A bill to kill

2 09 2008

I woke up this morning with this unfortunate incidence as reported in Bangkok Post.

It says “Shortly before 2am, attacking group of the United front of Democracy against Dictatorship (UDD) trying to oust the PAD crowds from Government House broke through the police lines to confront PAD guards. Both sides were mostly wearing motorcycle helmets and carrying sticks, clubs and PVC pipes. At about 7am, PM imposed state of emergency. After that the army appeared on the scene quickly, and it seemed in the beginning that order was restored and the two sides retreated. The declaration is the first use of a controversial new Emergency Law passed in the dying days of the military government late last year. With the emergency decree, the state authority has the right to disperse protesters at the Government House by force.

The state of emergency was announced while I was watching my morning news. I remember I was asking my father how this conflict will end and whether the government will handle the situation with care. Now I have the answer.  The government under  Samak Sundaravej  used UDD to pave way for their crackdown on PAD protesters. Once the UDD crossed the police lines and confronted with PAD supporters, one died and about 44 injured. This would then justify for the government to impose the emergency decree which has been prepared months ago.

While I was listening to news report in my car on the way to my new office, Samak said that the committee will investigate the incidence took place whether the person who died belong to which group UDD or PAD. Then he was asked further whether he still asked people to take side. His answer was not explicit but one can not miss that he was pro UDD. At least two PPP MPs joined UDD and led them to confront the PAD in the Government House. He said that the committee will handle the case. But I believe those PPP MPs will walk free of charge. They have completed their tasks to ignite the fight and pave the way for Samak to impose emergency decree and for the state authority to take control of the situation.

Samak’s strategy to counter PAD started to intensify when his attempts to use the police to disperse the protesters failed last week.  The special sitting in the parliament to find way to resolve the situation as suggested by the Opposition Democrat Party and the Senate turned out to be a platform for Samak and his gang to reborn again.

While he as the PM should resolve the political conflict with peaceful means through negotiation, he prepares to use force to end the conflict quickly. If this kind of thinking is shared among the PPP leaders, I can see more bloodshed on the street.

One possible solution that is always denied is for Samak to step down. However, he insists time and again that he will continue to stay in power to complete a four year term. All that happened are not his fault and he has no part of it. He does not know why people hated him and that he has performed very well in the past 7 months. I am sure he knows well why he is rejected by urban middle class, but may be he does not want to accept that fact. He tends to forget what he says and always comes up with different statements and counter statements to his own. As long as he is taking side and sees PAD as his opponent and orders a bill to kill, he will be rejected more by people and his dream to stay in power forever will be just a dream.



2 responses

6 09 2008

Hello Busarin!

First of all thank you for your great blog. I’ve been reading it for a time now because I’m very interested in the current situation in Thailand and found it hard to find any information besides the “official” Bangkok Post / The Nation stuff. But since the occupation of the government house by the PAD it’s been in the big media here in Germany as well.

I get it that you want Samak to step down as the PAD protesters want it and I see why. It seems that he is in fact a puppet of former PM Thaksin and he’s not been very efficient in his months in office. The current development is leading towards a political deadlock, the military is refusing to intervene, some of his inferiors are not doing what he is ordering. In the end the government will not be able to govern at all. I see what PAD and their supporters want but I’m having trouble to see what would happen after Samak and his crew steps down (if he does). Who will be to realize the claims of PAD?

In a previous post you wrote about a friend asking why it is that a “Peoples Alliance for Democracy” is trying to bring down an elected democratic government and I still think that this is a very good question the PAD has to answer. It’s a very strange thing to bring down a democratic government because one wants Democracy. Thats also one of the things western media is asking about and trying to understand. You see I do understand why PAD is doing that, but on what basis? Imagine a new government which does all the things PAD wants, but then there is this minority (or even majority) that thinks that they are doing the wrong things. They mobilize and protest so long that the new government is deadlocked as well and so forth… nobody could say then that this is not allowed or whatever, since the last government was created just like that.

What a weird situation! Maybe you could answer some of my questions. Also maybe some of my views are not correct. Please correct me if they are. I’m very interested in your point of view.

I’m looking forward to your answer!

8 09 2008
peace space

What is next after Samak and PPP government? I have confronted with this questions lately. After giving it some thoughts, I think the end of Samak government will not ensure the end of political conflict here as long as the proposal by PAD is not met.
What does PAD want? They propose a new political system of 70:30 meaning that 70% of representatives will come through a special selection process and 30% from election. Their proposal is based on their view that most politicians are corrupt, power driven and can not be trusted. As such, the current system must be discontinued and new system be created.
One must understand first of all that PAD’s proposal are not accepted by all their supporters. Those supporters are there to protest the government under Samak leadership and a distant boss in London but they do not share PAD’s view in regards to a new political system – some do not know about it at all. Even Democrat leader Abhisit stated on television last night that PAD will have to reconsider their proposal of creating a new political landscape in Thailand.
A possible way out of current conflict may be for each party to step back and reconsider their positions. This needs a strong mediator which is lacking at the moment. I remember my answer to foreign press last Friday when he asked how to bring this confrontation to the end I said they only listen to one man’s advise.
Thanks for the comment and I hope I answer to some of your questions!

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