Dalai Lama Interview 1960 – Dalai Lama & the CIA – Tibetan Guerilla


In Germany and Austria the ongoing veneration for the Dalai Lama is suspicious for some – which is understandable from a human perspective. So recently Panorama and the Süddeutsche Zeitung (both from Germany) tried to oppose this veneration by going into the other extreme casting shadow sides on the Dalai Lama by construing in a tabloid and rather manipulative manner (crossing different levels of information, incomplete image captures, leaving out information etc.) that the Dalai Lama would have supported violence by “being in charge for the armed fight financed by the CIA” (Panorama), and therefore cannot be a man of peace. As a crown witness both, Panorama and Süddeutsche Zeitung, have used for their agenda the ongoing production of “CIA in Tibet” by Lisa Cathey and Kefiworks. With a strange twist of the facts the Süddeutsche Zeitung’s claims have found its way also in La Republica. (for details see discussion on http://kefiblog.com; see Regarding Irresponsible Reporting Part 1, Part II) For a statement in German by Lisa Cathey see: “Reaktion der US-Filmemacherin Lisa Cathey” (PDF)

Doing now some research about the facts, I stumbled upon this interview with the Dalai Lama from 1960 which I wish to share with you:

Update 26 June 2012

Update 30 June 2012

The article by Süddeutsche Zeitung was picked up by China’s news agency Xinhua, Dalai Lama connected with CIA’s support of Tibetan secession: report, stating:

Despite his frequent claims of peace, the Dalai Lama knew much more about the US Central Intelligence Agency (CIA)’s support of Tibetan secessionists in the 1950s and 1960s than he admitted, Germany’s Sueddeutsche Zeitung newspaper reported recently.

I contacted the Tibetologist Thierry Dodin¹ yesterday and requested his comment to those claims. His comment given here with his permission is:

The public enthusiasm which the Dalai Lama never fails to arouse in Germany is a thorn in the side of a number of journalists there. They mostly belong to those who once, in the late 1960s and the 1970s, hailed ultra-leftist ideals and nowadays own high positions in mainstream media. While their pragmatic attitude of today stands in stark contrast to their ideals of the past, some seem to have preserved, at times downright visceral, enemy stereotypes shaped in those days, particularly when it comes to religion. They are of course entitled to their opinions, but it is sad that their highly emotional views blur their sense of professionalism. That the US through the CIA or other agencies supported Tibetan resistance against China is not a secret and never really was. It has been the object of many books, articles and media reports. In so far, the ‘revelations’ made here are nothing but attempts to flog a dead horse.The attitude of the Dalai Lama has been from the start, while respecting dissent, to discourage any form of violent resistance. This is based on the insight that, while violence might gain some advantages on the short term, on the long term it does not really solve problems, but even make their resolution far more arduous. I think, this is a very respectable point of view.

¹  Thierry Dodin organized together with the Tibetologist Heinz Raether in collaboration with the Art and Exhibition Hall of the Federal Republic of Germany in Bonn the “legendary”² International Symposium Mythos Tibet held in Bonn, Germany, in May 1996. As a result if this conference the book Imagining Tibet – Perceptions, Projections, and Fantasies, Boston: Wisdom Publications, 2001 was published which includes many of the papers presented there. Dodin and Raether are the editors of it and wrote the final chapter. ² A Tibetologist’s comment about this conference.

Update May 16, 2015