The Chinese Cabinet is considering the creation of a "cultural protection region" for the Qiang, an ethnic minority whose region was deeply affected by the massive earthquake in May. According to state-run reports, the Qiang, lost about %10 of their population in the devastation. For a community who has its own language, no written text and relies on elders to hand down ancient traditions, such losses may portend catastrophic consequences to the fabric of its entire culture. Only a few dozen of the shamen, or holy men, who are the gatekeepers of the Qiang's ancient traditions remain throughout the region. Known colloquially as the "people in the clouds", the Qiang live in the mountains of the Sichuan province with a history dating back 3,000 years. The government's move to extend this level of support at the cultural level provides a stark contrast to recent violent clashes with the Tibetans and the Ulghur ethnic minorities, who widely resent Chinese rule.