Better late than never

And it’s about time too. After declining to meet the Dalai Lama during the holy man’s visit to this country last year, President Obama seems to have at last realized that it was perhaps a mistake  and that the official excuse was rather tenuous; this was  pointed out so eloquently then by the visiting Czech hero and ex-president Vaclav Havel, who was saddened by the apparent snub.  So this week’s volte-face, or as a BBC News article called “Flip-Flop Diplomacy with the Dalai Lama”  should be  welcome news to all.

Last year’s faux pas was elaborated here in an old blogpost appropriately titled : Faux Pah or Chutzpah?. Was it was really a faux pas then? Let’s hope so, and no more. Yet nothing much has changed since then; if anything, China seems to be flexing its economic muscle more and its political sphere of influence expanding. We know that Obama didn’t want to offend the Chinese on the eve of his official visit to China. We also know what kind of reception he got as a guest there.

Apart from general affirmation of human rights, freedom, democracy  no controversial topic was discussed at this week’s meeting; yet the Chinese government condemned this meeting with the “separatist” as a ‘violation of US policy in Tibet’, which everybody had prescience of anyway. Does this mean the  end of spineless kowtowing?

Hardly. The meeting was held at the White House Map Room instead of the official Oval Office – just to signal to the Chinese that it was a private, not a political meeting! Geddit?

One Response to “Better late than never”

  1. […] attempts at compromise have been mentioned in earlier blog posts here, the most recent being on his kowtowing to the Chinese in an  attempt to placate them for his  White House meeting with the Dalai Lama. But the Chinese […]

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