Police Act against PAD Mob

The anti-democracy mob PAD blockaded parliament last night with a view to preventing the democratically-elected government from opening the new session and the convicted criminal Sondhi Limthongkul made another load of demands on behalf of the few thousand thugs who support his disgraceful attempt to bring an end to democracy in Thailand (reports that the demands concluded with ‘moon on a stick’ cannot be confirmed).

This morning, at 6:20, police moved in and used tear gas to disperse the mob and dismantle the illegally-erected barricades. This was to enable a path into and out of parliament for the democratically elected government (and junta cronies in the Senate). As would be expected, the police had to be careful because the PAD mob is known to be heavily armed and has murdered two people already, in addition to numerous beatings and acts of savagery.

A few dozen members of the mob suffered from the usual effects of tear gas – there were reports also that some people were suffering from ‘wounds’ caused by ‘shrapnel’ or ‘powerful explosives.’ The PAD has lied about this kind of issue before so it remains to be seen what truth there is in it or whether it was PAD mobsters who caused the injuries – mobsters are known to have attacked the police headquarters with tear gas of their own. Army chief Anupong Paojinda is said to be releasing a statement on behalf of the army this afternoon – so it’s back to turning on the radio in trepidation of the martial music that denotes yet another coup.

The government, led by PM Somchai Wongsawat, has now completed its duties in the house and made its exit – the PM had to climb over the wall to Vimanmek Mansion. The PAD again besieged parliament and turned off water and electricity, apparently.

Quisling Democrat leader Abhisit Vejjajiva (how long can he keep his job?) has led an unsuccessful boycott of proceedings, bleating about police actions and by no means supporting the rule of law. The Nation, meanwhile, has plumbed new depths of cynical lies – its website proclaims ‘Black October, 2008,’ disgracefully demeaning the memories of hundreds who were killed by the military in 1976 while protesting for democracy, the very same democracy that the PAD mob is trying to end. The Nation is a disgrace. Its editors, if they support this, should be deeply, deeply ashamed of themselves.

Looking on the Bright Side

Is there anything positive to come out of recent events, when armed right wing PAD thugs have illegally occupied Government House, seized and damaged Phuket Airport, causing thousands of tourists to be stranded, attacked police and journalists and allegedly threw some kind of tear gas before claiming police had done it?

Well, trying to be optimistic: first, it has become increasingly clear to the world at large who it is that is causing the trouble in Thailand and the tactics to which they are willing to stoop. More and more people are coming to the conclusion that there is a nexus of control maintained by the ‘iron triangle’ (military, religion and let’s say bureaucracy) which controls the judicial system, among other things.

Second, it is very noticeable that very, very few young people are interested in joining the right-wing thugs in their attempt to bring down democracy. It was the students who were so brave and so influential in the demonstrations for democracy, notably in the 1976 revolution, when scores of young people were murdered, tortured and beaten by the rampant military. Most students today, of course, have only a very hazy at best understanding of history (of course, the education system is not deliberately poor in this respect, is it?) but they know enough not to get involved with the disgraced PAD losers.

Third, well, I’m struggling a bit now – at least opinion polls show that the majority of Thai people, even those in Bangkok, reject the PAD thugs and would prefer to keep democracy. Alas, in a stunning act of class betrayal, some labour unions are apparently thinking of striking to show support for the thugs who, when they were in power, assassinated numerous labour activists and union leaders. Extraordinary.

Here is an interesting story on the ‘useful idiots’ acting as human shields for core PAD ringleaders, who are skulking in the crowd since they are now fugitives wanted by the police for treason.

The fourth thing, then, is the resolute nature of PM Samak Sundaravej – the old bruiser seems determined to stay the course and let us all hope that he does. It would be wrong to say that I approve of everything he has done (quite the opposite) but that he should some independence of mind now is of considerable importance.