At this point in time there was a significant drop in precipitation for the Titicaca Basin. Some archaeologists even venture to say that a great drought occurred. As the rain became less and less many of the cities further away from Lake Titicaca began to produce fewer crops to give to the elites. As the surplus of food ran out for the elites their power began to fall. The capital city became the last place of production, due to the resiliency of the raised fields, but in the end even the intelligent design of the fields was no match for the weather. Tiwanaku disappeared around AD 1000 because food production, their main source of power, dried up. The land was not inhabited for many years after that.
The empire continued to grow with no end in sight. William H. Isbell states that “Tiahuanaco underwent a dramatic transformation between AD 600 and 700 that established new monumental standards for civic architecture and greatly increased the resident population.” Tiwanaku continued to absorb cultures rather than eradicate them. Archaeologists have seen a dramatic adoption of Tiwanaku ceramics in the cultures who became part of the Tiwanaku empire. Tiwanaku gained its power through the trade it implemented between all of the cities within its empire.
The elites gained their status by the surplus of food they gained from all of the regions and then by having the ability to redistribute the food among all the people. This is where the control of llama herds became very significant to Tiwanaku. The llama herds were essential for carrying goods back and forth between the centre and the periphery as well as symbolizing the distance between the commoners and the elites. Their power continued to grow in this manner of a surplus of resources until about AD 950. At this time a dramatic shift in climate occurred.
The community grew to urban proportions between AD 600 and AD 800, becoming an important regional power in the southern Andes. According to early estimates, at its maximum extent, the city covered approximately 6.5 square kilometres, and had between 15,000 – 30,000 inhabitants. However, satellite imaging was used recently to map the extent of fossilized suka kollus across the three primary valleys of Tiwanaku, arriving at population-carrying capacity estimates of anywhere between 285,000 and 1,482,000 people.
Around AD 400, Tiwanaku went from being a locally dominant force to a predatory state. Tiwanaku expanded its reaches into the Yungas and brought its culture and way of life to many other cultures in Peru, Bolivia, and Chile. However, Tiwanaku was not a violent culture in many aspects. In order to expand its reach Tiwanaku became very political creating colonies, trade agreements (which made the other cultures rather dependant), and state cults.
Tiwanaku at its largest territorial extent, AD 950
The region that is now known as Bolivia has been constantly occupied for over 2,000 years, when the Aymara arrived in the region. Present-day Aymara associate themselves with an advanced civilization situated at Tiwanaku, in Western Bolivia. The capital city of Tiwanaku dates as early as 1500 BC as a small agriculturally based village.
The original name given to the newly formed country was Republic of Bolívar. The name would not change to Bolivia until some days later when congressman Manuel Martín Cruz proposed: “If from Romulus comes Rome, then from Bolívar comes Bolivia” (Spanish: Si de Rómulo Roma, de Bolívar Bolivia). The name stuck and was approved by the Republic on 3 October 1825.
In 2009, a new constitution changed the country’s name from the “Republic of Bolivia” to the “Plurinational State of Bolivia” in recognition of the multi-ethnic nature of the country and the enhanced position of Bolivia’s indigenous peoples under the new constitution.
Bolivia was named for Simón Bolívar, a leader in the Spanish American wars of independence. Antonio José de Sucre had been given the option by Bolívar to either keep Upper Peru (present-day Bolivia) under the newly formed Republic of Peru, to unite with the United Provinces of Rio de la Plata, or to formally declare its independence from the Viceroyalty of Peru that had dominated most of the region. Sucre opted to create a new nation and, with local support, named it in honor of Simón Bolívar.
The Bolivian population, estimated at 10 million, is multiethnic, including Amerindians, Mestizos, Europeans, Asians and Africans. The main language spoken is Spanish, although the Aymara and Quechua languages are also common and all three, as well as 34 other indigenous languages, are official. The large number of different cultures within Bolivia has contributed greatly to a wide diversity in fields such as art, cuisine, literature, and music.
Bolivia is a Democratic Republic that is divided into nine departments. According to Noam Chomsky Bolivia is the most democratic country in the western hemisphere. Its geography is varied from the peaks of the Andes in the West, to the Eastern Lowlands, situated within the Amazon Basin. It is a developing country, with a Medium Human Development Index score, and a poverty level around 60%. Its main economic activities include agriculture, forestry, fishing, mining, and manufacturing goods such as textiles, clothing, refined metals, and refined petroleum. Bolivia is very wealthy in minerals, especially tin.
Bolivia, officially known as Plurinational State of Bolivia (Quechua: Bulivya Mamallaqta, Spanish: Estado Plurinacional de Bolivia, IPA: [esˈtaðo pluɾinasjoˈnal de βoˈliβja] Aymara: “Wuliwya Suyu”), is a landlocked country in central South America. It is bordered by Brazil to the north and east, Paraguay and Argentina to the south, Chile by the south west, and Peru by the west. Prior to European colonization, the Andean region of Bolivia was a part of the Inca Empire – the largest state in Pre-Columbian America. The Spanish Empire conquered the region in the 16th century. During most of the Spanish colonial period, this territory was called Upper Peru and was under the administration of the Viceroyalty of Peru, which included most of Spain’s South American colonies. After declaring independence in 1809, 16 years of war followed before the establishment of the Republic, named for Simón Bolívar, on 6 August 1825. Bolivia has struggled through periods of political instability, dictatorships and economic woes.
Ever since President Ding Xioping said in early 1970’s at everything is negotiable accept for Independence of Tibet. Based on that statement, His Holiness
the Dalai Lama promoted the “Middle Way Approach” to the Tibetan issue with China.
The Dalai Lama representatives and the Chinese counterpart met 8 times since early 70’s but to date no progress has been made to solve the Tibet issue, from
the Chinese side they have always been negative response to all the overtures that His Holiness and the Tibetan Government-in-Exile. In July 2008 when they
last met, the Tibetan delegation presented a Memorandum to the Chinese counter part. They totally rejected the Memorandum, although every article in the
Memorandum is guaranteed under the Chinese constitution, therefore the Chinese government not even adhere to their own constitution.
His Holiness the Dalai Lama with Nobel Peace Prize which was Awarded to him by the Norweigian Nobel Committee in 1989 for His Non Violent approach to the
issue of Tibet
A quote from His Holiness the Dalai Lama: ” This is the worst period in our 2000 year history. This really is the most serious period. At this time, now,
there is every danger that the entire Tibetan Nation, with its own unique cultural heritage will completely disappear. The present situation is so serious
that it is really a question of life and death. If death occurs, nothing is left.”
The Chinese then used this document to carry out their plans to turn Tibet into a colony of China disregarding the strong resistance by the Tibetan people.
What is more, the Chinese violated every article of this unequal ‘treaty’ which they had imposed on the Tibetans.
On September 9, 1951 thousands of Chinese troops marched into Lhasa. The forcible occupation of Tibet was marked by systematic destruction of monasteries,
suppression of religion, denial of political freedom, widespread arrests and imprisonment and massacre of innocent men, women and children.
On March 10, 1959 the nation-wide Tibetan resistance culminated in the Tibetan National Uprising against the Chinese in Lhasa. The Chinese retaliated with a
ruthlessness unknown to the Tibetans. Thousands of men, women and children were massacred in the streets and many more imprisoned and deported. Monks and
nuns were a prime target. Monasteries and temples were shelled.
On March 17, 1959 the Dalai Lama left Lhasa and escaped from the pursuing Chinese to seek political asylum in India. He was followed by unprecedented exodus
of Tibetans into exile. Never before in their history had so many Tibetans been forced to leave their homeland under such difficult circumstances. There are
now more than one hundred thousand Tibetan refugees all over the world.
It has been 50 years since Chinese occupied Tibet and the destruction of a unique culture is still going on in Tibet, yet the world has not come in aid of
Tibet, only lip service.
Last of the Chinese troops leaving Tibet for repatriation via India 1913
In January 1913 a bilateral treaty was signed between Tibet and Mongolia at Urga. In that treaty both countries declared themselves free and separate from
The Thirteenth Dalai Lama, having returned from India i.n January 1913, issued a formal declaration of the complete independence of Tibet, dated the eighth
day of the first month of the Water-Ox year (March 1913). The document also clarified:
“Now the Chinese intention of colonising Tibet under the patron-priest relationship has faded like a rainbow in the sky”.
The Thirteenth Dalai Lama started international relations, introduced modern postal and telegraph services and, despite the turbulent period in which he
ruled, introduced measures to modernise Tibet. On December 17, 1933 he passed away.
The following year a Chinese mission arrived in Lhasa to offer condolences, but in fact they tried to settle the Sino-Tibetan border issue. After the chief
delegate left, another Chinese delegate remained to continue discussions. The Chinese delegation was permitted to remain in Lhasa on the same footing as the
Nepalese and Indian representatives until he was expelled in 1949.
In September 1949, Communist China, without any provocation, invaded Eastern Tibet and captured Chamdo, the headquarters of the Governor of Eastern Tibet. On
November 11, 1950, the Tibetan Government protested to the United Nations Organisation against the Chinese aggression. Although El Salvador raised the
question, the Steering Committee of the General Assembly moved to postpone the issue.
On November 17, 1950, His Holiness the Fourteenth Dalai Lama assumed full spiritual and temporal powers as the Head of State because of the grave crisis
facing the country, although he was barely sixteen years old. On May 23, 1951 a Tibetan delegation, which had gone to Peking to hold talks on the invasion,
was forced to sign the so-called “17-point Agreement on Measures for the Peaceful Liberation of Tibet”, with threats of more military action in Tibet and by
forging the official seals of Tibet.
Another sore point in the relations between the Gurkhas and the Tibetans had been the intervention of Tibet in the Gurkha invasion of Sikkim. Tibet offered
help to Sikkim and a treaty was concluded between Nepal and Sikkim in the presence of two Tibetan representatives. The Gurkhas resented this interference and
were looking for an excuse to attack Tibet. Such an opportunity arose in the controversy over the third Panchen Lama’s personal property which was being
claimed by the Panchen’s two brothers, Drugpa Tulku and Shamar Tulku. The latter hoped to use the backing of the Gurkhas for his claim. The Gurkhas used the
claim of Shamar Tulku and invaded Tibet.
The Eighth Dalai Lama, then 26 years old, requested the Manchu Emperor, Ch’ien Lung, for temporary military assistance. The Manchu army which entered Tibet
in 1792 became more harmful to the Tibetans and they again tried to increase the power of the Manchu Resident. Further, Ch’ien Lung sent a golden urn from
Peking and declared that future reincarnations of the Dalai Lama and other important lamas should be determined by putting the names of the candidates in it
and extracting one at random in the presence of the Manchu Resident. This imperialist imposition was not adhered to by the Tibetans and the Thirteenth Dalai
Lama, whose own choice had not even been referred to the Manchus, publicly abolished this form.
During this period Tibet was invaded several times and the Manchu Resident at Lhasa engaged in nefarious intrigues and meddled in Tibetan state affairs. But
Tibet never lost her sovereignty. The Tibetan people recognized the Central Tibetan Government, headed by the Dalai Lama, as the only legal Government of
The sovereignty of Tibet was further shown in her dealings with Nepal in 1856 when a treaty was signed between the two countries without reference to China.
In the internal affairs of Tibet, the sovereignty of the Central Government of Tibet at Lhasa was most clearly illustrated in the internal war which broke
out during the middle of the nineteenth century between the chieftain of Nyarong on the one side and the King of Derge and the Horpa princes on the other.
The Tibetan Government sent an army, crushed the Nyarong Chief, whose invasion of his neighbour was the cause of the trouble, and set up a Tibetan Governor
in his place, charging him with the general supervision of the affairs of Derge and the Horpa principalities.
In 1876, the Thirteenth Dalai Lama, Thupten Gyatso, at the age of 19, took charge of the duties of state from Regent Choekyi Gyaltsen Kundeling. He was an
outstanding personality and helped Tibet to reassert her rightful sovereignty in international affairs.
At this period the British had close and profitable ties with China. The Chinese had persuaded the British that they exercise ’suzerainty’ over Tibet.
Therefore on September 13, 1876, the Sino-British Chefoo Convention, which granted Britain the ‘right’ of sending a mission of exploration into Tibet, was
signed. The mission was abandoned when the Tibetans refused to allow them on the grounds that they did not recognise China’s authority. Two more similar
agreements, the Peking Convention of July 24, 1886 and the Calcutta Convention of March 17, 1890, were also repudiated by the Tibetans.
The Tibetan Government refused to have anything to do with the British who were dealing over their heads with the Chinese. This coincided with new contacts
between Russia and Tibet around 1900-1.
There followed an interchange of letters and presents between the Dalai Lama and the Russian Czar. This strengthened British fears about Russian involvement
in Tibetan affairs. As the Russian power in Asia was growing, the British Government felt that their interest was at stake. Tibet was invaded by a British
expeditionary force under Colonel Younghusband, which entered Lhasa on August 3, 1904.
A treaty was signed between Tibet and Great Britain on September 7, 1904. During the British invasion Tibet conducted her affairs as an independent country.
Peking did not so much as protest against the British invasion of Tibet.
When the British invaded Tibet, the 13th Dalai Lama went to Mongolia. The Manchus, who were then ruling China, made one last attempt to interfere in Tibet
through the military campaigns of the infamous Chao Erhfeng. Mhen the Dalai Lama was in Kumbum monastery in the province of Amdo, he received two messages –
one from Lhasa, urging him to return with all speed as they feared for his safety and could not oppose the intruding troops of Chao Erhfeng, and the other
from Peking, requesting him to visit the Chinese capital. The Dalai Lama chose to go to Peking with the hope of prevailing upon the Chinese Emperor to stop
the military agression against Tibet and to withdraw his troops.
When the Dalai Lama finally returned to Lhasa in 1909, he found that, contrary to all the promises he had received in Peking, Chao Erhfeng’s troops were at
his heels. During the annual Monlam festival of 1910, some 2,000 Manchu and Chinese soldiers under the command of General Chung Ying entered Lhasa and
indulged in carnage, rape, murder, plunder, and wanton destruction. Once again the Dalai Lama was forced to leave Lhasa. He appointed a Regent to rule in his
absence and left for the southern town of Dromo with the intention to go to British India if necessary. Events in Lhasa and the pursuing Chinese troops
forced him to leave his country once again.
In India the Dalai Lama and his ministers appealed to the British Government to help Tibet. Meanwhile the Manchu occupation force tried to subvert the
Tibetan Government and to divide Tibet into Chinese provinces – exactly what, not half a century later, the Communist Chinese would do.
But, when the news of the 1911 Revolution in China reached Lhasa, the Chinese troops mutinied against their Manchu officers and attacked the Amban’s
residence. Fighting broke out between rival Manchu and Chinese generals. Then, in a desperate attempt to regain their dwindling hold in Lhasa, the Chinese
attacked the Tibetans. By then, however, the Tibetans had reorganised themselves with orders coming from the Dalai Lama in India. Chinese troops in Lhasa,
and elsewhere in Tibet were overcome by the Tibetans and finally expelled in 1912. During this period of fighting and confusion the new ruler of China,
President Yuan Shih-kai, tried to send military reinforcements to the beleagured troops while at the same time trying to placate the Tibetans. He apologised
for the excesses and said that he had restored the Dalai Lama who wrote back saying that he was not asking the Chinese Government for any rank as he intended
to ezercise both spiritual and temporal rule in Tibet and declared Tibet’s independence.
The Great Ganden Monastery
During the first decade of the 16th century, Tseten Dorje, a servant of the Rinpung family, with the help of some local tribes and Mongols, managed to gain
control of Shigatse and the surrounding regions of Tsang province. From 1566 to 1642 Tseten Dorje and his two successors ruled Tibet with the title of Depa
Sonam Gyatso, born in 1543, emerged as a scholar of great spiritual and temporal wisdom. He became the spiritual teacher of the Phamo Drugpa ruler, Drakpa
Jungne. He was the Abbot of Drepung monastery and the most eminent lama of that time. He provided extensive relief to the Kyichu flood victims in 1562,
founded Lithang Monastery in 1580 and Kumbum Monastery in 1582. He also successfully mediated between the various warring factions in Tibet. He converted
Altan Khan to Buddhism and the latter conferred on him the title Dalai Lama meaning “Ocean of Wisdom” in 1578. As Sonam Gyatso was third in his line, he
became the Third Dalai Lama, the title being posthumously conferred on his two previous incarnations.
A close spiritual relationship developed between Tibet and Mongolia. The Gelugpa sect grew stronger and gradually eclipsed the waning Sakya authority.
In 1642, the Fifth Dalai Lama, Ngawang Lozang Gyatso, assumed both spiritual and temporal authority over Tibet. He established the present system of the
Tibetan Government, known as the Ganden Phodrang, “Victorious Everywhere”. After becoming the ruler of all Tibet, he set forth to China to demand Chinese
recognition of his sovereignty. The Ming Emperor received the Dalai Lama as an independent sovereign and as an equal. It is recorded that he went out of his
capital to meet the Dalai Lama and that he had an inclined pathway built over the city wall so that the Dalai Lama could enter Peking without going through a
The Emperor not only accepted the Dalai Lama as an independent sovereign but also as a Divinity on Earth. In return the Dalai Lama used his influence to
bring the warlike Mongols into acknowledging the Emperor’s sway in China. Henceforth, there started a Priest-Patron relationship which brought a new element
into the relations of Tibet, China and Mongolia. Another important event was the statement of the Fifth Dalai Lama that the line of the first Panchen Lama,
Choskyi Gyaltsen, who was one of his tutors, would continue.
The glorious reign of the Great Fifth was followed by a period of intrigue and instability. To start with, the powerful prime minister, Desi Sangye Gyatso,
had kept the death of the Fifth Dalai Lama secret for fifteen years in order to complete the construction of the Potala Palace and also to ward off possible
interference from the Manchus, who had become increasingly powerful in China. When the Sixth Dalai Lama, Tsangyang Gyatso, was finally enthroned in 1697 he
turned out to be an embarrassment to the Desi and his associates, refusing to take interest in the affairs of state and leading a frivolous life.
Circumstances arising from the behavior of the young Dalai Lama and also the personal conflict between the Desi and Lhazang Khan, the grandson of Gusri Khan
and the chief of the Qosot Mongols in Central Tibet, led to the resignation of the Desi and the complete take-over of political power by Lhazang Khan, who
later allied himself with the Manchus and sent the young Dalai Lama into exile.
Lhasang Khan was himself defeated and killed by Dzungar Mongols who had come to Tibet at the invitation of the monks of the three big Gelugpa monasteries in
Lhasa. The Dzungars, who were staunch followers of the Gelugpa tradition, were not content with the death of Lhazang Khan. They proceeded to persecute the
adherents of the Nyingamapa sect. This brought about a feeling of disenchantment against their presence among sections of the Tibetan people.
When Kalsang Gyatso, the reincarnation of the Sixth Dalai Lama, was discovered in Lithang, in eastern Tibet, there was a struggle among various tribes of the
Mongols and the Manchus to gain control over him so that they could exercise their influence in Tibet. The Manchus were successful in this endeavor and so it
was that in 1720 the Manchus sent in troops to escort the young Dalai Lama and also avenge the death of their ally, Lhazang Khan. At the same time, Tibetan
troops under Khangchennas and Pholhanas took advantage of the situation to attack the Dzungars, who fled with as much loot as they could take with them.
When the Manchu troops entered Lhasa, the Dzungars hact already left. But they had other designs and when their troops finally left in 1723 they left behind
a Resident or Amban ostensibly to serve the Dalai Lama but in fact to look after their own interests. This was the beginning of Manchu interference iri
Tibetan affairs. The Manchus also put up their own nominee as the Tibetan Regent against Tibetan wishes. A few years later the Manchu nominee was killed and
then the Manchu Emperor, Yung Cheng, sent a military force which was the first time the Manchus invaded Tibet. The Manchu force in 1727 tried to bring
changes in the administration of Tibetan Government. The Manchu Emperor also tried to buy the allegiance of certain Tibetan princes, chieftains and lamas by
giving many of them seals of office. But the Tibetans regarded the seals as a compliment and did not acknowledge them as a mark of vassalage. However, the
Manchu Residents (Ambans) began to meddle in Tibetan state matters whenever the opportunity arose.
The Tibetans were repelled by the extent of Manchu intrigues when the Manchu Resident murdered the Tibetan Regent. The Tibetans retaliated by massadring the
Manchus in Lhasa. Again the Manchus invaded Tibet in 1749 and they tried in vain to increase the power of the Manchu Resident.