The Longest Night… the longest nothing ?

6h00 AM
All Quiet on the Western Front… The police didn’t move. Status quo.

What game the government is playing ?

Suvarnabhumi Airport is closed since tuesday 6 PM ! Somchai, the alleged Prime Minister declared the state emergency at the 2 airports thursday evening. So ? What is he waiting for ? Better to launch the police in broad daylight, in order to get the prime time on TVs ? Or does he want to let the situation rot, to create even more chaos, so he can blame the PAD ?

Or does Somchai have some problems ? The police doesn’t want to follow the orders ? Or maybe the Navy and the Air Force are dragging feet ?

Is the “state of emergency” a joke like last september, when Samak ridiculed himself ? (read here) ?

The line between a stratego zen master and a total clown without any credibility starts to be very, very thin here…

Meanwhile, Thailand is loosing.

As for myself, I was obviously wrong : the gvt didn’t move and nothing happened. It’s almost 1 AM in Europe. Time to go to sleep. Wake me up if there is a coup. Ciao. 😉

1h50 AM

The daily (nightly) attacks occur.

ASTV office on Tha Phra-athit Road was attacked at around 1.50am. The broadcast of ASTV programme stopped for almost 10 minutes before resuming to normal broadcast.

There was a sound of gunfire and talks of ASTV staff when the screen was turning blank. There was no injury. At about the same time, a gunfire was hot at anti-government protesters at the Don Muang Airport. It is reported that the direction might be from the Don Muang toll way.

The previous nights, PAD suffered a few grenades attacks.


8 PM. I try to find something pertinent to write. But I can’t. 😉 Do you want a chart ? About credit cards ? Total credit issued at commercial banks ? Or balance of payments maybe ?

I’m not sure… 😉

So I was thinking about “The Longest Day”. The movie. This title suits well the situation I think. “The Longest Night”.

Something will happen tonight. It has to. It’s going to be a long night.

There is a sense of greek tragedy. A sense of inevitability.

All the actors are on the set. The director is late. We are not really sure if he’s really in control. But it doesn’t matter. The tragedy has its owns energy now. It lives by itself.

-the gvt can’t back off (it has to take back the airports)
-the PAD can’t back off (it has an historic opportunity to push the gvt to commit the irreparable)

A third actor, the army, is not very clear. Like the fog of war, we don’t really know its role.

Let’s see how the tragedy is going to unfold.

Meanwhile, let’s have a thought for the people stranded in Bangkok.

Acting president of Airports of Thailand or AOT Serirat Prasutanond announced Suvarnabhumi airport would be closed until 6 pm on Saturday, barring all departing and arriving flights.

Passengers were warned not to travel to the airport until further notice.

Meanwhile, director of Don Mueang airport Flying Officer Anirut Thanomkulbutra said Don Mueang airport was also closed to all flight operations from 6 pm on Thursday til 6 pm Friday. (TNA)

It’s rather strange to set a deadline, so precise. I mean we don’t know if the airport is going to be “liberated” before saturday. Or we might understand that even if the protesters leave now… some time would be necessary to start again normal operations. In any case : people will have to wait or to find other routes (via Phuket for instance).

You feel bored ? Waiting for the assault ? Have a look at this article from the Economist, “Desperate days“. As usual, clear and insightful.

The Thai crisis is complex and the motives of its actors are not always clear. But it has increasingly looked like a fight to the death by the country’s traditional, royalist elite against a threat to its dominance from an authoritarian but highly popular leader from outside that Bangkok-based clique. […]

Three years on, it is hard to foresee a happy ending to Thailand’s political strife, just a variety of sad ones.

12 Responses to “The Longest Night… the longest nothing ?”

  1. 1 EM 27 November 2008 at 2:49 pm

    Should be an interesting night indeed. It’s astonishing that there are no reports on tv from reporters on location.

  2. 2 ThaiCrisis 27 November 2008 at 2:51 pm

    ->EM : indeed, it’s appalling. All the journalists are having late dinner perhaps ? Or they’re hidding…

  3. 3 fall 27 November 2008 at 2:54 pm

    I want GOOD news, for a change.

    “The government has declared a declare state of emergency on the Suvarnabhumi and Don Muang airports, enlisting help from the Air Force and Navy”
    Using Air Force and Navy, are they really capable of handling protesters as a civilian and not a punching bag? Oh boy, why do I sense that things would go awry?
    It would be hilarious if Air Force and Navy got heavy hand, then Army coup citing such reason.

    There seem to be a subtle legal catch in dispersing the protesters. They are going to persecute the PAD as terrorist(legal status to be contest in court). But here’s the catch:
    – Since they are terrorist(legal status), those who funded them will be consider funding terrorist and subject to money laundering act.

  4. 4 DTRY 27 November 2008 at 8:58 pm

    The reason why it has to be the Navy and Air Force is: Anupong doesn’t care. Either he is a coward or he secretly supports the PAD. This guy was in the Queen’s Royal Guard. And the queen openly supports the PAD.

    The last time Samak declared the state of emergency, Anupong did nothing. Absolutely nothing.

    This move by Somchai is a smart one. Instead of appointing Anupong, who will continue to do nothing (except calling the government to quit), he appointed two police officers as commanders for rataking both airports. The Navy and Air Force, by the law, must support the police in their operations.

    If the army stage another coup, Somchai can immediately form an exile government in Chiang Mai, since all of the government is already there. He can then rally the red shirts down to Bangkok to oppose the coup.

    Civil war, here we go!

  5. 5 tsr 27 November 2008 at 11:26 pm

    my office is near the airport so I am anxious to hear some news to decide whether to go or stay at my hotel, but nothing. but since it took 2 days to decide to do anything, maybe it will be 2 more days before or they are waiting for saturday?

  6. 6 ThaiCrisis 27 November 2008 at 11:31 pm

    It’s impossible to know… And maybe there is nothing to know, no master plan. Maybe the confusion is total. Nobody is in charge.

    Anyway, I can only advise you to follow all the sources on line, plus the thai TV during day light.

    And of course the PAD’s TV :

    (they should react quickly if and when the police arrives).

  7. 7 chinesethai 28 November 2008 at 2:16 am


    You should have gone to bed early last night and woke up fresh like me. 😛 Any decision whether to begin the bloody crackdown is up to Thaksin in Dubai. Somchai is meaningless now.

    Anupong and Patcharawat did not act last night not because they want to protect PAD but because they want to be survivors. That is why Somchai are using somebody else, who I had not even heard of. But again, I believe Somchai is shaken too being in his current position – to die for Thaksin. Thaksin may be shaken too because he thought his plan should have gone smoothly but Pol Gen Patcharawat decided to be one of the survivors.

    TC, I believe the looming Succession would rather be the beginning of the most horrible bloodbath in Thailand’s history, not the end. We are still in the Prelude.

  8. 8 chinesethai 28 November 2008 at 3:26 am


    Since you are clearly on the Thaksin and republican side, I have a question for you. I am still wondering why Thaksin doesn’t allow Somchai to dissolve the parliament since winning another election, which is Thaksin’s sure bet, should rather strengthen their position and weaken PAD’s stance. Why doesn’t Thaksin choose this way?

  9. 9 chinesethai 28 November 2008 at 3:32 am


    Or alternatively, why didn’t Thaksin act decisively and crack down the PAD protesters? If you do have the genuine, overwhelming support from your people, you must act decisively to prove that your mandate is still valid, rather than retreating to Chiangmai.

    In 1989, the CCP acted swiftly and decisively at Tian An Men to save their mandate. It was the right move that did not even save the CCP but even strengthen their power to rule.

  10. 10 absolutelybangkok 28 November 2008 at 5:03 am

    What do you need an international airport for anyway.

  11. 11 ThaiCrisis 28 November 2008 at 5:49 am

    -that’s the quote of the day. 😉

  12. 12 Bedwyr 28 November 2008 at 6:46 am

    “TC, I believe the looming Succession would rather be the beginning of the most horrible bloodbath in Thailand’s history, not the end. We are still in the Prelude”

    Yep. I think we are seeing pretty much the same picture here.


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Thailand Crisis

Coup, Economic slowdown, Terror In the South... The situation is worsening in Thailand. Bumpy road like often before.

But this time, it's different.

The key to understand the present turmoil is the inevitable... succession of King Bhumibol.

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