With 3 updates: Maintaining the state of emergency, maintaining royalist rule

1 10 2010

PPT notes that, while lifting the state of emergency in three provinces, it remains in Bangkok, Samut Prakan, Nonthaburi and Pathum Thani. We think that this is unnecessary for things have clearly returned to normal as indicated in these links we have lifted from The Thai Report:

40 armed men take over Suvarnabhumi parking lot…

Parking lot re-opened with armed men inside…

Police patrol parking lots…

The first of these says: “The first floor of Zone 2 parking lot at the Suvarnabhumi Airport has been closed off by armed men who arrived at around 4 A.M. this morning. The problem stems from a concession dispute after a new concessionaire won the rights to manage the parking lot, but the previous concessionaire refuses to vacate the premises. Around 40 armed men dressed in black took over the parking lot early this morning and closed it down [Update 1: the Bangkok Post says 200 armed men!]. Police are on the scene and are reportedly negotiating with the perpetrators. Airport officials, however, insist that airport services are open for business as usual. Passengers are advised to avoid the Zone 2 parking lot.”

Clearly the men in black are back, but these are just the normal gangster men in black as opposed to the government’s statements about men in black with red shirts. So this is normal and as they must be working for the more entrepreneurial classes, they can pose no threat to anybody politically.In any case, the normal practice is for police and military men to dress in black when moonlighting for godfather businessmen.

They also seem no threat to the public as they remained after the car park was re-opened….

Occupations of Bangkok’s airports are also part of normalizing politics, so the potential for a shoot out in the international gateway to Thailand is also suggestive of the return to normalcy.

Yes, the occupation of an airport car park by armed men in black can only be cause for lifting the emergency decree, for Bangkok is back to normal.

Update 2: An eagle-eyed reader points out that a further sign that things are back to “normal” in Abhisit Vejjajiva’s dinosaur regime of royalist, military and bureaucrat control is provided by the Ministry of Interior. The Bangkok Post report is here in full:

Staff at the Interior Ministry have thrown a lavish farewell party for permanent secretary Manit Wattanasane before his retirement today.

The party yesterday included lucky draws for prizes including 64 gold necklaces, 10 32-inch television sets, 10 BlackBerry and iPhone handsets, refrigerators and motorcycles. All guests also received from 1,000 to 2,000 baht in cash. The gold necklaces given away at the party were estimated to have a combined value of about 342,000 baht.

Participants were also entertained by well-known actors, actresses and singers.

The party was organised by the Interior Ministry’s Wives Club, and the gifts were sponsored by private companies.

Party preparations began early with a large stage and tables set up. But when technicians fine-tuned the top-class sound system in the afternoon, some officials were so disturbed by the noise they were unable to finish the 2010 fiscal year reports they were working on.

Ignoring issues of corruption and political business, this is a statement of who’s in control in Thailand. If it feels a little like 1977, PPT thinks that is because Abhisit and his friends have set the country back 30 years in political terms.

Update 3: Recall, on the airport story, that the Airports of Thailand company wants to make Suvarnabhumi airport one of the 10 best in the world and so is planning to add a new concourse building and expand its passenger terminal. Maybe they need to expand barracks facilities for off-duty police and military men in black so that they don’t scare the tourists when they march on car parks….


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1 10 2010
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