Tag Archives: Tibet

As Prime Minister Modi visits China, it is necessary to remember a few hard facts: INDIA VERSUS CHINA: OR CHANAKYA VERSUS GANDHI

For nearly 70 years, China has humiliated India at every step :

It betrayed Nehru’s naive trust in a Hindi-Chini bhai-bhai friendship and treacherously attacked India from Tibet which Nehru had implicitly left to the Chinese, humiliating the Indian army which would take decades to recover. It directly or indirectly encouraged separatist movements in the northeast; it used Nepal as a front state against India; it armed, and worst of all, gave the nuclear bomb to Pakistan, a crime against humanity. Today it is still sitting on a million square meters in Aksai Chin (supposedly given to Pakistan), which rightfully belong to India; it claims Arunachal Pradesh, and sometimes Sikhim, does regular incursions into Indian territory and is still busy encircling India in Burma. Chinese despise Indians, witness how they summoned the Indian ambassador at 2 am in the morning as if she was some lower hireling.

Indian leaders, including Mr Narendra Modi, are also perfectly aware that the Chinese, in a span of fifty years, have killed 1,2 million Tibetans, razed to the ground 6254 monasteries, destroyed 60% of religious, historical and cultural archives and that one Tibetan out of ten is still in jail. As we have entered the Third Millennium, a quarter million Chinese troops are occupying Tibet and there are 7,5 million Chinese settlers for six million Tibetans – in fact, in many places such as the capital, Lhassa, Tibetans are outnumbered two to one… India has also to wake-up to the plain fact that China needs space and has hegemonic aspirations : it got Tibet, it got Hong Kong, it got part of Ladhak; now it wants Taiwan, Arunachal Pradesh, the Spratly islands and what not ! Seventy years ago, during the Korean war, Sri Aurobindo, had seen clearly in the Chinese game : “the first move in the Chinese Communist plan of campaign is to dominate and take possession first of these northern parts and then of South East Asia as a preliminary to their manoeuvres with regard to the rest of the continent in passing Tibet as a gate opening to India”.

And magically, for once, India has a chance to get back at China without appearing to do so. China claims Arunachal Pradesh and gives staples visas to Kashmiris and Arunachalis. It would be easy for India to prop-up the Dalai lama, a wonderful man if there is one, and let the Tibetans freely claim their country back, which has never been in Chinese possession except for such short spells. This would embarrass the Chinese enormously and give India some leverage in their territorial negotiations with the Beijing.

Tibet is so important for India: it has always acted as a peaceful, non-violent buffer zone between the two giants of Asia: China and Tibet. And the Dalai-lama wants it even pore peaceful: a demilitarized, denuclearized harmony region. But it’s exactly the opposite which has happened: according to the CIA, China has transferred one third of its nuclear arsenal to Nagchuka, 250 kms away from Lhassa, a region full of huge caves, which the Chinese have linked together by an intricate underground network and where they have installed nearly one hundred Intercontinental Ballistic Missiles, many of them pointed at Indian cities. The reason for this is that the Chinese, who are probably among the most intelligent people in the world, have always understood that India is their number one potential enemy in Asia – in military, nuclear and economic terms.

Today India is encircled by hostile neighbours, from Pakistan to Bangladesh, from Chinese-occupied Tibet, to a Maoist Nepal (encouraged and fostered by Indian communists and the Congress who betrayed the interests of the nation). It has also to deal with a valley of Kashmir whose only true allegiance is Islam, and separatism from some north-eastern states who have been nearly fully converted to Christianity.

Never has India faced a darker hour whatever gurus say. Never has she faced so many enemies at the same time – and truly China is one of the most dangerous ones. Yet India always bends backwards to please the Chinese. Only Mr Modi, since he has come to power, has worked to loosen the iron grip that the Chinese have thrown around India, with his trips to Japan, Bhutan, Sri Lanka, Nepal et cetera. But will, he like Mr Vajpayee, fall in the trap of the Hindu-Buddhist misconception of Ahimsa at all costs, which the Chinese eagerly seize upon to deceive India.

Why is that so? Because the Indian intelligentsia, the « secular » politicians, the journalists, the top bureaucrats, are the descendants of these « Brown Shahibs », which Macaulay created more than 250 years ago. The man who thought that « all the historical information which can be collected from all the books which have been written in the Sanskrit language, is less valuable than what may be found in the most paltry abridgement used at preparatory schools in England », wished to make of Indians a darker version of the British. He has been immensely successful and has created a nation with a colonized mind. Many of India’s politicians, bureaucrats and journalists are always aping whatever the West does, or are always worrying about what the West thinks of them. They never think Indian, they have no idea about India’s great culture, philosophy and spirituality. Very few have read the Bhagavad Gita, or understood that it encourages yoga in action and that sometimes it is important to defend one’s country, culture and borders, by force if necessary. They are no match for Chinese, who are proud of themselves and their nation and will use any means, open and covert, legal and foul, to foster their dream of a Greater China. Beware then Mr Modi, your enemy may be a match for your own political acumen and opportunism. You need to borrow now from Chanakya, or Krishna of the Bhagavad Gita, not Buddha or Gandhi

François Gautier

Will India ever learn its lessons? China has again shown that it is not be trusted. It pretends to shake your hand and then slaps you in the face. At the same time that President Xi came to visit India, Chinese soldiers willfully made an incursion in Indian territory.

Did you know that the Chinese have used the Tibetan plateau to point their nuclear missiles at North Indian cities (exactly 90 IRBM -US Senate Foreign Committee report). More than that, India could never see that Tibet was the ideal buffer between her and China, if denuclearised and demilitarised, as the Dalai-lama has proposed in the European Parliament of Strasbourg. And Nehru’s betrayal of Tibet will come back to haunt India, as it did recently, when the Indian occupation of Kashmir was equaled with the Chinese occupation of Tibet. The Chinese killed 1,2 million Tibetans and wiped out in 45 years a wonderful 2000 year old civilisation. On the other hand, in Kashmir, there has been no genocide, only war casualties and India is fighting to retain what has been hers for 5000 years.

Tibet and China, the natural brothers

Did you know that Tibetan medicine is one of the greatest surviving natural medical systems of the world, along with Ayurveda ? Tibetan medicine strives to keep in balance within the body the subtle flow of energy, or Nyipa sum, which is made out of the five elements: air, fire, water, earth and space. And as in Ayurveda, 95% of Tibetan medicine is based on herbs, and precious metals, which are used for the seven kinds of precious pills known as Rinchen rilpo. The methods of diagnosis differ though from Ayurveda – and thereby lies the genius of Tibetan medicine – as the observation of the tongue, along with questioning and palpation, is the principal tool of diagnosis. Tibetan medicine always treats the cause or the root of the disease and illness and not the symptoms. The school of medicine began to flourish 1,200 years ago when Tibet drew on medicinal knowledge from China, Persia and India, buts its origins are shrouded in mystery and many of its secrets have been passed on by word of mouth or are buried in Tibetan writings. The four main medical ‘Tantras’, said to be taught by Buddha himself and written down in Sanskrit more than 800 years ago, are still used by Tibetan doctors today.

And what about Tibetan spirituality ? It is probably one of the finest in the world and as in Tibetan medicine, the emphasis is on self development. There are two ways to create happiness, says Tibetan spirituality: the first is external. By obtaining better clothes, better shelter, and better friends, we can find a certain measure of happiness and satisfaction. The second is through mental development, which yields inner happiness. However, these two approaches are not equally viable, as external happiness cannot last long without its counterpart…. “But, if you have peace of mind, emphasizes His Holiness the Dalai-lama, you can find happiness even under the most difficult circumstances”. The Dalai Lama also reminds us that developing peace of mind means paying attention to our daily attitudes and choices as well as taking the time to meditate and be prayerful.

Tibetan Buddhism helps us too in preparing for a good death by coming to terms with negative emotions – such as anger, attachment, hatred and jealousy – that restrict our freedom, block our joy and cause us to experience suffering.

Reading the remarkable Tibetan Book of Living and Dying makes it easier to overcome your own fear of dying and helps you take the responsibility to prepare for your death. It also helps you prepare yourself for the death and dying of your dear and loved ones. Tibetan spirituality could also offer a word or two of advice to terrorists who blow themselves up or ram planes against buildings: “There is no such thing as a doomed soul in Buddhism. But there is such a thing as a prolonged period of suffering over many lives brought on by negative karma. Karma truly means cause and effect, says again the Dalai-lama.’ The terrorists, by killing so many people, are creating a negative karma that keeps them in hell for a long time through many lifetimes of suffering.” And indeed, If you see the Dalai lama today, he radiates so much peace and compassion.

Unfortunately, China does not seem to understand the great value of Tibetan medicine and spirituality. A report by the United States Congress (Resolution Number 63) states that since 1950, when the Chinese invaded this wonderful, peace loving nation, which boasted the highest (although quite feudal) spiritualised society in the world, 1,2 million Tibetans have been killed, either directly: shooting, death squads, torture – or indirectly: concentration camps, prison, or famines. 6254 monasteries, most of them ancient, have been razed to the ground. 60% of religious, historical and cultural archives have been destroyed. A quarter million Chinese troops are occupying Tibet. One Tibetan out of ten is still in jail. There are today In Tibet 7,5 million Chinese settlers for six million Tibetans- in many places such as the capital, Lhassa, Tibetans are outnumbered two to one…

It is not over at all: The summer and autumn of 2001 saw the dismantling of the Serthar Institute, the leading centre for Buddhist scholarship and practice on the Tibetan plateau. Khenpo Jigme Phuntsok founded Serthar Institute in Larung Valley near Serthar town, Karze Prefecture, Sichuan Province in 1980, to meet the pressing need for renewal of meditation and scholarship all over Tibet in the wake of China’s Cultural Revolution (1966-77). This non-sectarian academy of over 8,000 monks and nuns, drew nearly 1,000 Mainland and Overseas Chinese practitioners as students. They were the first group to face expulsion and deportation to their places of origin in June and July 2001. The Chinese- appointed “work teams” next targeted the over 4,000 Tibetan nuns forming Serthar’s affiliated nunnery. The official Beijing directive was to reduce their number to 400 and destroy their meditation huts to ensure the eviction was permanent. According to western monitoring agencies, such as Human Rights Watch, over 1,000 dwellings had been destroyed at Serthar by the beginning of this year, thousands of monks and nuns had been successfully evicted, and Khenpo Jigme Phuntsok is believed to be incommunicado in Chengdu, capital of Sichuan.

Places like the Serthar Institute, house Tibetan treasures – spiritual, medical, cultural and social – which should be conserved, otherwise they will be lost to humanity for ever. “The Chinese should understand that they are destroying the last great living spirituality of their continent. The highlighting of the secrets and the vast knowledge based on the various inner sciences adopted by the Tibetans, goes beyond the research with sophisticated equipment and the Chinese Government should take-up its study in earnest”, says Claude Arpi, the author of the Fate of Tibet (Har Anand, New Delhi). “Above all, he continues, it is ethical learning which did not need the sacrifice of lives. These sacrifices are both in terms of lives lost and pain induced. It is clear that China, which has embarked on a fury of materialistic endeavours, needs spirituality”.

Germans have taken up the language of Sanskrit through their ancient roots and this sets an example for a country like China to take up the wealth of

knowledge that is prevalent in Tibet. Tibet is a land of inner sciences and self development processes which can be learnt through various disciplines. These need to be preserved like treasures for the world before it is too late. Tibet in no way presents any danger to China. The Dalai Lama himself said recently : “I am only asking for the Tibetans that they should have full power in the fields where they are capable of managing their own affairs. In the case of defence or foreign affairs, the Chinese can manage our affairs. We are not asking for a separation from China”.

François Gautier

UPDATE SHIVAJI MAHARAJ MUSEUM, PUNE

Dear friends, As some of you may know, we have completed and inaugurated the 2d phase of the Shivaji Maharaj Museum of India History, Pune, with His Holiness the Dalai Lama on 28th July. see the film at: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0Dc5x6oDj1g
You can see some of the Media coverage at: http://factindiablog.blogspot.in/
and also Sri Sri Ravi Shankar’s message: http://factmuseum.blogspot.in/

We have already 5 buildings and have recently installed our latest exhibition: http://dara-shikoh.blogspot.in/

I am about to start a series of exhibitions on the Vedas in the light of Sri Aurobindo’s Secret of the Vedas, under the direction of Dr Kireet Joshi, who was Chairman Council of Philosophical research, Secretary Education Gujarat and is now retired in Pondichery. Would you be able to help? I need appr 5 lakhs per exhibition. Attached is the first page of the brief. We have tax exemption and can honor our big donors by naming one of the buildings after them.. Here are our trust bank account for electronic transfer: Name of account: Foundation Against Continuing Terrorism (FACT)
Account No: 04071450000237. IFCS code: HDFC0000407
Bank Address: HDFC Bank Ltd., T S No.6, 100 Feet Road
Ellaipillaichavadi, Pondicherry-605 005. Telephone: 0413 2206044

If you do so, send me a mail at fgautier@rediffmail.com
Best wishes
François Gautier/ Trustee FACT
Trustee FACT

A WESTERN JOURNALIST ON LK ADVANI

When I started reporting in India, I had the same ideas as most western journalists : secularism, as practiced by Jawarlahal Nehru, was the best policy for India, given its caste and religion differences; Islam was a peaceful religion; and there were also Hindu fanatics.

But I had been given three boons by the Lord: I spent the first seven years of my life in India far from Delhi (in Pondicherry); I read Sri Aurobindo extensively and discovered that he had a towering mind, educated in the West, but Himalayan in its breadth; & I started freelancing in the South, which is much softer, much more attuned to its culture and spirituality than northern India.

Thus, when I interviewed K.R. Malkani, then one of the spokespersons of the BJP in 1988, I went there thinking I would get a Hindu ‘nationalist’ spiel. I was surprised to find a very cultured man, who spoke softly and courteously. And funniest of all, most of the things he said made sense and reminded me of what Sri Aurobindo had written nearly a hundred years before. Thus I became, probably the only ever western correspondent sympathetic to the BJP (Mark Tully, who has an intuition of Hinduism, always remained too British and too Christian to cross that threshold).

I met LK Advani in Jaipur in 1989 and took an instant liking to him: his forthrightness, Spartan simplicity and forceful thoughts. I remember in these days, there were only 3 pillars of the BJP: Advani, MM Joshi and Vajpayee. I was never very impressed by Mr Vajpayee, though no doubt he was a consensus man and an able statesman: but both the times I interviewed him one to one, I found that he had no knowledge about the world and nothing much of interest to say. But I had a lot of admiration for Mr Advani and Murli Manohar Joshi. Both demonstrated that they had guts: MM Joshi by raising the Indian flag in Srinagar in 1992, which at that time was made fun by the entire Indian media; and LK Advani by breaking a jinx : Muslims destroyed hundreds of thousands, if not millions of temples in india, but he was the one who had the guts to destroy that one mosque, abandoned as it was. It was a symbolic message of the Hindu renaissance.

The pity is that these three kept each other neutralized: MM Joshi and LK Advani have hated each other for the last 20 years and Vajpayee made sure that Advani always remained N°2 in the BJP.

I however always though that L.K. Advani’s reputation as a fanatic hardliner and a hawk was misplaced: I have spent many moments in his home and I have never heard him raise his voice. In fact, I doubt he ever hit someone in his life: he is very much a family man, dedicated to his wife Kamla and daughter Pratibha, both of them remarkably intelligent. In fact, it often struck me that these two women were the two biggest influences in his life.

Wen the BJP again lost the last elections in 2009, I met Mr Advani shortly thereafter alone in his office & he firmly told me: “it’s time for me to retire from politics”. I believed him then: Advani is a quiet man, whatever the press says, he likes to read, think, watch films and spend quality time with his family.

Yet today, he is clearly positioning himself as the BJP PM candidate for 2014 and that is wrong. For one, he will be 87 at the beginning of his mandate and 92 at the end of it, when most of the leaders in other parts of the world are in their fifties or even forties. Secondly, he is wrecking the chances of the BJP, because, whether it is fair or not, he does not have a good image with the electorate. Thirdly, as usual, in the true tradition of Hindu disunity, he is stabbing in the back Narendra Modi, the only man who has a chance to beat Rahul Gandhi and bring the BJP back to power. Fourthly, however much I liked LK Advani, when he was Home minister and deputy PM, he did not do better than the Congress: neither did he help the poor Tibetans as he had promised, nor did he show any iron hand in Kashmir, nor did he stand up to the Chinese. In fact he did nothing except trying to project a goody image of himself and the BJP.

For all these reasons, I , who has been the one and only western correspondent friend of the BJP in all these years say:
DEAR MR ADVANI, PLEASE BE TRUE TO YOUR WORD AND STEP DOWN FROM THE BJP, SO AS TO LEAVE THE PLACE TO NARENDRA MODI, WHO NOT ONLY SHOWED THAT HE DOES THIBGS BY MAKING OF GUJARAT A MODEL FOR ALL OTHER INDIAN STATES, BUT ALSO IS THE ONLY CHANCE OF THE BJP IN THE NEXT ELECTIONS

Francois Gautier

PS It does not help that LK Advani refused point blank to help the Shivaji Maharaj Museum of Indian History, Pune. If there ever was a Museum dedicated to the Hindus, it was this one

KARMA AND THE 09 INDIANS ELECTIONS

Each nation, like the human soul, packs karma in each of its lives or cycles. Good karma or bad karma have one unique characteristics: they are like a tiny seed, bearing their fruits ages or cycles later, often giving the impression to the ignorant mind of total injustice done to innocent souls. Thus the individual who seems to suffer unfair circumstances in this life, may be paying for a bad karma done dozens of lives ago. In the same manner, a nation which appears to suffer inexplicable hardships: persecution, earthquakes, great natural catastrophes, dictatorships, may be amending for a karma accomplished centuries ago. The Tibetan people’s plight seems to be a good example of this phenomenon. Here is one of the most harmless, peaceful, adorable culture on earth, spiritualised on top of that, who suffered and is still suffering the worst ignominies at the hands of the Chinese communists, who have eradicated their culture, razed to the ground hundreds of ancient and marvelous temples, killed either directly or indirectly – concentration camps, torture, famine – more than one million of this adorable people! Why? The Dalai-Lama, himself, one of the last great spiritual figures of this era, admits that it was because of an ancient “black karma”, bad deeds. Was it feudalism? Was it not opening itself to the world for so long? Or misuse of Tantrism? Who knows and who can judge? But it’s a good bet to say that there is probably no total injustice in this world. Everything springs from a mathematical, ultra-logical system, where one gets the exact reward one deserves, which bears no moral connotation like in Christianity. That, is called Karma.

There is also another wonderful concept in India, that of Dharma, which is the path of righteousness and living one’s life according to the codes of conduct as described by all ancient scriptures. It means “that which holds” the people of this world and the whole creation. On the other side, a-dharma is what makes people stray from the path of compassion, love, togetherness and that which creates hate, corruption and selfishness. As in a human being, a nation can choose a dharmic path or an a-dharmic one. The dharmic path, whatever the pitfalls, ensures the survival of the soul of a nation – which has been India’s story so far; and the a-dharmic one, the fall of even the greatest of civilisations, whether Rome, Greece or Egypt. Today for Indians, dharma is choosing between forces that are attacking India’s spiritual legacy and forces which will help preserve it.

Then we have the notion of the Avatar and the Asura in ancient India. As the avatar or the Vibhuti is direct incarnation of the Divine forces, the asura works against Dharma and ushers an era of a-dharma. It should also be emphasized that there is no such thing as the utter evil and absolute good of Christianity or American films in human beings: often the asuric beings seem to embody some good, whether it is charity or even secularism.

At this very moment, Indians have been asked to decide their future by electing a new Government. Sometimes, it is said that people act out of ignorance. But this time it is not so: Indians have been warned repeatedly in the forms of monstrous terrorist attacks, one after the other, that something is terribly wrong. They have also seen how the whole system is deteriorating, that cynicism in politics is the rule of the day, that their own Media is terribly biased and can be bought, that ancient values are being lost quickly by the way of Christian conversions, wildcat westernization and the sprout of Islamic fundamentalism. So, ultimately Indians are being given the choice to vote decisively for their future. If they do opt for the repeat of the same government which has ushered all these forces, out of regional, caste or religious pettiness, selfishness, or plain indifference, it can be said safely that somewhere they will do it consciously. They will have then to bear the consequences of their choice. That is called Karma

Then Sir Aurobindo’s words will echo down the ages:
“There are moments when the Spirit moves among men and the breath of the Lord is abroad upon the waters of our being; there are others when it retires and men are left to act in the strength or the weakness of their own egoism. The first are the periods when even a little effort produces great results and changes destiny; the second are spaces of time when much labour goes to the making of a little result. It is true that the latter may prepare the former, may be the little smoke of sacrifice going up to heaven which calls down the rain of God’s bounty.

Unhappy is the man or the nation which, when the divine moment arrives, is found sleeping or unprepared to use it, because the lamp has not been kept trimmed for the welcome and the ears are sealed to the call. But thrice woe to them who are strong and ready, yet waste the force or misuse the moment; for them is irreparable loss or a great destruction.”

fgautier@rediffmail.com

Going from strength to strength

Source: Express buzz

What are the biggest lessons for India from the wonderful, glittering and highly successful Beijing Olympics, which are still going on (the Paralympics)? First, that what the Dalai Lama calls “black Karma,” the karma that an individual or a nation gather by doing wrong actions (such as killing a million Tibetans), does not strike immediately. In fact, it probably catches you unawares when the black deeds are long past and you look shining and innocent and have all but forgotten about them. This is why we get a deep sense of injustice when we see catastrophes or accidents befalling harmless civilians or innocent children.

Thus, China was triumphant.

The second lesson is that good governance is about cynicism, manipulation and deceit, what we in the West call Machiavellism. The Chinese are masters at saying one thing — that they will not interfere in the NSG clearance for instance — and doing exactly the opposite.

This is also what they proved during the Olympics, having promised beforehand not to censor the Internet — and not keeping their pledge. India would do well to understand once and for all that you cannot trust the Chinese. Unfortunately since Nehru, every prime minister has fallen for the Hindi-Chini-bhai-bhai…and paid the price.

There is even a deeper lesson: if your intentions are noble, dharmic, one would say in India, it is ok to use unethical or machiavellian means, for one has to play the game by the rules of this world which are rough, tough and adharmic. The question is: does the Chinese goal of ultimate conquest of India and the world qualify as dharmic? The third lesson is about triumph of will, hard work and dedication. The Chinese showed the world what it means to strive hard with efficiency and vision and achieve one’s goals. The Olympics were a fantastic success story, both in technological terms — the stadiums, the organisation, — and sports-wise.

China emerged as the biggest winner, having forged in the eyes of the world its image of a political, industrial, and sports superpower.

The fourth lesson for India is that of patriotism and nationalism. The Chinese are proud to be Chinese. All Chinese, whether mainland, expatriates, atheists, Buddhists or Christians participated in the success of the Olympics. In fact some of the biggest contributors were Christians, such as Jackie Chan. It is a pity Indian Christians often feel that they are first Christians and then Indians and complain of persecution, when they have been welcome in this country since the 1st century AD. But all Chinese beamed when China won a gold medal. Compare this with Abhinav Bindra’s unsmiling, totally unemotional face during the medal ceremony while the flag of his country was raised. It’s ok to be cool, but Bindra is also a product of an education where children are not taught to be proud of their country and in fact are taught that being a Hindu (or a Sikh) is a curse. It is this near total absence of love for one’s country that allows terrorists to strike indiscriminately, as they have just done in Delhi —and get away with it.

It is the lack of national and cultural education in Indian schools and universities that allows the Indian government, as it has done since every terrorist attack in the last five years to :

a) condemn ‘in the strongest terms’ this ‘barbarous act’;

b) appeal for calm and ‘communal harmony’;

c) give a few lakhs each to the families of the deceased or injured, so that they shut up; and

d) never catch the culprits (except in Gujarat where there was a political will behind the police) and go on as before till the next terrorist act.

Look at America, the most hated and targeted country in the world: it has not suffered a single terrorist attack since September 11 2001. Which Indian politician has the courage to tackle terrorism with courage and determination? Finally, the last lesson is about sports.

China got 51 gold medals and India 1. Why? I have said it time and again —and I will say it once more — even though I know that many of the readers are great cricket fans. The main reason is that cricket stifles all other sports. Because sponsorship and advertisement is solely focused on cricket, much more deserving and physically harder sports, such as track and field are neglected. More deserving athletes get very little sponsorship and media attention. As a direct result, India’s world position in sports is nothing short of disgraceful.Instead of concentrating on cricket and hiring foreign coaches, the government would do well to use India’s greatest gifts to the world: hata-yoga, pranayama and meditation for its sportsmen.

With a little rigour, discipline and training techniques borrowed from the West, India would quickly produce athletes of world calibre in all disciplines. It is also high time sports was taken off the hands of politicians and bureaucrats who for 60 years have shamelessly exploited sports and left it in the mire it is now. But as usual, we see that even the government is more interested in aping everything the West does, including cricket, at the expense of traditional sports such as kalaripayat, which gave birth to kung-fu and karate and is still practised in Kerala villages.Millions of Westerners practise meditation, multinationals include pranayama and hata-yoga for the relaxation seminars of their over-stressed executives, but these disciplines are not even taught in Indian schools. If only Indian cricketers would win! But they lose most of the time. It is high time the government enforced a limit on the number of international cricket matches played abroad and started focusing a little more on other sports. India lags 50 years behind China in most disciplines.

Fgautier@rediffmail.com

TIBET, CACHEMIRE & CORSE

INDE : Les attentats de Bangalore puis d’Ahmedabad, et auparavant ceux de Lucknow, Varanasi et Mumbai, qui ont fait plus de deux cents morts, ont tous une connexion indépendantiste kashmirie. C’est le moment ou jamais de vérifier quelle est la position de la France par rapport au Cachemire.
Par François Gautier, ancien correspondant du Figaro en Inde, rédacteur en chef de la Revue de l’Inde (lesbelles.lettres.com)

TIBET, CACHEMIRE & CORSE

Y a-t-il un lien entre le Tibet, le Cachemire et la Corse? Paradoxalement, oui ! La France reconnaît à la Chine, depuis fort longtemps déjà, droit de suzeraineté sur le Tibet ; nous n’accordons cependant pas la même latitude à  l’Inde, nous cantonnant à déclarer que le Cachemire est un territoire ‘disputé’ (entre le Pakistan et l’Inde) ; par contre, il ne viendrait jamais à l’idée des Indiens de nous dire que l’appartenance de la Corse au territoire français est ‘contestée’.

La France et l’Inde, depuis les premiers comptoirs, c’est une histoire de grandes promesses  qui n’aboutissent à rien, pour une raison ou une autre (que ce soit le rappel de Dupleix par Louis XV ou l’histoire du Clémenceau). Aujourd’hui la France n’est que le 7ème investisseur en Inde, loin derrière les Etats-Unis, qui ont compris qu’il leur faut reporter une partie de leurs investissements en Chine sur l’Inde et qui utilisent New Delhi pour contrecarrer l’expansion chinoise en Asie.

A la base, notre politique en Asie du sud est faussée, car nous avons toujours mis sur le même pied le Pakistan, petit pays non démocratique, toujours au bord de l’anarchie islamiste ainsi que de la banqueroute, et l’Inde, extraordinaire nation démocratique, pro-occidentale, au formidable potentiel économique. Si nous le faisons moins maintenant, nous continuons tout de même à succomber au chantage nucléaire pakistanais et pour cela nous ne voulons pas « déséquilibrer » le dialogue indo-pakistanais (qui n’existe pas) en reconnaissant à l’Inde le Cachemire.

La sensibilité indienne quant au Cachemire est exacerbée. Et avec quelque raison : le Cachemire a toujours fait partie de la nation indienne, c’est même le berceau du shivaïsme et de la philosophie de l’Advaita. Le fait qu’une partie de la vallée du Cachemire (le Ladhak est bouddhiste et la région de Jammu à majorité hindoue) ait été brutalement convertie à l’islam au 16ème siècle n’y change rien. Aujourd’hui, 400.000 hindous ont été chassés par la terreur de leurs terres ancestrales de la vallée du Cachemire,  et certains vivent encore dans des camps de réfugiés à Delhi ou Jammu, sans doute le plus grand nettoyage ethnique de notre ère.

La France se targue depuis quelques années de « soutenir » l’Inde, mais ce sont des promesses qui ne lui coûtent rien et sont vides de sens. L’appui de la candidature indienne au Conseil de Sécurité de l’ONU, par exemple, n’a aucune valeur, car la Chine s’y oppose, ainsi que d’autres pays. L’accès au nucléaire français frise l’absurdité, car non seulement il est tributaire de multiples conditions qui musèleraient la force nucléaire militaire indienne, qui fait fonction d’arme dissuasive face à la bombe pakistanaise et à l’énorme arsenal nucléaire chinois, mais nous attendons que les Américains leur vendent du nucléaire pour s’engouffrer dans la brèche.

Et le Tibet alors, que vient-il faire là-dedans ? Dès 1948, les Chinois ont compris que l’Inde était la seule puissance qui avait le potentiel de leur faire contrepoids en Asie. Pour neutraliser cette menace indienne, Beijing s’est d’abord saisi du Tibet, qui traditionnellement a toujours fait office de tampon entre les deux géants d’Asie (c’est d’ailleurs exactement ce qu’offre le Dalaï-lama aujourd’hui lorsqu’il propose de faire du Tibet une zone démilitarisée et dénucléarisée) et s’empressèrent d’y poster dans les années 80 un nombre impressionnant de missiles nucléaires (voir rapport de la CIA de 2004 au Congrès américain), dont un certain nombre visent les principales villes indiennes. Puis sous de fallacieux prétextes (contentieux frontaliers, hospitalité indienne au Dalaï-lama), la Chine attaqua l’Inde par surprise en 1962, humilia l’armée indienne  et quand elle se retira, garda quelques dizaines de milliers de kilomètres carrés de territoire indien dans l’Aksai Chin (Ladhak). Ensuite, les Chinois soutinrent tout au long des années 70 et 80 les mouvements séparatistes du nord-est de l’Inde (Tripura, Assam, Megalayana etc.), tout en continuant à revendiquer l’état stratégique de l’Arunachal Pradesh, un des plus beaux de l’Inde, qui se situe à la jonction du Bhoutan, du Tibet, de la Chine et du Bangladesh.

Mais surtout, les Chinois comprirent vite que c’est en se servant de l’animosité pakistanaise vis à vis des hindous, qu’ils pourraient le mieux neutraliser l’Inde.  La liste de la “coopération” stratégique entre la Chine et le Pakistan est longue et très éducative. Cela va de la route la plus haute du monde entre le Cachemire pakistanais et le Sin-Kiang, jusqu’aux missiles M11, capables de porter des têtes nucléaires, qui ont été fournis par Beijing, malgré les avertissements du Pentagone. Puis bien sûr, Les Chinois ont littéralement donné aux Pakistanais la Bombe – et les Américains qui se taisent, le savent depuis longtemps. Le père de la bombe pakistanaise a également vendu de la technologie nucléaire à la Corée du Nord, à l’Iran et à la Lybie, comme tout le monde le sait aujourd’hui.

Alors pourquoi donc nous acharnons-nous à investir massivement en Chine (et à vendre des armes au Pakistan) et négligeons-nous l’Inde, continent de liberté et de démocratie dans une Asie en proie au fondamentalisme islamique et à la tentative d’hégémonie chinoise ? Il est vrai qu’à l’heure actuelle il est beaucoup plus facile de faire des affaires en Chine qu’en Inde, car il existe là-bas une volonté centralisée qui a les moyens autocratiques de réaliser ses ambitions, que ce soit pour imposer le contrôle des naissances ou pour tracer des autoroutes en expropriant les petits propriétaires  (en Inde cela prend quelquefois sept ans de litiges).Pourtant non seulement l’Inde, “l’autre” géant d’Asie a su préserver sa trame démocratique depuis 60 ans, mais en plus, il offre des conditions de travail bien supérieures à celles du géant chinois: l’Inde possède par exemple un système juridique qui protège les contrats (ce qui n’est pas le cas en Chine), l’Anglais est parlé dans tout le pays, (idem) et le couvercle de la marmite a été enlevé depuis longtemps. Ainsi depuis l’Indépendance, tous les séparatismes, révoltes, excès, ont déjà bouillonné à la surface, sans affecter la trame démocratique de ce pays, preuve s’il en est de la stabilité future de l’Inde, qui assurera sécurité et rentabilité aux investissements étrangers. Ajoutons que les Indiens aiment l’Occident et qu’ils acceptent la diversité de ‘l’Autre’, contrairement aux Chinois.

Le Président français a montré qu’il savait aller au-delà des conventions  et des sentiers battus. S’il veut que la France reprenne sa place en Inde, et ne se fasse pas – une fois de plus – damer le pion par les Américains (qui tentent en ce moment de persuader Delhi de signer un accord nucléaire, qui lierait l’Inde politiquement et économiquement aux Etats-Unis pour les vingt prochaines années), la reconnaissance à l’Inde de sa suzeraineté sur le Cachemire frapperait un grand coup : nous nous gagnerions tous les coeurs indiens, tout nous serait possible en Inde. Elle rétablirait également une certaine parité entre les deux géants de l’Asie, l’un dictatorial, avec un ‘karma noir’ (à part le million de Tibétains  occis depuis 1959 les dirigeants chinois ont éliminé deux millions des leurs) ; et l’autre démocratique, doté d’un ‘bon’ karma (les Indiens, durant toute leur histoire n’ont jamais envahi militairement un autre pays).

Peut-être alors, le grand rêve de Dupleix serait-il en passe de se réaliser.

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