Sun Yat-sen, a pioneer in China's
democratic revolution. (File Photo)
BEIJING, May 18 (Xinhuanet) -- Sun Yat-sen, a pioneer
in China's democratic revolution, urged that the ultimate way to solve the Tibet
issue was to establish a united community of all ethnic groups of China, in a
bid to resist imperialist aggression.
He also drew up a plan to develop the regional
economy in Tibet, such as building railways, developing mineral resources and
reclaiming wastelands, as well as expanding agriculture and animal husbandry.
In modern times, as Tibet was subjected to
imperialist powers' invasion, Sun thought it was vital to build railways in
China in the first place, in order to consolidate frontier defense and develop
Tibet's economy as well.
On Dec. 22,1899, Sun published "the Current Map of
China," in which he proposed building a railway from East China's Shanghai to
Chengdu, capital of southwest China's Sichuan Province, before extending it
westward by way of Sichuan Province to Tibet.
However, the corrupt and impotent Qing Dynasty
Government, surrendered China's sovereignty under humiliating terms, resulting
in the country's frontier crisis.
Photo taken on Sep. 6, 2005 shows
the Qinghai-Tibet Railway. (Xinhua Photo0
After the government of the Republic of China was
proclaimed in 1911, Sun emphasized that the military strength was a necessary
precondition to solving the Tibet issue: "If China's military strength had been
high enough to defense the national frontiers, the British imperialists would
not have dared to invade Tibet."
In his view, China had enough military forces to
defend Tibet, but failed to dispatch troops to Tibet promptly as a result of
transportation inaccessibility. "Should China have convenient transport
facilities like railways, it would have been able to transport troops from
inland to frontier areas such as Mongolia and Tibet, which were subjected to
invasion because of the country's weak military forces there resulting from
inconvenient transportation," he said.
In 1912, Sun indicated that the government of ROC
would strive to build a total railway of 100,000 km nationwide in ten years.
Considering the crisis cropping up in the Tibetan and Mongolian affairs, he
proposed building a railway from Tibet's capital of Lhasa to Sechen Khanate
"Chechen" of Outer Mongolia, via Xinjiang and building a side line from Lhasa to
Chengdu, so as to connect railways in southwest China's Yunnan and Sichuan
"Without the completion of these railways, our
railways in Mongolia will undoubtedly be seized by Russians and those in Tibet
will be snatched by the British imperialists°≠ With the national railways
occupied by foreign imperialist forces, how can China avoid being carved up?"
Photo taken on Nov.
4 2007 shows a distant view of Yulong Copper Mine Base, eastern Tibet's Qamdo
Prefecture. (Source: Tibet Daily)
Meanwhile, Sun attached great importance to people's
livelihood. In his Plan for Industrial Development, he intended to develop
Tibet's minerals and move people there for land reclamation with the
construction of a plateau railway network.
"Tibet boasts rich mineral resources such as gold and
copper to the benefit of the national economy once exploited. In terms of the
harsh plateau climatic conditions, Tibet will not start to build its railway
until railways are completed in other parts of China. Hence, we can leave
mineral resources in Tibet for last development after all conditions are ready."
In order to reclaim wastelands, Sun also wrote in the
plan that "conducting migration into three northeastern provinces, Mongolia,
Xinjiang, Qinghai and Tibet in a scientific and systematic way°≠ When the number
of migrates reaches a certain ratio in a region, it should be granted autonomous
Sun's plan to develop Tibet enjoyed popularity among
people from all walks of life.
In January 1929, the 9th Panchen Lama's Beijing
Office declared: "Tibet, Kham Tibetan area and Qinghai are vast areas but
sparsely populated with abundant natural resources. If those areas progress as
projected by Dr. Sun Yat-sen's plan for industrial development, it will be
greatly conducive to the national economy and people's livelihood. "
Moreover, Sun stressed that education is essential to
national prosperity. He appealed for helping those needy areas with educational
Photo taken on June 9, 2005 shows a
teacher Dawa teaching with Tibetan sign language in a special school of
Lhasa, capital of southwest China's Tibet Autonomous Region. (Xinhua
On April 1, 1912, the Educational Department of the
Nanjing Provisional Government of the ROC stated: "Since the Republic of China
embodies an integration of the Han, Man, Mongolian, Hui and Tibetan ethnic
groups, each group shall have the equal right to receive education. As the
Mongolian, Hui and Tibetan Chinese differ from one another, efforts should be
made first to boost faculty building for these ethnic groups."
The later Northern Warlords Government of China and
the Nationalist Government of Nanjing also pursued this policy of establishing
schools for Mongolians and Tibetans.
Sun came to understand in his late years that only by
realizing national independence and unification, would it be impossible to
achieve a fundamental guarantee for the stability in Tibet and all-round
development of economy, culture, education and other sectors in Tibet. Facts
today have proved that his idea about achieving equality and unity among all
ethnic groups, developing Tibet's economy and culture, building a railway to
Tibet and enhancing Tibetans' self-governing capability have been turning into a
reality, thanks to the concerted effort of the entire Chinese people.
China Ethnic News contributed to the