Friday, 21 August 2009

TIBET - are these people really so poor and downtrodden?

We are living in surroundings where half-truths, omissions, or slight distortions of events have a fair chance to become the real thing. They might become fully confirmed facts and are thus supposed to make us salivate like well trained dogs seeing a bone............

Some months ago I saw a report on the telly regarding the fast disappearing Indian tiger. The animal was killed by poachers right in the Indian National Parks where it was supposed to live unmolested. But it remained unclear why and what happened to the furs.

Then the author of the report realized that the skins were smuggled to Tibet where they adorn wealthy Tibetans. And then I had the pleasure to look at those people wearing Indian Tiger skins. See for yourself, look at those photos in Belinda Wright's "The End of the Tiger trail"

Now that killed me. For years and years, whenever Tibet was mentioned, I saw those desperately poor, downtrodden people, living miserably at the feet of the cruel Chinese. Those photos just don't square with the general idea about that country. Each one of those skins fetch several thousand Euro (and a little more in US Dollars). Unlike those poor Tibetans I am unable to shell out that money for a weekend outfit and I don't know anybody around here who could and would do this and spend this amount.

A tent made up of 108 tiger skins

The poor downtrodden Tibetans: can't help thinking this to be another case were we are being force-fed another piece of crap and bullshit.