Army blame and challenge dissidents

15 03 2011

Prachatai continues to be the premier source of “alternative” news on Thailand. It is the only source that offers a contrary position to the mainstream media that seem unable to “see” beyond political ideology.

This Prachatai story is remarkable and should be read there with the equally remarkable pictures. It explains how it was that, on 11 March, two men hung a banner on a pedestrian overpass on Rama IV Rd at Bon Kai that attacked the local community. Apparently, similar banners appeared at Klong Toey.

Earlier, the community “had … hung a banner reading ‘15 deaths at Bon Kai; we will not forget’ as part of a commemoration of the dead, which was organized on 6 Mar.” These men put up a banner that screamed: “Demanding democracy; why burn as well?” and “So who the hell told you lot to burn the country.” Not only did they put up the banners, but they guarded them.

The two men turned out to be soldiers who said “that their superiors had ordered them to put up the banners on this spot and keep watch over them.” They claimed that the orders were to post banners prior to red shirt rallies.

A “local red shirt said that this might be a tactic by the military to intimidate them, as they had organized an activity to remember the dead on 6 Mar.”

It is clear that the military continues to wage a war against red shirts – in this case, “psych-ops” – that is reminiscent of activities of earlier eras.