Wednesday, July 15, 2020

Tibetan Faces in the PLA

This post is a continuation of previous ones on the presence of the Tibetans in the PLA.
According to The Tibet Daily, the Tibet Autonomous Region (TAR) Research Group recently investigated the possibility of new recruitment of troops for the TAR.
On May 30, Zhang Yongze, a member of the TAR Standing Committee discussed the issue with Maj Gen Ngawang Sonam and Maj Gen Zhao Zhigang, both serving in the Tibet Military District (or Command; known as TMD).
On May 29, China Tibetan Network News announced that the TAR Research Group conducted field investigations for the recruitment of military personnel and “set forth requirements for doing a good job in publicizing and interpreting the military recruitment policies and promoting the recruitment of young people of the right age.”
It is clearly for the recruitment of Tibetan soldiers.
Zhang Yongze is TAR’s deputy chairman is the leader of the TAR’s Recruitment Leadership Group; Maj Gen Ngawang Sonam (a Tibetan), the TMD’s deputy commander is the executive deputy leader of the TAR's Recruitment Leadership Group while his deputy is the deputy director of Political Work Department, in other words, deputy Political Commissar of the TMD.
We learn that the idea is to provide a 'one-stop window' into the entry into the People’s Liberation Army (PLA) by providing all facilities for military service registration, application for enrolment and policy consultation.
This should be possible at any time, believes the Recruitment Leadership Group.
The policy wants to integrate industry resources; information should flow so that candidates have the less possible running to do: “The research team emphasized that the conscription work is related to national defense and the building of the Army; it is also related to the overall work of the Communist Party and the Chinese State. Workers at all levels must strengthen their political positions, improve their political  views, unify their thinking and understanding, enhance their professional skills, form a joint force of work, and promote the orderly development of recruitment work.”
The article continues, asserting that the policy should carefully summarize the experience of recruitment with the practice, interpret the various recruitment policies as well as preferential treatment for placement, so that young people of the appropriate age can be recruited.
All efforts should be made “to earnestly carry out the publicity (propaganda) work, [recruiters] should solidly achieve their work at the grassroots level, and truly become a household name and a person everyone knows to create a good atmosphere for the whole society to actively join the PLA.”Besides the Communist jargon, it is clear that Beijing has decided to recruit more Tibetans in the PLA.

Recruitment tests in Lhasa
An On-Going Process
Already a year ago, on July 24, 2019, a national teleconference was held in Beijing for military recruitment. Participated:
•    Norbu Thondup, TAR Party Standing Committee member, Executive Deputy Chairman of the TAR and leader of the TAR Recruitment Leadership Team (Norbu is also Alternate Member of the Central Committee of the CCP).
•    Maj Gen Thubten Thinley, Deputy Commander of the TMD, Executive Deputy Leader of the TAR Recruitment Leadership Team.
•    Senior Colonel Ngawang Dorjee, TMD's Deputy Chief of Staff, Leader of the TAR Recruitment Group as deputy leader. Ngawang is also deputy director of the TMD's Political Work Department (deputy Political Commissar).  Today Ngawang Dorjee has apparently been promoted Maj Gen.
They attended the meeting on behalf of the Tibet branch.
Similar issues were discussed with the National Defense Mobilization Department of the Central Military Commission (CMC).

We are listing here some of the Tibetans who are involved in the PLA, either at the ‘ceremonial’ level, being sort Model Soldiers shown around, particularly in Beijing, but also some senior officers who are in a different category all together.
The only similarity is that they both good Communist, a prerequisite to join the PLA.

Maj Gen Ngawang Sonam
Major General Ngawang Sonam
One of two senior most Tibetan in the PLA is Ngawang Sonam; he is presently Deputy Commander of  TMD under the command of the WTC and the PLA Ground Force (PLAGF).
Ngawang Sonam is born in Qinghai Yushu (Jyekundo) in 1962.
He decided to follow the footsteps of his elder brother and join the army.
Many Tibetans like Ngawang Sonam has a pastoral background; most of them did not even know how to use chopsticks, explained a Chinese publication; they learned the ‘skill’ in the PLA: “We were also taught Chinese, we learned to write Chinese characters, as Chinese soldiers did know how speak the minority language (Tibetan),” Sonam recalled, adding: “By the time the [Tibetan] soldiers are demobilized, they are usually proficient in Chinese and can read the local language as well.”
He graduated from PLA Artillery Command College, located in Xuanhua District of Zhangjiakou Prefecture, Hebei Province.
He was a member of 12th National People’s Congress (NPC); he then led the PLA delegation from the TMD.
He also served as Deputy Chief of Staff of Qinghai Military Region.
Since 2019, he is the TMD’s deputy commander.
He was promoted to rank of Major General in July 2013.
A Chinese publication noted: “These [officers] bring pride to the rugged western China [Tibet and Xinjiang], they are absolutely honest and have defended the country's frontiers with their blood; they feel for the people from their heart.”
The publication added: “Minority officers, who represent the people in ethnic minority areas in the country's highest political authority [the NPC] are dedicated to a strong army and China’s steadfast dream.”

Maj Gen Thubten Thinley
Major General Thubten Thinley
Thubten Thinley is born in December 1961 in Lhasa. He graduated from the Central Party School and started working in September 1984 and joined the Communist Party of China in July 1987.
He served in the TMD’s Political Department and Logistics Department for a long time, and briefly served as the deputy director in the former General Political Department in Beijing.
After returning to the TMD, Thubten Thinley he became a member of the Standing Committee of the Lhasa Municipal Committee and a political member of the Lhasa Security District.
In 2013, he was appointed deputy Political Commissar (PC) of the TMD.
In 2016, Thubten Thinley was appointed as TMD’s deputy commander. It was a promotion soon after the TMD was upgraded following the reforms introduced by CMC’s Chairman, Xi Jinping.
On July 25, 2016, Thubten Thinley’s name first appeared in a report on Tibet Satellite TV; it reported a video call for military recruitment held in Lhasa: “The conference summarized Tibet’s 2015 military recruitment and arranged for the deployment of the 2016 military recruitment task. Deng Xiaogang, Deputy Secretary of the TAR Party Committee, Executive Deputy Chairman of the TAR, Secretary of the Political and Legal Committee of the TAR Party Committee, and Leader of the TAR Recruitment Leading Group, attended the meeting and delivered a speech.”
Thubten Thinley was announced as deputy commander of the upgraded TMD; the TV footage showed Maj Gen Thubten Thinley wearing the military-grade badge (one Star) while attending the event.
As a result of the military reforms, the TMD was upgraded to the rank of deputy military command and placed under the leadership of the PLA Army “which opened a new journey for the TMD’s construction and development,” said the China’s Daily.
Zhao Zhong, deputy director of the TMD’s Political Work Department then observed: “The upgrade is not only an upgrade of the army's specifications, but also an expansion of the functional mission. It is necessary to upgrade the overall position and strengthen the responsibility of the TMD. …After being upgraded, the leadership was accordingly adjusted.”
Maj Gen Li Wenping, for example was reappointed as director of the TMD Political Department (Political Commissar), while Col Zhao Zhong and Zhou Shenggang, who previously served in the former Chengdu Military Region, became deputy PC.
A former deputy TMD’s commander, Maj Gen Dang Encheng became deputy chief of staff of the upgraded military region while former deputy TMD deputy PC Zhang Wenlong was nominated minister of the Logistics Department of the upgraded military region.

Major General Liu Geping
Major General Liu Geping
Gen Liu is today commander of Qinghai Military Region. He is half Tibetan from his mother.
He served for many years in the Ngari Military Sub-Division of the Southern Xinjiang Militray District as well as a  member of the Ngari District Committee.
He often met his Indian counterparts during the Border Personnel Meetings (BPM) in Ladakh.
On July 31, 2017, he was promoted to the rank of major general.
On September 6, 2017, he was elected as the representative of the 19th National Congress of the Party as a PLA delegate.
After serving as commander (minister of Military Affairs) of the Xinjiang Production and Construction Corps, which had the responsibility to recruit, train, deploy and manage of all militia units in Xinjiang …and guard the Uighur reform camps, he was transferred back to the TMD.
In May 2020, Liu was appointed Commander of the Qinghai Military Region.

Major General Olo Bhuchung
Major General Olo Bhuchung (Oloban)
Gen Bhuchung is born in 1959 in Nyêmo near Lhasa. He was enlisted in December 1975 as a member of the CCP and graduated from the Armed Police Academy in 1985.
He is the former deputy director of the Ministry of Public Security Frontier Administration.
He has been described by the China Police Network as “a general who walked out of a serf family.”
Here are some of his appointments:
•    Deputy Director of the New Frontier Police Station in Nyalam (near the Nepal border).
•    In August 2007, he served as the head of the TAR Public Security Frontier Corps.
•    In July 2011, he became PC and secretary of the Party Committee of the TAR Public Security Frontier Corps.
•    In August 2013, he served as deputy military researcher of the Frontier Defense Administration of the Ministry of Public Security.
•    In November 2013, he became Deputy Director of the Ministry of Public Security Frontier Defense Administration.
He was promoted to the rank of major general of the Armed Police in July 2008.
On January 5, 2018, a Chinese website announced: “the Ministry of Public Security's Border Protection Administration organized a meeting to announce the order of cadres. At the meeting, the order of the resignation of the deputy director of the Ministry of Public Security's Border Protection Administration, Olo Bhuchung was read out.”
He has therefore retired (or he was ‘retired’).

Major General Khyung Se
Major General Khyung Se
Kyung Se is presently Political Commissar of the TAR Region Public Security Fire Brigade.
Kyung Se is born in 1961 as the son of an ordinary farmer and herdsman in the Chamdo region. There were eight children in the family; Khyung Se was the second child.
In 1971, the 10-year-old Khyung Se began to study in a rural private school and later entered a county public school to study Tibetan and mathematics.
An article consecrated to him explains: “In May 1975, as the ‘Cultural Revolution’ was nearing its end. Tibet was still in a period of rectification and restoration, and the Tibet Public Prosecution and Law Department was also under restoration. At that time, there was a shortage of Tibetan ethnic cadres. At the request of the TAR government, the Ministry of Public Security agreed to resume the opening of Tibetan classes at the Central Political and Law Cadre School.” The 13-year-old Khyung Se was selected among 300 children and sent to study in Beijing.
He returned to Tibet in July 1978 and began working in the Political Department of the Tibet Public Security Department. 
In 1981, Khyung Se once again embarked on the road of education, entered the Central People's Police Cadre Academy (this school was later divided into three: Shenyang Criminal Police College, Xi'an Armed Police Technical College, Langfang Armed Police Academy) where he studied Fire Protection in industrial enterprises.
From 2001 to 2002, Qiong Se went to the training department of the Central Party School to study and completed his under-graduation and post-graduation.
Again in 2007, the Ministry of Public Security invited him for a half-year study and training at the National Defense University which “has given me the ability to lead the management and comprehensive construction of the army under the conditions of modern informatization,” he remembered.
In 2010, Khyung Se became a major general of the Armed Police.
He said one of his teachers taught him to love the Party, the motherland, and the people: “In addition to this, other leaders and colleagues in the unit have also greatly helped my growth and progress, especially the main leaders of the TAR have greatly influenced me. They are both politicians and loyal fighters of the Party. For the cause of Tibet, they tried their best and bowed their hearts. When General Secretary Hu Jintao was in Tibet, as deputy director of the TAR Fire Bureau, I also had the opportunity to directly listen to the general secretary’s teachings.”
He spoke of his love for Tibet, “we should dedicate our life in Tibet. Tibet is my hometown and a beautiful place. The Tibetan people are kind and simple people. I deeply love the people here and deeply love this highland. I will dedicate my life to Tibet."
"On June 17, 1984, the Jampa (Maitraya) Buddha Hall of the Potala Palace was short-circuited due to the aging of the electrical lines and damage of the insulation lines, causing a fire and invaluable economic losses. Because the fire protection equipment was seriously lacking at that time, only the military and civilian battled against the fire, thousands of military and civilians used pots to raise water in the ‘mountains’. The rescue was quite successful, the fire was controlled in the shortest time, but the losses caused by the fire were irreversible," he recalled.
Kyung Se was directly involved in the fire fighting mission and later he did some research on fire prevention countermeasures. After the fire, the Party Committee and TAR government deployed a squadron of fire fighters to the Potala Palace; later it developed into a fire brigade. During the following 27 years, there was no more fire in the Potala Palace, said Kyung Se.
In an interview, Khyung Se explained: "Tibet is located in an ethnic area and is facing a long, complicated and difficult situation of anti-secession struggle. This requires that our officers and soldiers must have excellent political qualities and resist the penetration and subversion of hostile forces at home and abroad. It must be politically firm, disciplined, and work hard. Tibet is located in a remote area at high altitude with a cold climate, economically it is underdeveloped, it suffers from earthquakes, snow disasters, mudslides, and other natural disasters. When disasters come, it is easy to be stuck in isolated places, where rescue is difficult. Officers and soldiers must not only have excellent disaster relief skills, but also have the spirit of hardship and hard work and no fear of sacrifice. This puts strict and harsh requirements on our team politically and militarily.”
He is currently a member of the Party Committee of the TAR Public Security Department and Party Secretary and Political Committee of the Tibet Public Security Fire Brigade.
In July 2010, Khyung Se became a major general of the People’s Armed Police and Political Commissar (deputy commander level).

Major General Ngawang Dorjee
Major General Ngawang Dorjee
Ngawang Dorjee is the Deputy Chief of Staff of the Tibet Military Region. He was earlier the Leader of the TAR Recruitment Department and deputy director of the TMD’s Political Work Department (deputy PC grade).
At the age of 29, he was the youngest deputy commander of a regiment in the TMD; at the age of 33, it was the youngest regiment commander in the then Chengdu Military Region; at 39, he became the youngest deputy division commander in the TMD.
In 1990, he was transferred to the TMD. In the following years, he was in important positions such as propaganda, mass work, and national defense mobilization.
In 2004, he served on the Indian border, he once gave a speech during a Border Personnel Meeting (BPM) function with Indian officers; he said the ongoing confidence-building measures between India and China have been effective and fruitful. He later organised a cultural programme, games and a feast in honour of the Indian delegation.
In 2005, he was transferred from the post of Deputy Director of the Political Department (Political Commissar) of the Shigatse Army Division; later he was sent to the Nagchu Army Division as Director of the Political Department (PC). In 2010, he served as PC of the Linzhi (Nyingtri) Military Division of the TMD.
In July 2017, he was promoted to the rank of major general.
He is one of the rising stars among the ‘ethnic’ officers.

Senior Colonel Ngawang Yangpei
Senior Colonel Ngawang Yangpei
We do not have the bio of Ngawang Yangpei, who is deputy commander of the Ngari (Ali for the Chinese) Military Division, facing Ladakh.
Ngari sub-division is part of Southern Xinjiang Military District.
A Chinese website describes the place: “Here, it is Ngari, Tibet, with an average altitude of 4,500 meters above sea level. The oxygen content of the air is only 50% of sea level. There are continuous snowstorms throughout the year and the average temperature is below zero degrees Celsius. Hypoxia, severe cold, desolation... However, it is here that generations of iron-clad officers and soldiers used their blood and loyalty to build an unbreakable steel hero for the motherland.”
It continues thus: “Dangers is everywhere. On the roads of life and death, patrols walked where landslides, avalanches and mudslides occurred frequently; it is here that the border soldiers and soldiers walked year after year.”
Ngawang Yangpei has been serving most of his career in Ngari area; in 2008, he was the deputy chief of staff of the Ngari Army Division.
He described a tour experience as ‘nine deaths and one life’.
With his Indian counterpart
He explained why: “That day, I led the reconnaissance team into the Gora Pass (Gogra, near Hot Springs where China recently clashed with the Indian troops?); we encountered a rare snowstorm. I predicted that after heavy snowfall, there might be an avalanche. So, as soon as the reconnaissance team completed its mission, I led the team to evacuate the troops. Suddenly, a mountain shook and an avalanche came for real! Huge snow waves rolled tumbling down the big stones, instantly levelling to the ground the mountain pass behind me.”
On that day, the reconnaissance team crossed three times the death: some soldiers fell into a deep snow and nearly died of suffocation, some slipped from the peak to the bottom of the valley and were injured, and some were almost hit by the falling boulders.
Another article recounts: “Ngawang Yangpei was used to the plateau from an early age. Even so, the arduous and arduous task of defending the edges of the old plateau which collapsed three times in 15 days.”
Once, Ngawang Yangpei and a patrol including officers wore leather hats, coats, carrying water bags and dry food. In April, the mainland has already blossomed in spring, but on the Ngari Plateau, it is still icy and snowy. The border line is mostly bordered by watersheds, steep mountains, steep peaks, and ice peaks. Officers and soldiers have an average weight of more than 40 kilograms to carry and it is very difficult to walk. In the evening, the survey team encountered a snowstorm in a mountain pass.
At an altitude of 5106 meters, the storm and snow made the team members unable to open their eyes.

Captain Jampa Khedrup
Captain Jampa Khedrup
Capt Jampa is a member 13th National People’s Congress (NPC).
He is one of these ‘ceremonial’ delegates; a model ‘Tibetan’ soldier.
Jampa Khedrup is born in Aba Township, Kangding County, today's Sichuan province in February 1989. His family has three generations of loyalty towards the Party: his grandfather Norbu Tsering was the only ‘martyr’ in the township, and his father the only ‘hero’ of the township who participated in the 'War of Liberation' of the Kangding County; he was the only warrior who had two first-class merit (awards).
Norbu, his grand-father is said to have come from a ‘serf family’, oppressed by the local landlords until the liberation of Kangding in March 1950.
In 1952, Norbu “actively responded to the call of the Party Central Committee to eliminate the gangsters, defend the achievements of peace; he resolutely bid farewell to his loved ones who joined the bandit army.”
The ‘bandits’ are the Khampa freedom fighters.
In other words, Norbu betrayed his family and his race to become a good Communist.
Jampa, the grand-son, joined the PLA in December 2006.
Captain Jampa Khedrup
e has been named ‘Advanced Individual for the Whole Army to Learn and Become Talented’ by CMC's General Political Department; then, he became the ‘Army Elite Martial Arts Model’ for the entire PLA and was nominated one among the ‘A Hundred Good Military Squad Leader’ by the PLA’s mouthpiece.
He was rated as one of ‘Ten Outstanding Young Men’ by Tonghua City and ‘Learning Advanced Individual’ in Nanlin and rated as ‘Excellent Soldier’ by the Brigade for 6 consecutive years.
In other words, a ‘model’ soldier like the Communist love them.
In July 2015, Jampa graduated from the Army Officer Academy and in February 2018, he was elected to the 13th NPC.
Due to his love of the PLA, his elaborate training and personal dream merged with the deeds, said the propaganda; he was selected into the list of ‘Good People in China’.
On February 11, 2015, he met President Xi Jinping at the 2015 Chinese New Year Tea Party. He is one of the outstanding representatives of the new military generation, said a communiqué.

Sergent Yangchok Geshe with Xi Jinping
Sergent Yangchok Geshe
Yangchok is also a ‘ceremonial’ soldier and a member of the 13th NPC.
He is born in December 1977 in Gartang, Jomda County of Tibet.
Both his parents were ‘serfs’, said his CV; probably a compulsory background to make it to the NPC.
He studied till the sixth standard in Shashi, Hubei provice in a secondary school affiliated to the Kunming Army School.
In 1998, he was admitted to the PLA’s Kunming Army Academy.
After 2003, he served as a platoon commander, deputy company commander, company commander, and deputy battalion commander of a department of the TMD.
In an interview, he is thus described: “The 1.8-meter-large man in a military uniform showed the heroic spirit of the Khampa man. His bronze face was embedded with a pair of deep black eyes. Calm, majestic and fierce, like an eagle soaring over the snowy holy lake in Tibet. From the generations of serfs to representative to the National People's Congress, this young soldier born and raised during the time of the ‘reform and opening-up’ [post-1978] witnessing and experiencing the peaceful, stable and harmonious happy life of the Tibetan people during that time.”
Sergent Yangchok Geshe
After graduating, the school asked him to stay as a teacher, but he decided to come back to Tibet, “my country [China] spent so much energy to train me, I think I should work in Tibet, and show what I have learned.”
He continued to explain: “Tibet is poor and the conditions are worse than the mainland; the promotions are slower than the mainland, but this is not the most critical thing. The most important thing is that I can come back to do things.”
He was first assigned to a brigade in the Lingchi [Nyingtri] Military Army.
In early 2004, Yangchok was transferred to a PLA department in Lhasa: “In order to solve the urgent need for the lack of backbone troops, the party committee of the army asked him to organize the first ‘Snow Leopard’ backbone training class. Snow leopards live in the Himalaya in a harsh climate; they have quick responses and fast speed. In order to reach the level of a ‘Snow Leopard’ in training for the plateau scouts, everything must start from scratch with the difficulty can be imagined.”
Yangchok praises the system: “The troops used to eat and live in bungalows, but now they all have cement houses, and then they have no problem with fire and heating. They used to eat canned food, and now they can eat fresh vegetables. Supplies are far better now. The frontier defense is not like it was previously. The conditions are relatively good. All the border sites will be served by asphalt roads in a few years.”
On March 28 [year?], at the celebration of the Liberation Day of the Million Serfs in Tibet, Yangchok spoke as a representative of the Army: "It is the Party that has propped up the flying blue sky for me, and it is the Party that gave me wings for me to take off! As a new era active service soldier who grew up under the nurturing of the Party, I will always remember the Party's kindness and the people's love. …For repaying the Party and the people, be loyal to the Party, love the people, serve the country, dedicate to the mission, with loyalty and conviction, actively maintain national unity, serve the people in good faith, and practice the purposes of our army, oppose splitting, maintain social stability, defend solid borders, and build a well-off Tibet, safe Tibet, harmonious Tibet, and ecological Tibet to make its due contributions."
Like is colleagues, he knows his lesson.

Second Lieutenant Sonam Tashi
Second Lieutenant Sonam Tashi
Sonam is born in June 1990 in Lhoka (Shannan).
He is also a good member of the Communist Party of China.
In 2018, Sonam was elected as a PLA and PAP representative to attend the 13th National People's Congress.
He was apparently a marathon runner before becoming a member of the NPC.

Lieutenant Colonel Shisema
Lieutenant Colonel Shisema
Shisema is Lt Col of the People’s Armed Police; he is also a member of the 13th CPPCC National Committee.
He is born in May 1983 in Trochu in Ngaba County (today’s Sichuan).
He got a degree from the PLA Information Engineering University.
He enlisted in December 2000, he joined the PLA (at 16 years of age) without being able to read, write or speak Chinese.
In 2013 he was named a delegate to the 12th NPC and now has switched over to the CPPCC.
At first, he could not speak or write Chinese; he still became the squad leader and entered the Party (are the two related?). He was rated as an outstanding soldier for five consecutive years.
He was honored with ‘first-class’ merits once; ‘second-class’ merits once, and ‘third-class’ merits twice.
In 2008, he was rated as ‘Army Elite Martial Arts Model’, one of the “Ten Loyal Guards of the PAP’, a Communist Youth League Alternate member of the 16th Central Committee.
In 2010, he was elected as a member of the 11th China Youth Federation and won the 14th ‘China Youth May Fourth Medal’.
Shisema, while a student of the PAP’s Shenyang Command Academy talked about his own experience and often repeated this sentence: “I feel very happy because I grew up in such an era and grew up in such a military background.”
Enlisted from the rural areas of Tibetan areas, with an urgent desire to become knowledgeable; he painstakingly studied, did intensive reading of the ‘Soldier Theory Study Book’ and other books and recorded more than 200,000 words of study notes.
The ordinary warrior who knew only a few Chinese characters grew into the military officer to study and practice the Party's advanced innovation theory, and how to implement the scientific development concept in the PAP, dear to President Hu Jintao, said an article in a Chinese website.
He studied the spirit of the 17th National Congress of the Communist Party of China and delivered a conference which was warmly received by the head of the CMC: “He is determined to be a martial adept; he is dedicated; fully trained and has suffered some 7 injuries, worn out 31 pairs of shoes, wore three pairs of sandbag vests and has never been reluctant to shed blood and sweat. Once, during a high-intensity training, he fractured his left foot anterior metacarpal, he wrapped it with bandages and continued to participate in the training.”
He once broke the 5,000 meter road record of the unit with a time of 16 minutes and 30 seconds, and achieved his best personal results: “With this kind of perseverance, he gradually became the ‘military training pacesetter’ and was designate as an ‘Advanced Individuals in the Post-training’.
He is said to have been a ‘linking bridge for national unity in the army family.
He served as a company commander of the 3rd Battalion and 8th Company of the 8672 Army.
He is the current head of the Reconnaissance Section of the 8670 Armed Police Force.
He is responsible for training in the Armed Police Department. Once, he participated in a competition with foreign military snipers; at that time, he said training concepts, methods and personnel training were not yet in place in the PLA.

Colonel Jamyang Sherab
Jamyang is born in Gyamda County (Kongpo) in December 1977.
Late 1990, Jamyang then a Tibetan teenager, had a dream; he wanted to join the PLA. In an interview, he explained that when the 'western development' scheme (dear to President Jiang Zemin) started, the Central (Beijing) government initiated a preferential education policy for young Tibetans; Jamyang who had got excellent grades in the junior high school, eventually graduated in Administration from the Tibet University and later joined Kunming Military Academy.
He enrolled in the PLA in September 1998 and joined the Party in May 2000. He has served as the platoon leader, deputy company commander, instructor, and company commander.
He is currently the deputy brigade commander of a mountain infantry brigade in the TMD; he has the rank of lieutenant colonel.
In August 2007, he attended the military model conference for the whole Army.
After 2008, he has served as a representative of the PLA in the 11th and 12th NPC. 
In January 2018, he was elected member of the 13th National Committee of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC).
A Chinese website says that the whole Army loves Jamyang’s military standard and for the entire PLA, he is an excellent commanding officer.
He has been awarded the ‘Top Ten Outstanding Youths’ of the TAR and won the second place in the international Special Forces competition. He was also awarded a honorary title by the CMC’s General Political Department.
On March 28, 2019, Jamyang Sherab told a gathering in front of the Potala, "My family witnessed the democratic reform. As a descendant of the serfs in old Tibet, I became a PLA officer and was elected as a deputy to the NPC and a member of the CPPCC’s National Committee."
Now, he serves in the Special Forces; he recalled: “when I enrolled in Special Forces selection, conditions were very tough.”
He is posted (probably as a Colonel) in the Western Theater Command.
Ethnic deputies are able to deliver 'important' speeches on Xi Jinping's 'Four Comprehensives', particularly the Rule of Law in ethnic areas, though Jamyang believes that “nothing much will be done for a larger and truer representation of the ethnic officers.”
Jamyang seemed to complain that “Year 2015 marked the 50th anniversary of the founding of the TAR”, the Central Government's policies on governing Tibet attracted attention from home and abroad, but nothing concrete was announced for the ethnic representation in the local governments (Lhasa or Urumqi) or the PLA.

Major Sonam Dolma
Major Sonam Dolma
In September 2017, Sonam Dolma was elected as a delegate to the 19th National Congress of the Communist Party of China.
We know very little of Sonam Dolma, except for an interview with a PLA News reporter Wu Yuanjin on October 27, 2017. She spoke at a function organized for the officers and soldiers to meet the 19th National Congress delegates who had just returned from Beijing.
It said that Sonam Dolma was a nurse at 22nd hospital. The reporter only focused on her studied of the report of the 19th National Congress.
Sonam was asked about her feelings, responsibilities and important mission.

Lieutenant Kalsang Lhamo
Lieutenant Kalsang Lhamo
Kalsang Lhamo, a Tibetan female soldier from Aba, Sichuan.
Her CV said that she was poor in her childhood, a prerequisite to make it in the Party in Tibet.
On May 12, 2008, a huge earthquake took place in Wenchuan, Sichuan. Kalsang Lhamo was studying in a middle school in the disaster area. Many school buildings were damaged. She and her classmates were trapped on the playground. “Dare not to sleep, dare not drink even if there is water, fear and fear,” she remembers. Then, an army of green soldiers carrying a red flag and a backpack, ran into the disaster-stricken area surrounded with muddy water. In a short time, the PLA came to rescue the population; after witnessing the PLA rescuing her relatives, she realized that the Party's graciousness was as high as the snowy mountains. Since then Kalsang was determined to wear a green military uniform.
With the heart of gratitude, Kalsang Lhamo finally joined the PLA.
She worked hard, participated in the directional off-road training team of the whole Aarmy, and won the first place in the short-distance as well as mixed relay in the national championship.
It is said that she became the ‘Lei Feng’ of the Army Engineering University; serving well the public.
Lei Feng (18 December 1940 – 15 August 1962) was a soldier in the People's Liberation Army who was the object of several major propaganda campaigns in China. The most well known of these campaigns in 1963 promoted the slogan, ‘Follow the examples of Comrade Lei Feng’.
Lei was portrayed as a model citizen, and the masses were encouraged to emulate his selflessness, modesty, and devotion to Mao. After Mao's death, state media continued to promote Lei Feng as a model of earnestness and service, and his image still appears in popular forms such as on T-shirts and other memorabilia.
Lieutenant Kalsang Lhamo
The new recruit Kalsang set herself the goal to "train as a model soldier and fight to be the first", but achieving this goal was not easy.
During the endurance training of the new camp, watching herself being overtime by her comrades, she wanted to give up, but remembered her family, she decided to live up toher origin; she clenched her teeth and kept training, and gradually caught up with her comrades, and later overtook them.
In July 2016, during the PLA off-road competition training team, all her comrades were sports students and scouts; she was the only one from communications (Signals).
She was not discouraged; as others took a rest and carried out research on maps; she summed up her experience. As a result, that year, she came first in the ‘Tenth Orientation Course of the Henan Province’.
In the cross-country championship, she won the first place in the middle distance and the first place in the ‘National Orienteering Championship’ and the short-range mixed relay race.
She explains that the School of Communication Engineering is a Red College that came out from the flames of war.
Kalsang Lhamo once became a guest of the University's ‘live library’ and spoke of her experience communicating with readers face-to-face, telling them vivid stories, giving them wonderful speeches, with unchanged original intentions, which left a deep impression on those who attended.
She is another ‘ceremonial’ soldier.

Senior Colonel Gawa Gemochi
Senior Colonel Gawa Gemochi
Col Gawa is born in May 1963 in the Tibetan-inhabited area of Qinghai; she is from the feared Golok nationality of Eastern Tibet.
She is a member of the CPPCC’s National Committee; she was earlier deputy to the 10th NPC and of course a member of the CPC.
She graduated from China Conservatory of Music.
She was nominated a ‘National First-Class Actor’ and was served as deputy head of the ‘War Banner Cultural Regiment' of the former Chengdu Military Region.
She is a well-known solo singer and actor; her famous songs include: Magic Steppe and Song of Snow Lotus.
Last year during the Two Meetings (CPPCC and NPC) which took place in Beijing, Col Gawa used strong words about the ‘prejudice against ethnic minorities’ rampant in the Middle Kingdom since the unrest in Lhasa a decade ago.
During a CPPCC session’s panel discussion, Col Gawa affirmed that the discrimination shown by the authorities against people from her ethnic group (‘Tibetans’) was ‘detrimental to national unity’.
According The South China Morning Post, the army soprano, who served the PLA for more than 20 years, “appealed to China’s central government to stop treating ethnic Tibetans as if they were separatists”.
Col Gawa explained: “I don’t think they [Beijing] should impose measures intended to deter separatists on the whole Tibetan race …It’s like there’s an order from above [for all] to follow.”
Gawa first witnessed the prejudice after the March 2008 incidents, when riots and clashes broke out in Lhasa and spread across the plateau. She clearly remembered “the prejudice she experienced in the aftermath of the unrest. …One time I led a group of performers to Beijing, everyone checked in to their hotels, but I wasn’t allowed to, because I was Tibetan.”
It is extremely rare that, what is known as Han Chauvinism, is admitted at official meetings. The fact that it is being reported, is even rarer.
Col Gawa told the panel that despite her military rank (Senior Colonel) and status as a CPPCC member, “the hotel staff simply refused to let her in. I showed them my CPPCC membership ID and my military ID but still wasn’t allowed to check in. I had to stay at a friend’s place.”
She added that the incident was not an isolated one; she had witnessed numerous examples of prejudice against Tibetan cadres, especially in Han-dominated areas.
She cited examples of discrimination: “The mainland has a 4G network already, but in many parts of Tibet and Xinjiang, the network is still only 2G,” the PLA soprano said, “of course, it might be deliberate that the networks there are not so strong.”
According to her, one solution would to increase the number of people from minority groups in positions of authority: “Native cadres will stay here forever. But cadres sent from the mainland only stay for two or three years before they are promoted to higher office.”
It is a fact that the TAR has never had a Tibetan Party Secretary.
It is interesting that Gawa was allowed to speak on this ultra-sensitive topic.
Today, technically, she does not serve any more in the PLA, as singers, actors and other artists can’t be considered as PLA officers following the 2016 reforms. She remains a CPPCC member.

Some Conclusions
One could think that it is only officers who are enrolled in the PLA, but it is not the case.
On July 8, China Tibet Online reported that 1,200 Tibetan students participated in an ‘annual soldier enrollment review’.
 It was announced by the TMD that the previous day, military colleges and universities are recruiting students to enrolled as soldiers; they conducted a 'cultural' examination in conjunction with the 2020 national university entrance examinations.  It is said that over 1,200 students from the TMD arrived at the examination site by car.
The Chinese website said that “After checking their body temperature, verifying their identity and signing, the students drew lots to determine their examination room.”
It further explained: “This year, due to the COVID-19 epidemic, student examinations for military schools could only be done at examination sites set up by the PLA. Since May, the TMD has organized examination centers for students in Lhasa for centralized preparation of examinations and unified management and guidance.”
It is obvious done on a rather large in conjunction with the militia recruitment mentioned earlier on this blog.
China Tibet Online reported: “During the preparation period, in addition to hiring famous teachers from local colleges and universities to teach these students, the TMD’s Military and Vocational Training Center have encouraged students to form support groups, in order to take advantage of their advantages and strengths and to improve the effectiveness of their learning together.”
Apparently, the head of the TMD’s Military and Vocational Training Center said that the Tibetan candidates needed to come from places located at very different altitudes: “In view of this situation, the Center decided to bring together all the candidates in Lhasa two months in advance in order to create conditions and allow the candidates to quickly adapt to the Lhasa environment.”
It is rather strange because the entire plateau is located at high altitude, places like Ngachu or Ngari prefectures being much higher than Lhasa.

The problem for Beijing, will these Tibetan recruits be loyal to the Communist Party and to its bosses in Beijing?
It is highly doubtful.
For Delhi and Dharamsala, the time has come to watch this issue more carefully.

Private 1st Class (OR-2) being tested

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