Letter to Manager in Charge

Manager in Charge
3000 Splendid China Blvd.
Kissimmee, Florida 34747

Dear sir/madam,
We are writing again to ask that you take the opportunity to speak with us concerning the Tibetan, Mongolian, and Eastern Turkestani exhibits. These represent five out of the sixty or so in your facility.
The Tibetan exhibit, the Potala Palace, is not labeled properly. It does not mention the pivotal role of this structure in the secular and religious life of the Tibetan people or mention that this structure, built by the 5th Dalai Lama in the 17th century, served as his residence since that time. Would it be possible to start negotiations to get the same inscription that is used as part of the United Nations World Heritage list ? The following is a quote:

"The Potala Palace, an administrative, religious and political complex, is built on the Red Mountain in the centre of the Lhasa valley, at an altitude of 3700 metres. The complex comprises the White Palace and the Red Palace, with their ancillary buildings. The Potala, winter palace of the Dalai Lama since the 7th century A.D., symbolises Tibetan Buddhism and its central role in the traditional administration in Tibet. The beauty and originality of its architecture, its ornate decoration and its harmonious integration in a striking landscape add to its historic and religious interest."
The Mongolian exhibit called the Mongolian Yurt should be removed. The traditional lifestyle and culture of the nomadic Mongol nation is not Chinese and the efforts of the Chinese government to eradicate this lifestyle are well known. In addition, the transfer of Chinese people into the once sovereign Mongol lands has destroyed the grasslands on which the Mongol lifestyle depends, as well as making Mongols a minority in their own country.
The Mongolian exhibit called the 'Mausoleum of Genghis Khan' should also be removed. The exhibit implies that the Great Khan was Chinese and buried in a Chinese-style tomb. The fact is that the structure shown in the park was actually built by the Communist Chinese government in the 1950s to house the once-mobile shrines to the memory of Genghis Khan. At the same time, the rites that had been held for centuries to his memory were outlawed and other strict measures imposed to deprive the Mongolian people of the opportunity to observe their cultural traditions. During the Cultural Revolution, the artifacts that had been saved were destroyed by the Red Guard and the structure used for storing salt. Genghis Khan's memory is not well served by this exhibit and is insulting to Mongolian people and the truth.
The Uyghur exhibit known as the Id Gah Mosque should be removed. The religious school that existed in this structure was closed by the Chinese government and now all religious observances are under the control of the Chinese Communist Party, avowed atheists. The Id Gah is not Chinese and does not belong in the Florida Splendid China theme park.
The exhibit named in the park as 'Tomb of Xiang Fei' should be removed or the proper name attached to it with the correct information. The Uyghur people that built this structure call it the 'Tomb of Apak Hizrat Khoja.' Although the Uyghur Heroine Ipar Han is buried there, the fact is that she committed suicide rather than become a 'fragrant concubine' or 'xiang fei.' This is a gross distortion of history that attempts to eliminate the memory of the deeds of a great Uyghur woman. In addition, anyone familiar with the history of the Great 5th Dalai Lama knows who Apak Hizrat Khoja is, as they had met and formed an alliance between Uighurstan and Tibet many centuries ago.
Please take the opportunity to contact us at your convenience concerning this important matter.
We will be gathering at the main gate of Florida Splendid China at noon on the 16th of December 2000 to commemorate the 7th anniversary of the opening of Splendid China unless we hear from you on this important matter. Also note that the next demonstration will be held to commemorate Tibetan Uprising Day near March 10, 2001 and many more are planned throughout the coming year.

Jack Churchward
Citizens Against Communist Chinese Propaganda