Just about two years ago, I posted Free Tibet, which linked to an Alice Thomson column about her trip to see the Dalai Lama, which was probably one of the most memorable articles I’ve read. She’s bringing it up again:

Telegraph – Gordon Brown must back Tibet’s freedom fight, by Alice Thomson

The last image I have of Tsering Wangmo was the day she left northern India to return to her native Tibet. Her back bent and her feet swaddled in plastic bags, she was planning to walk over the Himalayas to her homeland, despite knowing she could face further torture when she arrived.

She had been forced to flee Tibet seven years previously, after being found by a Chinese soldier in the capital, Lhasa, with a picture of the Dalai Lama in her skirt. I first met her in the old hill station of Dharamsala, where we were both waiting to meet the man she calls the Lord of Compassion.

She explained how she had been dragged through the streets by her hair, beaten with electric prongs and thrown into a water-logged, open-air prison with more than 1,000 other women after she refused to spit on the photograph. She was repeatedly raped and hung upside down by her Chinese guards; she was expected to sleep on the bodies of dead inmates, and when she was finally released, she discovered that her husband had been forced to marry a Chinese woman and her children had disappeared. …

The Dalai Lama, standing outside his bungalow in the pouring rain, listened to this woman’s story as she lay in front of him. He told her that in India she would find refuge and regain her strength, but that she should eventually return or the Chinese would succeed in eliminating Tibetans from their spiritual homeland. Since the Dalai Lama was forced into exile nearly 50 years ago, more than 1.3 million Tibetans have been killed or starved by the Chinese because of their refusal to stop worshipping him.

More than 5,000 of their temples have been destroyed. I spent a summer, 20 years ago, wandering around the remains, watching the Chinese replacing places of worship and potholes with concrete and tarmac. I’ve since been to Rwanda and Darfur, but it is the Tibetans’ fortitude over half a century of sustained brutality that haunts me.

Yeah, so.