Posts Tagged ‘Dalai Lama

31
Mar
09

On This Day, March 31: Dalai Lama Flees Tibet

March 31, 1959

Dalai Lama begins exile

The Dalai Lama, fleeing the Chinese suppression of a national uprising in Tibet, crosses the border into India, where he is granted political asylum.

Born in Taktser, China, as Tensin Gyatso, he was designated the 14th Dalai Lama in 1940, a position that eventually made him the religious and political leader of Tibet. At the beginning of the 20th century, Tibet increasingly came under Chinese control, and in 1950 communist China invaded the country. One year later, a Tibetan-Chinese agreement was signed in which the nation became a “national autonomous region” of China, supposedly under the traditional rule of the Dalai Lama but actually under the control of a Chinese communist commission. The highly religious people of Tibet, who practice a unique form of Buddhism, suffered under communist China’s anti-religious legislation.

After years of scattered protests, a full-scale revolt broke out in March 1959, and the Dalai Lama was forced to flee as the uprising was crushed by Chinese troops. On March 31, 1959, he began a permanent exile in India, settling at Dharamsala in Punjab, where he established a democratically based shadow Tibetan government. Back in Tibet, the Chinese adopted brutal repressive measures against the Tibetans, provoking charges from the Dalai Lama of genocide. With the beginning of the Cultural Revolution in China, the Chinese suppression of Tibetan Buddhism escalated, and practice of the religion was banned and thousands of monasteries were destroyed.

Although the ban was lifted in 1976, protests in Tibet continued, and the exiled Dalai Lama won widespread international support for the Tibetan independence movement. In 1989, he was awarded the Nobel Prize for Peace in recognition of his nonviolent campaign to end the Chinese domination of Tibet.

“Dalai Lama begins exile.” 2009. The History Channel website. 31 Mar 2009, 10:38 http://www.history.com/this-day-in-history.do?action=Article&id=4879.

On This Day

1776 – Abigail Adams wrote to her husband John that women were “determined to foment a rebellion” if the new Declaration of Independence failed to guarantee their rights.

1854 – The U.S. government signed the Treaty of Kanagawa with Japan. The act opened the ports of Shimoda and Hakotade to American trade.

1870 – In Perth Amboy, NJ, Thomas P. Munday became the first black to vote in the U.S.

1917 – The U.S. purchased and took possession of the Virgin Islands from Denmark for $25 million.

1918 – For the first time in the U.S., Daylight Saving Time went into effect.

1933 – The U.S. Congress authorized the Civilian Conservation Corps to relieve rampant unemployment.

1939 – Britain and France agreed to support Poland if Germany threatened invasion.

1948 – The Soviets in Germany began controlling the Western trains headed toward Berlin.

1980 – U.S. President Carter deregulated the banking industry.

2004 – Google Inc. announced that it would be introducing a free e-mail service called Gmail.

March 31, 1492

Jews to be expelled from Spain

In Spain, a royal edict is issued by the nation’s Catholic rulers declaring that all Jews who refuse to convert to Christianity will be expelled from the country. Most Spanish Jews chose exile rather than the renunciation of their religion and culture, and the Spanish economy suffered with the loss of an important portion of its workforce. Many Spanish Jews went to North Africa, the Netherlands, and the Americas, where their skills, capital, and commercial connections were put to good use. Among those who chose conversion, some risked their lives by secretly practicing Judaism, while many sincere converts were nonetheless persecuted by the Spanish Inquisition. The Spanish Muslims, or Moors, were ordered to convert to Christianity in 1502.

“Jews to be expelled from Spain.” 2009. The History Channel website. 31 Mar 2009, 10:45 http://www.history.com/this-day-in-history.do?action=tdihArticleCategory&id=4877.

Advertisements
10
Mar
09

On This Day, March 10: The Dalai Lama

March 10, 1959

Rebellion in Tibet

On this day in 1959, Tibetans band together in revolt, surrounding the summer palace of the Dalai Lama in defiance of Chinese occupation forces.

China’s occupation of Tibet began nearly a decade before, in October 1950, when troops from its People’s Liberation Army (PLA) invaded the country, barely one year after the Communists gained full control of mainland China. The Tibetan government gave into Chinese pressure the following year, signing a treaty that ensured the power of His Holiness the Dalai Lama, the country’s spiritual leader, over Tibet’s domestic affairs. Resistance to the Chinese occupation built steadily over the next several years, including a revolt in several areas of eastern Tibet in 1956. By December 1958, rebellion was simmering in Lhasa, the capital, and the PLA command threatened to bomb the city if order was not maintained.

The March 1959 uprising in Lhasa was triggered by fears of a plot to kidnap the Dalai Lama and take him to Beijing. When Chinese military officers invited His Holiness to visit the PLA headquarters for a theatrical performance and official tea, he was told he must come alone, and that no Tibetan military bodyguards or personnel would be allowed past the edges of the military camp. On March 10, 300,000 loyal Tibetans surrounded Norbulinka Palace, preventing the Dalai Lama from accepting the PLA’s invitation. By March 17, Chinese artillery was aimed at the palace, and the Dalai Lama was evacuated to neighboring India. Fighting broke out in Lhasa two days later, with Tibetan rebels hopelessly outnumbered and outgunned. Early on March 21, the Chinese began shelling Norbulinka, slaughtering tens of thousands of men, women and children still camped outside. In the aftermath, the PLA cracked down on Tibetan resistance, executing the Dalai Lama’s guards and destroying Lhasa’s major monasteries along with thousands of their inhabitants.

China’s stranglehold on Tibet and its brutal suppression of separatist activity has continued in the decades following the unsuccessful uprising. Tens of thousands of Tibetans followed their leader to India, where the Dalai Lama has long maintained a government-in-exile in the foothills of the Himalayas. 

“Rebellion in Tibet.” 2009. The History Channel website. 10 Mar 2009, 09:40 http://www.history.com/this-day-in-history.do?action=Article&id=52437.

On This Day

0515 BC – The building of the great Jewish temple in Jerusalem was completed.

0241 BC – The Roman fleet sank 50 Carthaginian ships in the Battle of Aegusa.

0049 BC – Julius Caesar crossed the Rubicon and invaded Italy.

1496 – Christopher Columbus concluded his second visit to the Western Hemisphere when he left Hispaniola for Spain.

1656 – In the American colony of Virginia, suffrage was extended to all free men regardless of their religion.

1776 – “Common Sense” by Thomas Paine was published.

1785 – Thomas Jefferson was appointed minister to France. He succeeded Benjamin Franklin.

1804 – The formal ceremonies transferring the Louisiana Purchase from France to the U.S. took place in St. Louis.

1814 – In France, Napoleon Bonaparte was defeated by a combined Allied Army at the battle of Laon.

1848 – The U.S. Senate ratified the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo, which ended the war with Mexico.

1864 – Ulysses S. Grant became commander of the Union armies in the U.S. Civil War.

1910 – Slavery was abolished in China.

1912 – China became a republic after the overthrow of the Manchu Ch’ing Dynasty.

1927 – Prussia lifted its Nazi ban allowing Adolf Hitler to speak in public.

1944 – The Irish refused to oust all Axis envoys and denied the accusation of spying on Allied troops.

1945 – American B-29 bombers attacked Tokyo, Japan, 100,000 were killed.

1949 – Nazi wartime broadcaster Mildred E. Gillars, also known as “Axis Sally,” was convicted in Washington, DC. Gillars was convicted of treason and served 12 years in prison.

1953 – North Korean gunners at Wonsan fired upon the USS Missouri. The ship responded by firing 998 rounds at the enemy position.

1966 – The North Vietnamese captured a Green Beret camp at Ashau Valley.

1966 – France withdrew from NATO’s military command to protest U.S. dominance of the alliance and asked NATO to move its headquarters from Paris.

1969 – James Earl Ray plead guilty in Memphis, TN, to the assassination of Martin Luther King Jr. Ray later repudiated the guilty plea and maintained his innocence until his death in April of 1998.

1971 – The U.S. Senate approved an amendment to lower the voting age to 18.

March 10, 1948

Strange death of Jan Masaryk

The communist-controlled government of Czechoslovakia reports that Foreign Minister Jan Masaryk has committed suicide. The story of the noncommunist Masaryk’s death was greeted with skepticism in the West.

Masaryk was born in 1886, the son of Czechoslovakia’s first president. After World War I, he served as foreign minister in the new Czech government. Later he served as the Czech ambassador to Great Britain. During World War II, he once again took the position of foreign minister, this time with the Czech government-in-exile in London. After the war, Masaryk returned to Czechoslovakia to serve as foreign minister under President Eduard Benes. It was a tense time in Masaryk’s native country. The Soviet Union had occupied the nation during World War II and there were fears that the Soviets would try to install a communist government in Czechoslovakia, as it had in Poland, East Germany, and elsewhere in Eastern Europe. Masaryk, however, was skillful in dealing with the Soviets, assuring them that a democratic Czechoslovakia posed no security threat to Russia.

In 1947, though, Masaryk made a fatal mistake. When the United States unveiled the Marshall Plan-the multimillion-dollar aid program for postwar Europe-Masaryk indicated Czechoslovakia’s interest in participating. When he informed the Soviets, they absolutely refused to give their approval. This was quickly followed, in February 1948, by a communist coup in Czechoslovakia. President Benes was forced to accept a communist-dominated government. Masaryk was one of the few non-communists left in place. On March 10, 1948, the Czech government reported that Masaryk had committed suicide by jumping out of a third-story window at the Foreign Ministry.

The reaction in the West was characterized by deep suspicion. Secretary of State George Marshall stated that Czechoslovakia was under a “reign of terror,” and that Masaryk’s “suicide” indicated “very plainly what is going on.” Despite suspicions that the communists had murdered Masaryk, nothing has been proven definitively and his death remains one of the great mysteries of the Cold War era.

“Strange death of Jan Masaryk,” The History Channel website, 2009, http://www.history.com/this-day-in-history.do?action=Article&id=2602 [accessed Mar 10, 2009]




September 2019
S M T W T F S
« Sep    
1234567
891011121314
15161718192021
22232425262728
2930  

Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 281 other followers

Advertisements