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Comic: Usurpation

Buddhist TV

On Sunday, China named 20-year-old Gyaltsen Norbu, its version of the Panchen Lama, to its National Committee of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference.

The Panchen Lama is traditionally selected by the Dalai Lama, who in 1989 selected Gendun Choekyi Nyima, who was soon thereafter placed "in protective custody" by Chinese authorities and has not been heard from since. China then named its own Panchen Lama, Gyaltsen Norbu, and has worked ever since to legitimize his selection in the eyes of the world.

Good luck with that.

Roberto De Vido is a communications consultant, writer, cartoonist and jack of many trades. The former chief of Tucson Sentinel’s East Asia Bureau, he now lives in California (make of that what you will).

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“The safety of Gendun Choekyi Nyima and his proper religious training is of particular concern for me. I, therefore, appeal to all governments, religious and human rights organizations for their intervention in ensuring the safety and freedom of the young Panchen Lama.”

— Dalai Lama

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