Tibet, Uranium, Energy, History - Is Tibet China's Iraq?

Is there a parallel between Tibet and Iraq? Is Tibet's uranium part of the reason China is there? Maybe... perhaps even probably..

I have, like many of us, I'm sure, been looking at the many videos on YouTube of the demonstrations in Tibet and elsewhere in western China. Its depressing how oblivious China is to the needs of the people there for equality and an economic future. I think much of the anger is from Tibetans because they feel extremely marginalized. They are being marginalized in their own country.

One thing that I had not realized until now, is that evidently, Tibet contains the largest deposits of uranium in the world, some of which are, ironically, right around Lhasa, the pre-Chinese Tibetan capital.

Obviously, uranium equals energy.. just as oil does..

A desire to control that uranium would explain a lot.

As I said, its supposed to hold the largest deposits in the world. At least, this is what I have read on a number of web sites. And it makes sense, given Tibet's incredible geology. (Its the most mountainous place in the world, and the earth's crust is folded exposing large quantities of many metals that are not found near the surface elsewhere.

I have read (on a Tibetan web site) that China used the Tibetan uranium to pay back a huge loan that the ex-Soviet Union had given them.

If so, I think China should acknowledge this.

Obviously, China should be plowing that money back into Tibet in such a way that recognizes the Tibetans right to a share of that money. Instead, Tibetans have clearly been marginalized.

Similar things happened in the US with uranium on Indian reservations and the US government now owes a number of Indian tribes millions of dollars. But they had contracts. Treaties, and reservations. Even pennies on the dollar added up to a lot.

Anyway, its clear to me that Tibet represents a tremendous amount of energy wealth. The energy reserves may be comparable to or exceed the energy represented by the Middle East's oil.. This wealth is sort of the dirty secret underneath the Tibet situation.

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West "Tones Down" Criticism of China, Reports of Tibet Protest Spreading

"Economically, we depend much more on China than they do on us," French Foreign Minister Bernard Kouchner said on Wednesday. "It is an essential partner for pretty much every country in the world.

"When you conduct foreign relations with countries as important as China, obviously when you take economic decisions, sometimes it's at the expense of human rights," he told France's BFM television.

link: http://www.reuters.com/article/worldNews /idUSL1863047320080319?pageNumber=1& virtualBrandChannel=0

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UPDATED (2x): Police Conduct House-by-House Searches In Tibet As Protest Spreads

From today's Wapo - I've highlighted a chilling part of their report:

Vowing a harsh crackdown, Chinese police conducted house-to-house searches in central Lhasa Monday and rounded up hundreds of Tibetans suspected of participating in a deadly outburst of anti-Chinese violence, exile groups and residents reported.

The large-scale arrests and official promises of tough reprisals suggested the Chinese government has decided to move decisively to crush the protests despite calls for restraint from abroad and warnings that heavy-handed repression could taint next summer's Olympic Games in Beijing.

The Tibetan regional governor, Champa Phuntsok, said detainees who show remorse and inform on others who were part of the week-long unrest would be rewarded with better treatment. But Buddhist monks and other Tibetans who participated in Friday's torching of Chinese-owned shops and widespread attacks on Han Chinese businessmen would be "dealt with harshly," he told a news conference in Beijing.

link: http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/con tent/article/2008/03/17/AR2008031700575. html?hpid=moreheadlines

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Let's Send Ralph Nader to China

Let me start by saying that I am not at all one of those Democrats who think that it was consumer advocate Ralph Nader who gave us the last eight years of George W. Bush. While many in the Democratic Party may hold that opinion and truly believe that Nader is just this side of a complete a##hole for running for president in 2000, I do not share that opinion.

I always thought that if Gore had just won his home state of Tennessee. Or won President Clinton's home state of Arkansas. Or won West Virginia, a state that no Democratic presidential nominee had lost since...well look it on Wikipedia yourself and see. You get my point.

This year Mr. Nader has announced yet again his decision to run for president. No one in the Democratic Party seems to be happy about it. Senator Clinton said of Nader,

"...very unfortunate...I remember when he ran before. It didn't turn out very well for anybody -- especially our country."
Senator Obama said,
"He thought that there was no difference between Al Gore and George Bush and, eight years later, I think people realize that Ralph did not know what he was talking about".

There is even a guy [Jerry Peace Activist Rubin] fasting until Nader pulls out from the race. Now that's commitment.

But there is a time and place to settle for once and for all, the issue of Ralph Nader running for president, ....but without hurting his feelings. After all, Nader has done a great deal for us, and we owe him lots of gratitude.

Nader has given us clean water, clear air, safer cars----just to name a few things.

So, the other day I am reading about China's environmental problems. Like their air pollution: "... Beijing and its neighboring north-east Chinese provinces have the planet's worst levels of nitrogen dioxide, which can cause fatal damage to the lungs...An explosive increase in car ownership is blamed for a sharp rise in unhealthy emissions."

Or their water pollution: "One of China's most critical environmental problems is water pollution; 300 million people lack access to clean drinking water; over 70 percent of lakes and rivers are polluted; and according to an article in the Wall Street Journal, "factories and cities dump some 40 to 60 billion tons of wastewater and sewage into lakes and rivers each year."

So this gets me thinking, here's how to kill to birds with one stone: Let's send Ralph Nader to China. They've got pollution problems; we've got the guy with the track record to fix them. I mean, who better than Nader?

He's the guy to get Hu Jintao to help out. To get the Communist Party to clean up the place. To get Beijeng beautiful. China has 1.3 billion people. Nader has got to be inspired by a country that polluted and that big. He'd be up for the challenge. And in the mix, he's out of the country for the duration of 2008 election.

So, according to FlyChina.com, a round trip airfare between Nader's hometown of Washington, DC and Beijing is a paltry $1138. That's just 8,094.72 Chinese Yuan.

So, as good a Democrat, I am donating the first Yuan. Any other Democrats want to chip in with me?

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I heard Obama's wondering why Hillary was offering him the VP spot when he's the front-runner.  My first thought was - well why isn't he acting like the front-runner then?

He's whining about things like her tax returns (when there are already 20 years worth of disclosures out there), intimating that White Water's still alive and well in the world of scandals, and making silly mistakes like offering up the 5th explanation of NAFTA-Gate. This after a week where his top foreign policy advisor called Hillary a monster & told the BBC that his plan to get us out of Iraq was just a best case scenario, and another top advisor (Susan Rice) admitted that he's not ready to take that 3 am call.

And when Rice was asked about Obama's foreign policy experience, she pointed to his work on ethics reform

Hmmm... with all that bad news out there I wonder if it's time for them to manufacture some more of that outrage he's oh so good at.  Oh wait - he is!

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