After a few arguments with Chinese friends i should emphasize I am NOT for a free Tibet, again, that's not even what the Dalai Lama asks for. Only for the autonomy that they are supposed to have. It's already one country / two systems, why not give Tibet a Hong Kong style autonomy?
The irony in all that when Chinese people & government complain that Westerners just don't get the Chinese way and should stop giving misplaced advice like democracy and free speech, is that they are a communist government, now with wild capitalism, dealing with huge problems of industrial pollution, not the best of what came from the West...
My view is only from the outside despite a brief tour a few years ago. But the outside does matter, after the incidents in Greece, there are only problems in foresight for the traveling Olympic flame. This government can cause an entire nation to loose face.
One reason I am picking on China (and not Russia, Iran, Pakistan, etc.) is that I am a huge lover of Chinese culture, it has so much to offer to the world and I hate to see it under such bad management. If this government doesn't get it right in Tibet & other areas they will only create more local nationalistic resentment, and the claim to autonomy can step up to a claim for independence. One more system in the big country, that's just my 2cts..