By Pasang Tsering (New York, USA)
On February 27, 2009, following the prohibition of Kirti monks from observing the Monlam Festival by local authorities, a young monk in his mid-twenties named Tapey took to the street raising home-made Tibetan national flag centered with the portrait of the Dalai Lama. As he reached the crossroads, he doused himself with oil, set himself alight, and began to chant slogans against the repressive Chinese policies in Tibet. Immediately, Chinese police personnel stationed nearby opened fire, and he fell down on the spot. They immediately took him away. Even to this date, his whereabouts are unknown.
Now the question is: “Is the game over?”
“NO! A big NO.”
In fact, the cowardly act of the Chinese police in firing at an innocent Tibetan, thereby adding insult to injury spread out ripples of anger and resentment across the length and breadth of Tibet. After Tapey, over 70 Tibetans have
self-immolated thus far, and it is continuously spreading like wildfire. Within the last week, seven Tibetans set themselves ablaze. Among them, five of the incidents took place on the same day on November 7.
Just recently, over 5,000 Tibetan students took to the streets in Rebkong region of eastern Tibet calling for freedom in Tibet, and return of the Dalai Lama. There is not even a scintilla of doubt that these self-immolations and mass demonstrations will be met with batons and bullets, but this reckless approach will further exacerbate the situation with ever-increasing self-immolations and mass demonstrations. As Mao Zedong once said, “Where there is repression, there will be revolt.”
How long can China continue to repress Tibet?
Ever since the rise of self-immolations in Tibet, the world has almost turned a blind eye. Nevertheless, Tibet continues to burn.
This movement — the movement that is swirling in Tibet — is unique and powerful. This movement is unique because it is not about seeking Chinese empathy or even international sympathy or media coverage, but it is rather about Tibetan people choosing to redefine their own course of history. This movement is powerful because Tibetan people from all walks of life are determined to challenge the draconian Communist regime and reclaim their freedom and independence once and for all.
After over a half-century of Chinese occupation, Tibetan people in Tibet are now convinced that they cannot live under the authoritarian Chinese regime, and they also know the fact that the death of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) is inevitable. On the other hand, the Tibetan spirit and struggle are growing stronger and stronger, and it is gaining momentum.
Now that we have gone too far, we cannot afford to turn back now. Our long walk to freedom is not so long. Let's move forward.
This is the beginning of the end — the end of CCP.