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Ian_Lee

China's equivalence of Alexander the Great

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roddy

Greek-influenced Buddhist sculpture in Afghanistan < might help.

And also here

In 197 BCE, the Graeco-Bactrians conquered Oddiyana and Gandhara from the Mauryans. Subsequently, Sarvastivada came to the southeastern part of Afghanistan as well. From the strong interaction between Greek and Indian cultures that followed, Hellenistic styles strongly influenced Buddhist art, particularly its representation of the human form and the drape of robes.

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yonglan

Thanks, Roddy. I'm so lazy! I should have searched for something :roll:

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Ian_Lee

Yonglan:

There is subtle difference between PRC's settlement into those autonomous regions and Israel's settlement into West Bank and the Gaza Strip.

(1) The former is a transfer of population into one part of China from another part of China. But the latter is the transfer of population into a "foreign" land -- UN-recognized "occupied territory".

(2) But of course even though the former is only a transfer of population from one part of country to another part, extreme cautionary measures should be taken to safeguard indigenous culture and native interest. And Beijing doesn't seem to take this into consideration.

(3) But the impact of the former policy is much less than the latter. Since all those autonomous regions are sparsely resided by the nomadic people, their emotional fixation to land is not as much as the Palestinians are.

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Ian_Lee

Yonglan:

I consider Kublai Khan as well as Tang Taizhong and Qian Long as Chinese emperors.

Ethnically they were all either non-Han or mixed blood. But they all ruled China according to the traditional Chinese format, widely used Chinese in court and all considered themselves the "Son of Heaven".

And anyway, it comes back to the basic question: Who/What is a Chinese?

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yonglan
(1) The former is a transfer of population into one part of China from another part of China. But the latter is the transfer of population into a "foreign" land -- UN-recognized "occupied territory".

My point was simply that many people don't feel it is China. The UN is an organization, not a factual source like a dictionary. The US war in Vietnam was done under UN auspices. The UN does not have a sterling record for these sorts of things.

(3) But the impact of the former policy is much less than the latter. Since all those autonomous regions are sparsely resided by the nomadic people,

That is precisely the story the Israelis tell.

their emotional fixation to land is not as much as the Palestinians are.

You gotta be kidding me, man?

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Ian_Lee
My point was simply that many people don't feel it is China

You are talking about a view or an opinion.

their emotional fixation to land is not as much as the Palestinians are.

You gotta be kidding me, man?

Though there are many riots in PRC nowadays, most of them are not related to ethnic riots on settled land like those going on in West Bank everyday.

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yonglan

People's feelings are not simply a matter of whether or not they riot. That has only a vague correlation. Read world history; learn about the US (where you presently live) in the 20th century and you can see that just because someone doesn't resort to violence doesn't mean they don't care. And just because someone (ones) riot doesn't automatically mean it is a serious problem. It's far more complex than that.

As for my opinion on what is China. Yes, I know it's an opinion. And your opinoin is also just an opinion. That's the root of what I have been trying to say.

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Ian_Lee

Yonglan:

I cannot fathom people's feeling. But in the case of Mongols in Inner Mongolia, it looks like they are not as desperate as the Palestinians judged by circumstantial evidence.

(1) Unlike the Palestinians who have no country to go and were kicked out by other Arab countries, i.e. Jordan, the Mongols in Inner Mongolia have their own country -- Mongolian Republic -- just next door. With a size of Western Europe and only 2.4 million inhabitants (about half the Mongol population in Inner Mongolia), the Mongols in Inner Mongolia can always flee across the border to settle in their country like the Jews all over the world moved to Israel when the Jewish State was set up in 1948. But the mass exodus didn't happen.

(2) Mongolian Republic shares a thinly guarded long border with PRC. Unlike the Sino-Korean border, it is very easy to cross without any hindrance. So why is there no exodus?

(3) There are 3-5 flights weekly from Hohhot to Ulan Bataar. I never hear anybody jump the plane.

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bhchao
I consider Kublai Khan as well as Tang Taizhong and Qian Long as Chinese emperors.

Ethnically they were all either non-Han or mixed blood. But they all ruled China according to the traditional Chinese format, widely used Chinese in court and all considered themselves the "Son of Heaven".

I consider Tang Taizong to be a Chinese emperor because even though he was one-quarter Xianbei (his grandmother was Xianbei), he belonged to the "Li" family of his father.

Qian Long should be a Chinese emperor since all the Qing rulers up to his time adopted Chinese methods of governing, took up Chinese culture as their own without ignoring their Manchu heritage, and widely used Han Chinese administrators in their government.

Lots of people may disagree with me on this one, but I do not consider Kublai Khan to be a Chinese emperor even though he ruled China in the traditional Chinese format. Why? His Yuan dynasty, although part of the Chinese dynastic cycle, was never really "Chinese". The Yuan government never used Chinese officials for the most important positions. Instead positions of minor, very little significance were awarded to Han Chinese; and the latter was heavily discriminated upon, a stark contrast to the Manchus' rule three centuries later.

Also the Yuan never really adopted Chinese culture, nor were they really interested either. The Manchus on the other hand, especially Kangxi, had a genuine interest in the Chinese culture without casting away their ancestral heritage. They understood what made the Chinese "tick" and ruled accordingly.

This could explain why the Yuan lasted only 89 years while the Qing lasted two centuries and a half.

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skylee
Also the Yuan never really adopted Chinese culture, nor were they really interested either. The Manchus on the other hand, especially Kangxi, had a genuine interest in the Chinese culture without casting away their ancestral heritage. They understood what made the Chinese "tick" and ruled accordingly.

This could explain why the Yuan lasted only 89 years while the Qing lasted two centuries and a half.

I agree.

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Ian_Lee

But what about Yuan's predecessors Liao and Jin Dynasties which all occupied huge chunk of territory in current North China?

What about those peripheral countries that existed concurrently with Song Dynasties like Dali in Yunnan and Xia in Ningxia?

They were all non-Han but many were very sinicized like Dali. And in the case of Liao and Jin Emperors, they signed numerous treaties with Song in the capacity of Older brother or even father (which were stipulated in the treaty clause).

If Liao/Jin and Song Emperors were siblings, then all three should be treated as Chinese dynasties.

And farther up, do we count only the southern dynasties during the 400 years (about A.D. 250 - 650) turbulent period as chinese dynasties?

But the unifier of China at the end of that period, Mr. Yang of Sui Dynasty, was most likely a mixed blood and a high-ranking court official in the Northern dynasty.

So was Sui Dynasty a Chinese dynasty?

Anyway, I tend to agree with Mainland historians that the definition of what is Chinese in history should not be based on ethnicity since China had always been a melting pot.

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bhchao

Sui was definitely a Chinese dynasty because Yang Jian was of mixed Xianbei blood and the Xianbei were already well assimilated into the mainstream and Chinese society.

The Xianbei or 拓跋 clans were much more sinicized in 581 than the Mongols were in 1279. In fact the Mongols were viewed as complete foreigners in 1279. They did everything the Mongol way, a stark contrast to leaders of Xianbei heritage. They also introduced a new form of barbarian autocracy not seen before in China. As a result, the Ming emulated this form of repressive government, and to a lesser degree the Qing.

The Xianbei had been assimilated into the mainstream during the Northern Wei dynasty, a melting pot period of the Age of Fragmentation. By the time Northern Wei dissolved into Northern Zhou, people of Xianbei parentage like Mr. Yang (who was a general in Northern Zhou) were already sinicized.

So there is a subtle difference between the Xianbei-flavored Sui and Tang dynasties versus the Yuan dynasty.

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yan

Í think there is more to this difference (Correct me if I am wrong). The Qing and most other 'foreign' (perharps with exception of Jin) dynasties eventually became so sinicized that they had nowhere to go back to when their dynasties came to fall. They peoples were almost completely assimilated, e.g. like the Manchu who at the end of Qing dynastie had almost completely lost their language. The Mongol elite was able to return to the steppes and remain independent from China, until the Manchu conquests of the 17th and 18th century.

Ian Lee: I think there were some refugees after 1945 or 1947, when it became clear that (Outer) Mongolia's dreams of an unification with an independent Inner Mongolia would not work out. No real mass exodus though.

I don't think current Mongolia would be able or even willing to attract immigration of Inner Mongolians. The economic situation is rather unstable, and unlike in the case of Israel, emptying Inner Mongolia of Mongolians would mean that they cede land that from their POV traditionally belongs to the Mongols to someone else.(Hope you can understand what I am trying to say?) Guess why Arab countries never have encouraged Palestinians to leave the occupied territories en masse, why many Arab countries would not even give Palestinian refugees of the 1948/49 war a viable residence status.

I think the Zionist, and also Israeli, ideology was that their fellow jews can be oppressed because they live outside their home country, while mongolian ideology (where it exists) is rather that their fellow mongolians can be opressed because their home country is ruled by someone else.

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Ian_Lee

Yan:

There is a major difference in how Mongolia regards Inner Mongolia and Arab countries regard the occupied West Bank and Gaza Strip.

Mongolia regards Inner Mongolia as a part of China (the Sino-Mongolian boundary has been delineated as early as 1960s) and the Mongols in China as Chinese nationals.

But Arab countries regard West Bank and Gaza Strip as occupied lands and Palestinians as refugees.

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yan

That part about Mongolia is correct, many Outer Mongolians even regard Inner Mongolians as not being really mongolian anymore.

And of course, there are many more differences between Palestinians and Inner Mongolians, beginning from the fact that probably no Inner Mongolian would deny China's right of existence, that the P.R. China treats Inner Mongolians as citizens while Isreal treats Palestinians (in the occupied territories) as some kind of foreigners, etc etc.

What I meant was that if Mongolia would encourage all Mongols to emigrate, they would ask them to give up forever all rights regarding their traditional lands. It would de facto support the complete Han-ification of Inner Mongolia, something that can not be in Mongolian interest.

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Ian_Lee

Yan:

I hold contrary opinion.

Mongolian Republic, with a land size of Western Europe, just has 2.4 million population. It is one of the most sparsely populated country in the world.

Its government should actively encourage ethnic Mongols from other countries to migrate there.

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roddy

You don't think it might be sparsely populated for a reason, Ian?

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Ian_Lee

Roddy:

I need to do a search on why the Mongol population of Inner Mongolia doubles that of Mongolia albeit the latter's land size is much bigger.

Since Mongolia is north of the Gobi Desert, the weather is more hostile and that may be the reason why the population is so sparsely dispersed.

But on the other hand, the Buryat Mongol Republic, which is much more northerly located, has over 1 million population but its land is just about one-fifth of the land size of Mongolia.

So weather may not be the reason.

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yan

Ian: Do also you think Russia should ask all Russians to leave the other post-soviet republics? Should Arab countries ask Arab Israelis to leave Isreal? Should the Croatian, Bosnian, Serbian or Albanian governments have asked ethnic Croatians, Bosnian Muslims, Serbs or Albanians to leave areas that were inhabitated by other ethnic groups?

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Ian_Lee

Yan:

Don't be too sensitive. I just think that Mongolia should encourage more immigration due to its unltra-low population density.

Personally I think if there is too few Mongols in Inner Mongolia or too few Tibetans in Tibet, those place will be much less alluring.

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