By Stingray, Thai Intel’s national security journalist
Intelligence: Bangkok, still under emergency decree, quiet now for months but the junta prime minister, Abhisit, says dangerous people still around and lifting emergency may bring back protest and violence.
Analysis: Lifting emergency decree would likely see increase Red Shirts protest activity, but the fear is that the 3rd column, being the military, will secretly instigate violence against the protesters-for a set of objective.
Intelligence: Speculation is rampant on how protesters could have burned down the World Trade Center as the military took control of the center before the burning.
Analysis: Back on earlier reports that some street battle during the Red Shirts protest did not really exists, to military guarding the stock exchange letting protesters enter the stock exchange without trying to prevent the mere 10s in numbers-to the latest is that the military was in full control of the World Trade Center before it broke out in fire-where the military also prevented fire fighters from putting out the small fire that subsequently occurred.
Intelligence: Names and units of those involved in the slaugthering of about 100 red shirts protesters are emerging.
Analysis: With the names and picture of soldiers involved coming out, it would be difficult to control the damage and the truth of coming to light. The Red Shirts appear to be letting out the information is a controlled manner-indicating they have the entire picture of the event.
Intelligence: The key man who drew up the 2006 coup is now a force commander again and is with the top echelon of commanders of the Thai army.
Analysis: The bottom-line is that the military is ready to stage a coup any time that is needed.
Intelligence: All traditional Thai military units that are key in staging coup totally in command of Prayuth the Thai army chief, down to colonel ranking.
Analysis: This re-enforces the coup ready position of the Thai military.
Intelligence: The Guinness Record 83rd birth day Thai King celebration involved about US$10-20 million spending with much of the spending going to businesses with close relations with Nevin, a politicians who cooked-up the idea.
Analysis: Thailand is rated the most corrupt in history currently and the opposition say they will publish a book consisting of 100s cases of corruption and would censure the government on corruption. Nevin and Suthep, key power center of the junta government of Abhisit, is rated in nearly every poll as the most corrupt politician in Thailand.
Analysis: It begs to wonder why the Thai air force would opt for a weak platform like Grippen and an old platform like the F-16-except that corruption is involved.
Intelligence: Prayuth, the Thai army chief rise, comes on the back of three main character of Prayuth. They are first “charm” in charming the real controller of Thailand, “gambling” in keeping fractions of the Thai military suppressed, and “spychotic” in how he is willing to use mass murder in remaining in control.
Analysis: The bottom line is that Prayuth does not fit the “Qualifications” to remain a key power player in the long-term-and already emerging in Prem‘s playbook is an alternative. Prayuth is only the “Situational” answer.
Intelligence: Prayugh and Privy council Prem rise are similar in many ways, and Prem may be grooming Prayuth to be his replacement. But Prayuth lacks the intellectual powers and emotional depth of Prem and the real power behind the Amart (royalist, elite and military) rule of Thailand remains an open question.
Analysis: Again, Prayuth is “Situational” and he must struggle against some hard torrents inside the military to graduate to Prem’s level of ranking.
Intelligence: The many un-answered question on Thai royalty have grown into skepticism and now that skepticism is growing into a widespread anti-royalty feelings, with Republicanism gaining traction.
Analysis: Einstein said for every action, there is a re-action. The Amart have been hyping Thai royalism way beyond sustainable level and the reaction is rejection of Thai royalism.
Intelligence: The use of consumer boycott on goods with strong tie to the Amart (royalist, elite and military) rule of Thailand may gain significance momentum.
Analysis: This consumer boycott is about empowerment of the individual to do something in protest everyday, but we will have to wait for some results before calling this one, but it looks potentially to be a doable concept.
Intelligence: Populus policy targeted by the junta prime minister Abhisit, to the grass-roots of the cities, namely bringing motorcycle taxi, taxi and street vendors under social security will likely gain little traction as corruption against the 3 segment is rampant and deep rooted.
Analysis: The grass roots are the people who are hit the hardest by corruption, from disposable income angle, and having more money in their pocket, will only mean more corruption demanded from them.
Intelligence: Small chance for an election before the junta term expires but it is there to head off no-confidence censure debate in the first quarter of next year.
Analysis: The key characteristic or behavior of Abhisit, is “Power Hungry” meaning Abhisit is entirely corrupt by “Power” and he will only call for an election if he has to or if he knows he will win.
Intelligence: Amart rule game plan on course of using judiciary, military and press to create and manage “Mood” for the country.
Analysis: Game plan is still the same in using the legal, media and national security to remain in control of Thailand. But the defects in the system is emerging and lessening its effectiveness.
Intelligence: Poll says Thai happiness spike but earlier polls says most Thais see economy worsening.
Analysis: The question for the government is how to sustain the happy mood of the Thai people as traditionally, December is the happiest time for the Thais with many vacations falling on top of other vacations. The economy looks to slow next year as currently 100,000s of SMEs have or are on the verge of collapse.
Intelligence: Taksin testifying in US signals major acceptance of Taksin globally.
Analysis: Taksin, the leader of the opposition and key player with the red Shirts protesters has just been invited to testify in the USA and the whole macro picture is that Taksin is now much more widely accepted globally as a legit Thai player. The shift most likely is the result of the Thai court ruling to protect Abhsiti government, with the likes of Economist writing on the Thai courts ruling. The signal the globe got is just simply Thailand has an un-just justice system-making their ruling on Taksin less credible-thuse legitimizing Taksin.
- Red Shirts Stage Protests in Thai Cities (online.wsj.com)
- Is the Thai Military Torturing Detainees? (time.com)
- Thailand’s Scourge: Is the Thai Military Torturing Muslim Detainees? (time.com)
- Is the Thai Military Torturing Muslim Detainees? (time.com)
- Thai court ruling allows Prime Minister Abhisit to retain power – Christian Science Monitor (news.google.com)
- Q+A: Are Thailand’s “red shirts” regrouping? (reuters.com)
- Thai ‘Red Shirts’ Mark Anniversary of Protests (nytimes.com)
- Thai “red shirts” return to Bangkok’s streets (reuters.com)
- Analysis: Crackdown on dissent risks stoking Thai crisis (reuters.com)
- Thai Premier Signals Conditions for Elections Almost Fulfilled (businessweek.com)
- Bangkok Bomber Blows Up (waronterrornews.typepad.com)
- Q+A : Are Thailand’s “red shirts” regrouping? (reuters.com)
- Thai Premier Pushes Constitution Change Opposed by Allies, Foes (businessweek.com)
- Report: Toyota to boost Thai capacity 20% by Mid-2011 to around 600K units per year (greencarcongress.com)
- ‘The Sound of Siam’ Takes a Wild Trip to Thailand’s Musical Leftfield (spinner.com)
- At least 15,000 Myanmar refugees enter Thailand (salon.com)