State of emergency : crackdown likely

I wrote in a title on march 14 :

Amid the Red Sea, Internal Security Law, soon state of emergency… Abhisit praises the “recovery of the economy”

Well, It’s done.

The Prime minister declares a state of emergency in Bangkok and Nonthaburi and some districts of Samut Prakan, Pathum Thani, Nakhon Pathom after red-shirt protesters invade the grounds of the parliament on Wednesday, forcing cabinet members and MPs to flee. (Bangkok Post)

No easy way out. The ridiculous “historic talks” of last week couldn’t produce anything positive. The situation is totally locked.

The military apparatus needs to stay in control, before the royal succession. They can’t allow fresh elections.

And on the other hand, the opposition is still there (and is probably growing) and still accuses Abhisit to have stolen power thanks to a parliamentary coup in december 2008 (I remind you that a bunch of MP, friends of Thaksin, changed allegiance and voted for Abhisit… Abhisit and the Democrat Party lost every elections).

Since the riots last april, the Red Shirts have improved their tactics, with very large rallies, peaceful, blocking not an airport (that was the PAD in november 2008) but a few important areas in Bangkok.

Anyway. The crackdown is now likely. The government wants to shut down a TV station used by the opposition. And the Red Shirts leaders could face arrest.

I remind you that Abhisit declared the state emergency in april 2009, leading to this

Twelve months after : the same actors. The same causes. And probably : the same effects.

More than ever, the situation in Thailand is totally blocked.

22 Responses to “State of emergency : crackdown likely”

  1. 1 antipadshist 7 April 2010 at 7:52 pm

    I remind you that a bunch of MP, friends of Thaksin, changed allegiance and voted for Abhisit… Abhisit and the Democrat Party lost every elections

    actually more precise to say would be not just changed allegiance, but : “were “persuaded” by army for price 40mln each”

    because no any politician in Thailand just so simply “changes allegiance” ! 🙂

  2. 2 ThaiCrisis 7 April 2010 at 7:56 pm

    Thanks for the details.

    Indeed. I didn’t want to write : “bought”.

  3. 3 Insanity 7 April 2010 at 9:12 pm

    And on top of the state of emergency:

    Rice production in Thailand and Vietnam, the two largest exporters, will be hurt by drier than normal weather that’s parched farms and cut water levels in the Mekong River.

    Thailand accounts for a third of the global rice trade, and although Thailand currently has stock of rice the level of global stockpiles is still much lower than it used to be. So we are once again looking at a near future serious supply situation.

    The drought is being linked linked to the El Nino weather pattern but the main cause is the opening of 4 of the 8 planned hydropower dams on the Mekong by china which has resulted in the lowest water levels in the Mekong in 90 years and reduced its flow to a trickle to the extent that navigation has become impossible.

    China lied when it said that “the Mekong dams will benefit downstream countries, by storing water in the rainy season to reduce flooding and releasing it when needed in the dry season.”

    No surprise. Beijing built the dams to harness the Mekong for its own benefit, with complete disregard for the potential adversity rendered to the river’s ecological system and the livelihoods of the peoples of Burma, Laos, Thailand, Cambodia and Vietnam along the lower reaches of the river. It also did’nt care much for the plight of the tens of thousands of Chinese who were forced to evacuate to pave the way for the dams construction.

    The Mekong River Commission, which China has refused to join, has repeatedly voiced serious concern about the adverse impact caused by the dams to the ecological system of the river basin and to the millions of people living downstream, but to no avail.

  4. 4 fall 7 April 2010 at 9:26 pm

    It’s an offer you cant refuse.

    The government need to crackdown before the long holiday, where people from rural will reinforce the protest.
    Time for Abhisit and Anupong to repay their master for their rise to power.

  5. 5 Insanity 7 April 2010 at 11:23 pm

    Warning 1
    It is imperative for the protesters to not take violent action, as it would merely be playing directly into the hands of the elite that have been preparing for this eventuality for some time.

    Warning 2
    History is nothing but an example that when revolution takes place, it can quickly and effectively be hijacked by militant and extremist elements, often resulting in a situation worse than that prior to the revolution. Often, these elements themselves are co-opted by the ruling elite, ensuring that whatever regime rises in the ashes of the old, no matter how militant or radical, it will continue to serve and expand the entrenched interests of elites. This is the worst-case scenario of revolution, and with history as a guide, it is also a common occurrence.

  6. 6 antipadshist 8 April 2010 at 12:06 am

    “business as usual” hopes of brainwashed consumers are one of the main driving force of the current events, of why peasants are totally pissed off already.

    Business hopes for Songkran spending splurge”

    If the situation returns to normal before the festive season, as much as 100 billion baht could be spent during the Songkran festival next week, an increase of 1.89 per cent from last year, the University of Thai Chamber of Commerce said.

    in other words, “we want to continue shopping and making more money for more shopping – WHY those peasants disturb our nice snug equilibrium ?!”

  7. 7 dr anon 8 April 2010 at 3:34 am

    Did you catch Bkk Pundit’s bit on “Reds Destroying Tourism”? It’s a good match for Thai Crisis:

    Mascot Chumpol says arrives are down 10% due to the Red shirts. A few days ago Chump-boy said there was no effect. Even better are their own numbers: Overall drop is less than 1% and, March 2010 compared to March 2009 showed an actual INCREASE.

    The beauty of flexible stats is that you can add or drop a “0” any time, depending on the next phase of the FARCE that began in Sept 2006. Need to declare a State of Emergency? Blame the bounced checks on Issan!

  8. 8 Lothar 8 April 2010 at 4:50 am

    For me it looks that they are trying to prosecute as many red leaders as possible and ban them for 5 years from all policitical activity. When i hear that almost 70 leaders are currently on the arrest list i guess the reds will have problem to find some serious candidates for the next election.

    I can’t believe that they will turn this into a massacre when they still have a lot of leagal cannons to fire.

    The Red Power movement is way to large for a violent crackdown.

  9. 9 Anonymous 8 April 2010 at 11:02 am

    Was really surprised to read Thanong’s blog, which abandons Abhisit completely by saying “the end is near”. Is this the behavior of a chameleon which changes colors easily? Or it this the Nation’s journalistic style ? Namely, always supports the winner, in this case, the reds! I can see thaksin nods his head in agreement.

  10. 10 Duke of Ban Phai 8 April 2010 at 2:18 pm

    @ Anonymous
    Thaksin will be more than head nodding – whoops of glee, perhaps. Thanong advocated a national government led in the interim by Chavalit Yongchaiyudh. I seem to recall that a few months ago Thaksin appointed Chevalit as the “Supreme Commander” of the Peoples’ Army”. Yep, this really Discworld, folks.

  11. 11 Patiwat 8 April 2010 at 3:45 pm

    I wonder if there is a reward for Thaksin’s head. Old Elite, vs The Billionaire Multiple times over.

  12. 12 Pricilla 8 April 2010 at 6:30 pm

    Suspect the amount of power the Elite wield allows them to partake in massive manipulated profits, perhaps Wall St is an obvious example of the obscene money that can be stolen through various schemes when you own the government. Wall St actions are becoming less opaque by the day although naturally no action is or will be taken, suspect the situation here in Thailand is similar, power is worth keeping at any cost. If the reds had a serious shot at winning this does anyone really doubt what the army will do?

    As to the Chinese, SE Asia will surely wake up eventually that everything China does is completely in its own interests, if the Mekong becomes a stream they couldn’t less, they have financial ways to bring governments in power on board. They are going to only get more arrogant as their power increases, and of course their power remains by keeping a huge peasant population satisfied.

  13. 13 Observer 9 April 2010 at 1:38 am

    The most effective weapon now for UDD is to organize a general strike. That is also a nonviolent act of protest.

  14. 14 African Nomad 9 April 2010 at 4:41 am

    Vejj missed the opportunity to have discussed & initiated formation of a Government of National Unity. This could have run for a period of say 5 years, during which time a long-term peaceful solution for Thailand could have been argued & cobbled out. After this period, an election could be held under the fair-&-equitable rules.

    Instead, he has chosen to continue adding force upon force to escalate the situation to where the nation now truly faces a Civil War between class groups.

    The more the pressure mounts, the ever more likely that Thailand will move towards a Communist outcome, when the pressure-cooker finally explodes.

    For the Amart, the former peaceful way would have been wiser.

  15. 15 antipadshist 9 April 2010 at 5:54 am

    “always supports the winner, in this case, the reds”

    nope, the winners are always the same, no matter what gov it is : all the bankers, lenders, traders, middle-men, bureaucrats (guys both civilian & military) with permanent positions…

    they are the establishment, and they are ALWAYS the winners. politicians are merely their playthings, tools to get guap !
    so, Thanong acts naturally – netting on better performing asset. nothing personal, just strictly business. 🙂
    politics for them are business too, same as playing on SET.

  16. 16 Lothar 11 April 2010 at 1:37 am

    Many people will say that this is a sad day. I say that the last year was so full of sad days that this day – despite the sad actions that took place today – might be remembered as the dawn of a new age. I like to see the positive. It was a battle with personal looses but it was a battle that the united front for democracy and dictatorship clearly won.

    From all i learned in the last decade in thailand i never expected that it will go without violent. And everyone who really thought that this would be the case is just lying to himself.

    I can only hope that the democracy movement does not need to go through the pain of more battles.

    But we have to remember that so many of our grandmothers and grandfathers had to stand up and give there life for what we call today a civilized democratic Europe.

  17. 17 Insanity 11 April 2010 at 3:03 pm

    ICT to curb defamatory internet contents

    BANGKOK, 10 April 2010 (NNT) – The Ministry of Information and Communication Technology has now been strictly curbing all defamatory internet contents that likely pose serious threat to national security with an aim of preventing further division in the society.

    Permanent Secretary for Information and Communication Technology Sue Loruthai said that the Ministry had been instructed to take a close watch and curb all allegedly defamatory internet contents which possibly instigate the hatred of the people and might cause further conflict in society.

    Meanwhile, the internet users have been warned to use the internet in the right way or with appropriate purpose and avoid disseminating information that could create misunderstanding or instigate violent actions among the public. Also, all popular websites and social networks such as facebook, twitter, hi5 and my space will be under thorough watch.

    Violators will be prosecuted by law with no compromise.

  18. 18 Lord HaHa 12 April 2010 at 8:04 pm


    Articles like the above from the Jakarta Globe raising the possibility of a major change in Thai society itself are appearing everywhere.

    Maybe the ICT should turn off access to the world-wide-web to all of Thailand?

  19. 19 Insanity 12 April 2010 at 8:11 pm

    Amid crisis, Thai poll body moves against PM’s party

    Thailand’s poll watchdog on Monday set in motion a procedure which may lead to the disbanding of Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva’s party over suspected donation irregularities.

    The Election Commission agreed with the findings of state investigators that the ruling Democrat Party illegally obtained a donation of 258 million baht ($8 million) from a listed company five years ago.

  20. 20 US Immigration 15 April 2010 at 3:36 am

    I think this continues crisis in Thailand can only be resolved with democracy and social justice. Everyone is concerned about the current situation in Thailand and let’s pray that it won’t end up to a dictatorship.

  21. 21 Lord HaHa 21 April 2010 at 12:25 pm

    2 more gems from NTN:

    1) Army Vows To Protect King’s Castle, King’s Castle II

    “Troops loyal to King’s Group stand guard over “pillar of Thai society”

    2) Soliders On Patpong Distracted By Shirtless Movement


  22. 22 Pricilla 21 April 2010 at 7:25 pm

    Democracy is seen by many as the Holy Grail of Government. Most people believe the United States is a country created with a democratic form of government. Nothing could be farther from the truth. The Founding Fathers were almost as fearful of democracy as they were the monarchies of Europe.

    James Madison, the father of the Constitution, said, “Democracies have ever been spectacles of turbulence and contention, have ever been found incompatible with personal security or the rights of property, and have in general been as short in their lives as they have been violent in their death.” A few quotes…

    T.Jefferson….”The democracy will cease to exist when you take away from those who are willing to work and give to those who would not…”

    “A democracy is always temporary in nature; it simply
    cannot exist as a permanent form of government. A democracy will continue to exist up until the voters discover that they can vote themselves generous gifts from the public treasury. From that moment on, the majority always votes for the candidates who promise the most benefits from the public treasury, with the result that every democracy will finally collapse due to loose fiscal policy, which is always followed by a dictatorship.”

    I believe the above is where the west in now, Thailand seems to have the process in reverse, seems though a Republic is a better option in theory, but as per the US that also gets perverted by the money men.

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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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