The BBC has published an article by Vaudine England titled Divided Thailand seeks elusive ‘normalcy’. The main point they are making is essentially that while it seems that Thailand has returned to normalcy – an impression that the Thai government is working very hard on creating – behind the curtain, things are not so harmonious.
Some key points:
- the government still persists that there is a conspiracy to overthrow the monarchy, although teams of hundreds of detectives have failed to provide specifics
- Centre for the Resolution of Emergency Situations, which managed the government’s response to the protests, still exists, and insists security must remain tight.
- A state of emergency still holds sway over Bangkok and six other provinces – allowing for arrest without charge, censorship and other controls.
- Despite this, at least two explosions have occurred in the centre of Bangkok, killing one person and injuring others.
- “Things have quietened down on the surface but the issues are still very raw, they are lurking underneath” – political scientist Thitinan Pongsudhirak
- Dr Thitinan believes the government is pursuing repression not reconciliation.
- “The army […] have fanned out in pro-red areas for pacification and suppression efforts” – Dr Thitinan
- political education sessions are being held in every province
- “This time communities are divided, families are divided, workplaces are divided, companies are divided, even government offices are divided. This is a deeply divided country, a deeply divided city.” – Governor of Bangkok, Sukhumbhand Paripatra