What happened to the red shirts?

13 06 2014

There are a couple of interesting stories in recent days that give some insights into why the red shirts have been quiet.

The first is at the BBC and includes a video story as well. It speaks of repression and fear.

The “red villages” of Udon Thani are red no longer. Under orders from the military authorities, the red flags and banners have gone, the red gates and buildings are painted over.

Few people are brave enough to wear red shirts any more.

One of the army’s first acts after staging its coup in Bangkok was to detain, or summon, all those with important leadership roles in the UDD, the so-called red-shirt movement.

… When the detained leaders were released, they were forced to sign agreements that they would stop all political activity and refrain from inflammatory statements.

This process has, the report says, left the “mass of red-shirt supporters in the area around the provincial city of Udon Thani … confused and demoralised by the coup…. They had expected to be called on by the UDD leadership to take part in organised resistance to the takeover. That has not happened.”

Why? The report points to “… local activists, especially those running the all-important community radio stations which played an important role in mobilising the red-shirts, have been called in for questioning…. The radio stations have been shut down, their equipment confiscated and their houses searched.”

Soldiers have been everywhere. They “operate checkpoints on all the main roads around Udon Thani, and they have built bunkers at sensitive locations.”

In the face of all of this: “There was little appetite for confrontation anywhere in the village.” And, village activists say that “after the coup, … [there had been] little communication with red-shirt leaders,” and so activists were not sure what to do. ne activists said: “We have to stop our activities, because we have a gun pointed at our heads – we have to. But we don’t want to. I feel so bad towards the army. How are they going to run the country, without the people’s support?”

Meanwhile, at the Isaan Record, there are two important stories. The first tells of initial resistance to the expanded military presence and how this was stifled. The second is a story of the initial action by the junta and the “defeat” of the so-called Khon Kaen Model. In reading this story PPT couldn’t help but think of previously concocted “plots” and “plans” that have been used to undermine red shirts and the various pro-Thaksin Shinawatra movements and parties over the past decade and more. The military has been behind most of these inventions. However, they create a fear that inhibits organizing.


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29 06 2014
The dictatorship and fabricated claims | Political Prisoners of Thailand

[…] so-called Khon Kaen Model is quite possibly just one more military concoction. That aside, what  did suspect Noppadol have to do and […]

29 06 2014
The dictatorship and fabricated claims | Political Prisoners in Thailand

[…] so-called Khon Kaen Model is quite possibly just one more military concoction. That aside, what  did suspect Noppadol have to do and […]




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