By China Watcher
In a sign to challenge the popular stance of the Chinese people relating to the huge protests over China staging of the Olympics, Paris’s Mayor Bertrand Delanoe, from the Socialist party, has granted the Dalai Lama’s honorary citizenship.
I do not question the right of any cities to grant honorary citizenship to political or social celebrities throughout the world but the timing was bad. It was done at a time when there were massive anti-French protests throughout China over the veiled support given to the Tibetan Independence cause. The poor crowd control during the torch run in Paris early this month raised my suspicions of the incompetent security force and the police who may have been involved in encouraging the unacceptable acts of disrupting the torchbearers from completing their tasks.
The mayor claimed that by bestowing the honor to the spiritual leader it is defending the most basis right to dignity, freedom and simple life. But the mayor is also interfering in the internal affairs of China and has also defied the majority of the Chinese people who has expressed its support of the Chinese government to stage the Olympics. Furthermore, the Dalai Lama led protests throughout the world, at times violent, has re-ignited the patriotic feelings of the Chinese people – both in China and in 153 countries throughout the world.
It was also in Paris, last month that a couple was badly treated in a reputable departmental store because they were of Chinese origin. Paris also has its own problems of racial discontentment and treatment of its African blacks but there was no honor given to any black activists. It is obviously a case of double standards and the widely acceptable behavior permeating in French societies that to resent anything Chinese is good.
The awarding of the honor at the height of the many pro-China rallies held in Chinese cities is insensitive and it is regarded as an act against the Chinese people.
Chinese people throughout the world should speak out loudly on this matter and if possible, support a boycott to visit the French capital, at present or in the future.