Xenophobia


The Bangkok Post is leading with yet another tedious anti-foreigner story: apparently, more than 90% of Phuket beach land is owned by the despicable outsiders who, if it is true, are apparently planning to take the land away or else to poison it so that no Thai person can ever go back there again.

This story follows others in the national media, including various stories about foreigners secretly gaining control over rice-growing land and investigations into Thai-foreigner marriages with a view to seizing land or property that may have been secretly bought – well, we foreigners are not allowed to buy land in the Land of Smiles (Thais of course can buy land pretty much anywhere else) because … well, obviously, it is part of the establishment-military-nationalist elites who aim to frighten the poor and middle classes as a pretext to continue to inflate the budget of the military and the state security organs. Huge amounts of money flow to the military and it would be interesting (but enough to draw an assassination attempt) to know where it all goes.

The repressive Abhisit regime is part of this tendency – it is talking up the ‘dangers’ of the pro-democracy movement demonstration due to be held on the 30th and there is talk of a ‘special law’ to deal with the demonstrators (as opposed to the ‘special’ interpretation of the law which is used to discriminate, some people would argue, against the pro-democracy movement and its supporters). Expect, therefore, more agent provocateur action (perhaps the ‘blue shirts’ – mostly off-duty servicemen and known PAD goons – will reappear to ‘defend their neighbourhood’).

Then again, given Abhisit’s ongoing failure to force his crony into the seat of police chief, perhaps he will have been discarded by the Secret Hand by then. After the birthday party, perhaps. Then, perhaps violence will be used both to destroy the pro-democracy movement and also as a pretext for getting rid of the ineffectual super rich boy, who can also be blamed for it.