Letter to Mr. Chen

Nov. 12, 1993
Mr. George Chen
Splendid China
3000 Splendid China Blvd.
Kissimmee, Fl 34747
Last month the International Campaign for Tibet learned that Splendid China was going to open on December 18,1993 in Florida. We are writing to you, as the President of Splendid China, to lodge a serious protest about the inclusion of the Potala Palace in your park, and to request that you remove it.
Including the Potala Palace in Splendid China is an insult to Tibetans everywhere. The Potala Palace has been shelled, looted, and shut-down by the China. Its monks were forced to flee in exile and those that stayed ended up in labor camps where many perished. Today the Potala Palace is run by Communist Party authorities who maintain stifling regulations over it.
Almost half the exhibits are of "minority" and religious sites and, like the Potala, they are still suffering under harsh Communist Party regulations. It is difficult for us to conceive how you can use the word "splendid" when you are showcasing religious and minority sites, most of which have been desecrated or demolished and which today are kept under a tight rein.
China has a magnificent cultural heritage and its civilization is truly wondrous. However, your enterprise whitewashes a turbulent and painful history, particularly in the way the "minority" exhibits are included. We are asking that you remove the Potala Palace - and all references to Tibet - from Splendid China. We look forward to discussing this with you at your convenience.
(signed) (signed) Lodi Gyari John Ackerly, Esq. President Director cc: Mr. Ma Chi Man, Chairman
Mr. James Christensen, General Manager & Chief Executive Officer
Mr. Carl Reynolds, Director of Sales and Marketing
Mr. Tom Woods, Senior Project Manager
Mr. Steve Baker, Steve Baker Associates
Rod Caborn, Richard Selby Associates