- By Ranger, Thai Intel’s political journalist
When you look at Thailand and ask “What Now” after so many years of political crisis, the majority of Thais will probably say, “Enough is Enough.”
The problem is off course, reaching that point of “Enough.”
At the heart of this Thai political crisis, if you take out the individual, and look at the “Supra-Structure” there is no doubt, the division is about clashing “Far Extreme Right Wing Politics and Center Left Politics.”
What a Far Extreme Right politics is about, in Thailand, is mainly anti-democracy, anti-liberty, anti-justice and anti-human rights. And what is Center Left politics, is mainly about pro-democracy, pro-liberty, pro-justice and pro-human rights.
In the middle of that clashing political ideology, you have the individuals, like Thaksin who was found guilty of corruption and you also have Abhisit who may be found guilty of a massacre. Then you have political prisoners, the Thai military senior people, the privy councils, the judicialized judges of Thailand, the various media feeding off the frenzy, and off course, the political parties and their leaders.
But fundamentally, in asking how Thailand should proceed into the future, with confidence of not having to go through another round of political crisis, the answer, fundamentally, is about the underlying political philosophy of Thailand.
What that means again, is will it be a Far Extreme Right Wing aganda? or a Center Left Agenda?
Once that question has been answered, then Thailand can proceed with a re-conciliation, like bringing back Thaksin to Thailand and granting amnesty to the likes of Abhisit for the crack-down, along with a general amnesty for all crimes related to the Thai political crisis, since the 2006 coup.
The problem is off course, right now, that decision have not been made in Thailand.
The Democrat Party, the Yellow Shirts, the Multti-Color Shirts, the Appointed Senators, the senior judges, the privy councils, and the Thai military establishment, all continue to subscribe to the Far Extreme Right Wing Agenda.
Currently, most of the supporters of the Far Extreme Right, do not even respect the last election, even when it was a landslide win for Thaksin’s sister, Yingluck.
To the Far Extreme Right Wing, the Thaksin issue, is just being used to de-stabilized Thai politics, with the hope of keeping the Far Extreme Right Wing philosophy in existance in Thailand.
Within that environment, of lingering hope of the Far Extreme Right Wing being in control of Thailand again, this is not the right timing for Thaksin to be thinking about returning to Thailand.
Right now, Thai Intel thinks, it is time to strengthen Thailand’s democratic system.
The following is from Reuters:
Thai opposition quits peace panel, fears Thaksin amnesty
3:28 a.m. CDT, March 27, 2012
BANGKOK (Reuters) – Thailand’s main opposition party withdrew on Tuesday from a parliamentary reconciliation panel in protest at an independent study it said was aimed at whitewashing exiled former premier Thaksin Shinawatra of his graft conviction.
The house committee has taken up the study’s recommendation of a general amnesty for those guilty of crimes related to the country’s long-running political crisis.
The Democrat Party suggested the plan, drafted by King Prajadhipok‘s Institute (KPI), was aimed at facilitating the return and political comeback of twice-elected Thaksin, who fled into exile in 2008 before being sentenced to two years in prison for conflict of interest when he was in power.
Thaksin was overthrown in a military coup in 2006.
“The decision to include the report at a parliamentary meeting is an excuse to work towards a pardon,” Democrat MP Jurin Luksanawisit told reporters.
Thaksin’s homecoming is a divisive issue in Thailand, where he is loved and despised in equal measure. Many analysts believe his return could upset the current fragile peace and trigger another round of bloody confrontation.
The committee was set up by the then ruling Democrats in 2010, in the wake of a 10-week protest by Thaksin’s supporters that was crushed by the military, leaving 91 dead and more than 1,800 wounded in several clashes.
Thaksin still enjoys huge support among the rural masses but has powerful enemies among the conservative elite, the military and the royalist “yellow shirts” protest movement, all of which he says have undermined his governments, or those of his allies.
Thaksin’s politically inexperienced sister, Yingluck Shinawatra, is now prime minister but is widely regarded as his proxy. Her coalition controls three-fifths of parliament.
The KPI report was commissioned by the reconciliation panel’s chairman, Sonthi Boonyaratkalin, a retired general who led the coup against Thaksin. It was unclear why he was now pushing a proposal that could lead to Thaksin’s return.
KPI has also recommended the dropping, or transfer to another judicial body, of all legal cases lodged against Thaksin by the Assets Examination Committee, which was set up by the coup makers to probe Thaksin, a billionaire former telecoms tycoon, and his former cabinet.
The Democrats have urged changes to KPI’s recommendations and say the proposals are being pushed through too quickly.
“All sides need to be heard and matters should not be rushed,” Democrat MP Nakorn Machin said. “If parliament doesn’t listen to the minority, it won’t be true reconciliation.”
(Reporting by Aukkapon Niyomyat and Amy Sawitta Lefevre; Editing by Martin Petty and Ron Popeski)
- Thai Politics: Without the Thaksin issue, Thailand’s far right will have no political life (with Bangkok Post) (thaiintelligentnews.wordpress.com)
- Thai Politics: From topple King map to 45 baht street food “Why does Abhisit lie all the time?” (thaiintelligentnews.wordpress.com)
- Environment: Would Thailand’s environmental movement suffers the same fate as Thailand’s human rights movement? (thaiintelligentnews.wordpress.com)
- Reconciliation: From “Erasing Memory” to “Rekindle Memory” Thailand’s Kitirat shows “Mind Mending” (with BKK Post) (thaiintelligentnews.wordpress.com)
- Thai Politics: Editorial “Abhisit should enter Monkshood & Democrat Party should cure its illness” (thaiintelligentnews.wordpress.com)