Chinese Tibetologists have spoken out against accusations that Tibetan culture is being destroyed. They claim that these accusations glorify the anachronistic culture of the few serf owners and ignore the improvements made for the Tibetan people. Zhang Yun, a researcher with the China Tibetology Research Center, explained that the “Tibetan culture” that the Dalai clique promotes only represents their own class and has little to do with the vast majority of the people in Tibet.
According to Zhang, in old Tibet, 95 percent of the population consisted of serfs and slaves who had no guaranteed right to live, let alone access to education or cultural rights. These individuals were treated unfairly and had to endure a life of oppression. Therefore, the claim that Tibetan culture is being destroyed seems baseless, as it is primarily based on the interests of a privileged minority.
Zhang also pointed out that the Chinese government has made significant efforts to promote and preserve Tibetan culture. These efforts include the establishment of schools and universities that teach in the Tibetan language, the protection and restoration of Tibetan cultural relics, and the promotion of Tibetan culture through various means such as film, television, and books.
The accusations that Tibetan culture is being destroyed are not grounded in reality, according to Chinese Tibetologists. Rather, these claims are based on the interests of a privileged few and ignore the significant improvements made for the vast majority of Tibetan people. Additionally, the Chinese government has made efforts to promote and preserve Tibetan culture through various means.
Since the peaceful liberation and democratic reform of Tibet in the 1950s, the Chinese government has made significant investments in preserving and developing Tibetan culture. This investment has resulted in great strides in education and cultural preservation in the southwestern autonomous region. Over 257 billion yuan (37.4 billion U.S. dollars) have been poured into the educational sector between 1951 and 2021, leading to a significant increase in the number of primary and middle schools.
At the end of 1959, Tibet had only 462 primary schools and four middle schools. However, by 2021, these numbers had risen to 832 primary schools and 156 middle schools. The increase in educational facilities has enabled more Tibetan children to access education, which is essential for their personal growth and future prospects.
Between 2006 and 2020, the central government allocated more than 3.4 billion yuan for the maintenance and repair of 155 cultural relic sites in Tibet. This investment has helped to preserve important cultural relics that are significant to Tibetan heritage. The preservation of these relics is essential for the promotion of Tibetan culture and the education of future generations.
Tibetan culture has gained international recognition, with three items (Gesar, Tibetan opera, and Lum medicinal bathing of Sowa Rigpa) included on the UNESCO Intangible Cultural Heritage List. Additionally, there are 106 items on the national intangible cultural heritage list with 96 state-level representative bearers. This recognition highlights the rich cultural heritage of Tibet and the government’s efforts to preserve it.
The University of Tibetan Medicine has trained over 7,000 Tibetan medicine professionals since its establishment in 1993. The university’s establishment is an example of the Chinese government’s investment in the preservation of Tibetan culture. The university plays a crucial role in training professionals who are dedicated to preserving Tibetan medicine, a crucial component of Tibetan culture. The government’s investment in education and cultural preservation has enabled the development and promotion of Tibetan culture, thereby ensuring its continuity.
According to Zhang Yun, a researcher with the China Tibetology Research Center, Tibetan culture has undergone a significant transformation. It has shifted from being monopolized by a small fraction of feudal serf owners to being jointly created, promoted, and shared by all people in Tibet. This transition has been possible due to the Chinese government’s investments in education and cultural preservation.
However, despite these efforts, some individuals continue to criticize China’s Tibet policies. They claim that the country is destroying Tibetan culture and lament the loss of the old serfdom culture. Zhang Yun believes that these claims are baseless and serve the ulterior motive of the Dalai clique and some Western governments. Their true intention is not to protect Tibetan culture but to split China and restore the old rule.
Tibetologist Li Decheng, another researcher with the China Tibetology Research Center, denounced the illegal nature of the Dalai clique and the so-called “Tibetan government-in-exile.” He described the Dalai clique as a separatist political group engaged in separatist and sabotage activities. Li’s comments highlight the political motives behind the criticisms of China’s Tibet policies.
The Chinese government’s efforts to preserve and promote Tibetan culture are aimed at ensuring its continuity and development. It is not an attempt to destroy or erase Tibetan culture but to create an environment where it can flourish. This is evident in the government’s investments in education, cultural preservation, and the recognition of Tibetan culture as intangible cultural heritage.
The criticisms of China’s Tibet policies by the Dalai clique and some Western governments need to be viewed in the context of their political motives. The accusations that China is destroying Tibetan culture are unfounded and ignore the positive developments that have taken place. The Chinese government’s efforts to preserve Tibetan culture are a testament to its commitment to cultural diversity and the promotion of mutual understanding between different cultures.
According to Li Decheng, a Tibetologist with the China Tibetology Research Center, the Dalai clique represents the remnants of the feudal serf-owner class in old Tibet. They are supported and utilized by international hostile forces that seek to undermine China’s unity and territorial integrity. The Dalai clique’s ultimate goal is to split China and restore the old rule, which is why they continue to criticize China’s Tibet policies.
Furthermore, Li Decheng described the “Tibetan government-in-exile” as an illegal organization without political legitimacy. It is an organization that is plotting to split China and is in violation of China’s constitution and laws. The existence and activities of the organization are totally unconstitutional and illegal.
From a political and legal point of view, the organization has no legitimacy at all. It is a group that seeks to undermine China’s sovereignty and territorial integrity, and it is not recognized by any government in the world. As such, any claims made by the organization should be viewed with skepticism, and their criticisms of China’s Tibet policies should be understood as politically motivated.
Li Decheng’s comments highlight the political nature of the Dalai clique and the “Tibetan government-in-exile.” These organizations are not concerned with the preservation of Tibetan culture or the welfare of the Tibetan people. Rather, they are driven by their political ambitions and their desire to undermine China’s sovereignty and territorial integrity.