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Tibet makes a historic leap
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14:39, December 10, 2008

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Tibet is a mysterious and appealing place!

On the eve of the 40th anniversary marking the founding of Tibet Autonomous Region, this writer went to Tibet, which gave him the "Tibet complex". He said: I like to think back knowledge about Tibet and like to read writings on Tibet. As I recall all these my deepest impression on Tibet is: The "high mountains and long rivers" of natural culture, the magnificent projects built there and the "big leap" featuring the tremendous change seen when one compares the present with the past.

Ancient Tibetan books say that the living quarters of Tibetans are located between the high "snow-clad railings". This remark is quite true, high snow-covered mountain peaks at over 7,000 meters above sea level in the world are mostly concentrated here. A book says, the big U-shaped turn of the grand canyon of the Yarlung Zangbo River is like a yellow hada presented to the Nanjia Bawa Peak. A look at the pictures taken downwards reveals that it is really difficult to find out a metaphor of greater atmosphere! On the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau, there is a building that envelops a mountain, and that is the Potala Palace; there is a Tangkar painting (Tibetan religious paintings on scrolls) that covers the whole mountain slope, and that is a ceremony exhibiting Buddha in Bras-spungs Monastery held during Shoton Festival (sour milk drinking) every year.

The mountains here are the highest, canyons are the deepest and palaces are the most imposing in the world, and the color of Tangkar paintings is so rich that it seems that all beautiful elements in the world have been used up here. This is what Tibet shows us--the grandness of mountains and rivers and the vastness of humanity.

A review of the centuries-old history of Tibet shows that serfs planted qingke (highland barley) in river valleys, grazed cattle and sheep on the grasslands and lived at the mercy of the elements from generation to generation. The local economy was backward and people lived a poor life from day to day and year to year.

With the time entering the 1950s and along with the peaceful liberation of Tibet and the founding of the autonomous region, Tibet's construction has advanced at tremendous pace, many thousand-year-old dreams have been turned into reality within several short decades.

The biggest leap is the construction of a political system. On September 1, 1965, the First People's Congress of the Tibet Autonomous Region was held in Lhasa, which marked the founding of the Tibet Autonomous Region. The serf system featuring the combination of politics and religion was replaced by the socialist regional ethnic autonomy. Tibetan people's right of subsistence and development is guaranteed by a system, this is a great change unprecedented in thousands-year-old history of Tibet.

The grandest project is infrastructure construction. Since Tibet's peaceful liberation and the founding of the autonomous region, Tibet has witnessed one construction upsurge after another, making this snow-crowned plateau more beautiful and suitable for living in.

Let's open the map to see what "big projects" have been added to this plot of land over recent years: The Sichuan-Tibet Highway, the Qinghai-Tibet Highway, the New Century Qinghai-Tibet Railway; the Yangbajain Terrestrial Heat Power Station, the Yangzhuoyong Pumping Storage Power Station, Gonggar Airport, Bangda Airport, the New Century Nyingchi Airport, Barkor Street in Lhasa, Bayi Town was created from scratch��Many natural defects were made up by human labor and many long-cherished dreams of Tibetan compatriots have come true.

Change in Tibet today has infiltrated into every aspect of people's lives! This is true of cities as well as of the countryside. In the buckwheat field at the Niyanghe River Valley, we unexpectedly discovered that Tibetan women engaging in crop harvesting were chewing gums; in a telephone village of Bayi Town, the buttered tea to which our host treated us was not made by the use of a butter tea bucket, but instead by a power-driven fruit juice machine. Their change from having not enough clothes and medicine and lacking of sufficient vegetables and food and failing to buy even an egg, to having gums to chew by rural women, this shows that Tibet has made a great leap in these years!

A careful thinking reveals that the tremendous change is owed to the impetus given by "three big hands": The hard-working hand of the people of various local ethnic groups who "lack oxygen but not spirit"; the helping hand as shown in the concerns of the central authorities and in the support given by the whole country; and the "invisible hand" of the modern market economy which takes root in the snow-clothed region and the market allocation of resources.

Mt. Qomolangma (Mt Everest) is a mountain peak that keeps rising, 8848.13 meters are the height it once reached. We believe that through the painstaking efforts made by the people of various ethnic groups in their pioneering of enterprises and their persistent climbing, Tibet's tomorrow will certainly be better.

By People's Daily Online

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