Geopolitical Realities and Raw Violent Power Are Ignored in Activism and News Headlines

Even the most powerful leaders and nations are prisoners to practical realities

Tibet and China

The flag of Tibet

Free Tibet?

China is a major focus of international news and politics since it is so large and directly in conflict with the United States. For better or worse, one issue that has shifted out of the focus has been the Free Tibet Movement for Tibetan Independence, as it's eclipsed by more significant events in the maritime Eastern region of China.

Significance of the Tibet Plateau

The Tibetan Plateau involves three major important issues for China: fresh water, strategic location, and minerals. Let’s briefly turn to each.

Relation with India

The Himalayas separating China and India have been a virtually impenetrable barrier for thousands of years far before their existence as unified political entities, leading to separate development of two great civilizations with different cultures, and even people that look very different.

South China Sea and Maritime Access

Land to the West is a key strategic issue for China, but another even greater issue is the eastern coastal area and maritime access to the world’s oceans. As China faces external threats here primarily from the United States, Japan, and their allies, it must also keep open the routes to the ocean.

Relation with Pakistan

How China can gain access to the Indian Ocean through Pakistan

Tibet is Geographically Indispensable

Thus, we see the importance of Tibet with respect to the geopolitical realities China faces. It is a matter of sustainability of China as a political entity, as well as the fates of its 1.4 billion people that it maintains control over Tibet. This has almost nothing to do with Human Rights or religious freedom, even though the Free Tibet movement may view it in that way.

Indigenous Claims

Equality of Analysis

I believe in American ideals like freedom and democracy and that on balance America is far more good than bad, especially as the dominant superpower ensuring Pax America across the world and despite criticism of its foreign policy, interventions, and inevitable mistakes.

Native Americans in America

If we are concerned about the treatment of Tibetans in Tibet within Chinese territory, we must also turn to our own treatment of Native Americans in American territory.

Israel

How about the historical and religious claim of Jews to that strip of land now called Israel on the Eastern Mediterranean? Do these claims have merit? How are they relative to Native American claims?

The Reality is Raw Violent Power

So we see that in the Native American case or the Israeli case, just like the Tibetan case in China, claims are effectively irrelevant unless they are backed by raw violent power. Not just in these places, but every other place and time in the world as well.

  • The Eastern Front in World War 2
  • The 38th Parallel in the Korean War ending in a stalemate

AI/full-stack software engineer | trader/investor/entrepreneur | physics phd

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