Wednesday, 18 December 2013

Four Voices: Defending Thailand's Pro-Democracy Alliance

I’ve asked four prominent persons from what I would call Thailand’s “pro-democracy alliance” the four same questions to gauge the range of thoughts and feelings as to the country’s present political situation.

These four persons are, in order, trade unionist and possible prospective party list MP candidate for the new Palang Prachathipatai Party (Democratic Force Party), Jittra Kotchadet; Former Thai government minister, political dissident and exile, Jakrapob Penkair; SuranandVejjajiva, a former government minister and now the Secretary General to Yingluck Shinawatra, the Prime Minister of Thailand; Panuwat Panduprasert, lecturer at the School of Politics and Government, Faculty of Political Science and Public Administration, Chiang Mai University.


Jittra Kotchadet

Will democracy survive in Thailand?
I believe we will have democracy because most people in the country want democracy. But there is a small group of leading politicians from the party [Democrat Party] which has failed to win a majority in elections who are trying to introduce an unelected regime. In the past they ordered the army to attack those calling for democracy which led to 99 deaths. Now they are trying to incite people, claiming they are protecting the monarchy. However, out in the provinces among the workers and farmers we clearly see people disagree with this group, but because they fear provoking violence they chose to peacefully wait for elections. It indicates that they prefer democracy. But if there isn’t an election it is clear I believe that the people who love democracy will certainly resist.
How real a threat is Suthep to democracy?
I believe that Mr Suthep and others have the right to protest and fully express their own ideas if they wish. But he must stoke divisions, hatred and violence in society by using the monarchy as a tool. For example, by accusing the Red Shirts of attempting to bring down the monarchy and preparing for genocide. If he insists on continuing to stage protests and speeches he will cause more hatred posing a great danger to democracy, which should be about people respecting varied views on many subjects and through elections living together without killing each other.

Will the Army intervene in some way against the pro-democracy alliance?
I don’t trust the army. The army is the army of the people, but we really don’t have any mechanism to control the army which means we cannot expect anything at all from the army. I believe that if army assesses that it will receive benefits or can preserve benefits it will intervene in the protests calling for democracy immediately as past political events show. Every time the army launches a coup in Thailand there is always a pretext, such as corruption or a threat to overthrow the monarchy. I have seen that the protests by PDRC are trying to spin clues in these ways and then the leaders call for the army to come out and assist them providing a clear signal for the army to act.

How strong are the connections between Suthep’s PDRC & Abhisit’s Democrat Party?
They are the same group working to create all sorts of issues to undermine social coherence with clear collaboration from the media. The PDRC is the voting base of the Democrat Party because most of these people are from the south or the middle class in Bangkok.



Jakrapob Penkair

Will democracy survive in Thailand?
Of course, it will survive and very well so. It took Europe decades and years of perfecting its democracy. Ours is only less than 10 years, counting from the very first full term of a democratically-elected government. The main reason is that Thai people now understand the values and virtues of democracy, and they are willing to protect it.
How real a threat is Suthep to democracy?
If the likes of Suthep are allowed to get even an inch, we will see a young democracy replaced or controlled by the establishment, whose political base Suthep is now representing.
Will the Army intervene in some way against the pro-democracy alliance?
The armed forces learn their lessons. The task of keeping power is far more costly than the takeover itself. They may withhold the first strike if there realise that the second strike by the other side is surely in order. It is safe to say that the armed forces will not wilfully exercise that power, unless they are ordered to.
How strong are the connections between Suthep’s PDRC & Abhisit’s Democrat Party?
One and the same. There are dissidents in their party who are against the ongoing games, but they are in minority.



Suranand Vejjajiva

Will democracy survive in Thailand?
Democracy in Thailand is under threat. The conservative reactionaries have gathered force again to try to divert from democracy towards a dictatorship in disguise. A silent coup d’tat has been in process for the past month, silent because an overt one like the 2006 coup is not acceptable to the Thai public and international community. Thai democracy have a chance of survival if the general population continued to be informed that democracy is the best option for the country. Continued international support for Thailand to keep on the democratic track is essential.
How real a threat is Suthep to democracy?
The threat is real as Suthep is the front man for anti-democratic alliance in Thailand. He is brash and crazy enough to play this dangerous game, and his supporters, secret and open ones, are willing to invest in him.
Will the Army intervene in some way against the pro-democracy alliance?
So far the military top brass has taken the professional stance that is maintaining the non-interference position in politics. In reality, some may be pressured to take action, in particular the Army Chief of Staff. However, the Army is reluctant to intervene. They do not feel they could handle the pro-democracy alliance especially the Red Shirts which will rise if democracy is ditched through a coup d’tat or any other undemocratic means. But if violence breaks between the supporters of both sides, an excuse for the Army to take action is probable and it will not be for democracy, but for their own power grabbing ambitions.
How strong are the connections between Suthep’s PDRC & Abhisit’s Democrat Party?
The Democrat Party has been supporting PDRC from the beginning. Their MPs have been involved in organizing and planning the rallies. Many may disagree with Suthep on his tactics, but not the overall goal, for the Democrat Party knows they could not win an election against Pheu Thai Party, except to overthrow the present government, change the rules of the game and stop the Pheu Thai Party political machine.


Panuwat Panduprasert

Will democracy survive in Thailand?
I believe democracy will survive. There will be setbacks and obstacles, but Thailand has come too far for anyone to definitively turn back the clock.
How real a threat is Suthep to democracy?
Suthep alone doesn't represent a great threat to democracy in my opinion. What's more worrying is the anger and resentment of people against Thaksin and his loyalists, and democracy itself has been the unfortunate victim of it all. I know several people who have said that they don't respect Suthep but see him as a tool for defeating the so-called Thaksin regime.
Will the Army intervene in some way against the pro-democracy alliance?
 If the army are rational actors, I think they should know that any intervention would be costly for them. The problem is I don't think they are rational so anything is possible.
How strong are the connections between Suthep’s PDRC & Abhisit’s Democrat Party?
Obviously there's a very strong connection. In fact this is probably the first time so many Democrat politicians have got involved in street politics in such a highly visible manner. 

Tuesday, 10 December 2013

Statement of the Assembly for the Defense of Democracy (AFDD)

Reproduced in full, below and with kind permission, is AFDD's statement.

On 2 December 2012, the Council of University Presidents of Thailand (CUPT) issued their fourth statement, accompanied by a proposal from the group of demonstrators, named “The People’s Democratic Reform of Council,” (PDRC), and a group of academics, which called on the Prime Minister and Council of Ministers to take unconstitutional and undemocratic action. In response, and in order to mitigate against the causing of confusion among the people which may lead the political crisis to grow in severity and violence, and to protect against the destruction of the democratic system, we – academics, intellectuals, writers, students, civil servants, and ordinary people – have joined together as the Assembly for the Defense of Democracy (AFDD).  We are compelled to dispute the aforementioned proposal on the following points.

-- 1 --
The Establishment of a “People’s Council” by virtue of Article 3 of the Constitution

1. PDRC and one group of academics claimed that the Parliament and the Government lack legitimacy and are invalid as a result of not accepting the authority of the Constitutional Court.  Therefore, in line with Article 69 of the Constitution, the people have the right to oppose the government. This claim is incorrect and is an untenable stretch of imagination. In other words, the claim that the Parliament or the Government announced that they denied the authority of the Constitutional Court is not backed up by facts. Only the Pheu Thai Party and some Members of Parliament announced that they did not accept the “ruling” of the Constitutional Court regarding the constitutional amendment on the matter of the members of the Senate.
 As for the matter of those who refer to paragraph 5, Article 216 of the Constitution, which stipulates that, “The decision of the Constitutional Court shall be deemed final and binding on the National Assembly, Council of Ministers, Courts and other state organs,” and note that therefore, when the Parliament or the Government does not accept the ruling of the Constitutional Court it then violates the Constitution, and causes the Parliament and Government to lack legitimacy and to be invalid. We, AFDD, think that rulings of the Constitutional Court that are to be held as absolute and binding for state organs must be lawfully decided and in line with Article 197 of the Constitution. These rulings must be a use of authority that is constitutionally-determined, not an unconstitutional or arbitrary use of authority.
In this case, it is apparent that the Constitutional Court accepted and ruled on the petition without the Constitutional basis to do so. Therefore, the Constitutional Court ruling in this case is unconstitutional and cannot be held to be a ruling in the meaning specified in paragraph five, Article 216 of the Constitution. The ruling is meaningless and does not have binding legal consequence on the Parliament, Council of Ministers, Court, or state organs. The claim that this is an instance of the Parliament and the Government not accepting a ruling of the Constitutional Court, and deploying this as a reason to use one’s right to protest, should be disregarded.
2. In addition, PDRC and one group of academics claim further still that once the Government and the Parliament are invalid, the sovereign power must be returned to the people in line with Article 3 of the Constitution. Therefore, the people are then able to use their sovereign power directly in order to establish a People’s Council. If we examine the present-day Constitution, the ways in which the people as the holders of sovereign power can express it directly is by voting in referendums and in elections, as well as accessing power through state organs that is accountable for the people.
Upon examination of Article 3 of the Constitution, it can be seen that the King as the head of state exercises the sovereign power of the people through the Parliament, the Council of Ministers, and the Court in line with the provisions of the Constitution. Therefore, there are no circumstances in which Article 3 can be used for the people to exercise their sovereign power to establish a People’s Council. Also, when the entire Constitution is examined, nowhere is there a measure that provides the people with the power to set up a People’s Council. The aforementioned proposal is therefore a case in which one group of people has seized upon and falsely claimed to be “the people,” in order to themselves establish a People’s Council. This proposal is without a constitutional basis and is an unconstitutional action. If they wish to establish a “People’s Council,” there is only one way it can be done. That is the amendment of the Constitution to provide for a People’s Council.
The attempt to establish a People’s Council by using means other than the amendment of the Constitution is therefore an action in order to create administrative power in the country by a method that is not stipulated in the Constitution, or, a coup d'etat.
3. In terms of the establishment of the People’s Council and its members, even though the aforementioned proposal has not been finalized, the central point is that the Council will not come from elections but from the appointment of individuals from different fields. The proposal for a People’s Council is therefore not in line with democratic principles.
On the contrary, upon the examination of the facts of contemporary history and politics, we discover that a people’s council comprised of people from different professions is an idea inherited from fascist corporatism, as it appeared in Italy during the period of the fascist dictatorship of Benito Mussolini. He amended the electoral law in 1928 for the Assembly to be comprised of people from the names proposed by different fields. This Assembly was an important mechanism that ultimately led Italy into a totalitarian dictatorship.

-- 2 --
The Proposal for an “Intermediary” Prime Minister after the Dissolution of Parliament by virtue of Article 7 of the Constitution or by virtue of a Peculiar Interpretation of the Constitution

1. Article 7 of the Constitution provides that, “Whenever no provision of the Constitution is applicable to any case, it shall be decided in accordance with the Constitutional practice in the democratic regime of government with the King as Head of the State.”  A legal provision of this type appeared for the first time in the Administrative Charter of the Kingdom of Thailand of 1959. The Charter was a temporary constitution and was comprised of only 20 articles. A provision of this type was therefore used in order to solve problems that were not addressed by any existing provisions in the Charter.
As for the present-day Constitution, Article 7 is a legal provision that constitutional organizations are able to use in order to safeguard the written Constitution. In other words, if a Constitutional problem arises, and it is not addressed in the written Constitution, the involved organizations are able to use the conventions of democratic rule with the King as the head of state, which in law refers to Constitutional customary laws, to rule on problems that arise.
 The Constitution customary laws are established through actions being carried out over and over again until state organizations and people see that these practices have Constitutional force. The Constitution customary laws that are adopted in line with Article 7 must not be inconsistent with democratic rule with the King as the head of state.
2. Even though Article 7 of the Constitution has the meaning that has been outlined in (1) above, there has been an attempt to have the King appoint a Prime Minister by virtue of the aforementioned article. This attempt has consisted of the proposal to dissolve Parliament in order to terminate the terms of the Members of Parliament and the Council of Ministers. Those who wish to replace the regulatory system with a vacuum have then proposed that the caretaker Council of Ministers should cease to perform its duties. But when there is no longer a Parliament, it means that it not possible to appoint a Prime Minister from among the Members of Parliament. These individuals then think that the King naturally has the power to appoint a Prime Minister by virtue of Article 7 of the Constitution.  Some individuals have proposed that the Senate meet and select an appropriate individual to propose to the King that he appoint to fulfil the duties of the Prime Minister and that the President of the Senate countersign the royal decree.
3. We think that the above proposal is unconstitutional and contravenes many principles of democratic rule as Article 108 of the Constitution stipulates that the dissolution of Parliament must be done via royal decree and that the election day must within no less than 45 days and no more than 60 days from the date of dissolution. Therefore, either dissolution of Parliament without stipulating a date for election or the dissolution of Parliament for a purpose other than having a general election cannot be done. This is an unconstitutional action and will result in the destruction of the Constitution.
4. In addition, Article 181 of the Constitution stipulates that after the dissolution of Parliament, the members of the Council of Ministers who have been relieved of their positions due to the dissolution must continue to carry out their duties until a new Council of Ministers assumes office following the elections. The call for the caretaker Council of Ministers to stop carrying out its duties after the dissolution of Parliament is thus a call for the Constitutional organs, in this case, the caretaker Council of Ministers, to violate their Constitutionally-prescribed duties. This is equivalent to calling on other individuals to act illegally and in contravention to the Constitution.
            5. The proposal for the King to appoint the Prime Minister by virtue of Article 7 is a proposal that calls on the King to carry out action for which there is no royal prerogative.  This is because Article 7 provides for the Constitutional organizations to rule in line with Constitutional conventions on a case-by-case basis on matters not included in the written Constitution. This is not a measure that provides the King with the power to appoint a Prime Minister during the period between the announcement of the royal decree to dissolve the Parliament and the process of holding elections for Parliament.
            6. The proposal for the caretaker Prime Minister to be relieved from acting in the position of Prime Minister, whether by forcing the Prime Minister to cease carrying out her duties or by other means, all have the aim of creating a “vacuum” in the political system in order for the country to become deadlocked.
            There are some academics who have proposed that when the Prime Minister is relieved from acting in her position, and the entire Council of Ministers has been removed, the Senate should select an individual, who does not need to be a member of parliament, to perform the duties instead of the Prime Minister. This proposal has no legal basis for support, because the Constitution does not give this power to the Senate. Also, the position of a person who does the duties of the Prime Minister instead of the Prime Minister is not stipulated in the Constitution. In the case in which an incident arises in which the Prime Minister may be unable to carry out the duties of office, no matter what the reason, a member of the Council of Ministers must assume the position of acting Prime Minister. In the case of an incident arises in which the entire Council of Ministers is unable to function as acting Prime Minister, no matter what the reason, the Permanent Secretary will assume the acting position in order to wait to hold it for the Council of Ministers that came from the Parliament elected by the people to enter to assume the position. The Constitution does not provide an opening to select an individual who is not a member of parliament, or who is called an “intermediary” or an “outsider” to carry out the function of the caretaker Prime Minister.
            7. The Constitution stipulates that a general election for Members of Parliament must be carried out between 45 and 60 days after the dissolution of Parliament. In the period in which there is a not a new Parliament or Council of Ministers yet, the caretaker Council of Ministers carries out only the duties stipulated under the conditions in Article 181 (1) – (4) of the Constitution. The duration of the caretaker position is short, along with the conditions to act only as needed, thus we do not see any need for there to be an “intermediary” or “outsider” to perform the duties of a caretaker Prime Minister or caretaker Council of Ministers.

            The Prime Minister’s decision to dissolve Parliament is a method of solving the problem of political conflict by returning the power to the people. This is a method that is in line with democratic rule and with the Constitution of the Kingdom of Thailand. When the Parliament has been dissolved, there must be a general election of Members of Parliament, in order for there to then in turn be a Parliament and a Council of Ministers. During the interim period, the Council of Ministers must continue to carry out caretaking duties.
            The AFDD thinks that the obstruction of holding elections, or the forcing a slowdown of parliamentary elections, or the creation of a “vacuum” in the political system, no matter the means, opens opportunities for political transformations that are neither constitutional nor democratic. All of the aforementioned actions are entirely devoid of the aim of the Constitution. They destroy the process of building political will through peaceful means in a democracy and they will lead the country to violent crisis.
            Therefore, the AFDD calls on all sides to enter the electoral process and to express their political will through the mechanism of elections. After the general election has been held, the AFDD calls on the elected government to proceed to reform politics, governance, and the constitutional regime to be democratic and in line with the rule of law.


With an unrelenting will towards democracy
Assembly for the Defense of Democracy (AFDD)
10 December 2013

Signed:

1.    Charnvit Kasetsiri.   Former President of Thammasat University
2.    Nidhi Eoseewong.    Independent scholar
3.    Kasian Tejapira.        Thammasat University
4.    Worachet Pakeerut.   Thammasat University
5.    Pasuk Pongpaichit.    Independent scholar
6.    Sriprapha Phetcharasmesree.    Mahidol University
7.    Puangthong Pawakapan.           Chulalongkorn University
8.    Kritaya Archavanichkul.           Mahidol University
9.    Yukti Mukdawijitra.             Thammasat University
10. Pitch Pongsawat.                  Chulalongkorn University
11. Pornsan Liengbunlertchai.   Chulalongkorn University
12. Piyabutr Saengkanokkul.    Thammasat University
13. Jantajira Iammayura            Thammasat University
14. Sawatree Suksri.                  Thammasat University
15. Poonthep Sirinupong.          Thammasat University
16. Teera Suteewarangkul         Thammasat University
17. Viengrat Nethipo                 Chulalongkorn University
18. Niti Pawakapan                    Chulalongkorn University
19. Prajak Kongkirati                 Thammasat University
20. Boonsong Chaisingklanond. Silapakorn University


And a growing list of over 100 additional academics, intellectuals, writers, civil servants, and ordinary people (as of 9 December 2013). 

Friday, 6 December 2013

VIDEO 2: Thai Democrat Party fascist thugs run amok - AGAIN

I blogged earlier regarding a beating that Democrat Party fascist thugs meted out to a Red Shirt activist.

Well it appears that Abhisit's vicious blackshirt hooligans are running amok as another video has surfaced of his stormtroopers delivering a brutal beating to another person. This time someone they believe was involved in an attack on their protest.

It's fair to say that the victim may not have survived the attack and, at times, he appears to be hit with machetes, sticks, iron and wooden bars by multiple people for several minutes.

There is now no other way to describe Abhisit and Suthep's "protesters" except as violent criminals.

Yet Suthep and Abhisit's taste for blood is renowned in Thailand and it is very unlikely this two psychopaths will be happy until the have a big pile of corpses to languish upon.

I must warn viewers that this video is shocking and graphic 
(it has quite a long intro so forward to 2min 40secs - I have seen some photos of the victim after the attack but they are too graphic to publish here). I post it here to archive Abhisit and Suthep's responsibility for another round of violence.


video



VIDEO: This is the "Democrat" Party's future for Thailand - savage beatings for pro-democracy activists

On morning of 6th December near the site of the fascistic Thai "Democrat" Party's ongoing rally a group of Black and Yellow shirt thugs attacked and savagely beat a pro-democracy activist.

The attack - which appears to be nothing less than attempted murder - shows a group of what Thai fascist leader Abhisit Vejjajiva termed "peaceful protesters" (please see my guide to Abhisit-esque Doublespeak here) hunting down and attacking a passer-by that they assumed to be a pro-democracy Red Shirt activist.

The video below shows the man beaten about the head with sticks, and stamped and kicked. 

Once again this event has been almost completely ignored, not only by the foreign media in Bangkok but also by the equally insipid English-language news bloggers such as Bangkok Pundit etc.

The video below is graphic and quite terrifying - viewer discretion is advised.

A link to the video can also be found here.

video

Thursday, 5 December 2013

Gone Missing – the failures of Western media reporting of the 2013 Thai Crisis

As some of my readers know I’ve long been critical of the Western media’s reporting of the ongoing Thai political crisis. Yesterday I blogged a piece outlining some of the Doublespeak terms usually produced by Abhisit Vejjajiva and the other elements of the “Democrat” Party-led anti-democracy movement. It’s my view that the Western media use some of these terms without investigation, analysis or critique thereby presenting and distributing a codified form of language that gravitates towards a Democrat Party-led narrative on some of the key issues affecting Thailand’s political crisis.

This post is an attempt to further unpack some of the other assumed “neutral” positions of the Western media and also some of the events and news items editorialised out by the journalists and reporters working for the Western media in Bangkok.

As this is just a first draft and I’m quite busy I’ll be adding in weblinks later on that relate to each matter listed here. I should also add that if people have sources that contradict my comments please let me know.



This is about Thaksin versus the Bangkok elites.

Such an oversimplified analysis that fails to take into account decades of political struggle, a pro-democracy movement stretching back to the 1930s and its subsequent brutal suppression supported, almost without equivocation, by the USA and other foreign governments. Thaksin’s rise is a very recent phenomena yet the ever-present are the Bangkok elites/networks and their allies in the Thai Army. This simplistic analysis also avoids recognising and evaluating the agency of ordinary Thai people.

This is just about anti-government protesters versus pro-government supporters.

I find this analysis not only simplistic but an insidious use of language that is encoded with a subtext of “resistance” to authority that is not really present in this instance. The better description would be, in my view, anti-democracy agitators or rioters versus pro-democracy activists. Whilst the Red Shirts – the group clumsily termed “pro-government” by the Western media – are broadly supportive of the democratically elected Pheu Thai government and Thaksin Shinawatra that support is very clearly conditional. For example the amnesty bill that supposedly sparked the recent Democrat Party-led riots was widely attacked and derided by the Red Shirts including many of their leading figures.


As far as I’m aware not one single Western media source has given this any attention. It’s hard to fathom out why this isn’t newsworthy as it has been widely covered in the Thai language media and confirmed by the school itself. Very poor.

The disappearance of Thai fascist leader Suthep Thagsuban’s past.

Some reports, most notably by the Guardian’s Kate Hodal, appeared to conveniently forget that Suthep has been implicated in several corruption scandals, was disbarred from being an MP and has been charged with the murder of unarmed pro-democracy Red Shirt protesters in 2010. I found it simply astonishing that Hodal wasn’t able to avail herself of the most rudimentary facts regarding Suthep’s past and it appeared that the omission of these prominent facts was an effort to mislead the Guardian’s readership.

Almost complete failure to report very violent night-timeattack on 2nd December by Democrat Party supporters and Thai Blackshirts on Government House.

Our monitoring on that evening seemed to suggest there was not ONE Western journalist during this night-time attack which was possibly the most violent riot instigated by the Democrat Party Blackshirts since the protest began. [After receiving an email from Swedish journalist, Michael Topffer, it transpires he was there during these riots but he also appears to confirm that no other major international media outlet had a presence there - see Addendum below.] Also our monitoring revealed that there was a strong likelihood that Democrat Party activists were on the ground organising the riots. A complete failure by the Western media on this occasion.

That of the 5 reported deaths so far 4 are at the hands of the Democrat’s violent and fascistic Blackshirts and include 3 pro-democracy activists and one completely innocent 17year old burned to death in a bus.

The lack of reporting of this seems wilful and deliberately misleading. It’s simply astonishing the Western media have failed to report this adequately.

In the run up to the riots over the weekend of the 30th November/1st December  there were a number of well-documented and very violent attacks on single pro-democracy Red Shirt activists by gangs of Democrat Party Blackshirts.

We monitored the reports being put out by the Western media up to the weekend of the 30th November/1st December and could find no reference to ANY of the attacks by gangs of Democrat Party Blackshirts on pro-democracy activists despite there being more than enough evidence to warrant an investigation by journalists and reporters. These attacks included stabbings, beatings and very sinister cases of vigilantism where Democrat Party fanatics intimidated and threatened ordinary Red Shirts making them strip their clothing off and swear allegiance to certain persons. This is all missing from Western media reports.

The “students” attacking the pro-democracy activists were clearly infiltrated and mobilised by Democrat Party Blackshirt thugs with many of the “students” openly aligning themselves with the Blackshirts.
There was an attempt to portray the “students” as some de-politicised force inadvertently caught up in the protest. That was and is a complete fabrication. 



Addendum 

I received this email from Michael Topffer, a Bangkok-based Swedish reporter. I thought it was important to add his comments. I'll happily add any other response from any other Western journalist is they email me at asiaprovocateur@gmail.com


Hi, I saw your blogpost about failures of Western Media on Thai crisis
If you include Sweden in your view of the Western media I can say this:
Regarding the night of Dec 2nd, I was there, covering this for my paper Expressen. As far as I know, I was the only Western reporter there. BBC was there until around 10pm, I was there until 1am. It was exteremly violent. I gave a live report for our web-tv at 00:30 and had an article about the attack in the next day's paper.
Regarding Suthep's dubious past, I have reported it on many occasions, both for Expressen and for Swedish Public Radio, to which I contribute.
Regarding the whistleblowers at Yingluck's son, there were many conflicting reports as to what had happened, and by the time it was confiremd it was - in my view - already old. Besides, this was just a very small detail. I probably wouldn't have reported it anyway. After all, they were just blowing whistles.
I can't recall ever simplifying the crisis down to claiming that this is about Thaksin vs Elite.
Cheers,
Michael TopfferCorrespondent, ExpressenBangkok

Wednesday, 4 December 2013

A mini-guide to Thai political and media Doublespeak

I have decided to put together a small guide to the Doublespeak used by Thai fascist supporters, Abhisit Vejjajiva and other Democrat Party stooges and the usual weak reporting produced by the Western media in Thailand.

I'm sure some people will disagree with my interpretations so please leave your own in the comments box.




Reform - find a new way to undermine democracy 

1 Million people - 50,000 people

Vast majority - small very violent minority


Tyranny – democratically-elected government


Thaksin-regime – a democratically-elected government led by or allied with the most popular Prime Minister in Thailand’s history.

Illegitimate – not backed by the Bangkok elites

Legitimate – backed by the Bangkok elites

Populist – health care, nascent welfare state, wealth re-distribution

Vote-buying – see Populist

Peaceful – violent

People’s Council – unelected body appointed by tiny unrepresentative group of unelected elite persons.

Anti-government protesters – anti-democracy rioters

Pro-government supporters – pro-democracy activists

Democrat Party  – an ultra-nationalistic and violent Thai fascist party absolutely opposed to democracy led by an "educated" British citizen, Abhisit Vejjajiva.

Educated - rich and stupid

Uneducated - poor and clever


Good people – unelected representatives of tiny elite groups


Bad people – elected representatives of the Thai people as mandated in a free and democratic election

"We are winning" - we are losing


Proportionate force - excessive violence

Friday, 29 November 2013

UPDATE: It's confirmed - a new low was reached. Thai Democrat Party blackshirt thugs DID target an 11year old child

UPDATE: This story is now confirmed beyond all doubt. The headteacher of the school Yingluck's 11year old son attends has sent out an email to concerned parents ADMITTING that a pupil has been the target of protests by Democrat Party supporters at the school. Khao Sod have screen grabs of the email here - look down the right-hand side of the page. It is also inexcusable that NO foreign media have covered this story - it seems too many of them are interested in posing for the cameras and putting out stories of their own "heroism" than accurately recording the context of Thailand's political crisis

UPDATE: Thai Democrat Party deputy spokesperson, Mallika Boon, has expressed support on twitter for the harassment campaign directed at PM Yingluck's 11year old son. She states that it is a "good thing" because he can then go home and "ask his mother" why this is happening to him. It's hard to know how to respond to the Democrat Party anymore. They've clearly lost their minds.

We can also ask if the Democrats officially sanctioned Mallika's support for the harassment - unless Mallika is removed from her position as deputy spokesperson and Abhisit apologises for her comments we can assume harassing an 11yr old child is something directly supported by the Democrat Party leadership.


One of the best-selling and most respected Thai national daily newspapers, Khao Sod, are reporting a simply horrific story from Bangkok.

Not content with beating and force-stripping people on the street, not content with attacking foreign journalists, not content with stabbing people and not content with cutting power off to Bangkok's hospitals the fascistic blackshirt thugs of the "Democrat" Party have found a new horror to import to the Thai people.

They've started to threaten and harass an 11year old child.



Khao Sod are reporting - and I only have a partial translation available at the moment - that the out of hours tuition school where PM Yingluck's 11year old son attends has received a bomb threat. 

Whilst over at Yingluck's son's day school Khao Sod are also reporting that a black truck with Surat Thani number plates - Surat Thani is Democrat Party stronghold - parked up outside the school and its occupants, all dressed in the usual blackshirt clothing of the Democrat Party mob, began to talk to people at the school 

In addition to this Democrat Party-supporting parents of other children are harassing and hurling abuse at PM Yingluck's son as he and his escort arrive at his day school.

Is this what the Democrat Party means by ending the "Thaksin Regime"? Attacking and threatening children?

It's a vile new low even by their wretched standards.

Thursday, 28 November 2013

BREAKING: Thai police come under attack from Thai "Democrat" Party supporters as they attempt hospital reconnection supply.

As the story surrounding the Thai Democrat Party's attempts to use their increasingly violent street thugs to take control of Bangkok the cutting of the Bangkok Police Hospital's electricity supply is further evidence of the Democrat's extremism.

Yet, cutting off the supply once wasn't enough.

The picture below is reported to be of police officers coming under attack from the Democrat Party mob as an attempt was made to reconnect the supply.


UPDATE Hospital under seige by Thai "Democrat" Party will evacuate patients

UPDATE: Thai news source TNN is quoting a senior police administrator that the Police Hospital will be "evacuated".

UPDATE 2: It now seems that not the entire hospital had its supply cut off but that several buildings within the compound did. Medical equipment using large amounts of electricity were not working properly and there has been a planned evacuation of patients from the ICU department. 
In quite a shocking development news is coming in from multiple Thai language media sources that the "Democrat" Party protest mob have cut the electricity and water to the large Police Hospital (it is, in fact, a public hospital) in downtown Bangkok.


The reports, which are also coming from usually pro-Democrat Party newspapers - here and here an English language source is here - state the blackshirted, anti-democratic protesters were attempting to shut off electricity/water to the main Police HQ in central Bangkok. They were warned that if they did so they would also shut down the electricity and water to the hospital which shares the same compound. 

Regardless they cut the supplies anyway.

According to a source specialising in hospital equipment they are likely to have back-up batteries and generators that would last for few hours.

This source, who sells medical equipment to Thai hospitals told me that 


Individual pieces of equipment such as mobile x-rays and the like have battery back up for a couple of hours depending on the age, the rest pretty much will be depending on generators that will have to be refueled and in this situation that does not seem possible, my guess is if the generators are full and they shut down as much as they can they might last until the morning.

What then? Deaths?

These protesters are explicitly fascist and to call them any other than that is just collusion.

Wednesday, 27 November 2013

PHOTO: Whilst the BBC crack jokes Thai Democrat Party-linked thugs stab pro-democracy activists.

Yesterday I blogged video of "Democrat" Party-linked street thugs stripping and beating pro-democracy Red Shirts in a back street just north of Bangkok city centre in an area known as Lad Prao.

Today evidence has emerged that these vicious fascistic hooligans also stabbed and attempted to murder a Red Shirt in the same area.



In the meantime BBC reporter, Jonathan Head thinks this is all a big laugh and in-between making excuses for being hugged by people he doesn't consider "raving fascists" - you only get hugged by the people that support the raving fascists, huh, Johnny? - he has also taken to making distasteful comments about how amusing it would be to see more government ministries stormed by the extreme rightwing protesters. 

VIDEO As Western media collude with fascism Thai Democrat Party street thugs attack Red Shirts

The political crisis in Thailand is reaching fever pitch as a Democrat Party-led street protest threatens to boil over into violence.

Last night on the fringes of central Bangkok, just off the main Lad Prao Road and near a pro-democracy Red Shirt gathering, street thugs linked to the Democrat Party violently attacked two men they assumed to be Red Shirts - see the first video below. 

In the second video below it also appears that they made their victims strip first before they beat them.

(Links to the videos can also be found here and here if they don't play below)

This comes only a couple of days after a Democrat Party MP exhorted a mob to attack a German freelance journalist who they deemed disloyal to their cause. 

There's no doubt - if there ever was in the first place - that the Democrat Party's fascistic anti-democratic politics are now being explicitly proclaimed.

Unfortunately most of the English language media in Bangkok - including even the renowned anonymous blogger Bangkok Pundit - appear to be unable to name this fascism and sometimes even seem to be colluding with Democrat Party and fascistic elements (the US journalist in this tweet is thanking a well-known extreme rightwing Democrat Party official who had previously smeared a dead political prisoner). Yet the most bizarre moment came when BBC Bangkok correspondent, Jonathan Head, admitted to "hugging" some of the blackshirted, anti-democrat and fascist activists.

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