March 12, 2008

QUICK NEWS 03/11/08

Rise Up, Resist, Return
March 10, 2008 was Tibetan Uprising Day which is nicely represented by their call to arms of "Rise Up, Resist, Return." As I am sure there are plenty of sites which you can read which outline the Tibetan plight, I am more interested (concerned) with how the Chinese Government will be dealing with these protesters, especially with the world's eye on Beijing due to the upcoming olympics. Tibet has had a long and unfortunate history with China. Traveling through Lhasa and the surrounding areas back in 2007, I noticed that the Tibetan presence in Tibet is represented by a very small majority of the population. the Chinese have been extremely successful with indoctrinating young Tibetans. Putting them through Chinese education, into the Chinese military, and surrounding them with Chinese influences. The present tibetan culture is one that has been diluted by years of oppression and quite frankly, brainwashing.

With the railway linking Tibet with the largest Chinese cities, we can all but expect the culture and civilization that has richly contributed to the human civilization, to dissapear. I am heartened by watching Tibetans take up the call to defend what is rightfully theirs, but also saddened by the realization that these protests are filled with the youth. There are not many Tibetans left that clearly remember the period before the 1950's. It really boils down to numbers, they just live too geographically close to the largest population in the world. In Beijing I find that Tibetans have migrated and taken to the Chinese way of life, while in Lhasa the Chinese are setting up shop and capitalizing on the Tibetan tourist drive. Chinese stores and restaurants sprout like weeds while the old temples and houses remnants from years of migration and theft, remain empty. The largest protest in occupied Tibet happened on the 10th. There will be more.

Nighthawks Retire

I was tracking the market on Bloomberg and I kept seeing a caption on the Stealth fighters last flight. It seems that the US Air force is retiring the F-117 and replacing it with the F-22 Raptor. I can only imagine what missions these planes took that fell under the "need to know, and we don't need to know" basis. These nighthawks were excellent fighters. The first stealth planes of its kind, developed at Lockheeds famed "Skunkworks." If we use this fighter as an example (flown 1981 but publicly released in 1987...I think), I can only imagine what planes are currently flying that we are unaware off!

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