Nearly a half century has passed since the Dalai Lama established a Tibetan government in exile, but the issue of where does Tibet stand in the eyes of China and the world continue to be an important issue. The Chinese government, despite its efforts to portray the Dalai Lama as a feudal lord continue to confront anger and violence from Tibetans. It announced a new holiday, “Serf Liberation Day” to signify the end of monk rule in Tibet. Yesterday, there were reports of violence in northwestern China and police arrested 93 monks from the monastery at Rabgya. In South Africa there is still anger among many human rights activists over denial of a visa to the Dalai Lama who was attempting to attend a peace conference.
The Chinese government insists there is no room for compromise with the Dalai Lama. Only one who lives in fantasy believes Tibetans can drive out the Chinese. It is time for a sensible compromise which allows return of the Dalai Lama, restrictions on the power of monks to revert back to their former control of society, and creation of freedom of religion. Time will tell if Tibetans seek to retain their belief in the rule of monks.