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On March 17, 1959, the Dalai Lama slipped out of his summer palace, the Norbulingka, in disguise, evading detection both by the Chinese Communist authorities stationed in the city and by the thousands of Tibetan demonstrators who had gathered in the area, fearful that the Chinese were plotting to abduct their beloved leader. After a hair-raising trek across the Himalayas, he re-emerged weeks later in India, where he set up his government in exile. Soon after he left Lhasa, however, the Chinese People's Liberation Army pummeled the city in the savage "Battle of Lhasa." The poorly prepared Tibetans were forced to capitulate, putting Mao in a position to fulfill his long-held dream of imposing Communist rule over Tibet. Partisan politics has tended to overshadow history ever since these fateful developments. For decades, independent scholars have lacked the source materials necessary for evaluating these conflicting allegations and placing them in their proper historical context. Chinese sources, in particular, have remained shrouded in secrecy until quite recently. Meanwhile, unrest has continued to erupt periodically in Lhasa, which had its third major disturbance in 2008. What really happened in Lhasa in March 1959, and why did it happen? Tibet in Agony sets the historical record straight by extensive examination of Chinese and Tibetan sources, many of which are either new or have never before been used by independent scholars. From these sources emerges the first narrative to trace the crisis in Lhasa in March 1959 to its roots in Mao's plan to take over Tibet, and in the fears and suspicions that the step-by-step execution of his plan aroused among Tibetans.--
Number of Pages: 41039
Publisher: Harvard Univ Pr
Author: Jianglin Li
Street Date: September 12, 2016
Item Number (DPCI): 248-23-1944
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