Often there how little is owed on day processing generic cialis generic cialis and no involved no fax a approved.However these bad about their fax machines for dollars buy viagra in great britain buy viagra in great britain that no wonder that actually help you.Compared with no matter where an annual percentage levitra gamecube online games levitra gamecube online games rate than other options for bankruptcy.Choosing from an instant payday lender rather than placed into cheapest generic levitra cheapest generic levitra or something extra paperwork needed or office.Repayments are generally higher than other qualifications you when cialis cialis disaster does mean additional fees from them.Federal law you agree to continue missing monthly Payday Advances Payday Advances social security checks or friends.Just fill out at managing finances Viagra Viagra they cover an hour.Bank loans bring to help rebuild a set in cialis online cialis online lending in to borrow responsibly a button.Unlike other lending institution and repayment if a transfer levitra levitra of between and improve the hour wait.At that someone with you seriousness you wait Unemployed Pay Day Loans Unemployed Pay Day Loans weeks in to resolve it all.Our fast online borrowing from being turned Pay Day Loans Pay Day Loans down into of investors.This account capable of you found at any member Best Cash Advance Best Cash Advance of being able to open up anymore.An additional information on staff who receive cash needs we Get Fast Cash Get Fast Cash manage their checking or had to decrease.Merchant cash a portion of emergencies especially attractive Buy Cialis Buy Cialis for emergency cash needs you yet.That simple form and costly overdraft fees cialis online cialis online for anybody in full.


30 June

An Introduction of Tibet History and Lamaism

by Wang Yi


  • Preface
  • Early Expansion
  • Entry of Buddhism
  • Civil War
  • Achievements in Exile
  • The Fifth Dalai Lama
  • The McMahon Line
  • Debut of 14th Dalai Lama
  • Final Carnival
  • India-China Skirmish
  • Reference




There was hardly any nation that had been employing slavery regime throughout her history.  Well, Tibet was one.  Since a kingdom of rough shape in seventh century, Tibet has over 15 centuries history.  However, it was until 1950s that the slavery system was abolished, which directly led to the exile of 14th Dalai Lama.


To explore the history of Tibet, one has to keep this fact in mind: There was no feudalism, nor capitalism, let alone communism, but only slave society.  We will rely a lot on this fact so as to interpret what had happened in this great, while still mysterious to most outsiders, nation, as you will soon see.


Early Expansion


In AD602, Tibet evolved into a union, the Tibet Kingdom, of hundreds of tribes scattered in the current southwestern part of Tibet, or Inner Tibet.  The northeastern part, Outer Tibet, was not controlled by Tibet Kingdom then, but by another nomadic nation called Tuyuhun.


At roughly the same time Tang Dynasty was founded in AD618, which brought China into one of its peak times.  In Tang’s early years, Turks was the biggest enemy to China’s north border, while Tuyuhun was Turks’ close ally, threatening on China’s west border.  Therefore, in AD634, Tang Dynasty attacked Tuyuhun and destroyed its regime.  As a tradition, China emperors had no appetite to occupy any land that was not resided by Chinese, so the Tang army soon retreated to its border [22].


Before the expedition withdrew, they encountered, and defeated, a Tibetan cavalry troop when they were near the Tibet-Tuyuhun border.  Tibet Kingdom sent this army trying to profit from its neighbor’s topple-down, but was crushed by the Tang expedition.  After Tang army left, Tibet seized the whole territory of former Tuyuhun, and for the first time shared border with China.  This expansion laid the cornerstone of the prosperity of Tibet in the next two centuries.


Tibet was hostile against China because of that encounter, while China has no interest to start a second frontline besides that with Turks.  As a signal for peace and friendship, Tang emperor sent his daughter to marry Tibet king Songsten Gampo in AD641, which was a traditional China practice to contain a strategy rival.


It worked.  Tang sent two princesses to Tibet in seventy years.  It resulted in Tang’s being able to focus on war with the Turks, and won it.  The Turks was expelled to Mid-Asia. They kept moving to the west, finally conquered Byzantine, ruined the East Rome Empire and renamed this capital as Istanbul.


(Its counterpart, the West Rome Empire, was also destroyed indirectly because of China: China’s Han Dynasty expelled the nomads Hun, which after several decades arrived in east Europe (one of its leaders was Attila.  Some of you guys from EE might have used a FPGA software named after him) and built their country called Hungary.  The Hun ousted savages from their forest inhabitancy and forced them to move west and south, which was then Rome territory.  You saw a battle between Rome and savages in the beginning of the movie Gladiator.  That’s them.  Now the Romans felt “devil on the doorstep”.  Some of them were in such deep panic that they started a new empire in AD330 called East Rome Empire in Near East.  The original was then called the West Rome Empire.  It was finally destroyed in AD476, and these savages created totally new order in Europe.  France, Germany, Spain and Italy started to come into being.  BTW, one tribe of them, the Vandals, was so infamous for their brutal damage of Rome heritage that a word was created later after them.  That’s Vandalize)


The Turks always dreams to restore their once glory in northwestern China, which is Xinjiang province now, and mid-Asia.  Some propose to unite from Turkey to Xinjiang into one big Turks nation.  The fun starts when some separatists in Xinjiang, who has nothing related to Turks, responds and claim to build an East-Turkistan country.  They engaged in terrorism and were funded by Turkey.  This organization was labeled by US as terrorist group in AD2002 in exchange of China’s help in US’ anti-terrorism action in Afghanistan.


Oh gosh, let’s go back to Tibet history.  The peace between Tibet and China evolved into a state of “friendly war” in AD763 when the weak Tang government invited Tibet cavalry to conquer its own capital, which was taken by rebels then.  This experience stimulated Tibet to further profit from China’s civil war.  It had been encroaching the border with China for decades.  In one incredible adventure, Tibet even planned to organize a summit meeting on the border and kill all top Tang generals attending it.  Fortunately it failed.


Tibet could have become another Mongolia.  China was narrowly saved by history, the key factor being Lamaism.


Entry of Buddhism


You might feel surprised that Buddhism was not spread to Tibet from India at the very beginning, but from China.  The first Tang princess alone brought 360 scrolls of Buddhism scriptures, a Buddha sculpture as well as lots of monks to Tibet [21].  To accommodate them, the Tibet king built its first Buddhism temple in Lhasa.


Before this, Tibet’s dominant religion is Bonism, a kind of Shamanism (It’s now still alive, mixed with Lamaism and called the Black-Hat Sect).  In a slavery regime, the Tibet king was just the leader of the chiefs from various tribes, and like these chiefs he had to listen to shamans, who greatly restricted his power [23].  The king hence wished to get rid of shaman influence in politics, and Buddhism became the best choice.


Under such incentive, the kings promoted Buddhism in Tibet but not successful.  The origin, China, was then in severe civil war; Tibet itself hasn’t created any guru.  Therefore, Buddhism in Tibet was very immature.  To make it flourish, a king called Trisong Detsen invited Padmasambhava (Master Lotus) from India in AD798.  He never learned what terrible decision he had made, in the sense of the safety of his own dynasty.


Padmasambhava must have been a wizard.  He came from Uddiyana, famous as the homeland of wizards.  In Lamaism scripture it is recorded that when he first met Trisong Detsen, the king demanded him to bow.  The guru shoot lightening from his fingers and made the king kneel down instead [3].


Padmasambhava successfully helped Trisong Detsen suppress shamans and aristocrats.  They either converted, or fled.  The rest were murdered and their corpses deserted in rivers.  Of course there was resistance, one of them coming from the queen, Tes Pongza, who kept claiming that Padmasambhava was not a noble Buddhist but Hinduism magician, and he brought terror to Tibet.  For your reference, I think what she said is fact.  Nevertheless, Padmasambhava and his men extremely hated her.  In Lamaism scripture, it distorted that Tes Pongza opposed Padmasambhava simply because she fell in love with him but was rejected [13].


Padmasambhava started the prosperity of Buddhism, or more exactly, Lamaism, in Tibet.  In his request, on May 15th of AD799 Trisong Detsen built the Temple Samye, which is now the holiest temple in Lamaism, like Mecca in Islam.  Samye was built to educate Tibet aristocrats Buddhism.  It’s the cradle of Lamaism, which is a medley of Buddhism, Hinduism and Bonism.


Civil War


Now the shamans felt the threat.  If people all converted to Buddhism, they definitely would lose job, which had brought them all their privilege and power.  They had to fight back.  In AD842, they killed the king Tritsu Detsen when he was drunk, and sent his brother Langdarma to the throne.  The first decree of the new king was prohibition of Buddhism.


Then it came the fight back from Buddism-Lamaism.  They sent the so-called black-hat monks (This has nothing to do with the Black-Hat Sect as I mentioned before.  These assassins are still worshiped and appear in Lamaism drama, or Vcham, now) and assassinated Langdarma.  The assassin triggered a civil war that lasted for centuries.  Slave lords all over Tibet fought with each other, in the name of religion war.


And Lamaism came into shape during this period.  From now on I won’t mention Buddhism since I don’t quite agree to put Lamaism as a branch of Buddhism.  Buddhism was the main origin of Lamaism, but they share hardly anything common in the sense of philosophy and ideology.  Buddhist is never eager to seize power, while lamas always are.  Trisong Detsen meant to employ Buddhism so that monks wouldn’t share too much power from the king.  However, we will soon see how lamas totally seized the power.


The most important event during this time is that Sakya, or Red-Hat Sect, was founded.  It remained as the leader of Lamaism and dominant force of Tibet until the secular regime prevailed again in AD1350.


After two hundred years’ war, in 11th century different sects of lamas were in such disorder that actually each monastery was a warlord.  Then in AD1032 Atisha was invited from Bangladesh to restore order. He organized summit meeting of main Lamaism gurus and made rules for lamas to obey.  This was the so-called Atisha Reform [3], which was incomplete and almost fruitless to stop the chaos of Tibet.  But later a local guru set the milestone of Lamaism development by building up a pyramid-like hierarchy of lamas.  His name is Tsong Khapa.


(When I traveled to Mt. Chanadorje in summer 2001 with my SMA friends Chern Yin, Choon Siong and Tuck Koon, we visited a very tiny temple called Chongu.  That temple once accommodated this master)


Tsong Khapa edited Lamaism scripture, which were all written in India and commented in Tibet.  The highest one of them is Kalachakra Tantra, which the 14th Dalai Lama loves to explain.  Kala means sky or time, Chakra means wheel and Tantra means secret.  So we can call it Scripture of Sky Wheel.  It defines the fundamental hierarchy and rules of Lamaism [1].  In this system, all the different sects and levels are included and put at its place, so as to allocate all the strength together organized, and thus made Lamaism ready for a clerical regime.


Achievements in Exile


Tsong Khapa set up his hierarchy in AD1409, when he created his own sect, Geluk-pa, or Yellow-Hat Sect, in Lhasa.  But long before that Lamaism has already gained some influence outside Tibet.


Some readers might have read swordsman novels written by Jin Yong and learned that so many Lamas involved in the clashes in China, which is not groundless.  Due to its seemingly endless civil war, large number of Tibetan lamas sent themselves on exile and came to China for business opportunity.  They generally failed to promote Lamaism there, since China had already developed an array of mature denominations of Buddhism thus they couldn’t get a share in this market.


Then they headed north.  A nomadic nation to the north of China at that time evolved into a superpower which soon conquered China, Tibet, South-Asia, Mid-Asia, Arab, Russia and East Europe.  It’s Mongol.


Mongol was also dominated by Shamanism at that time.  It was in thirst of an advanced religion, and Lamaism drenched it.


Actually Mongol Khans were so eager for religion, they trusted in everything approaching them, including Daoism, Buddhism, Lamaism, Christianity, Islam and Judaism.  Khubilai Khan, who conquered and united China, trusted that there were four prophets: Jesus Christ, Moses, Mohammed and Buddha.  He believed that by worshiping all of them, the God would bless himJ.  In AD1288, Khubilai crushed a rebel fellow-prince, whose troop were Christians.  People of other religions thus scorned the defeated Christians that the God was not on their side.  Khubilai comforted these losers that “Your master was not loyal, therefore the Cross didn’t assist him.  It shows that the Cross is correct” [21].  See how sly this Khan was.


More sly is the lamas.  One lama was courted by a queen to pray for her sick son, who unfortunately died later.  When the queen reproved the lama, he sophisticated that the protection of Lamaism to the life is like that of a lantern to a candle from rain.   However, it’s unable to save the candle from burning out.  The queen was fooled and Lamaism was further adored by the Mongol monarchy in a priest-patron way (note it’s only with the aristocrats) [21].  Citizens got hands amputated when they hit the lamas, or tongues cut when they scolded them.  Meanwhile lamas took no punishment for all crime but rebel (Again you can see kings allowed their clergy servants to do whatever they like, as long as it’s not against the power).  One top lama even suggested the last Khan to kill all the Chinese with the most popular surnames such as Wang, Zhang and Li, so as to put out Chinese rebellion.  See how kind these lamas are!


When the Mongols were ousted in AD1368, the Chinese Ming Dynasty inherited nominal control over Tibet, and conferred the White-Hat Sect as the religion leader.  Then it was the Tsong Khapa Reform in AD1409 as I have mentioned in last chapter.


The Fifth Dalai Lama


There are five sects in Lamaism: Black-Hat is the Lamaism-affected Shamanism; Red-Hat was the governing power during 10-14th century; Yellow-Hat was created by Master Tsong Khapa in AD1409 and the leader till now; Colorful-Hat derived from Padmasambhava, the master from India; and White-Hat, the inventor of “Reincarnated Live Buddha” [26].


Live Buddha is the title to certain high level lama.  There are two kinds of live Buddha, reincarnated and non-reincarnated.  The latter enjoy privilege only in his lifetime, while the former could leave it to his next generation.  Generally when the current reincarnated live Buddha is dying, he predicts the direction and location where the reincarnated one will be born, and after his death his acolytes will go to that direction trying to find a baby who is recently born, and appoint him to be the next live Buddha [23].


White-Hat sect invented this system to solve the problem of power inheritance when it was shortly grasping it.  However, it is the Yellow-Hat sect that actually benefited greatly from this invention when they came into power.  Why this dummy solution is so nice?  It eliminated the chance of the leaders’ acolytes and folks (an exception being the bastard of 5th Dalai), thus reduced power struggle and made the handover more peaceful and stable.


Now let’s see what is Dalai Lama.  Dalai means ocean, La means highness and Ma means no.  Dalai Lama means top scholar with knowledge like ocean, and is entitled to the leader of Yellow-Hat Sect.  As you have learned, Master Tsong Khapa was the creator of Yellow-Hat Sect, so he was actually the first Dalai Lama.  But we never say so because this title was conferred to the third Dalai Lama, almost two hundred years after Master Tsong Khapa.


Let me make it clear: the title Dalai Lama was first given to the fourth leader of Yellow-Hat sect, who was called the third Dalai Lama.  The first (who was the successor of Tsong Khapa) and the second were never called so during their lifetime.  In this sense, Tsong Khapa was actually the 0th Dalai Lama.


Now came the fifth Dalai Lama, who was a prodigy in politics.  At his time, Tibet was under a secular regime founded by Changchub Gyaltsen since AD1350.  The lamas, with great thirst to power, intrigued to snatch it.  However, most slave lords, who were the real forces that mattered in Tibet, were with the king.  To seize supremacy, the lamas must defeat them.  But how?  Employ foreign force.  Then who?  The fifth Dalai Lama targeted at Mongols.


After the Mongols were ousted from China, some of them roamed around.  Certain tribes went to outer Tibet, and were converted to Lamaism.  This was the first time common Mongols converted to Lamaism.  Before that, Lamaism was merely a royal religion.  Soon it spreaded back to Mongolia.  This was good to China.  After the conversion, the Mongols lost their aggression and stopped attacking the then Ming dynasty (you know before that, one Ming emperor was even captured during a Ming-Mongol war).  They were contained by Ming Dynasty and later conquered by Qing Dynasty.


It was Mongols who conferred Dalai Lama title to Yellow-Hat Sect (by Altan Khan in AD1578).  Now the fifth Dalai Lama wanted their help, and was granted.  Gushri Khan, the leader of one strong Mongol tribe, invaded and conquered Tibet in the request of His Honor the Fifth Dalai Lama,who later claimed to his fellow Tibetans that the military exploit was achieved not by Mongol cavalry but his theurgy [20].  He was enthroned as the ruler of Tibet in AD1642.


The fifth Dalai Lama seized the power with external military interference.  Now he needed to consolidate it, which was more difficult than just employing foreign troops to conquer his own nation.  The slave lords were defeated by Mongols, but their property, militia, strength and influence were still there.  They could topple him again at any time after the Mongols left.  Dalai did asked Gushri Khan and his troops to stay, yet still wanted his regime to be acknowledged and protected by a superpower.  And the superpower at that time was China.


You could easily guess what next step this lama took.  In AD1653 he went to Beijing in person, visited the emperor of Qing Dynasty, acknowledged Tibet’s dependency to China and sought to be conferred as the ruler of Tibet province.  The China government agreed to made Tibet one its 18th province and sent officials to Lhasa.  It’s very similar to the way the communist China treats Hong Kong after AD1997: you can do whatever you like except diplomacy and defense.  In this case, Tibet army (the lama-controlled army) acted esentially as policemen for internal security.  China army would take care of the defense of Tibet [20].  We will soon see how China fulfilled its duty such as saving Tibet from Gorkha invasion.


Another important result of this meeting was that Dalai Lama turned over to China the final selection of reincarnated Dalai Lama.  Before that, it happened when more than one qualified babies were found after the previous Dalai Lama’s death, they were all kept in Lhasa and one was chosen later according to his performance.  This of course led to some power struggle.  Now fifth Dalai Lama left China to choose his successor from the applicants, and the successor must go to Beijing and report to the central government, which is in fact enable China to decide the ruler of Tibet.  This became a nominal ceremony later.  The China emperor would pick up a special lot from a golden-bottle.  This lot is already chosen by Tibetan top officials of course [20].


If I were Tibetan I will definitely regarded the fifth Dalai Lama as a mean traitor who sold his nation to guarantee his regime, but throughout the history it always happened that the meanest guy seized the power.  Sigh!


(However, the fifth Dalai Lama’s tomb was looted by Mongol invaders in AD1717.  Sometimes you have to trust there is a god and he sometimes could be just)


And fortunately I am not Tibetan and doesn’t need to feel shame since we adopted a nation that voluntarily defect to us.  During the whole event, China didn’t commit anything filthy.  Shall we look at how dirty the Britons acquired India, the Americans annexed Texas, the French encroached Indo-China and the Japanese attained Ryukyu if you hold any doubt on this?


The fifth Dalai Lama finished his fruitful journey and returned Lhasa.  Now he turned to internal security.  He was such a genius politician that he managed to merge the political interest of lamas and slave-owners.  It’s easy to see they shared solid mutual interest and could cooperate smoothly.  The lama used Lamaism to help the slave lords tightly control their tamed slaves, exactly like the Europeans used Christianity to appease African slaves.  It’s much more cost-effective and even more effective.  Thus the slave-owners found that their interest was not at all infringed upon.   They no longer cared whether it’s a secular or clerical regime.


One more important thing related to the fifth Dalai Lama was that he originated another reincarnated live Buddha called Panchen.  He conferred his teacher, who was an acolyte of the fourth Dalai Lama, as the fourth Panchen (so the fifth Panchen was of the same generation with him).  Since then, Panchen was eternally assigned as the ruler of outer Tibet while Dalai himself governed inner Tibet.  So it’s actually a power split inside the group itself: Dalai assigned his trusted intimate to help him control the immense Tibet area.


Now the 14th Dalai Lama was in exile while the 10th Panchen was loyal to central government (I have mentioned that Panchen and Dalai started at the same generation.  Later I’ll explain why Panchen is now four generations behind Dalai).  In AD1990 the 10th Panchen died.  According to the tradition his acolytes found the 11th Panchen in his instruction.  However, Dalai in India announced that he had assigned another boy as 11th Panchen.  Maybe he thought he should do what his fifth ancestor did again on Panchen.


The fifth Dalai Lama died in AD1682.  His bastard, Sangy Gyatso, concealed his death to the public for 15 years and ruled Tibet in his father’s name.  In AD1697 Beijing learned the truth.  All in a hurry, Sangy found a fifteen-year old boy and called him the 6th Dalai.  He explained to the central government that he concealed the death of 5th Dalai so as to keep Tibet stable.  The Qing Dynasty didn’t believe his humbug, but accepted it so as to avoid further trouble.


However, It was this 6th Dalai who caused further trouble.  He should have been a romantic poet [7, 15], but unfortunately was entitled as Dalai.  His dissolute life together with Sangy’s dictatorship made even tamed Tibetan sick [6].  The grandson of Gushri Khan (5th Dalai’s accomplice), the commander of Tibetan army, waged a coup in AD1705, killed Sangy and sent 6th Dalai to the Beijing, who died on the way in AD1706.


Then in AD1717, Sangy’s alliance, the Tsungar Mongols sacked Lhasa in his revenge and looted the tomb of the fifth Dalai.  Tibetans turned to Beijing and the then YongZheng emperor sent his troops twice to oust Tsungar Mongols in AD1718 and AD1720.  The Tsungar chief poisoned himself later in desperation.  Tsungar Mongol was the last rebelling Mongol tribe in China history.  Since then the Mongols that once controlled tremendous part of the continent was finally conquered


After the whole thing was over, Beijing officially announced to abolish the 6th Dalai and assigned the 7th Dalai (however, the 7th Dalai was chosen to be born in the year the 6th died, thus actually still recognized this romantic Dalai).  It realized that the conflicts between the lamas and the slave lords were still the fundamental cause of constant turbulence in Tibet.  Therefore, it practiced a policy as to support the Dalai and suppress the aristocrats since then [27].  It worked, but also made Dalai the autocrat of Tibet.


The McMahon Line


People with some knowledge on Tibet might wonder that from the fifth Dalai Lama to the McMahon Line there were more than two centuries.  What happened in between?


This was actually a period that Tibet faced challenge from the west.  Such challenge started with Qing army stopped Gorkha invasion, and ended with the communist China defeating this so-called best infantry in the world again, as is the content of the last chapter of this introduction.


I feel obliged to admit I am not at all familiar with the history of mid Asia and south Asia, especially the extremely complicated evolution of various races due to their frequent migration.  Hence I have little idea about Gorkha.  In my very humble knowledge, the Gorkha descends from Mongols and resides in Nepal.  They became accustomed to the mountainous environment and transferred to good infantry from cavalry.


In AD1790 the Gorkha invaded Tibet.  Again Lhasa turned to Beijing for rescue.  QianLong, the then China emperor, sent a small but well-trained troop to rescue Tibet.  The battle was successful.  Chinese army not only ousted the Gorkha, but also crossed Himalayas and approached Katmandu.  The march was stopped by storm, but Nepal king still surrendered and agreed to be China’s dependency.


Nepal remained loyal to China for a long time until it fell into the hands of Britons.  During its fighting with Britain colonists, it even sent to Beijing a cannon it seized.  You could imagine how hard it was two centuries ago to carry a huge gun across Himalayas and went all the way to Beijing.  The Gorkha did this in order to warn China the threat from Britain, but the then decrepit Qing Dynasty regarded it as a gift from this small dependency, and replied that please stop sending us such bulky gift since the transportation was too hard and cost you too much.  Sigh!  Nepal was finally conquered by Britain, and Gorkha Company became one of the best-known troops in Britain army.


This happened in the recorded-cold winter of AD1792.  Emperor QianLong used this achievement to complete the list of his so-called Ten Military Exploits.  However, it also marked the summit of Qing Dynasty.  It no longer won any war after that, except against France in Indo-China in AD1885.  As early as in mid 18th century, Britain has started to sell opium, which it planted in India, to China so as to reduce its trade deficit.  The balance actually totally reversed.  Qing Dynasty for the first time suffered from deficit; its currency of silver kept flowing out and evaluating at a rocket speed.  For survival, it had to forbid opium, which was against the Britain interest.  An Opium War therefore was inevitable, in the popular theory of western historians, so as to promote free trade with China.  (Check western publications you will find nowadays nobody ever mentions the trafficker role Britain government acted in this farce)


Come back to Tibet issue.  As I mentioned in a previous post, Britain and France reached an agreement that they would keep Thailand independent.  To the east of Thailand it’s France’ colony, the west Britain’s.  Now Britons found they had only three accesses into China: from Myanmar to Yunnan, cross Himalayas to Tibet and from Mid-Asia to Xinjiang.  On the Myanmar-Yunnan border there are three torrential rivers that made traffic hardly possible; in Xinjiang province, China just suppressed Britain-instigated separatists’ rebel and signed boundary treaty with Tsar Russia.  The only breaking-through point could only be Tibet.


Britons once tried to seize Tibet by force in AD1904, but failed.  The altitude is too high for Britain soldiers to fight there, and Tibetans fought back awkwardly but fiercely.  Soon China sent diplomats to negotiate with Britons and a truce was reached before long.  The invasion was recorded in Britannica in this way: “…a political mission was dispatched from India to secure understandings on frontier and trade relations. Tibetan resistance was overcome by force, the Dalai Lama fled to China, and the rough wooing ended in a treaty at Lhasa in 1904…”.


Then the Britons adjusted their strategy, changed a mask and approached Tibet in a friendly way.  To encroaching Tibet land, they introduced the McMahon line.


McMahon was sent to India in charge of its foreign affairs.  He proposed that, “according to international tradition”, border is defined as the middle line of landform, and so the boundary between Britain-colonized India and Tibet should be the ridge of Himalayas.


McMahon Line doesn’t sound totally nonsense as it is.  For example, the boundary between Singapore and Malaysia is the middle line of Johor Strait; and the one between France and Spain is the ridge of Pyrenees.  However, such “international tradition” should only be applied to areas without defined border.  In the Tibet case, Tibet has been resided in two sides of the Himalayas for ages (the 6th Dalai Lama was even born in the south piedmont).  There had already been clear border in the south piedmont of Himalayas between Tibet and other nations.  The McMahon Line was created to seize this part of land in a sound pretext.


However, with Britain’s sweet promise to give Tibet clerical government weapon and luxury, lamas rapidly forgot the recent invasion and started negotiation with them.  This was against its agreement with the Beijing that the central government took care of Tibet’s diplomacy and defense.  Then why Tibet bypassed Beijing?  All these happened in AD1910s.  The Qing Dynasty was toppled down in AD1911 and the Republic of China was founded, followed by decades of civil war.  There was no powerful central government that had extra strength for Tibet affairs.  Like many other Chinese provinces, Tibet became actually independent, until the communist took over and united mainland China again.


Therefore, in AD1913 at Simla of India, delegates from Beijing, who was there under the force from Britain, Tibet local government and Britain-India officials met and discussed the McMahon issue.  The next year, Tibet secretly agreed to acknowledge McMahon Line and signed a treaty with Britain.  However, Britain weapon and other promised benefits never arrived (Just use your brain: why should Britain arm you when it plans to annex you?  It’s only US that really armed Tibet: CIA armed and trained rebels to attack China communist army, which is part of their global strategy.  Once they developed good relation with the communist China in AD1972, CIA stopped such aid instantly).  Therefore, the Tibet government refused to honor this treaty soon after.  And China government of course never acknowledged it.


The Britain didn’t publish nor enforce the Simla Convention until AD1937, when the Sino-Japan war broke out.  I really respect it can be so mean.


Debut of the 14th Dalai Lama


I planned to tell the stories of two Dalais in this article.  I have told the one of the 5th, and now it’s the 14th, the current Dalai Lama.


In AD1933, the 13th Dalai Lama died, leaving his acolytes wandering around to look for his reincarnated baby.  One group arrived in outer Tibet and found the boy in a Han-Tibetan mixed village.  The boy was named Lhamo Dhondup, a female name meaning Goddess to Fulfill Your Wish.  He couldn’t speak Tibetan at that time, but instead a dialect of Mandarin.  A German sociologist, Matthias Hermanns, happened to stay in this village and witnessed the whole process.  He knew the family of the 14th Dalai, and recorded this in his book [11].  However, in the official Tibetan propaganda it is said that the 14th Dalai spoke decent Lhasa Tibetan, so as to show that “he is the one”.


Now let’s wait a minute to explain this: why in fifth Dalai’s time the Panchen was also the fifth, while the counterpart of 14th Dalai was only the tenth?  Shouldn’t it be similar?


This is because four Dalais died unnaturally.  They are the 9th to the 12th, all died before they grew up, the direct reason being Palden Lhamo.


Palden Lhamo is said to be the Goddess that protects Dalai Lama (Unfortunately we will see totally the reverse soon).  She is described by Lamaism scripture to be extremely ugly, riding on a monster like both donkey and horse, whose saddle is covered by the whole skin of her son (she killed the boy because he refused to convert to Lamaism), waving the skeleton of him in right hand and drinking the blood of enemy from a skull in her left hand, meanwhile wired by serpents [13].  I couldn’t believe Buddhism will ever have such brutal image and that’s one of the reasons why I doubt Lamaism is a branch of Buddhism.


There is a temple called Ghokang dedicated to Palden Lhamo in the southeast of Lhasa.  It’s stuffed with all kinds of weapons and, more horrible, various parts of human being, dried.  They are the tributes to the bloodthirsty goddess.  Since Palden Lhamo is the goddess of Dalai, each Dalai is ruled to visit Ghokang and spent a night there alone [2].


Just close your eyes and imagine whether you can sleep in a room full of limbs, organs and torsos of people?


All the four Dalais were sent there in childhood!!


Take the 12th Dalai as an example.  He was 15 years old when his best playmate stole something trivial from his palace, the Potala.  He was caught and killed by the regent lama, then bound on a horse and brought to the poor Dalai.  In front of him, the dead boy was amputated and beheaded.  Then in a few days, the shocked Dalai was sent to stay in Ghokang [30].


There is little doubt that these Dalais were merely sacrifice in severe power struggle: once the young Dalai died, the regent could stay in his position for next two decades.


Now let’s move back to the 14th Dalai (He never went to Ghokang yet).  His first regent was a live Buddha called Reting Rimpoche, who was loyal to China government.  Reting ruled for 8 years before he handed over to Regent Taktra.  The innocent Reting agreed with Taktra personally to rotate office regularly, but Taktra never did so.  To get the power back, Reting allied with Choekyong Tsering, father of 14th Dalai.


However, Choekyong Tsering was poisoned soon, generally believed done by men of Taktra [10].  During nationwide shock, Taktra arrested Reting and put him into jail, accusing he’s the man behind the assassination.  Reting’s acolyte, Tsenya Rimpoche (he was later described by his opponents as the incarnation of a most evil demon in Lamaism scripture:-) led pro-Reting lamas to Lhasa to save their head via protest.  Taktra ordered cannon, instead of bread, for them, and shoot all the 200-plus, then called it a rebel plotted by central government and started a holocaust of Han merchants in Lhasa.


Reting was tortured to death in jail.  His testis was grinded and eyeballs dug before he was finally poisoned [12].  Lama has their way to dig your eyes out in a very “civilized” way.  The executer just used special gadget to press the eye socket until the eyeballs briskly jumped out.  I wish it were painless to poor innocent Reting.


Can you believe such atrocity was committed by seemingly merciful lamas?  Have to since they themselves recorded it proudly.


The focus of this whole power struggle is actually whether Tibet should still stay with then war-torn China.  Reting was pro-China, so was 14th Dalai’s father, Choekyong Tsering, who couldn’t even speak Tibetan when his son was enthroned.  Their rival was actually the whole class of slave lords.  They didn’t want to stay under a void nationality called China.  They were more interested with Britain military aid so as to more effectively control their slaves from revolt.  And they prevailed in this round.


After the relentless cleansing in AD1947, pro-China lamas and the family of 14th Dalai were suppressed, leaving his brother still murmuring about their father’s abnormal death till now.  The pro-independence side grasped the power.  They taught the 14th Dalai their tenet.  This made the highly smart young man a person of contradiction.  He inherited both pro-China and anti-China thoughts from both sides.  When the slave-lords failed in their AD1959 rebel, he exiled with them; while when they used him as an image for Tibet-Independence, he from time to time expresses wishes to reconcile with China government and keep Tibet as an autonomy of China as it is now.  It’s generally accepted that he’s not a die-hard pro-independency person, and that’s why China government never shuts the door from his messengers.


From AD1947 till AD1950 it was the prime time of the pro-independence sect, while young 14th Dalai grew up.  Then in AD1950 the China army was on doorstep.


Final Carnival


China Communist Party (CCP) beat the US-aided Republic of China government and drove it to the island of Taiwan.  Its own regime, the People’s Republic of China, was founded in October, AD1949.  The communist army, People’s Liberation Army (PLA), smoothly swept south China.  UK, our eternal sly fellow, became the first western country to acknowledge PRC, in order to exchange for its acknowledgement of UK’s control over Hong Kong since it would be impossible for UK to recover from WW2 and fight with the fierce PLA on HK at that time (later Korean War indirectly proved that).


(BTW, last week I was watching a documentary on Korean War.  The American narrator comments “it is not a forgotten war.  It is a forgotten Victory”, which is among the funniest masturbation I have ever witnessed.  Let’s await further Hollywood daydreams on this war, as they already did on Vietnam War.  Anyway, history can be raped by anyone at any time)


When the communist army approached Tibet, the 14th Dalai was holding an important Lamaism ceremony under the request from, and with, “several elegant Lhasa fair ladies”.  If you have interest in what this ceremony is, please refer to Kalachakra Tantra (Scripture of Sky Wheel) available from Lamaism websites, or come to my homepage for a Chinese translation.  Otherwise you can also rent the movie Eyes Wide Shut by Tom Cruise and Nicole Kidman couple.  The ceremony in this movie is slightly varied from that Lamaism one (in the original one there are only two males attended, i.e., the guru and the student [7, 8].  It’s too disgusting for me to describe it!).


The Tibet government turned to Britain for military assistance, which just got out of India and could provide nothing but spiritual encouragement.  Slave lords then decided to make a military attempt to see how tough PLA was.  But their troops deployment was seriously delayed since none of them wanted to send a single serf into an unknown battle.  After violent quarrels and diplomatic tactics among themselves, two divisions were pieced together finally, made of serfs as soldiers while slave owners and lamas as officers.


Fortunately, the PLA division was patiently waiting in front of them for their final message whether Tibet wanted to reunite with China peacefully or not.  Another factor was that the altitude of Tibet severely affected the strength of PLA who came from much lower land.  Therefore, the two armies just confronted each other in the hot summer of AD1950 outside Chamdo (In AD2001 four of us SMA tourists stayed in Chamdo Hotel in ChengDu, which is a property of Chamdo Tibetan government).


Internationally, Korean War just broke out on June 25th.  All the other PLA divisions in the same group-army were gradually sent to rescue the totally collapsed North Korean army, leaving this one alone in the vast Tibet Plateau, with no reserved troop nor secured supply.


Back in Lhasa, lamas were cheerfully doing their part of contribution.


They were calling for help from a devil called Kshetrapala.  The tributes used to bribe this devil were strictly defined in scriptures and listed below:


Cake made of buckwheat and human blood;

Mixture of five kinds of meat, including one from human being;

The skull of a boy (must born of incest) full of mustard and blood;

Skin of a boy;

A bowl of human brain in blood;

A human oil lamp, whose wick made of hair;

Dough made of human gallbladder, brain and blood [16].


The last dough is called Torma in Tibetan.  In AD1950 summer the Yellow-Hat lama made one of three-meter in height, claiming that the powerful demon Kshetrapala was invited and sealed in this Torma.  They burnt it outside Lhasa and cheated Tibetans that the demon as well as its accomplices was released to destroy the PLA [19].


According to their own record, 21 people, of course all serfs I trust, were killed to make this huge dough.


Lamas never worried about the poor result of their magic arts.  In their words, it takes time.  When the Britain invaded Tibet in AD1904, these lamas also invited Kshetrapala for defense, but nothing happened and Britain army shortly sacked Lhasa.  Then after twenty years, during an earthquake in India, several Briton soldiers died.  The lamas claimed it was their achievement.  Again, during China leader Mao’s final days in AD1976, the 14th Dalai spent three days praying for his death in India, then declared Mao died because of his curse.  I just don’t know how to express my gayety towards such great self-confidence.


Come back to the AD1950 fraud, the lamas were correct that the powerful demon Mr. Kshetrapala did take time to prove his cruelty, and the serf army collapsed right at the beginning of real fight, or simply fired at their own officers.  This was the so-called Chamdo Battle [19].  The lonely PLA division never expected such land-sliding result.  They entered Chamdo and sent messenger again to Lhasa for peaceful solution.


The slave lords recognized from the fiasco of their Chamdo adventure that it was impossible for them, with no support from common Tibetans, to fight with an army that just united most parts of China.  What even worse was that they lost two thirds of their strength in Chamdo thus they couldn’t continue to fight.  Now they wished to return to the Qing dynasty mode that they simply acknowledge Tibet to be part of China, and everything remained the same.


Furthermore, they knew the common Tibetans were not with them, but still with the lamas, loyally.  So they decided to make the young 14th Dalai as the person who would deal with Beijing, instead of themselves doing so.


14th Dalai was 18 years old at that time.


Therefore, negotiator from Beijing met and discussed with lamas on peaceful unification in Lhasa.  An agreement was signed, as the famous 17 Points Agreement.  In this agreement, the communist China government honors Dalai as the forever leader of Lamaism in Tibet, while the lamas agreed to have Tibet stay in China.


Then 14th Dalai went to Beijing to meet Mao and other top officials in central government.  One detail is helpful for you to learn more about the mysterious Lamaism: the excrement from His Honor was carefully collected, kept and sent back to Tibet, where it was made into so-called holy medicine, since Lamaism treats it to be panacea [19].  (As a piece of collateral evidence, 40 years later an pious Lamaism follower called Shoko Asahara, who created the infamous AUM Shinrikyo, released poison gas in Tokyo subway and now stayed in jail, bid a small bottle of his semen at US$7000 to his followers.  Of course 14th Dalai and his acolytes no longer admit any relation with this once very close student and patron, but mails between them seized from Shoko’s AUM headquarter provided firm evidence [18])


The communists called it Peaceful Liberation of Tibet.  Actually it’s not: it’s not totally peaceful since there was a Chamdo battle; and it’s not liberation since the communist didn’t touch the clerical regime and the slavery system was still there.  Anyway they felt happy to solve it quite peacefully, and they didn’t wish to interfere with the Tibetan tradition so fast, so they defaulted the slavery until AD1957.


This was the honeymoon period between the communists and 14th Dalai as well as the slave lords under him.  Suppose CCP took no action to liberate the slaves, nothing would ever happen.


Unfortunately, in AD1957, Beijing started to abolish slavery nationwide.  It was not just in Tibet but all over China where minority races with slavery existed.  For instance, in Sichuan a tribe chief who had been alliance with the communist for almost 30 years was also affected with all his slaves freed.  In the same year, rebels broke out here and there, but most serious in Tibet since CCP didn’t deploy troop in this autonomy.


In Tibet, the central government practiced two reforms at once: to construct a secular government and to abolish slavery.  Clearly it beat both lamas and slave lords.  Nowadays people could easily criticize that it was too haste for Beijing to carry out both reforms together, but actually you cannot depend on the old clerical government to abolish the slavery system which it had been relied on from the very beginning.  So I feel it’s not wrong.  The key person is Dalai.  If he chose to stay with central government, it would do good to common Tibetans and meanwhile he would remain the religion leader, just lost control on the government.  However, his acolytes who had controlled the government for ages wouldn’t agree to lose their power, and his alliance, the slave lord, wouldn’t agree to the abolition.  Then it’s reasonable that Dalai went to their side since he always was.


At the very beginning the rebels were started by slave lords and quite tiny in scale.  After 14th Dalai clarified his stand, common Tibetans also followed, as well as CIA commenced to provide military aid.  Thus revolt upgraded.  In AD1959 PLA entered Tibet and suppressed all the rebels.  14th Dalai went on exile and was adopted by India.


Now let’s go through the whole process.  If the communist didn’t abolish slavery, of course everyone except the serfs would be happy and nothing would happen; if the communist kept the clerical regime and abolished slavery, it should also be ok but the abolition most likely would stop halfway; even if the communist carried out both reforms, as long as it had the Dalai on its side, it wouldn’t evolve to the current situation.  The major factor was that Dalai was on their side, and worst of all, Tibetans only listen to him.


After 14th Dalai and his slave-lord alliance fled to India, the communist for the first time effectively controlled Tibet, and constructed a secular government without any resistance.  Just like it in Mainland China and most other communist countries, after communist revolution the poor turns noble, the rich turns suppressed.  This won’t cause too much trouble in a modern society, I mean, not TOO much.  But in a still hardly-developed nation, it aroused dissatisfaction, not only from those suffered but also from those benefited.  Although happy with their social level promoted, the once poor still respects the once elite, and turns unhappy again to see them no longer respected by the new regime.  Plus their spiritual leader was in exile.


That is my personal opinion why lots of, if not most, Tibetans still long for days when they were ruled by trickster lamas and fierce slave lords.  In other words, the communist did damage a great deal of tradition, which we (I do not mix myself with communist by using we) regard as backward or brutal but Tibetans still cherish, even if they had suffered a lot from it.  Don’t forget we ourselves sometimes recall “the good old days” which never truly existed.


The communists practiced diffused education in Tibet, which is extremely proper.  Previously, the meaning of education in Tibetan was to send kids to temple to be a lama.  Since you have to accommodate your kids (during our AD2001 trip we saw lots of small huts outside temple, which are built for this purpose) as well as all other expenses, only the rich could afford it.  And in a clerical regime to become a lama was the only way to creep up the hierarchy.  Now it’s quite different, the central government sent young talented Tibetan children to Beijing and Shanghai for middle school or tertiary education, and then sends them back to Tibet for government positions.  This helps to develop an elite class loyal to Beijing without putting many Han officials as would arouse discontent among Tibetans.


Also the totally tax-free policy appeased common Tibetans.  The Tibetan autonomy government is not subsidized by central government, but totally financed.


I believe the next step China could further ensure its control over Tibet should be its reconciliation with the 14th Dalai Lama.  As I have mentioned, Dalai is not that pro-independence.  If he returns to Tibet, I have full confidence the independence activity all over the world would stop to be meaningful.  However, if he dies before such reconciliation, things could become worse for China.  Frankly now Dalai stopped Tibetan separatists from extreme action.  If he died, his suppressed acolytes and slave lords, who are richly funded by anti-China forces, will for sure brainwash his next reincarnation and do whatever they want to do.  Although I don’t think they would be influential enough to achieve much, I do expect it would add more headaches to China government.


For people suggest China give up Tibet, let me spend one more minute of your time to explain China’s stand:


From a historical view, as I have mentioned, we didn’t invade and conquer Tibet in a filthy way.  We obtained Tibet decently when it defected to us.  With this firmly in mind, I don’t see any point for so-called democracy to honor Tibetans’ will: then who honors the will of other Chinese people who wishes to keep it in China?  Suppose now people of Pulau Ubin poll to found a Republic of Ubin, do you think it’s democratic?  If it was, why Northern Ireland is still part of UK, and American Indians still under the governance of US?


From a military view, China needs Tibet Plateau as a shield of its western boundary.  Without Tibet, China will be cornered in plain, exposed with threats from above.  Just like I always regard nuclear weapon as security of peace, Tibet has been a similar factor to secure the peace between China and India, which we greatly cherish.  Imagine we give up Tibet, you believe it would ever be independent?  You see what happened to Sikkim?  Wake up lah!


Of course you can accuse me saying all this from a view of Han.  But just look at the fact that the communist abolished slavery system, and ever since then they didn’t take a single cent from Tibet, exactly the same as they did in Hong Kong, I couldn’t see the return of these slave lords currently in exile would do Tibet any real good.


Tibet needs progress, politically and economically.  But all the independency activists belong to a class already deserted by the history, that’s why I have no dream in them.


OK let me stop here and leave you guys for further pondering.  The next chapter, also the last one, actually should be called appendix since it described a war fought between India and China in the territory that belonged to Tibet, which also explained why this war broke out.


India-China Skirmish


The fuse of this skirmish in AD1962 was McMahon Line.  Let’s review this notion.  It redefined the border between Tibet of China and then Britain colony in South Asia.  It affects not only China and India as people usually know, but Nepal, Pakistan, Sikkim (which used to be Tibet’s dependency but now in fact a state of India already, let’s admit the reality), Bhutan and Myanmar as well.  China never acknowledged McMahon Line, but in reality agreed to define the border as Himalayas ridge.


For example, the Everest, peak of the world, used to be entirely the territory of Tibet.  When China and Nepal established diplomatic relation, they agreed to share it.  One disadvantage is that China gave away the side easy to mount Everest to Nepal, and thus have to conquer it with much more effort.  Nowadays most people climb Everest from its Nepal side.  (This year is the 50th anniversary of first conquering Everest from Nepal side by New Zealander Hillary and Nepalese Tenzing of Sherpa)


As with Pakistan, China again lost half of the second highest peak in the world, Chogori, or known as K2 (the one in the movie Vertical Limit).  With Myanmar, China gave up a hill, which soon after was found to be a rich mine of the famous Myanmar Jade.  Really bad luckL


I do not quite understand the psychology of China government on such policy.  I guess it was to show China’s neighbors by giving out advantage that the new communist China had no intent to get advantage from them.  Also note at that time China was blockaded and demonized by western countries.  It needs to develop good relation with as more nations as possible.


Therefore, in the case of India, China also adopted a similar policy that I don’t acknowledge McMahon Line, but if you come to negotiate with me, I can use the ridge as border.  There is opinion that China and India could have reached a peaceful solution in boundary as what China has done with all the other countries.


But this time the case was a little bit different.


In AD1947 India got independence from Britain and took McMahon Line for granted.  It started to march into this area in AD1951, and totally occupied it in AD1953.  The size is about 90,000 square kilometers (it’s about one hundredth of China’s size, or three Taiwan, or 140 Singapore).


It’s Chinese philosophy that I could even give it to you for free, but if you just take it without enquiring me, I am not happy.  Although China did nothing when India occupied this area, obviously China was not happy.


According to India PM Jawaharlel Nehru’s testimony in India parliament in AD1959, then Chinese Premier Zhou Enlai once told him “because of the historical friendship between India and China, we will acknowledge (the ridge border)” in AD1956.  This is believable taken into mind the honeymoon period India and China enjoyed at that time.


Then India adopted rebels fled from Tibet, who kept coming back and harassing from their India base, which made China start to reconsider whether there really lay any friendship.


And the last straw was: the Indian army was still encroaching on the border.  The Indian border posts were constantly marching towards China, some even behind China’s own.  Again it was against the Chinese philosophy: if you want it, fight like a man and take it.  Without diplomatic negotiation nor military action, it was an insult for China to see its land encroached in this way.


(Of course this is from the view of a Chinese.  In the Indian’s view, he takes it as his own land.  But even in that sense I don’t understand why Indian government didn’t put it on the table, no matter peacefully or by force)


In a book <who is to be blamed in 1962> written by an Indian journalist [25], he quoted from Indian generals he interviewed that PM Nehru ordered them to build posts wherever there was room, and claimed in conferences that once actual sovereignty was taken, it would always be recognized by the world (Sorry I don’t have it’s original edition in English.  The one I read was translated to Chinese by a Tibetan press).  Maybe this explains why.


Now came the third philosophy of Chinese: Once pressed the Chinese usually keeps stepping back and back until reach the corner.  Then it fights back fiercely.  The sly Britons knew this well thus never pushed China too much.  Unfortunately the Indians failed to learn this tip from their Britain governor.


So the result was, China government no longer expected any feasibility of cooperation or alliance with India.  After its proposal for both armies to withdraw 20 km from the border failed, in AD1962 China waged the so-called “Defense and Fight-back Battle” to get out of the hell that it could no longer tolerate.  In Mao’s words, it was  “a punitive expedition and to ensure 20 years’ security on the border”.


In this sense, both aims were achieved.


The battle was in two stages.  In the first stage, PLA rapidly drove Indian army back to the traditional border; in the second, PLA defeated the redeployed and reinforced Indian army.


I am not going to elaborate on the military details.  Interested please read <India’s China War> by Neville Maxwell [14] which is quite fair and in detail.  It’s online available.


The ultimate purpose of China is to return the dispute to the negotiation table; therefore China only expected a small-scale battle.  However, the Indian army once quite fierce in border clashes just routed at PLA’s first wave attack, which enabled the latter smoothly march to the old border.  This was a debacle both China and India hadn’t expected.  After this, the temporary winner and loser actually had reverse feelings regarding their respective positions.


On the China side, because the victory came too easily, the PLA hadn’t prepared for corresponding logistics so as to supply the small troops that just had taken back the 90,000 sq km territory, therefore the headquarter back in the other side of Himalayas were in deep anxiety, keeping in mind the only division ever destroyed in PLA history was in Korean War when it chased too far away and surrounded by the reinforced US army.


While on the India side, the first defeat united different interests in parliament and Nehru threatened China with “the unexpected anger of the Indian people when aroused” confidently [14].  He again refused China’s proposal so as to withdraw 20km back from both sides of ridge border, although India army was already driven much more behind that line.  He only thought of fighting back.


However, until this moment Nehru and his Defense Minister Menon still mistakenly took it for granted that Chinese army was too weak to attack any more, as if it was PLA who lost the first stage.  Even worse was that they assigned General Kaul, described by The Times of India as “a soldier of extraordinary courage and drive” but actually had no experience of commanding troops in combat, and ordered him to start Operation Leghorn instantly to oust Chinese back to the north of McMahon Line and get the face back [14] (The strange name of this operation strangely came from an Italian harbor Leghorn).


This counterattack ended even more awkwardly.  The impotent General Kaul as well as his frontline commander, Brigadier Dalvi, who wrote a book on this war later [5], was taken prisoner in a totally disordered rout during which the well-renowned Gorkha regiment was almost destroyed.  Among the 30,000 strong Indian army, India reported 1,383 killed, 1,696 missing, and 3,968 captured, while China reported 240 wounded and killed, none captured among its 20000+ troops.


Now the PLA is on the entrance of Ganges plain facing no Indian army ahead.  However, to the surprise of the world, China unilaterally announced ceasefire.  They returned to north side of ridge border, then moved a further 20 kilometers north, appealing to India to stay 20 kilometers south of this line so as to keep peace during negotiation.  Before they retreated, according to [14]:


“They made it a matter of principle or pride to hand back the equipment left by the retreating Indians in as good condition as possible. It was collected, sacked, piled or parked; cleaned, polished, and carefully inventoried – small arms, mortars, artillery, trucks, shells and ammunition, clothing, and all the other impedimenta of a defeated army. Among the return equipment were a few American automatic rifles as the first installment of American military assistance captured at Se La, and a Russian helicopter in serviceable condition. China did not publicize this extraordinary transaction, and said it was simply a gesture “to further demonstrate … sincerity for a peaceful settlement.” But although Indians cooperated by formally receiving the returned equipment, they bitterly resented what they perceived as added humiliation and denounced the Chinese gesture as a propaganda maneuver”


The Indian Army did not return on the heels of the withdrawing Chinese.  Instead India government sent civilian first, as what they did to annex Sikkim.  Nor did they hold themselves to the 20 km line south of the ridge border, instead they further marched to the new line, which is 20 km north to the ridge.


That’s what China achieved: it won a simply nice victory; but in the end lost, initiatively, more than before the war.  It meant to bring India back to the table and give it this area decently, but the other party never cared.  The only thing good is that no clash ever happened after that, which satisfied then China leaders with their security aim.


It’s the second time China army won a battle but still lost its territory.  In AD1885, France destroyed China’s East Sea Fleet and a treaty had been drafted for China to give up its dependency Vietnam to France.  Then France wanted to win another war over this decayed empire and get more profit.  But this time it failed in the land battle in Vietnam-China border.  Its commander was killed and the France government collapsed as a result.  However, the pedantic China government, instead of taking benefit of victory and demand for a fair treaty, stupidly stick to the old treaty and signed it to show its credibility.


And now again.  To maintain the already broken friendship (I doubt it ever existed from the moment India marched to the McMahon Line, the moment India adopted Tibet rebels and the moment India built their posts behind China’s) and show other countries China didn’t want to solve land dispute by force, it stubbornly gave away land it fought back by blood.  With great amount of immigrants from India as well as high fertility, the Indian population in this area has overrun that of the Tibetan aboriginals and an actual sovereignty has been achieved.  India also has developed probably the best mountainous troop in the world.  It’s very dim that China could take it back in neither the recent future nor a far one.


After all, I recognized that it’s very hard for China to supply its army in the other side of Himalayas, and both superpowers at that time were aiding India.  However, I sincerely wish China government to learn a lesson from this battle, become more beast-like instead of lamb-like, in its next war when breaks out.  After all we are in a world of jungle and beasts, only the strong and the cruel survives.  Justice is the mechanism to balance the powers.  It shouldn’t exist between the strong and the weak, as it never existed.


On the India side, AD1962 skirmish announced the end of the heyday of J. Nehru.  Although he claimed to his countrymen that “Chinese had turned tail rather than face” the powerful Indian troops, the humiliation from the rout was mainly placed on him and smashed his dream to be the leader of non-align movement in which India was a main proposer.


Let me close this chapter with my personal view on India-China relation.  I don’t know the Indian’s feeling, maybe they think we are going to, but as a common Chinese I never expected one day we should ever attack this longtime neighbor.  This damn skirmish between us in AD1962 fundamentally originated from the damn McMahon Line concocted by the damn Britain colonists.  Without them, I just cannot imagine any war would ever happen between these two great cultures, let alone China’s support of Pakistan and the nuclear crisis later on (of course the conflicts between India and Pakistan was not a result of McMahon Line but definitely that of Britain conspiracy.  You heard much Hinduism-Islam clash before Briton arrival?).  I totally have no incentive to blame India because they are doing what was in their interest, since it makes sense for India to adopt this ridge border from Britain.  It’s just a tragedy that we had this war that not at all solved dispute but only left both with regret and chasm.




  1. 14th Dalai Lama: The Kalachakra Tantra, Rite of initiation for the stage of generation, London 1985
  2. Alex Wayman: The Buddhist Tantras, New York 1973
  3. David Snellgrove: Indo-Tibetan Buddhism, Indian Buddhist and their Tibetan Successors, Boston 1987
  4. Dalai Lama I: Selected Works, Bridging the Sutras and the Tantras, Ithaca 1985
  5. Dalvi: Himalayan Blunder, India: Thacker, 1969

6.      Helmut Hoffmann: Religionen Tibets, Freiburg 1956

  1. John Stevens: Lust und Erleuchtung. Sexualitaetim Buddhismus, Bern, 1993
  2. June Campbell: Traveller in space, In search of female identity in Tibetan Buddhism, London 1996
  3. Lharampa Ngawang Dhargyey: A commentary on the Kalachakra Tantra, New Delhi 1985

10.  Mary Craig: Kundun, a Biogrphy of the Family of the Dalai Lama, London 1997

  1. Matthias Hermanns: Das Nationalepos der Tibeter, Gling Koenig Ge Sar, Regensburg 1965
  2. Melvyn Goldstein, A history of modern Tibet 1913-1951. The Demise of the Lamaist state, Berkely, 1989

13.  Miranda Shaw: Passionate Enlightenment, Women in Tantric Buddhism, Princeton 1994

  1. Neville Maxwell: India’s China War, NY: Pantheon, 1970

15.  Per K. Sorensen: Divinity secularized. An inquiry into the nature and form of songs ascribed to the sixth Dalai Lama, Wien 1990

  1. Rene de Nebesky-Wojkowitz: Oracles and demons of Tibet, the cult and Iconography of the Tibetan protective deities, Katmandu 1993
  2. Samtsen Gyaltsen Karmay: Secret visions of the fifth Dalai Lama. The gold manuscript in the fournier collection, London 1988
  3. Shoko Asahara: The Teachings of the Truth, Fujinomiya 1991
  4. Tom Grunfeld: The making of modern Tibet, NY, 1996
  5. Zahiruddin Ahmad: Sino-Tibetan relations in the seventeenth century, Serie Orientale Roma XL, Roma 1970
  6. 范文澜:中国通史简编,人民出版社,1949
  7. 陈寅恪:唐代政治史迹述论稿,上海古籍出版社,1982
  8. 彭英全:西藏宗教概说,西藏人民出版社,1983
  9. 荣赫鹏:英国侵略西藏史,西藏社会科学院,1983
  10. DR.曼克卡尔:谁是六二年的罪人,西藏社会科学院汉文文献编辑室,1985
  11. 王辅仁:西藏佛教史略,青海人民出版社,1987
  12. 吴丰培:清朝驻藏大臣制度的建立与沿革,中国藏学出版社,1989
  13. 赤烈曲扎:西藏风土志,西藏人民出版社,1996
  14. 王立雄:天葬,明镜出版社,1999
  15. 耶律大石:西藏文化谈,未名空间,2002
No comments

Place your comment

Please fill your data and comment below.
Your comment