没落的中国清王朝对西 藏的影响力越来越小。北方的俄罗斯帝国和南方的大英帝国对西 藏越来越感兴趣。
1903年，一支由杨哈思班（Younghusband）上校率领的英国远征军抵达拉萨。英国人战死4名士兵，却屠杀了超过700名试图阻止他们的西 藏人。这些 藏人当时的主要拦截手段仅仅是宗教魔法。英国人在拉 萨建立了"商务代表处"。中国人将达赖撤离到青海高原，在那里他的行动自由受到限制，也许这是为了防止他与英国占领者进行接触。
1907年，芬兰民族英雄马歇尔·曼纳海姆（Marshal Mannerheim）在进行他著名的穿越中亚的马背之旅期间，拜访了达赖。他当时是沙皇俄国军队的上校，他的旅行实际上是一次间谍行为。正因为如此，他才对13世达 赖 喇 嘛产生兴趣。
达赖嘛的权力逐渐削弱。1950年，解放军和平进入西藏。看来14世达赖嘛在初期之所以接受这个现实，仅仅是想将其作为维持自己神权独裁统治的保障。1954年，他奢侈地扩大和重建了夏宫罗布林卡（Norbulingka Summer Palace）。
西 藏以前只有一些羊肠小道与外界沟通，其他地方与外界隔绝。中国政府很快修建了用于交通的马路。西 藏与世隔绝的状态被打破了。
1959年，由于权力地位不断削弱，年轻的达达赖 嘛利用宗教发动了叛乱。这次叛乱最终被制止。达赖 嘛和一些追随者离开西藏，逃到印度。在那里，他继续挑起事端，妄图重返西 藏，恢复中国已不再允许的神权独裁统治。
达 达赖嘛重新掌权的可能性降低了，他的人民不再跟随他。中印两国正在发展合作，密切友谊，印度以后必然不会为承认达赖 嘛而破坏中印关系的发展。达赖 嘛再进行反对中国的活动，不大可能得逞了。
拉 萨 暴 乱是精心准备的。一些制革工人非法跨越边境，去见达赖赖，以接受他的指令。一群外国登山者在边境拍摄到了一次不幸的意外。一名越境者被射杀，另一名在越境后公开宣称想要去见达赖 嘛。我是在（去年）11月份，来中国之前，在电视里看到了这个节目。
2006年，当我访问西 藏时，我吃惊于那里宽松的环境和拉 萨街头寥寥无几的警察。我满眼看到的都是西 藏人，而非汉人。环境非常安宁，人们生活幸福。那里没有令人压抑的感觉。我没有感受到在苏联非人性的制度垮台前，曾在苏联和及其卫星国所多次感受到的那种压抑。拉萨人非常友好，他们想与我攀谈，多数情况下由于我不懂汉语或藏 语而无法沟通。但我不时可以遇到一些讲一点英语的藏人。我感到，他们希望与我攀谈的原因，只是出于对外国人正常的好奇心。
我之前听说，在拉萨宗教受到压制，但我却看到宗 教繁 荣发展；我之前听说，太多汉人进入西藏，现在拉萨已没有几个藏人，但我却看到在那里藏人比汉人多得多。难道那些汉人都藏起来了？
西 方 媒 体宣称中国封锁消息，任何有关拉 萨 暴 乱的消息都传不出去。我对这种明显违背事实的说法非常愤怒，无法忍受这些有关中国的不实报道。因此，尽管我不是记者，我还是撰写了这篇文章。我将这篇文章和另外两篇类似文章一道通过电子邮件传送给了三家西方报纸。它们均收到了我的邮件，但其中两家既没有给我回音，也没有刊登我的稿件，第三家回复我说，希望将我的稿件裁减，许多天后作为普通的'读者之声'刊发。与之相对照的是，它们每天都大量刊发达赖 嘛的言论，真是形成了反中国的宣传阵势。而我所写的文章对这些'自由的媒体'来说显得对中国太过于友好了。（陈涛译）
The Riots in Lhasa
by Eirik Granqvist, a foreign expert in Shanghai who visited Tibet in 2006
"The western medias announced that China had cut all information and that articles about the riots could not be sent out! I got mad about all the apparently incorrect information and wrote this article and two other similar ones although I am not a journalist but just because I could not stand all the bad things about China that was told. I sent them by e-mail without problems and they arrived well but two newspapers did neither respond neither publish what I had written. The third answered and wanted a shorter version that was published many days later as a normal 'readers voice'. What Dalai Lama had said was largely published every day together with a real anti-China propaganda. What I had written was apparently too China friendly for the 'free press'."
I was very shocked by what I had seen in the television and been reading in China daily about the riots in Lhasa. The most that shocked me was anyhow may be not the cruel events by themselves but how the medias in my country of origin, Finland, reported the events. A friend has scanned and sent me articles and I have checked also myself what can be found at Internet.
Very few Finnish people have ever visited Tibet, but I was there together with my wife in 2006. This was private persons and not as a part of a group-travel. I have seen Lhasa with my own eyes. I have been talking and chatting with people there. This was without any restrictions. Okay, we had a lovely and very competent guide that helped us much and took us where we wanted to go in the mornings but in the afternoons we were alone. Therefore I think that I have something to tell.
I am also interested in history and know more than people in general. When writing this, I do not have any reference books so I write out of my memory. If I do a small mistake somewhere, I beg your pardon. Anyhow, I think that this gives my writing an objectivity. I am well aware of that I will be accused for this and that for writing what I think is the truth. I will be accused by those who think that they know but do not know and by those that haven't seen by their own eyes.
Tibet was for centuries an autonomous concordat between Nepal and China. Sometimes China ruled Nepal as well. The king of Tibet used therefore to have one Chinese wife and one Nepalese and then a number of Tibetan ones.
With the fifth Dalai Lama, the religious and the political power were unified under the rule of one person, The Dalai Lama. Tibet became a theocratic dictatorship and closed itself for the rest of the world. No foreigners were anymore allowed in.
At the end of the nineteenth century, the famous Swedish traveller Sven Hedin made an attempt to reach Lhasa but was sent politely back, out of Tibet by Dalai Lama.
A French woman, Alexandra David-Néel was more successful. She visited Lhasa dressed as a Tibetan pilgrim and she was fluent in the Tibetan language. She told how she was afraid many times that she should be discovered and then she knew that she like other suspects or opponents should "happen to fall down" from the walls of the Potala palace.
Tibet was not a paradise. Tibet was an inhuman dictatorship!
The weakened Chinese Qing Dynasty had more and more lost its influence in Tibet. Tibet became more and more interesting for the Russian empire in the north and the British in the south.
In 1903 a British army expedition directed by the colonel Younghusband reached Lhasa. The British lost 4 soldiers but slaughtered more the 700 Tibetans that tryed to stop them, mainly by magic. The British installed "a commercial representation" in Lhasa. The Chinese evacuated Dalai Lama to the Qinghai plateau where he hade limited rights of move, probably for preventing him from having contacts with the British occupants.
The Finnish national hero, Marshal Mannerheim, visited him there in 1907 during his famous horseback trip through central Asia. He was then a colonel in the Tsar Russian army and his trip was in reality a spy trip. Therefore the 13th Dalai Lama was interesting.
The power of Dalai Lama was weakened. In 1950 the PLA marched in to Tibet without war. The 14th Dalai Lama seems at the beginning to have accepted this just as a security for his power as the theocratic dictator he was. He enlarged and restructured the Norbulingka Summer Palace in a luxury way in 1954.
The Chinese decided anyhow to finish with the cruel theocratic dictatorship under which the opponents fell down from Potala. The borders where during this dictatorship closed for all foreigners and the only schools where the religious ones. It is well known that it is easier to rule a population with a low education and is ignoring the outside world. In Tibet, about 5% of the population owned everything and the rest literally nothing. About 40% of the Tibetans were monks and nuns living as parasites on the rest of the population that had to feed them. Tibet was not a paradise!
Now China decided that the Tibetans should have the same rights and place in the society as the rest of the country's population. The monasteries should be emptied from their excessively large monk and nun populations.
Tibet could earlier be reached only by some horse trails and was for the rest insulated. The Chinese built rapidly a trafficable road. The insulation was broken.
In 1959, the young Dalai Lama caused a peoples upraising, using the religion as power since he was loosing his own powerful position. The upraising was however stopped, may be in not a too clever and smooth manner. Dalai Lama then left Tibet and his fellow citizens and escaped to India wherefrom he has continued to fight for his come back and reinstall the theocratic dictatorship that China will never allow again.
Then followed the ten years of Cultural Revolution that was an unhappy time for all China that closed itself to the rest of the world.
Now Lhasa has a modern airport and a railway. China has invested a lot in Tibet. The standard of living has been raised a lot in Tibet and last Xmas I have seen Tibetans spending sun-holidays on Hainan Island! Very lucky looking old women in traditional dresses walking on the beach with their husbands and the youngsters dressed like other young people enjoying the beach life.
The possibilities for Dalai Lama to take back his power has diminished and he does not anymore have the population with him. China and India are developing their cooperation and with the closer friendship, India will for sure also not more admit Dalai Lama to disturb this development. His possibilities to act against China will be diminished.
Therefore he undertook recently an around the world diplomatic travel since he has seen the possibility of harming the now good international image of China and provoking boycotts of the Olympic games in Beijing.
The Lhasa riots where very well prepared. Curriers where crossing the borders illegally for to see Dalai Lama and get his orders. A group of foreign mountain climbers filmed recently across the border an unlucky incident when one of these curriers got shot and another that crossed the border openly declared that he wanted to go to see the Dalai Lama. I have seen that in television just before I left for China in November.
China is no longer a closed country. There is no need for illegal border crossings if you are not doing something illegally! You just ask for a passport and take the necessary visas and cross the border at a legal border crossing or better, just take a regular flight from Lhasa to Kathmandu!
There where no peaceful demonstrations in Lhasa that where brutally knocked down! Young men went to action after a well prepared scenario at many places at the same time so that police and fire brigade should be taken by surprise and unable to act everywhere at the same time. This was successful! People where just knocked down without differences and all what could be broken was broken in the shortest possible time. With Molotov cocktails, fires where lit and fire cars where stopped. 18 normal citizens where killed without feelings and one police. The police had order to not respond with firearms for not being internationally blamed!
When I have seen the filmed riots in television, my diagnosis was immediately clear. The scenario was the same that I had seen many times of organized riots in France since more the forty years of tight familiar contacts and 21 years of living there. The difference was only that less ordinary people seemed to take part in Lhasa. The rioters where surprisingly few but well organized! China's positive image in the world should be damaged!
Dalai Lama is acting as the friendly and peaceful father. This is an old trick that also dictators like Hitler and Stalin used. I am not comparing him with them but he is acting like a demon when he tries to take back his power at any cost, not once caring for human lives and against Buddhistic non-violence principles. It was a try to do a coup d'ètat that failed. Now he is asking for international help for to stop the violence that he, himself had planned!
When I visited Tibet in 2006, I was surprised by the relaxed atmosphere and the few policemen in Lhasa. All that I have seen were Tibetans. Not the Han-Chinese. The atmosphere was remarkably peaceful and gave a picture of general well living. There was no oppressed feeling like I had seen so many times in the Soviet Union and its satellites before all that non-human system collapsed. People in Lhasa where friendly and wanted to speak to me, mostly without success since I do not speak Chinese nor Tibetan but up and then somebody could speak some words in English. Their wish for contact was just out of normal curiosity towards the foreigners.
I had heard that the religious life should been oppressed but it was flowering! I had also heard that so many Han Chinese where moved in that the Tibetans where now very few in Lhasa. I did however see much more Tibetans there. May be that the Han Chinese where hiding?
The western medias announced that China had cut all information and that articles about the riots could not be sent out! I got mad about all the apparently incorrect information and wrote this article and two other similar ones although I am not a journalist but just because I could not stand all the bad things about China that was told. I sent them by e-mail without problems and they arrived well but two newspapers did neither respond neither publish what I had written. The third answered and wanted a shorter version that was published many days later as a normal "readers voice". What Dalai Lama had said was largely published every day together with a real anti-China propaganda. What I had written was apparently too China friendly for the "free press".