Sunday, January 1, 2012

The Fate of Tibet

Almost a decade ago, I happen to walk into  a Tibetan  bookstore in Kathmandu. My friend Johnny had an inkling of my interest in books and asked me to pick one that I like and he would pay for it. My eyes fell on title "The Fate of Tibet: When The Big Insect Eat The Small Insect"by Claude Arpi. I have shelved the book since then to gather dust. Only a month or so ago I took out  the book , dust it off and urged myself to read it.  For that way,  I will at least pay back the kindness of my friend and his generous investment would earn its dividend. It was a great choice. One of my best thing I have done in 2011. This meticulously well researched book enriched me with important historical facts and figures. It has opened the door to a vast knowledge of treasure house.

Reading  The Fate of Tibet has piqued my interest on Tibetan history. Author Claude Arpi has done a fantastic research on the Tibetan history and the circumstance that led to the downfall of Tibet nationhood. It made me appreciate the intensity and importance of researched works.  I feel like walked into a great repository of knowledge house, where I am charmed by the author's insights on the Tibet's historical events.
History will repeat itself, and to prepare for the future we should know the past. This book is a must read for all Tibetan and Tibetan supporters.  I have learned the follies and foibles of Tibetan people in dealing with Chinese and their internal management.

The Tibetan  history could have taken a different path, if  our ancestors and aristocrats could view things in a broader prospective, if they could be little more farsighted. If they realized the importance of Tibet's relation with international communities, if more Tibetans were sent to England for modern education, and if Tibetan themselves earned a seat in the UN. Along with this there are many external factors, that has paved the way for Chinese aggression in Tibet. India's weak position and Nehru's fatal flaw on India's Tibet policy and Nehru's trust on the Chinese have eventually broken his heart and the heart of  six million Tibetan. Tibetan  history shows the decision of few individual leaders had far reaching consequences on Asia's geopolitical positions.

Despite of all the wonderful analysis of the historical events and the critical presentation of the events leading from 1947 up to the fateful year 1959 in an objective and balanced approach, the book ended with a great optimistic tone.  It reiterate the strategic importance of  Tibet  as the "Key to peace in Asia lies on the roof of the world". and repeated Acharya Kripalani 's prophetic quote  "It is on the roof of the world that our friendship with China will flourish or flounder".

As a true support of justice, peace and truth  Alaude Arpi echoes the same hope and optimism for Tibet  as our the newly elected Prime Minister of Exile Tibetan government, the last sentence of the book reads "The World is going through a whirlwind of changes, what may look improbable or impossible today maybe a reality tomorrow". This is the hope that all Tibetan clinging to, and this hope keeps the Tibetan spirit  in and outside strong. 

I am very thankful to my friend Johnny for his friendship and for this wonderful book that he got for me. 

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