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When the government of South Africa denied the Dalai Lama an entry visa last week, it was not the first time it had snubbed him. In 1999, then-President Mbeki canceled a meeting with the Tibetan leader after the Chinese vehemently protested. Whatever backbone Mbeki may have at one time had when working against apartheid seems to have turned to jello on that occasion. The South African government claimed that last week’s episode was not a snub, but merely an attempt to keep any ensuing diplomatic incident from deflecting attention from next year’s World Cup. But it’s hard to see the […]


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