"The Western world has been trying to "free Tibet" for the last 30
years. It hasn't gone well. China remains predictably intractable towards any Western
admonitions, and repression inside of Tibet has now increased to the point where Tibetans
are lighting themselves on fire in desperate, fatal protest.
Arrogance has led the West to believe that its perspectives on democracy and Tibet will
eventually lead to Tibetan freedom; Yet, after three decades, the accumulated mass of
governmental edicts, congressional legislatives initiatives and verbal challenges to China
has led to nothing more than a worsening of the Tibetan condition.
No one personified this arrogance more than Jim Rinaldi as he connected wild and
dangerous schemes to assist Tibetans as they traveled through Nepal on their way to India.
For 20 years, operating on nothing more than a full belief in his American exceptionalism,
Rinaldi worked with Tibet charities; helped Tibetans feeling over Himalyan passes; and
eventually saw his efforts dissolve into nothing more than a series of brand-enhancing
exercise for the American Tibet lobby.
`Saviors and Fools' is ultimately the story of Rinaldi coming to terms with the
realization that America and the West do not appear to have a clue on how to help Tibet.
From his Unique insider's perch, Rinaldi levels his fire on the mistakes, hubris
opportunism and imperious politcal posturing the has now brought any hope for effective
Tibetan advocacy by the West to a standstill. The West blew it, and Rinaldi moves forward
by arguing that it's now time for America and the West to get out of the way and let India
take the leadership role.
`Saviors and Fools' is a humorous, challenging and insightful memoir that should
compell all of us to step back and re-think how we approach not only Tibetans, but human
rights issues in general. It begins a conversation that is long overdue."