• Quezon City, Philippines

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Regarding Frank Ching’s July 16 article, “World sympathy lies with Tibet, not Xinjiang“: To be sure, there are many reasons why world sympathy for the Uighurs seems to be muted compared to the outcry over Tibet in previous incidents. Some of the reasons are plain to see; Western prejudice against Muslims, the current global economic downturn and the unabated problems of financial turmoil are only a few. External provocateurs, foreign forces meddling in China’s internal affairs, geopolitical interest and others are not so plain to see and may take time before they come to light.

Considering U.S. involvement in the 1953 overthrow of (Iranian Prime Minister Mohammed) Mossadegh, the stirrings in Tibet, the attempted coup against Venezuela’s Hugo Chavez, the separatist movement in Kurdish-populated areas of Iraq and Iran, and many more, I would not in the least be surprised at how the recent Xinjiang incident came about.

China has a long history of peaceful coexistence inside and outside its borders. It can teach the United States and others in the West a thing or two about racial harmony and religious tolerance. Why the Uighur riots happened just now, after centuries of harmonious relationship, remains a mystery.

Maybe the humble priest from Tibet, cloaked in enlightened mysticism, can divine this one for us and share with us some of his oriental wisdom. And perhaps American actor Richard Gere can come on board to help publicize the cause of the Turkic minority with all his Hollywood flair. That would be quite a spectacle, definitely one for the Nobel Peace Prize committee to seriously consider.

philip francis sy

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