Tuesday 18 March 2014

Wikileaks Reveals Human Rights Watch As Supporters of Illegal Thai Army Coup

 With the strong smell of a coup or other Thai military engagement wafting through the air in Bangkok it seems apt to remind readers of Human Rights Watch's position on the last coup in Thailand in 2006.

In October 2006 Sunai Phasuk, HRW's Thai researcher, visited the US Embassy and made a number of astonishing comments to the assembled embassy staff which they recorded for posterity and which were then later released by Bradley (now Chelsea) Manning and Wikileaks.

HRW's secret support for an illegal military coup
In the cable dated October 17th 2006 Phasuk makes clear his support for an illegal military coup which overthrew not only a democratically elected government but also abrogated Thailand's 1997 Constitution (consider the most democratic in Thailand's history) by saying 

As a staunch anti-Thaksin activist [Phasuk] was initially relieved to see the Thaksin administration forced out. 

Reading further into the cable Phasuk also engages in an astonishing and shameless piece of Thai Political Doublespeak by claiming that a military coup designed to terminate democracy was actually an attempt to "restore democracy". 

In addition Phasuk also expresses his loyalty and admiration for the Thai Army - which is extraordinary give the 17 previous coups and massacres they'd been directly involved in, and never mind the massacre at Tak Bai the Thai Army had played a huge part in and which had occurred only two years earlier.

The cable states that Phasuk

emphasized that he was close to many officers and, in fact, taught many of them in his capacity as a guest lecturer at Chulachomklao Royal Military Academy and the Royal Thai Air Force Academy.  He said that he had always held the military in high regard for their sense of honor and dedication to the country.
Of course none of Phasuk's secret fawning admiration for the Thai military, his obvious politicisation, his abandonment of the rule of law, his support for those attacking democracy and his bogus claims to being "neutral" have ever been questioned by one single member of Bangkok's international media. 

Yet that same media are more than happy to continue quoting Phasuk as though he is some credible, impartial source rather than the pro-coup phoney that he appears to be.

I guess Bangkok's international media corps prefer an easy life to actually pursuing the truth. Penthouse flats, maids and swimming pools to maintain.

We can only speculate on the latter.

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