Thursday, May 8, 2008

Politically Correct Ascent

Well what do you know. Just after I posted my last blog entry, the late night news had a report saying the 36-member team was going to climb up Mount Qomolangma (Mt Everest) early this morning (1am) to mark exactly three months to the day the Olympics will start.

Why didn't I think of that?

And this afternoon, my colleague told me late last night she had trouble sleeping because her mom had the TV on really loud with the broadcast of the ascent on CCTV. Except her mom fell asleep on the couch.

In the office we turned on the TV and saw the last few moments, when a member pulled out a lighting stick, put it in a hole of the special lantern carrying the Olympic flame and lit it. He then lit the torch and they did a mini relay up to the summit.

And who was the last torch bearer? A Tibetan woman. How much more politically correct can you get than that?

What was even more impressive was the camera crew broadcasting from over 8,800 meters high. It looked really windy and cold up there.

While some shouted "Welcome Beijing Games", one climber can be heard breathing heavily and gasping, "I need oxygen".

They took lots of pictures with their mini Olympic and Chinese flags and breathed a huge sigh of relief. Mission accomplished.

The base camp coordinator was on TV, so overcome by emotion that he couldn't speak. Maybe he was thinking now I can really get a good night's sleep. My colleagues were beaming, so proud and thrilled to see this event realized.

But there are those who are angry, feeling the Chinese are using this stunt to show its superiority, that yes -- Tibet is a part of China.

And there are others who think, why are we wasting so much money on this? Can't we be spending it on more useful things like helping the poor?

Now the torch will go down and wait to be reunited with the other flame currently in Guangdong. The next real test is in early June, when the torch goes to Yunnan Province, where many Tibetans live.

The poor flame has 92 more days go to. Hope it's got enough passion in there to keep burning through the controversy.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

With so many eyes on china we cannot falter. A lot of countries in the west only wish China fail and fall from grace- France and the US for example. There are so many well organized anti-torch activities all over. They don't happen sporadically or independently. They are well orchestrated with subversive powers. We are glad to know this Qomolangma ascent has been a success.Eeven though it is a show , it is a good show.