Perhaps the Chinese have been stuffing Jimmy Carter’s pockets – most likely through donations to his foundation. [Recently we have seen how they stuff the pockets of another former prez – Clinton] Back in 1980, Jimmy Carter led the boycott of the Moscow Olympics in protest against the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan. But when asked if he supported a boycott over Chinese aggression in Tibet, he replied:

“That was a totally different experience in 1980, when the Soviet Union had brutally invaded and killed thousands and thousands of people,” he said, rejecting the idea of boycotting the Beijing games to protest China’s crackdown in Tibet. He did not address whether just the opening ceremonies should be boycotted.

It is only totally different only if you are being paid by the Chinese. If you are a true humanitarian, and defender of people’s rights to self-determination, as Carter proclaims ot the world, you know that the results of China’s invasion of Tibet has been much, much worse than anything the Soviets did in Afghanistan.

China invaded Tibet on March 10, 1959. According to Tibetan sources, since then 87,000 people have been died. China has carried out a policy to destroy Tibetan culture through destroying Tibetan cultural/religious centers, transplanting millions of ethnic Chinese there, brutally repressing opposition, and forcing into exile the Tibetan leader.

Remember last year, Carter returned from Darfur proclaiming it was not a genocide by the Sudanese government, but a regional conflict. This is the standard line of the Muslim totalitarian regimes, who stuff millions into the coffers of the Carter Foundation. China is also under fire for major supporter of Sudan, and not doing enough to pressure the Sudanese.

Today, Carter roams around Israel, visits Sderot, gets rebuffed by Israel’s leaders, and ignored by the Shin Bet. Any goodwill created when they inked the Peace deal with Egypt nearly 30 years ago has evaporated. I just have one suggestion for the Israelis – pay up. For a mere 5 million of so, Carter could “re-examine” his views on the subject. He could “have a new understanding” and become more of an ally. We could get a ghost writer from the Shalem Center to whip together a new book too.

As it says in Pirkei Avot, “K’ne l’cha chaver”, “acquire for yourself a friend.” It will do Israel a lot more good to support Jimmy Carter with backsheesh, than to rebuff him.

About the author

Rabbi Yonah


  • Carter’s mild view on Tibet reminds one of his administration’s policy of engaging China: the US formally recognized the PRC in 1979. Carter also famously hosted Deng Xiaoping in Washington.

    Comparing Tibetan and Afghan suffering strikes me as an exercise in futility, but the question of whether to boycott all or any part of the Games is a vexed one. The West should be very selective about picking up its marbles and going home. Turning your back on a country, albeit for principled reasons, can prove self-defeating. If we could decide today, would anyone north of Lauderdale think the Cuban economic embargo a good idea?

    The Olympics should promote openness, exposure to the non-Chinese world, and heterodoxy generally. If the goal is loosening the Communist Party’s stifling control, the Olympics may well advance it.

  • And as the cartoon I linked to also infers, it’s a bit too late in the game to boycott China, while everything else we import or buy from China continues unabated. Better than a boycott, are little mini-protests in the stands, on the podiums, etc.

    What the Chinese are doing in Tibet is atrocious, but let’s also not forget that Tibet was never a paradise for the majority of Tibetans. The ruling Llama class were no saints (despite being holy) and even the evil communists brought a better standard of living to the Tibetan serf class, who were the majority, including lowering the infant mortality rate, increasing literacy and life expectancy, etc..

    Yes, communism is evil, but is a ruling theocratic dictatorship that much better? And let’s not fool ourselves in believing that if Richard Gear’s and Steve Segal’s money bumming Dalai Llama friend is put back in power, that all of the sudden Tibet would become a democracy. Choosing Tibet over China is like voting in an American economy; choosing the lesser of two evils.

    Tibet just seems like a wonderful place because it has become the left’s and Hollywood’s pet cause for some time and a bunch of movies and books were made glorifying the Dalai Llama and his “greatness” (Seems like a snake charmer to me who needs money like the rest). Anyone remember Brad Pitt?

  • China invaded Tibet on March 10, 1959. According to Tibetan sources, since then 87,000 people have been died. China has carried out a policy to destroy Tibetan culture through destroying Tibetan cultural/religious centers, transplanting millions of ethnic Chinese there, brutally repressing opposition, and forcing into exile the Tibetan leader.

    The Chinese Communist Party assumed control of most of Mainland China (including parts of Mongolia and all of Manchuria, Eastern Turkestan, Sipsongpanna and other areas that were arguably at one time or another sovereign nations) in 1949. Since then tens (if not hundreds) of millions of people have been killed by the regime. During the 1960s, the CCP carried out a policy to destroy Han, Mongolian, Manchurian, Uyghur, Tibetan, Dai, and various other cultural/religious centers (including monasteries, temples, mosques, churches, synagogues, libraries, etc.), forcibly transplanting millions of intellectuals to the countryside, burning books, destroying buildings and murdering or driving to suicide some of the most talented literary figures who ever lived in any country. But all that happened decades ago, as did the vast majority of the bad stuff the Chinese did in Tibet.

    So why should Tibet be driving our policy toward China today? Tibetans today have roughly the same rights as any other Chinese (some would say more rights, since as minorities, among other benefits, they receive affirmative-action-style educational preferences and are exempt from the One Child Policy). Obviously China has nothing close to our Bill of Rights, but for the most part organized religion and culture is tolerated, and these days even encouraged–as long as it doesn’t involve an institutional structure outside the CCP’s control. And that goes for everyone, not just Tibetans. Just like Tibetan Buddhists in China aren’t allowed to recognize the Dalai Lama as their leader, Chinese Catholics aren’t allowed to recognize the Pope as their leader (China has its own parallel Catholic Church that is outside the Vatican’s control).

    So again I ask, why should Tibet be driving our China policy?

  • To be clear, I’m not saying we shouldn’t boycott the Olympics. I’m just saying I think all the emphasis on Tibet is misplaced, and is merely a really good PR ploy by the Tibetan independence movement, a movement I find more sympathetic than Alex apparently does, but a movement I do not support.

  • Hey, at least the weekly bulletin at Carter’s Baptist church doesn’t carry warm and fuzzy messages from Hamas leaders. (Sorry– y’all were too busy preparing for Passover to watch last night’s debate.)

  • Like I said, I hate communists. IMO, the only good communist is a dead one. But I’m not about to go jump on the Tibet bandwagon when my own people need me just as much if not more. There’s only a certain amount of hours in the day and an unlimited amount of causes. Let attention whores like Steven Segal, Richard Gere, and the Beastie Boys worry about Tibet. Again, 4 Jews who do nothing for Judaism and Israel and everything for some Buddists. Not to say that I’m unconcerned about injustice and genocide like in Darfur. G-d knows if people only thought about themselves, the Shoah would have proceeded unabated. Pick and choose our battles wisely…

    As far as the debate… OMG! It was awesome!! Barrack’s Waterloo they’re calling it. As someone who’s definitely voting against Obama ad Clinton, I could not have asked for better entertainment. It was great to see some journalists actually doing their jobs and asking Hillary about being a pathological, shameless liar and about Obama having terrorists as friends and associates. Then, when they actually got to policy issues, they both had no idea what they are talking about! Both believed that a local community could override the 2nd Amendment and Obama proved he was a closet socialist who wants to redistribute weath for “fairness”. I actually feel sorry for my Democrat friends, if these are the two jokers left running for POTUS, it’s a sad state of affairs for that party. Depressing in fact.

  • Students for a Free Tibet has a new online video channel broadcasting from London throughout the worldwide uprising for Tibetan freedom during the Beijing Olympics: Free Tibet 2008 Television, or FT08.TV.

    With all the Olympic actions for Tibet taking place and particularly the incredible success of the ‘opening’ banner action outside Beijing’s ‘Bird’s Nest’ stadium on Aug. 6th and subsequent media storm here in the UK, it took some time to get FT08.TV ready for prime time.

    But with the dedicated help of lots of people, SFT’s new video channel is up and running, and filled with lots of must-see on-demand content, including inspiring Tibet activist video-profiles, action reports, video-blogs, and more.

    We’re also airing a nightly Windhorse Report live from London with SFT leaders Tenzin Dorjee and Han Shan – a roundup of reports from Beijing and around the world during the Olympics, with breaking news about protests, call-in interviews with news-making activists, episodes of SFT-TV (the efforts of SFT’s global grassroots), and info and analysis about the situation on the ground in Tibet.

    There will be more and more compelling content to watch every day and we’ll be improving the channel/website as we go (after all, this is but one small facet of our Olympic efforts right now). But please come check it out: surf around the many videos on the channel, or watch the stream (click on “Streaming Now” in the upper left-hand corner). Last but not least, you’re invited to submit video… check out the channel for more on what we’re looking for.

    Please help spread the word about FT08.TV– join the facebook group, blog about it, embed the videos, spam your address book – and of course, keep watching.

    And don’t forget to visit SFT’s Olympics Campaign website: and SFT’s blog: for more news and analysis from the frontlines of the current global effort to make Olympic history for Tibet.

    Note: many thanks to Nathan Dorjee, Shannon Service, Andi Mignolo, Alex Fountain, Thupten Nyima, Kala Mendoza, and many others for helping to make FT08.TV happen at this critical time.
    5:32 PM

  • so that is what zionists do with balfour and truman and presidents since and
    congressmens and senators since.