In an earlier post we made comparisons between extremist political groups in the 1970s and the emergence of lese majeste extremists today.
Back in the 1970s, another defining element of rightist extremism was the rise of fascist monks. Most notorious was the palace-linked monk Kittivudho Bhikkhu, who claimed that killing Communists was not a sin. He meant all “leftists” who were also considered a threat to the monarchy. He was also a fraudster and shyster.
The contemporary equivalent of Kittivudho is Buddha Issara who heads up one of the anti-democratic groups aligned with Suthep Thaugsuban.
A report at the Bangkok Post indicates how this political activist monk has decided to take up the lese majeste cudgels to attack his political opponents. He has “accused several pro-government radio stations of lese majeste, and demanded the National Broadcasting and Telecommunications Commission to take then off the air.”
This is not his first effort at vigilantism. The anti-democrat monk got in on the lese majeste sycophancy by holding a rally and offering a reward of 500,000 baht for anybody who could arrest or locate the red shirt iconoclast Ko Tee, recently accused of lese majeste. He’s also exhibits a considerable interest in money.
Political extremism in Thailand begins with monarchy and lese majeste. Here’s the rest of the Post report:
The monk led a number of PDRC protesters to the NBTC head office in Soi Phahon Yothin 8 after calling at the Miracle Grand Hotel where the Election Commission and political parties were meeting.
Luang Pu met NBTC secretary-general Thakorn Tanthasith, and asked him why no action had been taken against several radio stations of the red shirts which he alleged had broadcast programmes containing lese majeste remarks in violation of the Section 112 of the Criminal Code.
He said such radio stations included the one run by Wuthipong Kochathamkhun, alias Ko Tee, the Pathum Thani red-shirt leader. He gave a tape which recorded a programme broadcast by Ko Tee’s radio station on Tuesday morning to Mr Thakorn. Ko Tee has been charged with lese majeste in a separate case, but has apparently fled rather than answer charges.
Mr Thakorn explained to the monk that the NBTC had set up a task force centre to monitor radio and TV programmes. It has no authority to order the closure of any stations, including those accused of violating lese majeste laws. It is a police matter, he explained.
The protesters said they were not satisfied with the explanation and shouted disapproval, accusing the NBTC of neglect of duty.
They vowed to stay at the NBTC office until they receive the “satisfactory answer” they are seeking.