With such questions today surrounding China’s human rights policies and the importance of international laws, China’s peaceful rise to power may be directly challenged bydiffering policies on such issues. One example is the origin of contentious relations between Tibet and China. Each nation has a unique history which has shaped their current situation. In the case ofTibet, their historically loose ties with China seemed to mean loose association with its government as well. When the British in India threatened the Tibetan area in the late 19th century, China’spower and sphere of influence were directly challenged, causing the Chinese government to suddenly attempt to develop more concrete relations with Tibet. Naturally, the Tibetans would see this more as ahostile takeover than a re-affirmation of association.
Their unique histories are what have shaped the nations’ respective views of autonomy - the crux of the issue. Tibetans believe autonomyshould include a right to true self-governance and domestic independence while the Chinese see autonomy in light of the Chinese population as a whole and must be treated as a tool for the advancementof all of Chinese society, not only the Tibetans. These differing definitions make it virtually impossible to come to clear agreements regarding the appropriate structure of the region.
Theflight of the Dalai Lama from Tibet is what propelled this issue to international fame. His consequent traveling, especially to Western nations, angered the Chinese government to the point where they nowlook unfavorably upon any nation that hosts the Dalai Lama.
The Chinese Korean minority has many similarities to the Tibetans. Both groups lie at the periphery of the Chinese nation, haverelations with other countries, differ culturally and linguistically from the Han majority, and have their own autonomous areas. Though the Korean minority is portrayed as the “model” minority and the...