The Treasury of Lives

In 1904, the British Younghusband expedition invaded central Tibet, and the Thirteenth Dalai Lama escaped to Mongolia. In 1907, Bhutan became a monarchy with Ugyen Wangchuck installed as King. The Thirteenth Dalai Lama returned to Tibet in 1909, only to escape again, this time to India, in 1910. The Chinese Republic was founded in 1912 after the fall of the Manchu empire in 1911. Returning to Tibet in 1913, after the Chinese forces were defeated and driven out of Lhasa, the Thirteenth Dalai Lama issued a proclamation of Tibet's independence. In 1921, the Mongolian People’s Republic was established leading to the persecution of Buddhism and the execution of monastics. The Thirteenth Dalai Lama died in 1933; his reincarnation, Tenzin Gyatso, was born in 1935 in Amdo. He was installed as head of state in 1950, and a year later in 1951, the Seventeen Point Agreement, which ended Tibet's independence, was signed in Beijing. Relations between Tibet and China deteriorated and monasteries, viewed as centers of resistance, were attacked and destroyed. The Four Rivers, Six Ranges guerilla movement, which would gain clandestine support from the CIA, was formed around 1957. An uprising during the 1959 Monlam festival in Lhasa turned violent, leading the Fourteenth Dalai Lama to escape from Tibet to exile, repudiating the 17 Point Agreement just before reaching India. Following the destruction of most Tibetan monasteries during the 1950s and 1960s, branch monasteries were established in India and Nepal. Since the reforms of the 1980s, many monasteries have been rebuilt in Tibet.


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