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Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Chas Freeman and Tibetan Freedom Day

March 10 is Tibetan Freedom Day. In an editorial, the Washington Times recalls the response of Chas Freeman, who has been nominated to head the National Intelligence Council, to riots that took place in Tibet on this day last year.
We have always deplored China's ongoing, brutal occupation of Tibet. The Tibetan people have suffered three-score years of Chinese communist rule, and the chronicle of barbarities and indignities that have been visited on them is long and well documented.

Yet Chas Freeman, now undergoing vetting for the position of chair of the National Intelligence Council, thinks - rather astoundingly - that what is going on in Tibet is the fault of the United States. In remarks made last April, in which he infamously referred to the March 2008 Tibetan uprisings as "race riots," Freeman stated that "the level of patriotic indignation in China against posturing by American and European politicians over Tibet is already so high that a long-term clamp-down in Tibet seems inevitable."

Freeman is employing a classic "blame America" formula, saying the Chinese repression in Tibet is caused by the fact that concerned humanitarians in the West have drawn attention to it. He took a similar line in assessing the cause of the 9/11 attacks, as he stated in 2005: "What 9/11 showed is that if we bomb people, they bomb back." Freeman seems to have a problem with the law of cause and effect. Perhaps he believes that "American posturing" caused the invasion of Tibet 60 years ago.

In Freeman's world, those who protest against such human rights tragedies simply have over-active imaginations. In remarks made in March 2007 he noted that "those who wish America to go abroad in search of monsters to destroy can always find one worthy of our attention there. China has become a screen on which Americans can project both our reveries and our nightmares." And those who speak out in support of the rights of the Tibetan minority are wasting their time because "Chinese proponents of Tibetan independence are rarer than British advocates of discarding Wales."
Read the whole thing.

And you thought the Democrats were the party that cared about the downtrodden. You were wrong.


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