Thursday, August 7, 2008

The Dalai Lama's Olympic handshake

The Dalai Lama's Olympic handshake is circling the world, headed for Beijing. Click below to see more and join the call for dialogue!

As the Beijing Olympics begin, the world looks on with mixed emotions. It's a moment which should bring us closer together, and Chinese citizens deserve their excitement - but the Chinese government still hasn't opened meaningful dialogue with the Dalai Lama, or changed its stance on Burma, Darfur and other pressing issues.

Even worse, extremists in China are promoting the view that Olympic activism is anti-Chinese. We can't stay silent, but we also can't let our efforts be abused to divide people. So what can we do? The answer comes from the Dalai Lama himself, in an unambiguous gesture of Olympic spirit and friendship: a handshake.

It began in London, passed hand to hand by thousands of us - now the handshake has gone online, and is criss-crossing the globe on its way to Beijing. All of us can join, Chinese and non-Chinese, and it comes with a promise: to hold ALL our governments accountable where they fall short, in Tibet, Iraq, Burma or beyond. We'll deliver our message in a bold media campaign in Hong Kong and around the world: Click below to see how the Olympic handshake started, sign up to join in, and watch it circle the globe:

The worldwide outcry has produced a little progress, but much resistance from Chinese officials so far. If we are to see advances not setbacks after the Games, we need to show both that our voices will never fall silent, and that our challenge is a positive one.

We have one last chance to reclaim the spirit of the Olympics, with the message of friendship and dialogue we share with the Dalai Lama. The more people join the global handshake, the more powerful our message will be when it hits the Chinese and international media. So let's forward this email on, encouraging everyone to join in. "One World, One Dream" is an ideal that's bigger than the Olympics - it's time for citizens around the world to take it back.


Learn2Flash said...

Well from what i know is that the important focus should not be on Dalai Lama himself (who makes friends with hollywood stars) but it the attention should be more focued on the normal Tibetians and their voice should be heard!

Liam said...

As far as I know the Dalai Lama is the voice of the people of Tibet. I think it is more the case that Hollywood stars befriend him than the other way around. This is probably because they want to be seen to be supporting a good cause and have very little else to do with their time...

Learn2Flash said...

Although Dalai Lama may be representing Tibet and wants to free his people, I think what the actual Tibetians themselves thinks are more important. You'll also have to take account that Dalai Lama recieves millions of dollars in funding by the US

Liam said...

How are we to know exactly what the Tibetan people want when they are not allowed freedom of expression? I think we can safely guess that they want freedom and don't want to be oppressed by China; isn't that the Dalai Lama's message?