hump Airlift Operations from April 1942 to November 1945 in China Burma India Theater (CBI) of World War II. While the British fought against the Japanese invasion of Burma, the US worked to extend support to Nationalist forces engaged in bitter Civil War to oppose the Communist takeover of mainland China. Apart from the use of Tibetan airspace, some Hump Airlift Operations delivered weapons and ammunition to Tibet.
For both Tibet and India have no Security Plan or Strategy to defend Tibet from military conquest, they used the opportunity provided by the US President Harry Truman who signed The National Security Bill with plans to fight against Communist Expansionism.
Tibet, India, and the United States agreed to work together in support of the US Plan to contain the spread of Communism. But, as we have seen, it is not good enough. In fact, Communist China consolidated her tight grip over Tibet.
For countries of the World have no Security Plan for Tibet, I asked God for His Security Plan for Tibet. God referred me to the story of David and Goliath described in The Old Testament Book, 1 SAMUEL, Chapter 17. God assures me that it takes only a single ‘Sling Shot’ to utterly defeat Tibet’s Enemy. Beijing’s Downfall is just a ‘Stone’s Throw Away’. I call God’s Plan as ‘The Sling Shot’ Option for Tibet’s Security.
TRUMAN SIGNS NATIONAL SECURITY BILL – AUGUST 10, 1949
President Harry S. Truman signs the National Security Bill, which establishes the Department of Defense. As the Cold War heated up, the Department of Defense became the cornerstone of America’s military effort to contain the expansion of communism.
In 1947, the National Security Act established the Cabinet-level position of secretary of defense, which oversaw a rather unwieldy umbrella military-defense agency known as the National Military Establishment. The secretary of defense, however, was just one of a number of military-related cabinet positions, including the pre-existing secretaries for the Army, Navy, and Air Force. The growing complexity of the Cold War, a war in which the mishandled application of military force could lead to a world war of cataclysmic proportions, convinced U.S. officials that the 1947 act needed to be revised.
In 1949, the National Security Bill streamlined the defense agencies of the U.S. government. The 1949 bill replaced the National Military Establishment with the Department of Defense. The bill also removed the cabinet-level status of the secretaries of the Army, Navy, and Air Force, who would henceforth be subordinate to the Secretary of Defense. The first person to hold this position was Louis Johnson. Finally, the bill provided for the office of chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff in an effort to bring to end to the inter-service bickering that had characterized the Joint Chiefs in recent years. World War II hero General Omar Bradley was appointed the first Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.
The National Security Bill of 1949 was the result of the realization that more coordination and efficiency were needed for America’s military-defense bureaucracy, which had experienced tremendous growth during and after World War II. The Cold War was a new and dangerous kind of war for America, and the 1949 reorganization was recognition of the need for a different approach to U.S. defense.
Foreign Relations of the United States.
Status on Tibetan Operations.
On behalf of Living Tibetan Spirits, I can review the status on Tibetan Operations because of my lifetime affiliation with the military organization called Special Frontier Force. In my review of foreign relations of the United States, I conclude making amendments to the US policy which essentially aims to contain the threat of the spread of Communism to mainland China. 1. In the present times of ‘The Information Era’, there is no need for The Cold War Era of secret diplomacy and covert operations. Information is the most important tool to decide the outcome of the battle between Democracy and Communism. 2. The United States must seek Direct Dialogue with Tibet and Tibetan Institutions of Government and, 3. The United States must recognize Tibet as the third largest nation of Asia. This country because of its size and location is vital to the US interests to maintain The Balance of Power.
Foreign Relations of the United States, 1964-1968,
Volume XXX, China. Office of The Historian
342. Memorandum for the 303 Committee1
Washington, January 26, 1968.
- Status Report on Tibetan Operations
1. Summary—The CIA Tibetan program, parts of which were initiated in 1956 with the cognizance of the Committee, is based on U.S. Government commitments made to the Dalai Lama in 1951 and 1956. The program consists of political action, propaganda, paramilitary and intelligence operations, appropriately coordinated with and supported by [less than 1 line of source text not declassified]. This program was last reviewed and endorsed by the Committee on 20 February 1964. Current activities have been coordinated with and have the approval of [1 line of source text not declassified], Mr. William Bundy, Assistant Secretary of State for East Asian and Pacific Affairs, and Mr. Lucius Battle, Assistant Secretary of State for Near East and South Asian Affairs. 2. Program Objectives—In the political action and propaganda field, Tibetan program objectives are aimed toward lessening the influence and capabilities of the Chinese regime through support, among Tibetans and among foreign nations, of the concept of an autonomous Tibet under the leadership of the Dalai Lama; toward the creation of a capability for resistance against possible political developments inside Tibet; and the containment of Chinese Communist expansion—in pursuance of U.S. policy objectives stated initially in NSC 5913/1.2 [6 lines of source text not declassified] 3.
Appraisal of Current Programs—The cultural revolution in China expanded into Tibet bringing with it tremendous disturbances including the disruption of internal transportation, communication, travel and, to a significant extent, peace and order. Unfortunately, there are no apparent signs that the Tibetan people are capitalizing upon this internal chaos to seek further autonomy. Chinese security has shown no signs of deterioration [Page 740]and their control over Tibet, both political and military remains as pervasive as ever. Tibetan leadership has been purged, leaving the Chinese in direct control of the local administration, and a large number of underground assets have been uncovered and neutralized.
The Tibetan program has a potential for operational success based on a reservoir of trained agent material, the location in a safe-haven of the Dalai Lama together with the nucleus of new young leaders, widespread sympathy for the Tibetan cause, indications of a more positive Indian attitude toward the political aspirations of the Tibetan government, and evidence of considerable disarray among the Chinese stationed in Tibet.
a. At present, there are no radio teams remaining inside Tibet. Radio teams continue to function [less than 1 line of source text not declassified] although much of their information comes from the debriefing of traders and refugees. Singleton resident agent operations in Tibet, regarded as being the long-range replacement of the black radio teams, have not progressed as planned due to continued tightening of Chinese security in the border areas. Intelligence reporting from all sources deals primarily with military, political and construction activities along the Tibetan border. b. The Tibetan paramilitary unit, a remnant of the 1959 resistance force, is dispersed in 15 camps [less than 1 line of source text not declassified]. The Tibetan leadership views the force as the paramilitary arm of its “government-in-exile” [2 lines of source text not declassified]. Because of the diplomatic sensitivity occasioned by the presence of the Tibetan force [less than 1 line of source text not declassified], it has been enjoined from offensive action which might invite Chinese [less than 1 line of source text not declassified] retaliation. Joint efforts to disperse the force to other uninhabited areas [less than 1 line of source text not declassified] have not been successful because of Chinese [less than 1 line of source text not declassified] reaction or of difficulties in resupply. c. [1 line of source text not declassified] responsible for radio contact with and operational direction of the radio teams, the paramilitary resistance force, and the support mechanism [less than 1 line of source text not declassified] continue to serve their intended purpose with a minimum of problems. d. Bi-lateral CIA-Tibetan intelligence collection operations into Tibet, [less than 1 line of source text not declassified] have increased significantly, both in number and in value during the past few years. e. Activities designed to develop a dynamic political program [less than 1 line of source text not declassified] to weld the refugee communities into a cohesive whole under the leadership of the Dalai Lama and his brother, Gyalo Thondup, continue. These include: (1) The Geneva, New York and [less than 1 line of source text not declassified] “Tibet houses” continue in operation. The Geneva office serves as [Page 741]the coordinating point for the resettlement of some 500 Tibetan refugees in Switzerland and other European countries and maintains contact with the international agencies concerned with Tibetan relief. Although time has dimmed some of the effectiveness of its pleas, the New York office continues to lobby among the U.N. delegations for legal and moral support for the Tibetan cause, guided in their efforts by a sitting former U.S. delegate to the U.N. who is also a well-known international lawyer. [2 lines of source text not declassified] (2) The covert training program conducted in the U.S. under which some 250 Tibetans were trained, ended in November 1964. (3) Twenty selected Tibetan junior officers studied at Cornell University, over a three year period. Due to the Katzenbach strictures, this program was concluded in July 1967; CIA is considering a continuation of the program, on a limited scale, [less than 1 line of source text not declassified]. (4) The Tibetan organizational party, the Cho Kha Sum, (i.e. the Defense of Religion by the Three Regions: Kham, Amdo, and U-Tsang), which was established in India in April 1964 by Gyalo Thondup, now has an active press and publications arm. While the future potential of the party is still in question, the Tibetans are making an effort to mold it into an effective organization, aimed at halting a drift towards disunity among the refugees, developing a political consciousness and a political program with which to challenge the Communist efforts inside Tibet.
Significant Previous 303 Committee Approvals—
a. September 1958—initial endorsement of CIA covert support to Tibetan resistance; b. 20 May 1959—initial approval of covert support to the Dalai Lama; c. 14 February 1961—endorsed continuation of the covert program; d. 13 December 1962—approved training of Tibetan guerrilla force; e. 20 February 1964—reviewed and endorsed continuation of covert program; f. 9 April 1965—approved relocation of Tibetan paramilitary force; g. 8 July and 25 November 1966—endorsed the covert paramilitary program [1 line of source text not declassified].
These landmark reviews were interspersed with status reports and briefings of the Committee, in one period at monthly intervals. The basic decisions listed above in several instances were reviewed with Higher Authority.
5. Coordination— a. Department of State—Since the project’s inception, appropriate officials of the Department have approved various elements of the program. [Page 742]Department officers who have been briefed on aspects of this project include Elmer Falk and Clement J. Sobotka, Director and Deputy Director, respectively, of the Office of Refugee and Migration Affairs; Harald Jacobson, Director, Office of Asian Communist Affairs; William Gleysteen, Deputy Director, Office of U.N. Political Affairs; William Bundy, Assistant Secretary of State for East Asian and Pacific Affairs; and Lucius Battle, Assistant Secretary of State for Near East and South Asian Affairs. b. Ambassadors—The past and present Ambassadors to Nepal and India have approved the Tibetan program, [1 line of source text not declassified]. c. [2–1/2 lines of source text not declassified] 6. Projected and Planned Programs— a. On the political front during 1967, the Dalai Lama began what is hoped will be a long-range program of projecting himself and Tibetan affairs on an international basis. He is contemplating visits to Ceylon, Burma, and Cambodia, having visited Japan and Thailand in late 1967. Invitations have also been extended from several European countries having active Tibetan refugee programs or interests. b. Gyalo Thondup, acting for the Tibetan partnership in our liaison with the Indians, has proposed the establishment of a Tibetan Operations Center to represent Tibetan interests [less than 1 line of source text not declassified]. This Tibetan center would conceivably provide greater efficiency in the Tibetan handling of existing operations and in the relegation of operational tasks to Tibetan assets. [1 line of source text not declassified] c. Some elements of the basic covert program remain to be implemented. They include the deployment of landline wiretap teams to selected priority targets within Tibet; the activation of special refugee debriefing teams; a census of some 70,000 Tibetan refugees spread throughout India and its neighboring countries which may locate additional operational assets; and the resupply of arms and ammunition to the Mustang force. 7. Costs—At the time of the February 1964 review by the Committee, the projected annual cost for all Tibetan operations was $1,735,000. With the discontinuation of the training programs in the U.S., [1 line of source text not declassified] a reduction of $570,000 in this estimate for FY68 has been achieved. The remainder of $1,165,000 has been programmed in the CIA budget for FY68 for the activities described in this paper. Of this amount, $650,000 was approved by the 303 Committee on 25 November 1966 in its review of the [less than 1 line of source text not declassified].
- Source: Department of State, INR Historical Files, Tibet, 1967–1968. Secret; Eyes Only. The source text bears no drafting information. A March 4 memorandum from Battle to Bohlen describes it as a CIA memorandum. (Ibid.) It was discussed at a March 19 meeting of the 303 Committee. According to Peter Jessup’s memorandum for the record of the meeting, CIA representative James Critchfield stated that “achievements inside Tibet were minimal—outside more substantial.” He observed that “the Tibetans by nature did not appear to be congenitally inclined toward conspiratorial proficiency.” Jessup records no action by the 303 Committee at the meeting. (Johnson Library, National Security File, Intelligence File, 303 Committee)↩
The text of NSC 5913/1, approved September 25, 1959, is printed in Foreign Relations, 1958–1960, vol. XVI, pp. 133– 144. Also, see the record of the NSC discussion of NSC 5913 on September 17, 1959, ibid., pp. 116–127.↩
THE COLD WAR IN ASIA – LESSONS OF COVERT ACTION
The Cold War in Asia represents the security threat posed by the spread of Communism to mainland China. Because of my lifetime affiliation with the military organization called Special Frontier Force, I can review covert action in Tibet to draw some lessons.
In my analysis, the US, India, and Tibet lack intelligence capabilities to conduct a successful covert action in Tibet. In 1959, Tibet National Uprising failed for the CIA underestimated the enemy’s capabilities both in terms of intelligence and the use of military power to crush civilian uprising or rebellion. In 1962, the CIA again failed to know the enemy’s war preparation and the attack across the Himalayan Frontier came as a rude surprise.
I directly ask the CIA to improve its intelligence capabilities to respond to the security challenge posed by the spread of Communism to mainland China. The United States fought wars in Korea and Vietnam without testing the enemy’s military capabilities. To fight against the enemy, the United States must recognize the face of the enemy. No covert action will succeed without knowing your enemy.
LESSONS OF COVERT ACTION IN TIBET (1950-1972) –
SMALL WARS JOURNAL
Lessons of Covert Action in Tibet (1950-1972)
Between 1950 and 1972, the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), in close cooperation with the Departments of State (DoS) and Defense (DoD), conducted a comprehensive covert action campaign in support of Tibetan resistance movements fighting against Communist Chinese occupation of their homeland. The campaign consisted of “political action, propaganda, paramilitary, and intelligence operations” intended to internally weaken and undermine the expansionist ambitions of the People’s Republic of China (PRC).[i] Following the October 1950 invasion of Tibet by the PRC, the CIA’s Special Activities Division (SAD) inserted teams into Tibet to train, advise, and assist Tibetans who were already fighting the Communists.[ii]
A number of Tibetan resistance fighters were specially selected and exfiltrated to the Pacific island of Saipan and Camp Hale in Colorado to undergo training in demolitions, clandestine communication, and other critical skills.[iii] Operating out of neighboring Nepal and India, SAD-directed teams of Tibetan rebels waged a ceaseless campaign against the Chinese that tied down significant PRC troop strength, strengthened international opposition to Chinese atrocities against Tibetans, and prevented the PRC from effectively pursuing its regional ambitions in South Asia to further spread its communist ideology.[iv] The CIA continued to support the Tibetan resistance until 1972 when U.S. President Richard Nixon changed course and decided to normalize relations with the PRC.[v]
Though the CIA’s Tibetan covert action campaign never successfully ousted the Chinese Communists, the campaign was quite successful in accomplishing the U.S.’s limited objectives. Through its covert action campaign, the U.S. sought to internally weaken the PRC through sustained attrition and distraction in order to prevent the Chinese from spreading their brand of communism across South Asia – specifically India.[vi] The CIA’s covert action campaign succeeded in three ways: it depleted the PRC’s already limited resources, which further weakened the state; it undermined the PRC’s international standing and limited its regional influence, and it prevented the expansion of the PRC’s borders.[vii]
Specifically, the CIA’s covert action campaign forced the PRC to commit vast numbers of troops and resources to pacify Tibet, which delayed a number of other critical initiatives that the young communist state sought to pursue. In 1959, the CIA estimated that the PRC had over 60,000 soldiers deployed just to subjugate Tibet, a force that required 256 tons of supplies daily to sustain. [viii] The PRC, which had just successfully ended its own civil war in 1949, saw its military stretched incredibly thin by its Tibetan occupation. This strain likely undermined the ability of the Chinese government in Beijing to effectively consolidate full control over the expansive country, further encumbering efforts to pursue its strategic ambitions.
Adding to the PRC’s frustrations was the widespread international condemnation resulting from the increasingly brutal pacification campaign that China felt compelled to undertake to try and quell the Tibetan rebellion.[ix] Much of this international focus was (and still is) cultivated by Tenzin Gyatso, the 14thDalai Lama and the spiritual leader of the majority of Tibet’s Buddhists. During a particularly violent 1959 revolt, The Dalai Lama fled from Tibet with over 100,000 of his followers, escaping with the help of the CIA to India where he established a Tibetan “government in exile”.[x] This government has been a constant thorn in the PRC’s side, with the Dalai Lama and his disciples incessantly lobbying the international community for Tibetan rights and autonomy from China.[xi] The sustained focus on Chinese atrocities against the Tibetans significantly undermined the PRC’s regional standing and efforts to strengthen ties with neighbors.
Finally, the CIA’s covert action campaign was successful in its primary objective of preventing the spread of communism across South Asia. Mao Tsetung, the chairman of the PRC’s Communist Party, was convinced during an extended stay in the Soviet Union between 1949 and 1950 to undertake the leadership role in “liberating” Asia for the cause of global communism.[xii] However, the PRC’s inability to fully control Tibet, largely due to the CIA’s covert action campaign that sustained indigenous resistance, denied China the use of key terrain that might have enabled military action against India or even the Middle East.[xiii] The covert action campaign thus protected the U.S. or its allies from the need to fight a major land conflict in South Asia against the military forces of the PRC.
The CIA achieved a significant victory for the U.S. with a minimal commitment of American resources: total expenditures per year amounted to roughly $1.7 million dollars.[xiv] However, it is important to note that the CIA’s covert action campaign cost tens of thousands of Tibetans their lives, and the supported resistance encouraged violent oppression from the Chinese occupiers. Further, when relations between the U.S. and China normalized under President Nixon, many Tibetans and even a few CIA SAD officers saw the abrupt decision in 1972 to cease support of the Tibetan resistance as tantamount to betrayal.[xv] The Dalai Lama described this sentiment with some bitterness in a 1998 interview, saying that the CIA had aided his cause, “not because they cared about Tibetan independence, but as part of their worldwide efforts to destabilize all Communist governments.”[xvi] Despite such accusations of duplicity, the CIA achieved its stated objectives through this covert action campaign.
The CIA’s efforts in Tibet were successful because the objectives of the covert action campaign were reasonably limited and achievable with the resources available. While the Tibetans themselves may have nursed illusions of eventually driving all Chinese occupiers from their homeland, it is clear from the available records that the CIA and the political leadership in Washington were content to simply destabilize China and frustrate the Communists’ designs to spread their ideology throughout Asia.[xvii] Once the political winds changed and relations started to improve between the U.S. and China, the continuation of support to the Tibetan resistance was no longer in the best interests of the U.S. The U.S. successfully achieved its objectives through this covert action campaign because those objectives were achievable without escalating into a wider conflict.
Other successful covert actions, such as the SAD-spearheaded coups that toppled the governments of Mohammed Mossadegh of Iran in 1953[xviii] and Jacobo Arbenz of Guatemala in 1954[xix] are thought by historians to have given the CIA and subsequent U.S presidents an overly optimistic opinion of the potential for covert action to achieve outsized objectives. This overconfidence likely led to the 1961 “Bay of Pigs” invasion in Cuba, which was a tremendous failure because its objectives were overly ambitious and unachievable given the limited resources that the U.S. committed.[xx] Rather than be greeted as liberators and reinforced by masses of Cubans dissidents flocking to their cause, the US-backed Cuban rebel forces were quickly overwhelmed. The most important lesson that covert action practitioners and policymakers who consider the use of covert action should take from the highly effective campaign in Tibet is that such campaigns must be reasonably limited in their objectives to maximize the chances of success.
[i] “Memorandum for the 303 Committee,” U.S. Department of State Office of the Historian, January 28, 1968, accessed October 10, 2017, https://history.state.gov/historicaldocuments/frus1964-68v30/d342.
[ii] Kenneth Conboy and James Morrison, The CIA’s Secret War in Tibet, The University Press of Kansas, 2002.
[iii] John Roberts and Elizabeth Roberts, Freeing Tibet: 50 Years of Struggle, Resilience, and Hope, (New York, AMACOM Books, 2009), 43-46.
[iv] Joe Bageant, “CIA’s Secret War in Tibet,” History.net, June 12, 2006, accessed October 10, 2017, http://www.historynet.com/cias-secret-war-in-tibet.htm.
[v] Jonathan Mirsky, “Tibet: The CIA’s Cancelled War,” The New York Review of Books, April 9, 2013, accessed October 10, 2017, http://www.nybooks.com/daily/2013/04/09/cias-cancelled-war-tibet/.
[vi] “Chinese Communist Motives in Invasion of Tibet,” Central Intelligence Agency, November 16, 1950, accessed October 10, 2017, https://www.cia.gov/library/readingroom/docs/CIA-RDP82-00457R006300270010-6.pdf.
[vii] “Memorandum for the 303 Committee,” U.S. Department of State Office of the Historian, January 28, 1968.
[viii] “Logistical Problems of the Tibetan Campaign,” Central Intelligence Agency, April 17, 1959, accessed October 10, 2017, https://www.cia.gov/library/readingroom/docs/CIA-RDP79T01049A001900130001-6.pdf.
[ix] “Tibet and China Background Paper,” Central Intelligence Agency, April 27, 1959, accessed October 10, 2017, 35-38, https://www.cia.gov/library/readingroom/docs/CIA-RDP82R00025R000100060022-5.pdf.
[xi] Michael Backman, “Behind Dalai Lama’s Holy Cloak,” The Age, May 23, 2007, accessed October 10, 2017, http://www.theage.com.au/news/business/behind-dalai-lamas-holy-cloak/2007/05/22/1179601410290.html.
[xii] “Chinese Communist Motives in Invasion of Tibet,” Central Intelligence Agency, November 16, 1950, accessed October 10, 2017, https://www.cia.gov/library/readingroom/docs/CIA-RDP82-00457R006300270010-6.pdf.
[xiii] “Resistance in Tibet,” Central Intelligence Agency, July 21, 1958, accessed October 11, 2017, https://www.cia.gov/library/readingroom/docs/CIA-RDP79-01006A000100090001-7.pdf.
[xiv] “Memorandum for the Special Group,” U.S. Department of State Office of the Historian, January 9, 1964, accessed October 10, 2017, https://history.state.gov/historicaldocuments/frus1964-68v30/d337.
[xv] Joe Bageant, “CIA’s Secret War in Tibet,” History.net, June 12, 2006, accessed October 10, 2017, http://www.historynet.com/cias-secret-war-in-tibet.htm.
[xvi] Jim Mann, “CIA Gave Aid to Tibetan Exiles in ’60s, Files Show,” Los Angeles Times, September 15, 1998, accessed October 10, 2017, http://articles.latimes.com/1998/sep/15/news/mn-22993.
[xvii] “Memorandum for the Special Group,” Department of State Office of the Historian, January 9, 1964.
[xviii] James Risen, “SECRETS OF HISTORY: The C.I.A. in Iran — A special report. How a Plot Convulsed Iran in ’53 (and in ’79),” The New York Times, April 16, 2000, accessed October 10, 2017, http://www.nytimes.com/2000/04/16/world/secrets-history-cia-iran-special-report-plot-convulsed-iran-53-79.html?pagewanted=all.
[xix] Nick Cullather, Secret History: The CIA’s Classified Account of Its Operations in Guatemala, 1952–1954, (Stanford University Press: 1999).
[xx] Grayston Lynch, Decision for Disaster: Betrayal at the Bay of Pigs, (Dulles, VA: Potomac Books, 2000).
TIBETAN RESISTANCE MOVEMENT
FAILED BECAUSE OF COVERT ACTIONS
In my analysis, American actions in support of the Tibetan Resistance Movement failed because of the choice of covert operations to accomplish their mission. On behalf of Living Tibetan Spirits, I demand direct dialogue between the US and Tibet after due recognition of Tibetan Government-in-Exile as the sole representative of Tibetan people.
LESSONS OF COVERT ACTION IN
TIBET (1950-1972) –
Small Wars Journal
TIBET AWARENESS – LIVING TIBETAN SPIRITS WELCOME RECIPROCAL ACCESS TO TIBET ACT
To promote Tibet Awareness, Living Tibetan Spirits welcome The Reciprocal Access to Tibet Act. Transparency and Public Accountability are important to re-establish Tibet Equilibrium.
SPECIAL FRONTIER FORCE
US HOUSE JUDICIARY COMMITTEE UNANIMOUSLY APPROVES RECIPROCAL ACCESS TO TIBET ACT – TIBET POST INTERNATIONAL
US House Judiciary Committee Chairman Bob Goodlatte delivering his statement in Washington DC, USA, on July 25, 2018. Markup of H.R. 1872, the “Reciprocal Access to Tibet Act of 2017”. Photo: Youtube Screenshot
Washington, D.C. — The Reciprocal Access to Tibet Act took a big step forward when the House Judiciary Committee approved the bill unanimously. The next step is for the act to move to the floor of the House of Representatives.
House Judiciary Committee Chairman Bob Goodlatte (R-Va.) Wednesday delivered the following statement during the Committee’s markup of the Reciprocal Access to Tibet Act of 2017 (H.R. 1872). The Committee approved this bill by voice vote”.
Chairman Goodlatte in his statement said, “H.R. 1872, the Reciprocal Access to Tibet Act of 2017, addresses an issue of longstanding and increasing concern regarding China’s treatment of Tibetans living in the Tibetan Autonomous Region (TAR) and other Tibetan areas controlled by China.”
“In 1950, the Chinese People’s Liberation Army went into Tibet [Central Tibet] in order to establish control over the region. In the years since then, as noted by the U.S. Department of State, the Chinese Government “has imposed severe restrictions on Tibetans’ ability to exercise their human rights and fundamental freedoms,” the Committee said in a press release issued on July 25, 2018.
“Such restrictions occur with regard to religious practices, freedom to travel, freedom to practice cultural and language preferences, and other aspects of life,” Goodlatte said.
“In addition, the Chinese government routinely engages in human rights abuses, such as extrajudicial killings, torture, and arbitrary arrests,” Goodlatte added by saying: “In fact, the Chinese government’s actions are so severe that in recent years, over 150 Tibetans have self-immolated in a last ditch effort to get the rest of the world to focus on the problem.”
“In order to prevent documentation of the religious freedom restrictions and other human rights abuses to the outside world, the Government of China has severely limited access by foreign nationals to the Tibetan regions,” Goodlatte added to the statement.
“Such limitations prevent access to U.S. officials seeking diplomatic and consular access, journalists, human rights workers, and even tourists. When rare access is granted, activities are closely monitored by the PRC and information dissemination is restricted,” Goodlatte further said.
The statement quoted the US-based advocacy group for Tibet, ICT President Matteo Mecacci, who noted in a recent report that the Chinese government is trying to restrict access to Tibet to a degree that exceeds even North Korea, where at least some foreign media are based. By contrast, international journalists, diplomats and civilians are almost always denied access to Tibet, a historically independent nation that China has occupied for nearly 70 years and rules with an iron fist.
“In fact, travel by Chinese nationals, including those with direct and substantial involvement in the formulation of policies to restrict access to Tibet, is routinely allowed by governments all over the world, including the United States,” the Committee Chairman stressed.
According to the US House Judiciary Committee Chairman, “During FY 2017, for instance, nearly 1.5 million tourist visas were issued by the United States to Chinese nationals. And those visas are valid for ten years – during which the Chinese nationals can visit the U.S. multiple times. During that same period, the United States issued nearly 4,500 diplomatic visas to Chinese officials.”
H.R. 1872 prohibits an individual who is “substantially involved in the formulation or execution of policies related to access for foreigners to Tibetan areas” from being granted a U.S. visa if the Secretary determines that;
1) the requirement for specific official permission for foreigners to enter the Tibetan Autonomous Region remains in effect; or
2) such requirement has been replaced by a regulation that has a similar effect and requires foreign travelers to gain a level of permission to enter the Tibet Autonomous Region that is not required for travel to other provinces in China; and
3) restrictions on travel by officials, journalists, and citizens of the United States to areas designated as ‘Tibetan Autonomous’ in the provinces of Sichuan, Qinghai, Yunnan, and Gansu of China are greater than any restrictions on travel by such officials and citizens to areas in such provinces that are not so designated.
“Any visa currently held by such individuals will be revoked under the bill,” the Committee said, adding: “The bill then requires the State Department to report annually to the House and Senate Judiciary Committees as well as the House Foreign Affairs Committee and the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, on the number of actions taken regarding visas pursuant to the legislation.”
The Chairman also quoted the State Department as saying, “in recent years there have been very small inroads made with regard to access to the Tibetan areas. And while some have expressed the concern that moving this bill could make the Chinese Government roll back some of those inroads, moving this bill is the right thing to do. It is time that Congress take a stand with regard to access by foreign nationals to the Tibetan regions.”
“I want to thank Congressman McGovern for his work on this issue and I urge my colleagues to support the bill. I yield back the balance of my time,” says Chairman Goodlatte.
One by one, other committee members spoke up at this morning’s hearing in support of the bipartisan legislation, which seeks to ensure that Americans are given the same access to Tibet that Chinese citizens have to the United States.
Under the Reciprocal Access to Tibet Act, Chinese officials responsible for discriminating against Americans who try to enter Tibet would be banned from entering the United States.
“If Chinese officials, journalists and other citizens are able to travel freely in this country, it’s only fair that their American counterparts are able to do the same,” Rep. Pramila Jayapal (D-Wash.) said.
Rep. Jerrold Nadler (D-N.Y.), ranking member of the Committee, said that the bill is important because it can help expose human rights violations taking place in Tibet.
“For Tibetans, restricted access to the region leaves them in virtual isolation from the rest of the world,” Nadler said, “while also precluding international witnesses to the Chinese government’s continuous violations of the Tibetans’ human rights,” which include arbitrary arrests, torture, heightened surveillance and severe restrictions on religious freedom.
Rep. Steve Chabot (R-Ohio) warned that “China is seeking to undermine the rules-based international order virtually every day.” Although China tries to keep the rest of the world out of Tibet, the Chinese government is sending a growing number of state delegations to Western countries and creating new state-controlled media outlets in capitals around the globe, including Washington D.C.
Rep. Zoe Lofgren (D.-Calif.) said the Reciprocal Access to Tibet Act would help make sure China’s relationship with the U.S. is fair and reciprocal.
The bill, which was introduced by Reps. Jim McGovern (D-Mass.) and Randy Hultgren (R-Ill.), now has more than 50 co-sponsors in the House. A companion bill was also introduced in the Senate by Sen. Rubio (R. – Fl.) and Sen. Baldwin (D. Wis.), and now has 8 co-sponsors.
In addition, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo recently expressed support for reciprocal access to Tibet for Americans in his statements to the House and Senate Foreign Affairs Committees.
The totalitarian regime in Communist China began their invasion of Tibet in 1949, reaching complete occupation of the country in 1959. Since that time, more than 1.2 million people, 20% of the nation’s population of six million, have died as a direct result of China’s invasion and occupation. In addition, over 99% of Tibet’s six thousand religious monasteries, temples, and shrines, have been looted or decimated resulting in the destruction of hundreds of thousands of sacred Buddhist scriptures.