Tag: Olympics

Apr 12

5 Years in the Life of a Child – Global Day for Darfur Sunday 4/13

This Sunday, April 13, from 12 noon to 4 pm on the National Mall in Washington, DC, Americans will have the opportunity to learn first hand what the past 5 years have been like for the children of the Darfur region of Sudan.

Sponsored by Amnesty International, STAND: A Student Anti-Genocide Coalition, the Genocide Intervention Network, and the Save Darfur Coalition, this is a unique opportunity for people to gain an understanding of the complex yet devastating nature of the conflict giving rise to the ongoing genocide in Darfur.

When Anna Schmitt of Waging Peace traveled to eastern Chad bordering Darfur in 2007 to conduct research on the humanitarian, human rights, and security situation in the region, she was told “If you really want to know the truth, speak to the children.” She collected over 500 drawings by children in the camps. You can see some of them at the Save Darfur Coalition website here, or read more about them at the Darfur section of the Waging Peace website. These drawings can break your heart.

For a million Darfuri children, they have lived their entire lives now running from the janjaweed, traveling from camp to camp, never knowing the meaning of the words “safe” or “home” — these are concepts they have never experienced.  Five years is a lifetime to a child.

Apr 11

Updated: The IOC on Athletes and Tibet: What ARE They Thinking?

Some folks out there may remember that I wrote a while back on the IOC’s decision to give the Olympic games to China, asking rhetorically, “What were they thinking?”

Right now, given the IOC’s desire to see the Bubblelympics continue free of any influences of the world outside the Olympic village, I’ve just gotta ask, “What are they thinking?”

The Times UK covers the recent “decision” of the IOC regarding whether or not athletes at the games can make any political statements. Calling displays of the Tibetan flag potential propaganda, the IOC stated that athletes could be banned for such displays.

Ah, yes, but how to handle that whole “freedom of speech” thing?

Follow me under the fold for the machinations…

Apr 10

Dalai Lama Defends Free Speech And Rudd Rides To The Rescue

While the protesters were being thwarted by Mayor Gavin Newsom’s high speed game of wack-a-mole with the Olympic torch through the streets of San Francisco, the Dalai Lama was en route to Tokyo and Australian Prime Minister Kevin Rudd was giving one of the most important speeches of his diplomatic career.

First to the Dalai Lama. In remarks this morning in Tokyo, His Holiness defended the right of protesters to voice their dissent, while returning to his calls for nonviolence:

Diarists’s note on the above YouTube: The Dalai Lama’s remarks this morning come immediately after the short clip of Archbishop Desmond Tutu. The final part of this YouTube contains a photo that has raised no small amount of controversy on the web. I include this YouTube because it was the only one I could find with His Holiness’s remarks in English. I have no thoughts regarding the veracity – or lack thereof – of the claims surrounding the last photograph other than to say that this is just one example of why an impartial, international investigation into the riots in Lhasa needs to be held, so that the truth around these events can be discovered.

Apr 10

Boycott the Olympics? Here’s a better idea

The Olympic Games have been the scene of several high-profile political statements over the past three-quarters of a century. Take a look at these photos and see which ones made an impact:

Apr 09

Free Tibet!

cross posted from The Dream Antilles

Photobucket

The spontaneous demonstrations by monks in March seem to have triggered demonstrations across the world in support of religious freedom and autonomy for Tibet.

We’ve been treated to huge street demonstrations in London, Paris, and San Francisco. To extinguishing the torch in Paris. To Chinese security pushing around Sebastian Coe, who was a fantastic runner in his prime. To mountain climbers hanging flags on the Golden Gate Bridge. To demonstrations in Lhasa. To news items about the struggles of Tibet. Let a thousand flowers bloom.

But if Tibet is to be saved, and I truly hope that it will be despite fifty years of Chinese domination and oppression, if it is to be preserved in a form we can recognize as Tibetan, it seems only right that it should be saved by what are essentially Tibetan, nonviolent means.

My simple proposal has two items:

1. Please send some $$ to International Campaign For Tibet. This is the Internet so large donations aren’t required. If you give $5 or $10, and millions join you, it will help in a dramatic way. You don’t need to strain to help. Anyone can help.  There is no minimum amount.

2. Please sit quietly (eyes open or closed). Then, non-denominationally and/or theistically and/or untheistically, however you are most comfortable, inhale the suffering and oppression of all of the Tibetans, and then exhale out in place of their suffering and oppression, strong love and healing to all involved in the conflict, including the Chinese government.  Repeat this over and over until you are finished. This is called “tonglen” and is a wonderful and powerful practice for making peace. When you are finished with doing tonglen– you don’t need to do it for hours, minutes with a clear focus will work just fine– you may conclude by saying the following:

May all beings be happy.

May all beings be well.

May all beings be safe,

And may any merit from this practice go to the ocean of merit created by the Buddhas for the enlightenment of all sentient beings.

This is a road to saving Tibet. May Tibet be free.

Apr 09

Updated: Tutu, Gere Speak Out On Tibet, Nonviolence and George W. Bush

“We want to say to China, ‘We thought that the Olympic Games would help you improve your human rights record,” Tutu said. “We still hope… But what we are saying to the heads of state, to President George Bush, is, ‘For goodness sake, don’t go to the Beijing games… for the sake of our children, for the beautiful people of Tibet. Don’t go!'”

link: http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/…

Apr 08

Updated (3x): Protests Begin In San Francisco, Dalai Lama Issues Statement to Tibetans

“I think this is just a preview. I think there will be a lot more than this city is prepared for.”

link: http://www.reuters.com/article…

This was one San Fransican’s reaction to yesterday’s breath-taking protest by proponents of a free Tibet who scaled the Golden Gate Bridge:

Apr 08

Free Tibet on Golden Gate Bridge



One World One Dream – Free Tibet 08



Screen caps from KTVU Video

This is the BIG story in the Bay Area tonight.  These 3 people on the bridge were truly brave souls and after 3 hours flying their banners and Tibetan flags, they were taken into custody and booked for felony conspiracy.  The city of San Francisco is ‘bracing for uproar’, iow shitting bricks, about what to do with the Olympic torch relay on Wednesday.  After London and Paris I can only imagine what will happen here. Tensions have been building for weeks now.        

Apr 07

Updated (3x): “The Flame of Discord” Doused in Paris

From The Press Association:

Protesters have forced police to extinguish the Olympic torch amid heavy demonstrations as it set off across Paris.

Officers in jogging gear who had been escorting the flame put it out and took it on a bus, apparently to get it away from the protesters.

The flame, which started out at the Eiffel Tower amid tight security, was being carried down a road next to the Seine near demonstrators carrying Tibetan flags when the relay was stopped.

Sky News has footage of the security guarding the torch, including the police on rollerblades:

Apr 07

Updated: Tibet, and Panic In The Streets of London

Londoners awoke on a lazy, snowy Sunday morning to images of protest flooding their television screens, including one moment when a protester was almost successful in dousing the Olympic flame as it was carried by British celebrity Konnie Huq:

Apr 02

Tibetans to Bush: Don’t Go to Beijing Olympics — Rally in DC — UPDATED

Please see the update at the end of this diary, with letters to the Chinese people and the world from His Holiness the Dalai Lama.

On Monday, March 31, a large group of Tibetans, Americans of Tibetan ancestry, and other American supporters gathered at Lafayette Park outside the White House in Washington, DC to ask President Bush to make a statement for human rights and refused to attend the opening ceremonies of the Beijing Olympics in protest of Chinese government oppression of Tibet.

I have been very moved by the mostly nonviolent struggle of the Tibetans to regain their freedom, and by the strength and compassion shown by the Dalai Lama in urging them to maintain nonviolence at all times. I decided it was important to go and stand in solidarity with them. This is my report on the event.

Apr 01

On Tibet, Dick Lugar, Baichung Bhutia and the Power of One

“I sympathise with the Tibetan cause. This is my way of standing by the people of Tibet and their struggle. I abhor violence in any form,” Bhutia told the Times of India newspaper.

link: http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/sou…

Baichung Bhutia, an Indian footballer, is making headlines across Asia and the world by making this statement and refusing to carry the Olympic torch across India later this month.

This is the power of one.

Where governments fall short in decrying injustice, it remains for all of us, regardless of religion, or ethnicity, or politics, to stand up and let our voices be heard.

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