A bad omen, yes. But Naif Ton Rasa deserves what he got in Pattaya, since Malaysians were not game enough to show him what they thought of the 6th prime minister.
The message is clear. To be furstrated on his first international tour, by Thailand’s democatic forces, shows that perhaps, Naif Ton Rasa, has taken his seat in an inappropriate manner.
Also, one can imagine, what happens to people who carry heavy baggages when climbing to the top of a hill. A heavy fall, that is!
And if you are trying to make sense of the red heat wave in Bangkok, here’s a little analysis by Professor Ji Ungkaporn, who is living in exile in London, due to a pending lese majeste charge:
When watching and commenting on the recent events in Thailand, observers need to hold on to some basic principles. These are:
1. No government anywhere in the world has the right to use troops to gun down protestors in the streets, especially when they are not carrying fire arms. The Abhisit government’s use of the army to kill people in cold blood is an outrage. It is not “restraint” nor “the application of the Rule of Law”. It puts the Thai government on the same level as the Burmese junta and their aims are the same too…. to hang on to illegitimate power and protect the interests of the privileged.
2. If observers want to pontificate about the “Rule of Law”, then they must first denounce the illegal military coup of 2006, the lack of partiality and accountability among the judiciary in dissolving TRT and PPP, the illegal seizure of Government House and the airports by the PAD, the use of firearms and bombs by the PAD, the illegal bribes and threats to manoeuvre the Democrats into power, the illegal government-backed Blue Shirt gangs, who carried fire arms and the illegal and extra-Constitutional role of the Palace and the King’s advisors in frustrating the functioning of democracy. None of the above cases have been punished.
3. There is a clear line between Democracy and Dictatorship. “Thai-style democracy” is an elite myth. The Yellows have repeatedly failed to respect the democratic wishes of the majority of the population. They want more appointed public positions and less power to the electorate. They want a “New Order”. They want censorship. They back the draconian lese majeste law which stifles the basic right to freedom of speech. The Reds may not be angels, but they want a genuine democratic process without interference from the military, the King’s advisors or the Palace. They would prefer to use the more democratic Constitution of 1997, rather than the present one drafted by the military.
4. The anger of the Red Shirts over the past few days did not come out of nowhere. Since 2006 the majority of Thais have continually been abused politically by the elite Yellow Shirts, the mainstream media and middle-class academics. When pictures of Red Shirts smashing the PM’s car are shown, it is dishonest and bad journalism not to explain this.
5. The majority of Red Shirts support Taksin, not because they like to “hero worship”, but because his government brought in a Universal Health Care System and other pro-poor measures. The Democrats and the Yellows opposed these policies all along and knew that they couldn’t win popular elections as a result. This is why they wanted a coup.
6. Most of the Thai elite are corrupt, especially army generals and politicians. Why single out just Taksin? We need to punish them all or none at all.
7. The entire Thai elite support the use of state violence, whether it be in the South, in the War on Drugs or against unarmed protestors. Taksin has to take responsibility for gross human rights abuses while he was Prime Minister. So does the rest of the elite, including Abhisit and the Generals. There is a long history of Thai State Crimes and we need to challenge this. We can start with denouncing the cold-blooded murder by troops on the streets of Bangkok this April.
13th April 2009