Random thoughts

Can’t find enough time to write a full size entry on any particular one, even though they all deserve proper attention.

So here it goes, in no particular order.

Thaksin’s new pix from his facebook:

Montenegro flag

This is Montenegrin flag. Pic dated Monday 26 but uploaded on Wednesday 28. Facebook link

And the latest one:

In Russia

Facebook link.

This is in Russia, judging by cyrillic on the sign. Someone noted that the shade is missing, I’m not convinced, though, not as clear cut case as with temple in Seychelles. If you didn’t see it, here is the thumbnail for “now you see him, now you don’t” trick.

Now you see him, not you don't

Temple in Seychelles

We are talking about officially released photo on Thaksin’s own facebook page.

Gives some weight to the theory that Thaksin is in fact in coma in Brunei. Abhisit thought he could sit it out but, as Thaksin refuses to die, his camp needs to release some pix and videos, delaying breaking the news to his faithful.

A temple in Chiang Mai associated with his family is, reportedly, has been contracted to hold a fake funeral ceremony, the idea being that after a fake funeral the karma would be cleared and there’d be no need to hold a real one. Gosh, makes him more difficult to kill than Lord Valdemort with his seven Horcruxes.

Suppose Thaksin really died, what would the impact be on the current crisis?

Change in ideology and demands is unlikely but the players behind the protest would certainly need to readjust their strategies, preparing for post Thaksin Thailand.

Would they call the dogs off? Possibly, but not guaranteed. It would depend on how secure they feel without the full scale revolution. As for rank and file proxies in politics, they’d need to reassess their ability to get elected on their own and whether backing the revolution would serve them any good. There is probably a hundred of those in parliament now.

That brings me to another thought – has the red movement outgrown Thaksin. Everybody says it is so, even Nation’s Thanong in his blog.

Well, what does it really mean, “outgrown”? Are they able to fight on their own, without his input? Yes, it appears to be so, there are several layers of command between him and the people by the red stage and they’ve got enough battery power left to continue for a while.

On the other hand, he is undeniably has been their main source of inspiration, and don’t forget that reds on the street is only one part of his movement, other parts and especially the leaders have been a lot more connected to Thaksin than the folks on the ground. Who knows what they would do without him.

Right now they are clearly winging it, they had no idea whatsoever that their protest would last this long and degenerate into open calls for civil war. You could say they have been successful so far but at a cost of losing all democratic legitimacy – the only way they can win is total overthrow of the state with arrest warrants against them nullified in the process. They can’t hope for bail anymore – most of them are already on bail for the last Songkran riots, it’s either jail or victory.

Would Abhisit promise them amnesty if they surrender? Possibly for some of them but people like Arisman and Kwanchai can forget about it.

Or would they force Abhisit to resign and have him begging for amnesty? They’d like that but they need a really big massacre for that to happen, and a clear proof that Abhisit gave the order to kill, otherwise it would be viewed as the army or police screw up rather than political responsibility, just as it happened after April 10.

Anyway, back to red rally size – have they outgrown Thaksin in any other sense?

From Thaksin’s point of view they are still doing exactly what he needs. Of course it’s a lot of mayhem and destruction to serve just one man, but, whichever way you look at it, it’s the only way to get him what he wants. Without overthrowing the state he can’t hope to get neither the money nor lost status and prestige nor avoid jail.

All he needs is to make sure reds are not deviating from this course. He can’t allow them to give up and enter the constitutional process. Have they outgrown him if they are still playing to his tune?

Just think about it – civil war is not in their interests at all. Even if they win, at a great cost to themselves and to the country, they’d still have to make a deal with their enemies – generals, ammarts, elites, yellows, multi-color, Democrats, middle classes – they are not going to go away, reds will still have to share the country with them one way or another.

Despite wide held delusions Thailand is not Burma, it’s insane to go through civil war because reds can’t wait a year and a half for the next election campaign which they believe they’d bag easily anyway.

So here they are, still dancing to Thaksin’s tune against their own interests. Have they outgrown him? Or have they fallen prey to a bunch of rabid Maoist revolutionaries instead?

What is Abhisit to do about this misguided bunch? Yellows and some multi-colors want him to get tough and show no mercy. Reds have pissed off a lot of people and arm chair warriors, the anger is out in the open and at times they look as mad as reds.

He has all justification for a crackdown he would ever need.

The other day I posted a comment somewhere about the latest HM the King’s speech about duty and that made me thinking.

I remembered Bhagavat Gita, the book central to most of Hindu religious schools. There are great many interpretations of what it actually mean but one thing stands out in the connection to the current Thai crisis.

Some background on that book – it’s just one chapter in a monumental epic Mahabharata, second only to Ramayana in size and fame. The whole story is about two parts of a family fighting for a throne. The “good” ones were cheated and sent to exile and when they served their time and came back the “bad” ones didn’t want to return them the throne. Eventually the situation escalated to the point when war was inevitable and the whole nation was divided. Cousins against cousins pulled all they could to their respective side. Some sons were faced against their fathers, disciples against their teachers and so on. Everybody belonged to one camp or the other.

So everything was ready for the battle, armies were facing each other in the field, all preparations completed.

That’s when Bhagavat Gita starts. Arjuna, leader of the “good” ones, confides in his closest friend Krishna that he has no guts to fight his relatives. He looks across the field and sees familiar faces he loved from his childhood and he just doesn’t have the stomach for it.

He argues that the war would bring destruction to the whole country and the victory won’t be worth the price, he doesn’t want the sin of killing people on his hands and therefore he offered to resign and spend the rest of his life as a monk.

Krishna didn’t buy any of it. He said that as a warrior it was Arjuna’s duty to go and fight to the best of his abilities to return what was taken to their rightful owners. Abandoning his duty would be a bigger sin, and, as for poor victims, they are already dead, so to speak, Arjuna just doesn’t know it yet. It’s not Arjuna’s worry to think who deserved to die and who doesn’t, as long as he sticks to doing the “right thing”.

Then Krishna explains the logic behind his argument and reveals that he is actually God himself and it’s him who kills people and administers their karma, not Arjuna or anybody else.

This part of the book is where all philosophy is and everybody understands it differently but the first, introductory chapter is rather clear, despite various allegories associated with it.

So, would it mean that Abhisit has to go out and kill those reds left and right and “let God sort them out”, as they say in the movies?

Not at all. Bhagavat Gita was Gandhi’s bible, too, and he clearly didn’t think violence was the answer. The key is understanding what the duty actually is. Arjuna was a warrior, Abhisit is a politician, Gandhi was Gandhi.

In yesterday’s interview with CNN and BBC HardTalk Abhisit expressed his duty as “to find a political solution in tandem with solving problem of law enforcement”. He is tempted by yellows to go and fight but that won’t bring a political solution so he has to stay put and test his resolve to find a way where there’s apparently none.

Will he be victorious? Arjuna, after all, took Krishna’s advice about duties, went out, killed those who needed to be killed, and ruled the country with his brothers happily ever after. Shouldn’t Abhisit be rewarded, too?

Not at all. I bet there were thousands of people on that day praying for divine advice, getting the same “do what you have to do” answer, but they got killed anyway!

That’s another trick – the rewards for doing your duty are not of earthly order but of spiritual. Earthly results might or might not come, one shouldn’t be thinking of results when doing his job to spare disappointment, or develop attachments, which are root of all misery even by Buddhist standards.

So, Abhisit should think carefully what his duty is, so far it looks reasonable even though improbable, and he should follow all the developments closely, resorting to the use of force only when there’s no other choice. Sometimes his supporters might feel the waiting is unbearable but he should be firm and keep emotions out of this one.

Reds are hell bent on starting a civil war, he should try to avoid that at all costs while maintaining the integrity of the Thai state and honor of his office.

Thaksin death could be a “deal breaker” here but the rumors of his demise are probably greatly exaggerated. Either way, it doesn’t look as quick a solution as it appeared last week.

People are getting used to red rally at Rajprasong, btw. It’s not a news anymore, reds need another escalation but so far haven’t found any working to their advantage.

That’s gone for too long and I’m hungry now, forget proofreading, maybe tomorrow.

Cheers

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6 Responses

  1. Fascism is still fascism. Even if the representative of fascism went to Eton and Oxford, lies fluently and plausibly, and looks like he might be a nice chap. In the end, the Fascists always lose… Its worth while remembering that while they might cling to power for a bit longer, if you are really thinking about the future, you are definitely backing the losing side. Of course it may take another few decades to realize the vision of the reds and bring the rule of law to Thailand but eventually, no matter how difficult the project is, they will succeed in opening up this country. Its just a matter of time.
    So to recap, you have a government of fascists, fronted by an mealy mouthed PR dream scumbag who represents the views of unapologetically psychopathic killers and you think that’s fine. Terrific. And your objection to the Reds is that they are associated with a corrupt, exiled, thoroughly discredited member of the same Sino-Thai elite that places its trust in the very government you support. That’s retarded.
    Wake up. This time it is different. Change is coming. And the longer the old guard hold out the more radical that change will be.
    I have a theory. Its obvious that at times the number of people holding the intersection is quite small. Numbers might drop to a couple of thousand during the middle of the day when its very hot. Why don’t the government move? I think I can tell you the answer and its not one you will like. The Reds are a stalking horse for the real revolutionaries who are buried inside the current government and need to cover their tracks very carefully. If they can claim that the Reds forced change against their will then their fingerprints will not be found on the eventual and inevitable movement to return to democratic rule. You can bet that there are a lot of people in the government, ostensibly opposing what the Reds are doing, who are using the red menace as a bargaining chip dealing with their elderly, psycho-fascist powerful uncles who have the last word on what happens in this country. Thailand is complicated. And the only people with the guts to stand up to the fascist scum who have taken over the country are the people you abhor. Shame on you.

  2. Remind me, how is Abhisit a fascist? Fully perplexed by that one.

  3. Jaded said Abhisit is the frontman for the fascists – read http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fascism and you might understand.

    • And Veera, Nattawut and Jatuporn are Thailand’s modern day John Adams, Nelson Mandela and Mother Theresa.

      And like Hobby I am not joking either!

  4. Abhisit as Hitler, Truth Today, April 20-22 issue:

  5. Please calm down, everyone! It serves no purpose calling people Hitler or a fascist, whatever the definition of a fascist is.

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