I can’t say that I often agree with George W. Bush, but I am glad to read in today’s New York Times that “With One Eye, Bush Receives Dalai Lama” yesterday:
“President Bush met privately with the Dalai Lama at the White House on Tuesday, as tensions escalated between the United States and China over Congress’s awarding its highest civilian honor to the exiled Tibetan spiritual leader. The 30-minute meeting, which the Dalai Lama said included a discussion of the situations in Tibet and Myanmar, formerly Burma, was fraught with symbolism and cloaked in secrecy — an effort by the White House to avoid further angering the Chinese … The Dalai Lama, a Nobel laureate, has lived in exile in India since the Chinese army crushed an uprising in his homeland in 1959, and is revered as the spiritual leader of Tibetan Buddhists. He has been pressing, without success, to return to China to advocate for greater cultural and religious freedoms for his followers.”
With the Beijing 2008 Summer Olympics less than a year away, in my opinion China will be less and less likely to act belligerently. As an American, I believe America should support the basic human rights of religious and cultural freedom around the world.