A glimpse of history of Nepal and Tibet: 1872
Tibet is a land-locked country; it is surrounded by India, Nepal, Bhutan, Sikkim, Khotan (Tibetan call it LiYul- I think Li stands for Bell-Metal- and Chinese, today, call it Xinjiang; it is on the Silk Road and south-west edge of Gobi desert), Tajikistan(ancient name Kamboja) on the west of Gobi desert, Uyghur(also called Shanshan; tibet’s south), China on the Tibet’s east. Any of these countries can plunder Tibet as there is no natural(body of water, high peak) barrier to hold them back.
“Pleasing all nine neighbors” is a tall order, unless Tibet had a King who had nine beautiful daughters to marry off to all the nine prince of neighbors. Tibet followed a policy of “harm none and none will hurt you”. Such a policy has no advantage but is a mere rule that required other nations to adhere to voluntarily.
Here is an extract of history, authored by Leo Eugene Rose, in “Nepal: Strategy for Survival” which highlights Tibet’s vulnerability and naïve policy which ultimately failed to protect Tibet and led to 1949 invasion of Tibet not from Nepal but from China.
Eugene writes, "
Nepali-Tibetan relations once again underwent a crisis in 1872 when Kathmandu accused Lhasa of permitting the maltreatment of Nepali merchants resident in Tibet. Jang Bahadur talked of war. A partial mobilization of the Nepali militia was ordered for January 1873, and Nepal threatened to withdraw its Vakil from Lhasa and stop all trade between the two countries. The Tibetans suggested the appointment of a joint commission that would meet on the border to settle the dispute. Jang Bahadur rejected this proposal, and finally did withdraw the Nepali Vakil from Lhasa in the fall of 1873. There is no record of a specific settlement having been reached. but by 1875 the situation had improved sufficiently to permit the Nepali Vakil to return to Lhasa. Relations then returned to normal—that is, to an interminable series of petty disputes.
The most serious dispute over the terms of relationship established in the lB56 treaty occurred in 1883 when armed hostilities between Nepal and Tibet again seemed imminent. On April 8, 1888, a dispute between Newari merchant at Lhasa and two Tibetan women over a piece of coral led, a few hours later, to the destruction and plundering of 84 Nepali owned shops by a mob led by monks from three main Lhasa monasteries-Drepung, Sera and Gaden.
A close analysis of the events leading up to the riot indicates that this was not a spontaneous affair resulting only from the mutual antagonisms often prevalent between the privileged Nepali merchants at Lhasa and their commercial competitors—the monks of the three large Lhasa monasteries—but rather was planned and carried out at the instigation of the leaders of one or more of the Tibetan factions contending for political influence. Indeed. it may have been connected with the concern felt in some Tibetan circles over the closer relations then being established between China and Nepal, which were viewed as a threat to Tibet’s virtually complete autonomy. That this riot coincided with the visit of a high Chinese official, Sanbui Hosai, to Kathmandu with "dresses of honor" to Maharaja Ranodip Singh appertaining to the Chinese title that had been conferred on him 1878, was not inadvertent. Tibetans understood quite well that Nepali-Tibetan disagreements placed the Chinese in a difficult position. and they may have hoped to frustrate a Sino-Nepali rapprochement in this manner.
If this was Lhasa's objective, it succeeded-initially at least. Kathmandu, on hearing of the destruction of the Nepali shops, demanded either full restitution at all property or compensation for losses and threatened war if this was not acceded to by the Tibetan government. The Senior Amban, who seems to have suspected some deep, dark design, placed the blame for the riot. squarely on the Tibetans and advised the civil authorities to take the requisite measures for the settlement of the affair in conformity with the terms of the 1856 treaty “and to further neighborly relations of amicable nature” with Nepal. He also raised a small subscription fund for plundered Nepali merchants and urged the Tibetan authorities to restore the plundered property. At the request of the Tibetans, the Amban offered 200,000 to 400,000 rupees to the Nepali Vakil as full repayment fo the merchants’ losses- estimated by Kathmandu at Rs. 1,700,000- but the merchants rejected this proposal, with the support of the Nepal authorities. For the most part, relations between China and Nepal remained cordial during the dispute, although Nepali officials did tell the British Resident that China was likely to intervene in support of Tibet if the dispute ended in hostilities.
This crisis was an embarrassment lo Kathmandu. Despite its threats to resort to arms, the Darbar was well aware that the cost of a Tibetan campaign would far exceed the indemnification that could be expected.“ Moreover. the internal political situation in Nepal was critical. The dispute between the sons of Jang Bahadur and the late Maharajas two brothers, Ranodip Singh and Dhir Shamsher, was an approaching a showdown. Neither side was anxious for an armed Conflict with Tibet at that time, for they were primarily preoccupied with preparations for the power struggle that would ensue after the death of the ailing Ranodip Singh.
Kathmandu realized, however, that if Lhasa successfully avoided all responsibility for the 1883 riot, Nepal's position in Tibet would be gravely impaired. Tibet might next move to terminate annual payments to Kathmandu or even abrogate the 1856 treaty entirely. If Lhasa refused to make concessions, some form of military reprisal appeared necessary—preferably a lightning thrust into Tibet. The Wallung Chung pass in eastern Nepal was chosen for the invasion route. as the l788, 1791 and 1855-56 campaigns had shown that Kuti and Kerong were too distance from major political and trade centers in Tibet to have the maximum impact. Khadga Shamsher, a son of Dhir Shamsher, was sent to Calcutta to purchase 4,000 breech-loading rifles; these would have given Nepal such an immense superiority in firepower over the Tibetan army that only a comparatively small force would have been required for the trans-Himalayan campaign.”
Jung Bahadur helped British Raj to capture Lucknow for a price which British Raj did not oblige. Jung Barhadur eyed for the throne of Nepal.