What can I say about a day like today? This was another landmark achievement for our movement and the Olympics campaign. We started the day at the crack of dawn, driving towards the Golden Bridge while watching a live stream video of the banner hang in Paris uploaded by our colleagues. We were thrilled to see the video of Mel Raoul (a Canadian who also did the banner hang on the Great Wall of China in August) and Phil (a British SFTer) unfurl a French banner which read “Pas de Flamme au Tibet” or “No Torch through Tibet.”
A few hours later, a team of seven SFT members/ Tibet activists unfurled two of the largest banners I have ever seen on the Golden Gate Bridge against a cloudless blue sky. It was stunning sight. Two days before the Chinese Olympic Torch arrives in San Francisco, we had put our message on the most recognizable landmark in San Francisco. And our message was clear – we reject the Torch; we reject it here and we reject it going into Tibet.
Then came the media interviews, one after another, non-stop. Shortly after (they were a little slow on getting there) we were sized up by a fair number of Chinese ‘observers.’ But it didn’t matter anymore – we had won already – a small victory but another piece of a global message to China that until they resolve the issue of Tibet, they will have to hear us Tibetans and our supporters protest loudly at every opportunity.
Ali Taub (another Canadian, 22 year old, from Vancouver) was detained with three other support members shortly after the climbers left the ground. The three climbers were then detained after coming down voluntarily. As of right now, all of them are incarcerated and have been charged a number of different charges, and we’ve got a legal team monitoring the situation.
This was an amazing day and it’s almost over, but our work with Beijing’s disastrous Torch Relay in San Francisco certainly isn’t – in fact it’s just beginning.
Beijing, we are ready.