From an article in the LA Times on self-immolation inTibet as a protest against Chinese occupation and brutality:
"Only by staying alive can the will become a reality."
The Chinese empire endures. The oldest empire still in existence. It seems to me that the battles fought in the 20th century between democracy and totalitarianism have largely been won. No one can deny the totalitarianism still rules all too many human beings on our planet. Nevertheless, the trends are clearly heading toward democracy.
Not only victories 20th-century, but also spread of technology which empowers individual people and groups and individual people are having a tremendous impact. I'm certainly not saying that the battles are over, but I do believe the ultimate victory is now in sight.
As the middle-class continues to rise, the Chinese government will more and more be forced to deal with the demands of well-educated populace which now expects life to be getting better and better at an accelerated rate. The inevitable result will be democracy. The question, then, becomes how long will this process take? How much human suffering must continue in a pointless effort to maintain a system which is already beginning to rot on the trash heap of history?
I have no doubt that given enough time, the people of Tibet will be free. But I do worry that they may not be free for decades and many, many more will die before this can be accomplished.
In spite of this grave concern, I will again make a prediction i have been making for some time. In the foreseeable future, certainly within the next 50 years, China will be one of our very best friends. She will be our trading partner. She will be our ally. It happened with Germany. It happened with Japan. It will happen with China.
But how much suffering must be added on to the already too great a toll? It is all so pointless. The old regime clings to the power which is rapidly eroding. And the people suffer on.