Saturday 18 May 2013

Coup talk update as Thai fascists launch the “Thai Spring” to overthrow democracy

In the days since Thai PM Yingluck made her impressive commitment to democracy in her recent speech at the Ministerial Conference of the Community of Democracies in Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia the reaction of the Thai extreme-rightwing and neo-fascists has reached new heights of hysterical absurdity. 

Led by prominent Thai fascist, Vasit Dejkunjorn - a man noted for his violent opposition to democracy – a new group has emerged calling themselves “Thai Spring”. Thai Spring's "position" is that the massively popular PM Yingluck, who won a huge landslide general election victory in 2011 is "not a responsible representative of the Thai people at all". It’s not certain what the group will amount to but they have launched an online petition that, so far, has attracted support from 0.028% of the Thai population. If they can’t even get people to turn out online it’s hard to view them as any other than a farcical joke. 

That’s not to say Vasit’s group don’t represent dangerous anti-democratic undercurrents in Thailand. Of that we can be certain. 

A well-placed government source recently told this blog that serious elements in the Thai Army have made substantial coup-preparations. However, these preparations have stalled on two counts. The first is a failure to identify credible political leadership within the military who could lead a post-coup junta government. The second is that the army are also concerned that they will meet serious resistance from the Thai population – something that could easily escalate very quickly. 

The generals are also concerned by the likely reaction of the international community. Abhisit, who is clearly chomping at the bit to be “returned” to his previous undemocratically assumed position of Thai PM, is now a busted flush internationally with most media commentators seeing through the Butcher of Bangkok’s carefully contrived act. The military leadership would likely maintain other concerns regarding the International Criminal Court and the fact that their counterparts in places like Argentina are now dying in prison. 

With the army likely to remain in the barracks for now my sources tell me that the government are more worried about an attempt to stage a "judicial coup" wherein the Constitutional Court dissolve the democratically elected party of government and ban its leaders. Such a strategy by the Thai elite is likely to be met with very stiff resistance from the Thai population equal to that which might be staged should the military attempt a take-over.

So, in summary, no Army coup for now but the military still view themselves as beyond normal democratic control. The rule of law isn’t staying their hand but the simple fact that this time they might actually lose. And badly. They may, however, attempt to enforce the decisions of the Constitutional Court should the democratically elected government choose to ignore them. Such a situation would be tantamount to a military coup in all but name. 

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