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Shame on President Obama for Not Meeting with HH the Dalai Lama

posted by Paul Raushenbush

With-HH-Dalai-Lama-small.jpg



Last
summer a handful of students and I had the chance to meet with HH Dalai Lama in
Dharamsala, India.  We spent an hour and a half listening, laughing and
learning his views on inter-faith relations, the meaning of non-violent
resistance and world events. One of the questions asked to HH was: “Will
Tibet’s future be changed by the election of Barack Obama?”  That
question has been unfortunately answered with a resounding – no!  In fact,
America’s commitment to Tibet may be worse than under President Bush.  

Politico.com reported that President
Obama snubbed HH Dalia Lama this week during the Dalai Lama’s visit to
Washington DC.  The only thing that can account for it is that this White
House is so afraid of the Chinese and the debt the hold that they are now able
to dictate American foreign policy: 

When it comes to the White House’s decision not to have President
Barack Obama meet with the Dalai Lama during his visit to Washington this week,
some are seeing an $800 billion elephant in the room.


That, of course, is the amount of U.S. Treasury debt held by the
Chinese government. That makes China the largest foreign holder of U.S. debt,
and the country’s willingness to buy more is essential to the ability of the
United States to finance its deficit spending.


And naturally, the Chinese do not want the new American president to
meet with — and lend credibility to — the Dalai Lama, who is a longtime
adversary of the Chinese government.

This week will mark the first time since 1991 that the Dalai Lama has
come to Washington and not met with the U.S. president.

That leads one former Federal Reserve official to suspect that
Chinese fiscal leverage over the American government is at the root of the
decision. “Bottom line,” says the official, “don’t piss off your
banker.”


Rep. Dana Rohrabacher (R-Calif.), a co-chairman of the Congressional
Tibet Caucus, blasted “the administration’s unwillingness to meet with an
internationally respected human rights leader in order to placate Chinese
tyrants.”


Read how financial
pressures forced Obama to snub HH the Dalai Lama


Towards
the end of our time together HH asked a sincere question: Why will America not
question China’s treatment of Tibet and not being able to help myself I said:
“Because we are intimidated!”  

Sad but true.  



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Blue Collar Todd

posted October 6, 2009 at 7:45 pm


Wow. Something I actually agree with you on. President Obama ought to have met with the Dalai Lama, he may still but he blew it big time. At least President Bush, for all his faults, had enough sense to meet the Lama. Obama’s deference to Totalitarians ought to concern us, maybe this instance will finally cause the Left to rethink their admiration for Obama.



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Peter

posted October 6, 2009 at 8:51 pm


More important than rethinking the Left’s adulation of Obama is the support of either the Left or the Right for programs that endorse/require spending money we don’t have (ie., borrowing). Can’t serve two masters and the restrictions we see in President O’s freedom to meet with the DL is an illustration of it.



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Pablo

posted October 7, 2009 at 5:05 pm


The problem with Obama is he gives concessions without getting anything in return. Now concessions without getting anything in return has a name, its called appeasement.
Not meeting the Dalai Lama is appeasement to China. So will you say a well down President Bush for not following a similar path to Obama? Or would that be too much?



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Mere_Christian

posted October 8, 2009 at 10:31 am


Umm, is it just me, or is HH a coward?
Why doesn’t he live and stay in Tibet?
So he’d be persecuted or worse. This guy gets to come back via reincarnation over and over again.
Obama shouldn’t nod his head to this guy if he passed him on Beverly Hills street.
I’m just saying.



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Indy_Ice_Princess

posted October 8, 2009 at 10:59 am


Dear Mere_Christian – The Dalai Lama is not a coward. When one attains the Buddha state that stops the wheel of reincarnation if he/she so chooses. Achieving that state one commits to teaching others the Dharma and getting them out of cyclic reincarnation as well through enlightenment, or at the very least to have a higher rebirth.
I do ask though why you think Obama should not acknowledge his Holiness on the streets of Beverly Hills.



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John F. Higgins

posted October 8, 2009 at 11:28 am


A Religious World Leader…Most assuredly!



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Bill Steele

posted October 8, 2009 at 11:51 am


I am disappointed. If you don’t stand up for something… you’ll fall for anything!



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Khai Mahala

posted October 8, 2009 at 11:53 am


To the mere Christian. It is this kind of hate, often proffered by Christians, that supports the decline of your religion. The Dalai Lama has chosen to be outside Tibet because it is outside Tibet that he can do the most good. Perhaps you should dust off the bible?



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Your Name

posted October 8, 2009 at 12:14 pm


It is the declining faith of many world religions that harbor such hate and distaste for religions which do NOT revolve around those whom are doing the hating. Like Khai stated, HH can do the most good for his people on the outside, away from the oppressive rule of the Chinese Government. Though I am young in years, I have seen what hatred in this world can do to one’s soul and to the well being of a people.
I agree that to not seek the infinite wisdom of HH is to deprive yourself of much needed spiritual nourishment. One day, humanity will look back onto themselves and wonder why they did not strive for world peace sooner.



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Mark

posted October 8, 2009 at 12:22 pm


Pres. Obama WILL meet with the Dalai Lama, eventually. It will just have to be after he meets with the president of China. The reality is that China is a major player. The reality is that China owns a massive amount of this country’s debt. And the reality is that China’s government is uber-sensitive & will take offense if Obama meets the Dalai Lama first. They WILL meet but China must be treated like a child or they will get upset. The Dalai Lama is an adult and fully understands the situation, I am sure.



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Mark

posted October 8, 2009 at 12:23 pm


Pres. Obama WILL meet with the Dalai Lama, eventually. It will just have to be after he meets with the president of China. The reality is that China is a major player. The reality is that China owns a massive amount of this country’s debt. And the reality is that China’s government is uber-sensitive & will take offense if Obama meets the Dalai Lama first. They WILL meet but China must be treated like a child or they will get upset. The Dalai Lama is an adult and fully understands the situation, I am sure.



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John Zaun

posted October 8, 2009 at 12:32 pm


“Mere_” is about the furthest you can get from Christian;
Maybe like Mr. Obama they should stop concentrating on the buzz
In their ears and obey the Love in their hearts.
We will All Ways Be One.



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Dana

posted October 8, 2009 at 12:34 pm


Thanks, Mark, for your wise words on this situation. They make it easier to understand what’s happening. Peace



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Sherab Dorje

posted October 8, 2009 at 12:38 pm


“The only thing that can account for it is that this White House is so afraid of the Chinese and the debt the hold that they are now able to dictate American foreign policy”
There are rumors that this was HHDL’s idea- briefly, to not give the Chinese anything to huff and puff about to BHO. HHDL is a very astute politician- he may very well have thought that, in the long run, this would be better for Obama, and that they could meet later without the possibility of China being able to raise a stink about it.
This would not surprise me at all. Both HHDL and BHO are very pragmatic politicians.



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Kenny Beal

posted October 8, 2009 at 12:40 pm


Obama has chosen not meet with the Dalai Lama. It’s his choice. He’s action is not right or wrong, its simply what he choose to do. I do not consider offering an opinion about Obama what he should or should not do as right action.



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teresa ley

posted October 8, 2009 at 1:04 pm


It was my understanding that Obama simply postponed a sit-down with HH until after meeting with the Chinese.



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Dee Nickel

posted October 8, 2009 at 1:51 pm


I am more and more upset with my vote for Obama…and not for Hillary, everyday. Obama begs Republicans for help and concedes so much-only to get nothing in return. Now he sucks up to China-because we owe them tons of money. To not meet with this great and gentle spiritual leader is one of Obams greatest mis-steps so far.



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Kent Bryant

posted October 8, 2009 at 1:59 pm


I would have liked him to meet with the HH Dalai Lama but I have faith in both, he having a good reason to postpone it and HH Dalai Lama understanding him not meeting. However I cannot imagine anyone putting off meeting HH Dalai Lama.



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Sandra Collins

posted October 8, 2009 at 2:14 pm


Obama should be curled up in the fetal position, cowarded by shame. He will meet with the leaders of the terrorsts, bow to them, and apologize for America. But he will NOT meet with the greatest Peace Promoter on the Planet???!!! How DARE he embarrass America like this! Shame, Obama! SHAME!!!



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Tina

posted October 8, 2009 at 2:54 pm


Funny how people come to assumptions and look narrowly at something when taken out of context of the whole. Given the past interactions between President Obama and H.H. The Dalai Lama, I’m trusting that the President is on good terms with the Dalai Lama and has good intentions. His choice to not meet at this time may simply be based on strategic diplomatic reasons… we need to remember that not all plans can or should be made public.



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Mark (Pema Choga)

posted October 8, 2009 at 3:06 pm


I have lost all hope for Obama doing anything except politics as usual. Wasn’t he supposed to get us out of these wars, too?



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Rick

posted October 8, 2009 at 3:13 pm


I had little hope for Obama,and now see how he is like the many others.Greed is the root of all evil and Obama now has a taste for it.Very big mistake putting China ahead of his HH The Dalai Lama.



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Sparker

posted October 8, 2009 at 3:33 pm


What is unfortunate is that no one bothered to check ALL the facts. Over a month ago, Obama and the Dalai agreed NOT to meet at this time, but arranged to meet later, after Obama discusses politically sensitive subjects with China, such as renegotiating our trade arrangement to we import LESS and export MORE to China to help reduce our debt to that country. He is already in the hot seat with China for proposing more taxes on Chinese imports, so Americans will buy more American products instead, another boost to our economy. It is very frustrating when only half the information is made public, always seek the entire truth. There is always more to the story.



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Barry Gumbert

posted October 8, 2009 at 6:29 pm


I have read that President Obama plans to meet with His holiness “later this year” http://www.iol.co.za/index.php?art_id=nw20091006202918421C976785
If President Obama were a shred man we would strongly suggest to the Chinese government that repayment of that 800 Billion dollars could be seriously delayed if relations with Tibet are not improved. They feel free to hold That money over our heads, we should be willing to do the same. The Chinese should be made aware that they do not hold our leash and that we will no longer allow ourselves to do business with countries that don’t respect the rights of other countries.
I was looking at Google earth the other day and I went to Llasa Tibet. The Chinese have turned the city into a maze of warehouses where I assume they are exporting Tibet’s vast natural resources along the railroad they built. This railroad has been touted by the Chinese as a great benefit to the tibetan people. Yeah Right.
The American people should write to Obama and insist we take a firm stance with the Chinese. his e-mail address is president@whitehouse.gov
I thought we Americans were the champion of the oppressed. Time we proved it.quyxtc



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Barry Gumbert

posted October 8, 2009 at 6:34 pm


Oops!! Make that “a shrewd man”



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Your Name

posted October 8, 2009 at 6:57 pm


Obama didn’t meet with HHDL because he’s afraid of offending the Chinese government. Now isn’t this a sad state of affairs. What else will we do or not do for fear of offending the Chinese government? They hold the majority of our debt and at any time could say, “your printed money has no value, and we’re calling in the chips”. Furthermore, Obama plans on borrowing trillions MORE from the Chinese to cover healthcare and whatever else he thinks of. Of course we must cower before them for fear of offending. Perhaps we might think about starting to teach Chinese as a second language because China will own this country before we know it.
Our financial troubles may have started during the Bush years, but were also hastened along by two and a half years (now three) of a Democratic majority Congress. But at least Bush never shrank back from public meetings with the Dalai Lama!
For all Obama’s apologists, open your eyes and see the truth. The Chinese would like nothing more than witness the demise of HHDL, and have no intention of ever freeing Tibet. And at the same time, we are now beholden to them because of trillions in national debt held by a Communist regime.
All these ‘explanations’ of this cowardice… it’s HHDL’s idea, it’s foreign “etiquette”, smart politics… I disagree. Obama can’t risk offending the Chinese because we owe them waaaay too much money.



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Vixen

posted October 8, 2009 at 6:59 pm


Obama didn’t meet with HHDL because he’s afraid of offending the Chinese government. Now isn’t this a sad state of affairs. What else will we do or not do for fear of offending the Chinese government? They hold the majority of our debt and at any time could say, “your printed money has no value, and we’re calling in the chips”. Furthermore, Obama plans on borrowing trillions MORE from the Chinese to cover healthcare and whatever else he thinks of. Of course we must cower before them for fear of offending. Perhaps we might think about starting to teach Chinese as a second language because China will own this country before we know it.
Our financial troubles may have started during the Bush years, but were also hastened along by two and a half years (now three) of a Democratic majority Congress. But at least Bush never shrank back from public meetings with the Dalai Lama!
For all Obama’s apologists, open your eyes and see the truth. The Chinese would like nothing more than witness the demise of HHDL, and have no intention of ever freeing Tibet. And at the same time, we are now beholden to them because of trillions in national debt held by a Communist regime.
All these ‘explanations’ of this cowardice… it’s HHDL’s idea, it’s foreign “etiquette”, smart politics… I disagree. Obama can’t risk offending the Chinese because we owe them waaaay too much money.



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Daniel

posted October 8, 2009 at 8:00 pm


As was commented, the president and H.H. understand each other and the situation with the Chinese Government.H.H. has ben dealing with the Chinese Communists since before most of you were born! Let our leaders lead and trust in H.H. and his sublime wisdom and intelligence and do not despair. We must leave politics to the politicians no matter how hard it is to do so. Pray for our leaders, pray for His Holiness, and, the hardest part of all, pray for the Chinese Government.



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Barb

posted October 9, 2009 at 12:47 am


Its a shame we keep supporting and kissing china’s Ass and continue to keep making them richer and richer. They are cruel to their own people they respect no one. they are laughing all the way to the BANK! . they will never free tibet . they dont even look at them at humans actually they dont have empathy for anyone or anything.
And yet we support them . its so upsetting! go ahead find a factory in the us that makes anything! they make everything we gave them all the power they have.



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Size 14 shoes

posted October 9, 2009 at 3:32 am


I agree with you. How can he be so busy that he couldn’t meet such important people. Specially Dalai lama. It’s really bad…



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Thisara

posted October 9, 2009 at 4:05 am


Obama is the best president we ever had in USA. No argument on that. 90% of people in non-US countries including leaders supported Obama and today it is still the same. President of Sri Lanka supported Obama in open. (not Hillary…we don’t like her or her husband)
As seen on some of the comments it is not that Obama doesn’t like to meet Dalai Lama. It is just he doesn’t like to take unnecessary problems home.
I don’t agree with calling Ven.Dalai Lama as HH or any special character in Buddhism. Simply there isn’t any special characters preached by Lord Buddha according to the Buddhism I know. Lord Buddha has appointed Dhamma (The teachings of Buddha) as the leader of Buddhism after his passing away. This is clearly stated in books. Sangha (the monks just like Ven.Dalai Lama) are belongs to one category called carriers (teachers) of Buddhism. I personally respect all humans but when it comes to religions, I only believe the contents in books. I see Lord Buddha, Lord Jesus, Lord Alla in their books. They are all super natural and simple humans like us can’t be compared to them ;o)
Also, Buddhism is about giving up all greed by giving away all we have. Lord Buddha was a prince (Warrior Blood) who was about to become a king of India. But he had given away everything to achieve enlightenment (end of suffering). So politicians, astrologers and aurvedic doctors who are coming in the face of Sangha in Buddhism is simply a complete joke and they betray not only public but also themselves.
Finally, Obama is a busy president. He has lots of things to do in office with number one priority on correcting mistakes made by previous rulers and make the pride of prestigious America back once again. We know who is Obama and we trust him. Simply we love him a lot. So not meeting Ven Dalai Lama is not a problem at all.
Regards,
Thisara



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Mere_Christian

posted October 9, 2009 at 9:25 am


So I’m a bad guy for expecting the leader of Tibetan Buddhists to actually help his people WHERE they live? If D-Lama has it so good outside of Tibet (which it’s clear he does), why not get all of the Tibetan Buddhists out of Tibet TOO? D-L looks in pretty good health to me.
That makes my position not Christian?
Obama has no problem going to anti-Christians in Saudi Arabia.
How about my username being Mere Logic?



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LOVE AND TOLERANCE ARE THE ANSWER

posted October 9, 2009 at 10:33 am


I SO APPRECIATE DANIEL’S COMMENTS…I MUST REMEMBER THAT I DO NOT HAVE THE WHOLE STORY ABOUT POLITICS…THOSE WHO BELIEVE EVERY IOTA THAT THEY RECEIVE FROM THE MEDIA MAY BE FOOLING THEMSELVES TO THINK THEY HAVE A HANDLE ON THE SITUATION, AND CAN THEREBY ACT AND WRITE IN AN OVER-REACTIVE, SENSATIONAL WAY. LET US ALL COME FROM A PLACE OF LOVE WHEN CONTEMPLATING, WRITING UPON, OR ACTING ON ANY SUCH “NEWS”. I, TOO, REMEMBER THAT THERE IS A MUCH, MUCH GREATER DIVINE PLAN THAN ANY THAT MY HUMAN EXISTENCE CAN SEE. I TRUST SPIRIT AND IT’S UNCOMPROMISING LOVE, GRACE AND POWER. LET’S NOT BEHAVE AS BADLY AS THOSE WE REBUKE. PRAY, MEDITATE, TRUST. ALL IS WELL.



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Jessica Custer

posted October 9, 2009 at 11:28 am


With so many issues in the world, I have to say this is not a primary one. Yes, it would have been nice, and I am sure looking back, perhaps President Obama might question his own judgment on not meeting with such a wise person, but then again, who am I to say whom he should meet? The President has so much on his plate already, and he needs to really start to get things done. While meeting with HH would have been polite, it would not really have solved anything. Popularity is important to a president, but productivity is essential. There will be many occasions to meet with the Dalai Lama, and I am sure he won’t miss the next one. It is a bit ironic, though, that he just won the Nobel Peace prize and did not have time to meet with another peace promoter.



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churchmouse

posted October 11, 2009 at 11:41 pm


Thisara said, “Obama is the best president we ever had in USA. No argument on that. 90% of people in non-US countries including leaders supported Obama and today it is still the same. President of Sri Lanka supported Obama in open. (not Hillary…we don’t like her or her husband)”
I can think of a millions arguments that Obama is the worst president we have ever had.
“Finally, Obama is a busy president. He has lots of things to do in office with number one priority on correcting mistakes made by previous rulers and make the pride of prestigious America back once again. We know who is Obama and we trust him. Simply we love him a lot. So not meeting Ven Dalai Lama is not a problem at all.”
Busy?
He had time to entertain two guys for beer at the White House. He had time for a trip with family in tow to the Grand Canyon, Africa, Europe. Pleaze….He takes a lot of working vacations at the taxpayers expense that’s for sure.
Like Jessica said Obama has a lot on his plate. He has not accomplished anything yet, he has not held to any campaign promise.
He could have met with him and should have. Rev. Wright probably told him to snub him.



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Trixie

posted October 12, 2009 at 7:22 am


President Obama is self-centered. He is to busy creating more debt and is more worried about giving unnecessary speeches than meeting with such a beautiful, peaceful person as the Dalai Lama. He can only gain wisdom from such a meeting, but his ego got in the way.



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Monika

posted October 19, 2009 at 12:12 pm


As a resident of the State of Illinois, I have no good feelings about Barak Obama. I did not vote for him, but unfortunately helped him be
elected by paying his salary (as a taxpayer) from the time he became a State Senator until he won what some people believe to be the highest office in the Nation. He ‘blew’ off politicians that he didn’t feel were absolutely necessary to his Presidential candidacy and so far has only ‘talked’.
To award him the Nobel Peace Prize after he shunned a symbol of Peace, the Dalai Lama—SHAME ON THE NOBEL PRIZE COMMITTEE. Barak is egotistical, self-centered, an not interested in anything other than being another millionaire on the backs of the American taxpayers.



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Flu-Bird

posted December 30, 2009 at 4:27 pm


Wont meet with the DALI LAMA but gose to the UN to oink to some of the worlds worse despots,tyrants, and dictators



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dsafsd

posted February 28, 2010 at 9:17 pm


all u people who are bad talkin obama are b i t c h a s s mother f u c k e r s



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Cody

posted March 4, 2010 at 4:54 pm


It’s amusing watching people call Obama egotistical for not meeting with this buddhist charlatan, when the Dalai Lama is bar-none one of the most egotistical men in the world.



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