Why Tibet Must Be Freed From Chinese Tyranny

Tibet cover

Why Tibet Must Be Freed From Chinese Tyranny

This is a post in which I try to raise awareness of and get passionate about something that myself, and too few people in the world, don’t know enough about. After recently listening to the Dalai Lama speak in Dharamsala, and spending time with Lobsang, a Tibetan monk, the plight of the Tibetan people has stuck a powerful chord in me. After meeting those guys, I started to do a little research; the statistics I read were horrifying.

I’m talking about the inhumane, illegal and brutal Chinese annexation of Tibet.

Everybody has heard the slogan and seen the t-shirt. “FREE TIBET.” The brilliant Free Tibet website can argue this terribly important case far more eloquently than me, and so the information that follows is courtesy of them.

Here’s why we must raise awareness of the ‘Free Tibet Movement,’ and help rid this beautiful, peaceful and inspiring land and its people of the brutal Chinese dictatorship. Very, very sobering!!


Tibet 1Tibet 2Tibet 3Tibet 4 Tibet 5 Tibet 6 Tibet 7 Tibet 8


We’ve heard that Tibet is occupied by a harsh Chinese leadership. But why should we care?

Economic Discrimination

  • The Chinese government has forced thousands of Tibetans to abandon their traditional rural nomadic lifestyle and move into new housing colonies or towns.
  • Most Tibetans work in the agricultural sector while most economic activity outside of agriculture is controlled by the central government or state owned corporations.
  • In urban centres Tibetans are a minority as a result of Chinese encouragement of ethnic Chinese migration.
  • Most tourist activity is located in urban centres where the main employees are ethnic Chinese migrants.

Religious Suppression

  • Since 1949, the Chinese have destroyed over 6,000 Tibetan Buddhist monasteries and shrines.
  • By 1978 only 8 monasteries and 970 monks and nuns remained in the Tibetan Autonomous Region (TAR).
  • The number of monks and nuns allowed to enter monasteries and nunneries is limited. Any reference or images of the Dalai Lama are banned.


  • Buddhism is central to Tibetan life and monasteries and nunneries are kept under tight surveillance. Police stations are often situated nearby (or inside).
  • Monks and nuns are regularly subjected to ‘patriotic re-education programmes’, for weeks at a time.
  • During these programmes, they are forced to read ‘patriotic’ literature denouncing the Dalai Lama.
  • Those who refuse to take part, or fail the programme, often have their rights to practice as monks and nuns taken away.

Restricting Information

  • China attempts to control all information in and out of Tibet. TV, radio, printed media and the internet are subjected to strict monitoring and censorship.
  • Access is blocked to TV and radio broadcasters based outside China, which provide news services in Tibetan languages.
  • Foreign journalists are rarely allowed entry into Tibet, and when they are, they are closely chaperoned by Chinese officials.

Political Oppression

  • The Chinese have responded to uprisings with extreme violence and around 300,000 Chinese soldiers are posted in Tibet.
  • There is extensive surveillance of the population.
  • China has repeatedly violated UN conventions through extensive use of torture against Tibetan political prisoners – often monks or nuns.
  • Tibet is governed directly by the Chinese Communist Party in Beijing. No Tibetan has ever been appointed Party Secretary – the most senior government post – in the TAR.

Environmental Exploitation


  • Over half of Tibet’s available forest stock has been felled and exported to China.
  • Qulong in Tibet is home to copper deposits of more than 10m tonnes, in addition to other valuable metals. Mining and mineral extraction are now a significant proportion of economic activity but few Tibetans receive financial benefits.
  • The Indian government has reported that three nuclear missile sites are located inside Tibet. Nuclear waste has also been dumped near Lake Kokonor, Tibet’s largest lake.

Human rights in Tibet

  • Tibetans’ civil and political rights are under constant attack by the Chinese authorities who will stop at nothing to suppress dissent.

  • Every aspect of Tibetan life is under siege from a Chinese leadership determined to gradually eradicate a whole culture. (WOW)



No Right to Protest

  • Tibetans are not free to protest or openly speak about their situation. Even peaceful demonstrations are met with heavy handed, military crackdowns.
  •     In 2008, thousands of Tibetans staged the largest protests in Tibet for over 50 years. Demonstrations swept across the entire Tibetan plateau. Later, Chinese authorities arrested an estimated 6,000 protestors, of which the fate of about 1,000 still remains unknown.


  • The upsurge in protests and self-immolations (monks burning themselves to death) in 2011, 2012 and into 2013 has led the Chinese authorities to step up security even further and tighten its stranglehold on Tibet.

Political Prisoners Tortured

  • Prisons in Tibet are full of people detained for simply expressing their desire for freedom. People have been arrested and sentenced to prison for peaceful acts, such as:
    • waving the Tibetan flag
    • distributing leaflets
    • sending information about events in Tibet abroad

    Human rights Child, pedro saraiva, credit.jpg

  • The Chinese deem these acts as ‘subversive’.
  • Many Tibetans are imprisoned on unclear or unspecified charges, their families not informed of their whereabouts.
  • Released prisoners report of having been subjected to beatings, electric shocks, and being deprived of food and drink. A 2008 UN report found that the use of torture in Tibet was ‘widespread’ and ‘routine’.

Free Tibet campaigns for an end to China’s occupation of Tibet and for human rights and self-determination for the Tibetan people. It is entirely funded by its members and supporters. 



Not everybody is in a position to financially assist this important and humanitarian cause. However, if you’re seeing this post then you have access to the internet. I humbly ask you all to do your own little bit, by sharing, liking, re-posting and generally shouting out loud about the plight of the Tibetans.

When I spent time with Lobsang I was humbled by his passive nature and peaceful, positive energy. He fortunately escaped to India, where he now lives in exile, and relative peace. Hundreds of thousands of his county-men, women and children aren’t as lucky.

If you’re as shocked as I was by the staggering statistics & facts above, then please:


Immolation image credit here

Bloodied monk image credit here

Chinese brutality image credit here

Header image credit here

More posts:

His Holiness The Dalai Lama

Lama Illumination


  • October 31, 2014


    I spent time in Tibet and was shocked by the treatment Tibetans received historically and in the present day. Like you I saw many examples of this during my travels and yet it goes on. Thanks for adding to the campaign for awareness of this situation.

    • October 31, 2014


      Hey Tim.

      Yes, it’s truly shocking isn’t it…makes me sick, but not only Tibet…oppression of any people around the world is simply against human nature. We’ve reverted to and become worse even than animals in many cases. We each try and do our little bit, right?

      Thanks mate.

  • July 26, 2014



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  • December 10, 2013


    This is a shocking (and for me enlightening) view of the worst part of human beings. Thank-you for sharing this, it is something that the world NEEDS to know about.

    • December 10, 2013


      Indeed Jamie. Shout out loud for Tibet!
      Watch this space…got a post coming soon about more of this stuff that makes us so sad and angry. We each have only one voice, but if we keep shouting eventually our echoes will get heard.

      • December 10, 2013


        I look forward to it.

  • November 27, 2013


    I knew Tibet was in a rough situation, but the information above took my breath away. I’m disgusted by China’s behavior. I’m disgusted by the international world’s lack of response to China’s behavior.

    Thanks for this post, complacency is one of the worst qualities a person can half, and for travelers it’s twice as bad. You did well to give the internet a kick in the butt.

    • November 27, 2013


      It was only after my visit with the Dalai Lama in Dharamsala last month that I started to look into it. There are a lot of online communities doing great things, but this is just my little bit.
      Thanks for stopping by, and thanks for the support. Pimp and share and spread the word!!
      Thanks Sally.