She is the equivalent of the Dalai Lama – a leader in exile, battling Beijing over the persecution of her people in China.
Her story is even more compelling.
Whereas the Tibetan leader was anointed a child god and, at age 24, whisked out of China in 1959 on a donkey over the Himalayas to exile in India where he remains, she was a dirt-poor housewife who walked out on her abusive husband, became a multi-millionaire entrepreneur and a human rights activist, married a fellow-dissident and was persecuted and jailed.
It was only in 2005 that the mother of 11 – indeed "the Mother of all Uighurs" – was released under American pressure, and now wages her non-violent campaign from exile in Washington, D.C.
She was nominated for this year's Nobel Peace Prize and would, in fact, have been a better choice than Barack Obama.
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