Monday, April 13, 2009

Fast and furious in Bangkok, Part Two

Street battles broke out in certain parts of Bangkok between the red-shirted supporters of Takhsin Shinawatra and the police. The riot police have so far exercised restraint, firing only warning shots, but until this morning, over 70 people have been reportedly injured.

No one is sure how long this anti-Abhisit Vejjajiva protest will last although his officials have predicted it would end in the next few days. Takhsin has called for a people's revolution to oust Abhisit, saying he was the legitimate PM.

I spoke to my Bangkok based colleague, Philip Golingai, a short while ago and he said the perception among the people is that the security forces do not want to clamp down too hard on the protestors, preferring to avoid a bloodshed. He saw two buses being overturned by the protestors but the policemen merely stood and watched.

Although an emergency has been declared, the army has preferred to stay away from the streets, letting the police to do the work. Some have said that the days of Abhisit are numbered. Some have even said he has become a lame duck PM with his orders now ignored by the army.
Even if the manages to ride through the anarchy, the political damages from the short-lived Asean summit would dealt a serious blow to him. The cancellation is unprecedented. It has a major let down and reports of leaders having to leave Pattaya by helicopter has become an international diplomatic fiasco.


Anonymous said...

The best thing for Thailand is to become a republic. This factor that is causing the political unrest is the "Establishment" - the elites that are from the royal families, court officials and rich families linked to them. They control the wealth of Thailand and own most of the large Thai corporates. They also control the military.

The "Establishment" control the Yellow Shirts.

Thaksin is the first prime minister that is not from the 'Establishment". The Red Shirt is essentially anti Establishment.

The problem in Thailand is essentially a class war, fought Thai style.

Anonymous said...

DS WCW, I think most of your readers of this blog are not that keen on non-Malaysia issues, as I suppose they can just catch up on these kind of news in other news sites or newspapers. This is reflected in the very few comments on the non-Malaysia topics. Unless of course you have some juicy details not available in the news sites. I thin there could be a lot of interest in thngs that affect Malaysians more directly. Maybe more stuff on how our tax payers' money have been abused by Pampena, for example. Pampena scandals have been ignored by the MSM, but reported in alternative media like the blogs. I know that in your current role in STAR you would be very busy just doing your job there, and may not always have time to update your blog. But when you are busy, it is better to just leave your blog un-updated, and that is OK. It is not good to just repeat what your STAR papers print, just for the sake of updating your blog. Your blog's reputation also need to maintained with some strategy or predetermined objective. So if you are too busy with meetings or travelling, just take leave from your blog for a few days, and we will understand. (But don't say how long you will disappear, because you don't want burglars to visit your home while you are gone!)

Samuel Goh Kim Eng said...


Learn good lessons well from our neighbours
Only allow goodwill and goodness in people harbour
Otherwise there may be plenty of social trouble
Which can easily turn into ugly forms of rabble

(C) Samuel Goh Kim Eng - 140409
Tue. 14th Apr. 2009.