"FISTICUFFS ON EVEREST" - The Daily Fail at it again

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bhilden

Trad climber
Mountain View, CA
May 6, 2013 - 09:29pm PT

Lhakpa Sherpa -- "Reports claiming that 100-200 Sherpas attacked the 3 climbers are entirely FALSE."

bhilden you didn't even read.

You made up your own independent story.

Were you there?

Werner,

Yes, I did read what Lhakpa wrote. Here is the expanded quote from your original quote:

"Reports claiming that 100-200 Sherpas attacked the 3 climbers are entirely FALSE. Only the fixing team were involved."

By most accounts, the fixing team was comprised of 17 Sherpas. So, we have conflicting reports on the exact number of Sherpas present in the mob. Lhakpa says 17, the multiple western reports say 100.

Maybe if Lhakpa had said something like 'members of the original fixing party plus some other Sherpas' I would be more inclined to believe him,
but he said 'only the fixing team were involved.' There is a huge discrepancy between 17 and 100 so somebody isn't telling the truth. I tend to believe the western reports since there are multiple, independent reports which say 100.

No, Werner, I wasn't there, but I also was not making anything up. I have spent a lot of time over the past week reading all the publicly available accounts so that when I participate in this discussion I can be as informed as possible.
klk

Trad climber
cali
May 6, 2013 - 09:47pm PT
from lahkpa's account

We also did not witness other claims that rocks were used to hit others

yeah, that may literally be true. maybe he didn't watch it.

maybe ueli cut himself shaving.

The fixing team threw rocks at the tent to get the group to come out. Some western guides ran to “protect” the group. One western guide tackled a Sherpa carrying a rock perhaps thinking he was going to throw it to hurt someone. Unfortunately, this first assault on the fixing team triggered them to respond aggressively.

another remarkable passage
Climber Joe

Trad climber
May 6, 2013 - 11:57pm PT
I don't think that Jan's (doubtless well-intended) broad characterizations of Asian "communal" mentality and a preference for letting things just boil over, just to take two examples in this monster thread, are helpful or true. I'm Asian, if it makes any difference.
kunlun_shan

Mountain climber
SF, CA
May 7, 2013 - 12:06am PT
I prefer backcountry more than en piste.
Ken M

Mountain climber
Los Angeles, Ca
May 7, 2013 - 03:56am PT
So what you are saying is that you picked three foreign climbers to vent your years of frustration by assembling a mob of 100 Sherpas and trying to stone them to death. I guess that about says it all.

Hint to everybody else: Stop trying to make excuses for the behavior of the Sherpas. You now have a first-person account from one of the Sherpas who was there.

interesting lies that you tell. I like the stoning one, which no one has alleged......which you know, since you've read all the written accounts, right?

So we know you'll lie, if it furthers your agenda.

by the way, in terms of you instructing the group what they can and cannot say, you can kiss my *ss.
bhilden

Trad climber
Mountain View, CA
May 7, 2013 - 09:20am PT
interesting lies that you tell. I like the stoning one, which no one has alleged......which you know, since you've read all the written accounts, right?

I guess throwing rocks at people, which has been described in all the accounts I have read, doesn't fit your definition of 'stoning.' It certainly fits mine. Ueli Steck has a gash in his head after a Sherpa hit him with a rock. What do you call that?
crankster

Trad climber
South Lake Tahoe, CA
May 7, 2013 - 09:24am PT
Ken is an attorney looking to get a job representing the Sherpa's, maybe? What else could explain his ignorance?
Stewart Johnson

climber
lake forest
May 7, 2013 - 09:56am PT
Justification for a little elitist attitude is getting your ass kicked
bhilden

Trad climber
Mountain View, CA
May 7, 2013 - 11:34am PT
Justification for a little elitist attitude is getting your ass kicked

Please expand on your comment.
couchmaster

climber
pdx
May 7, 2013 - 12:17pm PT
Clearly it was a difference of opinion. The Sherpas felt threatened and violated, the Westerners thought that they didn't do anything wrong (they clearly did by climbing near the Sherpas). The Sherpas HAD to be up there doing the work, whereas the Westerners WANTED to be there, but didn't have to be. The Sherpas might have overreacted, but the western climbers are now toeing the line and will perhaps be more considerate and think twice about endangering others it is hoped.



Stewart nailed it more than once, I'll add to this:
"On piste is like being on a run at the ski area, Off piste is everywhere else "

3rd line to add, what we have here is "Piste Off". That is all. Good day.
splitter

Trad climber
SoCal Hodad, surfing the galactic plane
May 7, 2013 - 12:31pm PT
bhilden - Hint to everybody else: Stop trying to make up excuses for the behavior of the Sherpas

Hint?!?! You have the gall to suggest such a thing? Are you serious? We are trying to make up excuses? We are trying to knock some sense into your hard and arrogant heads! But I'm beginning to fear that it's a hopeless case. Blindness ... I generally thought of it primarily aas being a physical characteristic or disability, evidently not. How can you be so obtuse, is it deliberate?

Please read again what you previously quoted Lhakpa Sherpa as stating, "For years they have quietly suffered and endured arrogance by some western guides and professional climbers."

Talk about "hints"! Get a clue!! From what I have heard and read, they have been giving a certain ilk subtle, and not so subtle, hints for quit some time.

Sixty (60) plus years of being an essential team member, of one degree or another, from the very first ascent. Who was on the summit with Hillary on the FA? I seriously doubt that he would have gotten there without Tenzing Norgay, let alone all the other Sherpa and porters, etc, it entailed!.

"...highly skilled and experienced Sherpa climbers..." They have finally arrived, and they did it in the most humble, dedicated and selfless way imaginable.

"A mob of 100 Sherpas trying to stone them to death."

Umm, I think if they were intent on stoning them to death they could have easily succeeded.

After years of subservience, and humbly paying their dues whilst often being on the receiving end of brash and arrogant disrespect, coupled with shameful abuse, they finally exploded. Everyone has their breaking point, even the most humble among us. But, talk about patience, like I said in my post up thread, "Personally, I think they should have kicked some ass a long time ago. Let everyone know who's boss."

I believe the international climbing community needs to sit down and look at the big picture in regards to Everest, at least on the Nepal side. Its past, present and future, how and why they have arrived at where they are today, and where it's all going. May need to change some attitudes, and perhaps show some long overdue gratitude and respect to those whom it is due.

edit: Burch3y - "...but it pains me when logic and fact is often tossed for emotion." -- on the contrary, there is much, much more going on here than unbridled emotion. Look at it in the context of the big picture, the history of arrogance and abuse (lets get real, they have been taken advantage of from the get go), etc!

Regardless, we have a problem that has been stewing for years. I suggest climbing down off of yer high horses and taking a long introspective as well as retrospective look at the situation. Because this doesn't bode well for either side in the current direction it is going.

EDIT: The idiom, "The chickens have come home to roost." comes to mind.

;)
Stewart Johnson

climber
lake forest
May 7, 2013 - 12:40pm PT
Sh#t really DMT ? We love a home-cooked Sherpa meal in base camp And what about the lovely bed Tea? Have you ever had a proper Dahl bhat?
Something not to be missed by anyone including the super climbers.
Cheers with some rakshi!
bhilden

Trad climber
Mountain View, CA
May 7, 2013 - 03:29pm PT

bhilden - Hint to everybody else: Stop trying to make up excuses for the behavior of the Sherpas

Hint?!?! You have the gall to suggest such a thing? Are you serious? We are trying to make up excuses? We are trying to knock some sense into your hard and arrogant heads! But I'm beginning to fear that it's a hopeless case. Blindness ... I generally thought of it primarily aas being a physical characteristic or disability, evidently not. How can you be so obtuse, is it deliberate?

So let me get this straight. You don't quote all of my original post, but instead just the second to last line and then resort to name calling?

If you read my entire post, I included the paragraph from Lhapka Sherpa where he explains the reason for what happened. This is an explanation from one of the Sherpas directly involved in the incident hence there is no need for anybody on this forum to continue to come up with their reasoning for what happened. That was the basis for my 'no excuses' comment.

BTW, I believe what Lhapka says is the reason. It makes sense given what happened.

Here is my original post:


From Lhakpa Sherpa

http://himalayanascent.com/live-blog.html

"As eluded by others, the fixing team were venting the frustration of all highly skilled and experienced Sherpa climbers who want to feel more respect from their fellow western colleagues. For years they have quietly suffered and endured arrogance displayed by some western guides and professional climbers."

So what you are saying is that you picked three foreign climbers to vent your years of frustration by assembling a mob of 100 Sherpas and trying to stone them to death. I guess that about says it all.

Hint to everybody else: Stop trying to make excuses for the behavior of the Sherpas. You now have a first-person account from one of the Sherpas who was there.
Don Paul

Big Wall climber
Colombia, South America
May 7, 2013 - 03:38pm PT
I believe the international climbing community needs to sit down and look at the big picture in regards to Everest, at least on the Nepal side. Its past, present and future, how and why they have arrived at where they are today, and where it's all going.

Good point splitter, no one to blame but ourselves. We're basically talking about the cables route on half dome. Maybe Everest is hard and dangerous but a tourist route is a tourist route.

Someone earlier pointed out a number of really hard routes on Everest with Russian names, and Coz compared it to Yosemite Valley in the 70s, full of potential. Maybe it is like Yosemite, except that everyone is on the cables route.

The solution for Cerro Torre was to chop its equivalent of the cables route: the infamous Compressor Route. For Everest, its way too late. There's no turning back now, it is what it is. An impressive sounding achievement for posers and wannabees.
Jan

Mountain climber
Okinawa, Japan
May 7, 2013 - 04:08pm PT
If we can step back and look at this more from a social science point of view instead of a personal morality play, then as Jim Brennan pointed out, mob action is the hallmark of poor and disenfranchised people.

Compared to the westerners with their hot showers and internet connections and high tech music and nightly videos in base camp, do you really think the Sherpas have an equal say in things? Can they really compete by western rules? Do they have the same access to the internet, book and movie contracts, good English language skills for explaining their position, money to hire lawyers etc? Clearly the answer is no. The fact that we have a dozen western accounts of the episode and only one Sherpa with the resources to reply, is a good indication of the imbalance.

What the Sherpas have is what they used - numbers and dominance on the mountain. They certainly could have killed the climbers if they had wanted, but they didn't. They wanted to make a point and they did. Most people are backing the Sherpas. From a purely political point of view (which is usually quite separate from an idealistic moral point of view) they succeeded.

The mob who threw tea in Boston harbor weren't being moral with other people's possessions. The American frontiersmen at Lexington, Concord, and the Battle of new Orleans who hid behind trees and shot British marching in lines like civilized people did then weren't being moral by the standards of the day. The French women who knitted in time to the guillotine's action weren't being moral. Yet in retrospect, these actions are justified by historians because they ended up bringing about a greater good.

Right now it's too soon to say if this episode will bring long lasting changes to the mountains and the Sherpas which will be good. History is also full of peasant rebellions that failed.

Meanwhile, as several people have pointed out, Everest has long since ceased to be a good moral example of anything on anyone's part except for the occasional selfless heroism of the Sherpas and a few western guides. So far this year, two Sherpas have died, and one westerner. Another Sherpa was airlifted in serious injured condition from falling ice on the Lhotse face which is what they were worried about when their lines were crossed and the incident under discussion was provoked. How about their dreams which were ruined? Not too much talk of that, is there?

As for morality, the person right now providing the best moral example from all this is Simone Moro. He was piloting the helicotor that retrieved the body of the Sherpa who died in Camp 3 and ferried the Sherpa injured by ice fall to the hospital (talk about ironies). That should make a big impact on everyone - east and west. In terms of karma (a decidedly non social science perspective) maybe that's the true reason for this episode - to provide an example of forgiveness.
couchmaster

climber
pdx
May 7, 2013 - 04:10pm PT
Ron Paul said:
"..... it is what it is. An impressive sounding achievement for posers and wannabees."

You don't have a clue.
gilly

climber
Mohawk Valley,Ca
May 7, 2013 - 04:41pm PT
Being disrespectful of the locals at work is on the same lines as stealing another climber's vodka and ham that was flown in to a big mtn. The Mountain Gods will simply want you to return home and learn how to behave!
Cheers to Stewart and the other men and women climbers with manners and respect!
splitter

Trad climber
SoCal Hodad, surfing the galactic plane
May 7, 2013 - 05:32pm PT
Don Paul - The solution for Cerro Torre was to chop its equivalent of the cables route: the infamous Compressor Route. There's no turning back now, it is what it is. An impressive sounding achievement for posers and wannabees.
Si amigo, I concur, my sentiments precisely.

But regarding the trade route on the Big E, it certainly has come to resemble HD's cable route in many ways. But as far as comparing it to the Compressor Route (which was a desecration from its conception and never should have been conceived) it was initially a proud achievement and continued to be a formidable goal for many years thereafter. Unfortunately, it is what it is today.

And, at whose expense, season after grueling season, was it? Who got raped, pillaged and abused in the process? Who did they use and then toss the leftovers too? Whose cooperation did it require and was integral to the success or failure of every friggin' expedition over the last 60+ years? Whose kin were left in some abysmal crevasse, or buried under tons of snow and whose memorial after memorial now sits at the base? Who would be left behind and expected to simple sit around twiddling their thumbs? And, last but certainly not least, whose to blame really for it becoming what it is?

And now that it has become what it is, just pull the plug? Go back to Manhatten, or wherever, and take a shower? Brush the dirt off of our shoes and sweep it all under the carpet? Besides, we were there years ago when it still was a badge of honor to have climbed it. We've moved on to more worthy goals. No worries. Frig the pawns, the lowly peons, out of sight out of mind. Or maybe we should offer to build them a reservation if we start feeling really guilty. After all, that's the western way, eh?

Me thinks that somebody needs to man up and shoulder the responsibility for what it has become, for what they have birthed, in essence, created! And stop whining, sniffling and bitching about it.

Don Paul - Good point splitter, no one to blame but ourselves.
Amen! ...at least somebody gets it!
dave729

Trad climber
Western America
May 7, 2013 - 05:45pm PT
When the hired help goes rogue and assaults the neighbors
but are not fired afterwards there is something rotten afoot.
canyoncat

Social climber
SoCal
May 7, 2013 - 05:53pm PT
Modern Western people who hire help overseas are much nicer than own their employers, on average, who often treat humans like cattle.
While this probably has some truth to it, isn't it a little like talking about how blacks were treated in the 50's? I'm sure they were treated better by New Yorkers than by deep south plantation bosses, but that still wouldn't justify telling people they can't sit at the lunch counter.
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