Further updated: A year under the military boot II

23 05 2015

In an article first titled “Thaksin: 2014 Coup Makers Helped by ‘Palace Circle’,” Khaosod has been forced to censor its reporting and now headlines the article “Thaksin: 2014 Coup Makers Helped by Elites.” The new story states this: “Note to readers: This article has been edited to comply with Thailand’s lese majeste law.”

Thaksin 2015 In fact, clicking on the video suggests that the use of the lese majeste law for censorship in this case is taking a very broad definition of the law as Thaksin Shinawatra complains about the palace circle and privy councilors rather than anyone covered by the law.

This is the original story cached at Google:

In his strongest criticism of the May 2014 coup yet, former Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra told a South Korean media agency that last year’s military takeover was plotted by advisers to the Thai king.

The video clip was posted today on the one-year anniversary of the coup by a pro-Redshirt Facebook page called “Stop Hypocrisy in Thailand.”

Speaking in Thai above Korean subtitles, Thaksin alleged that the King’s privy councilors helped engineer the anti-government protests that culminated in the coup that overthrew his sister’s government twelve months ago.

“The military listened to the Privy Councilors,” Thaksin told Chosun Media, which organized a leadership conference that the former PM attended this week in Seoul. “When they didn’t want us to stay anymore, they made Suthep [Thaugsuban, leader of anti-government protests] come out, and then had the military help him. Some people from the palace circle also provided help, which made us powerless.”

Thaskin said the military takeover “played out like what I had been through,” referring to the military coup that ousted him from power in 2006. The 2006 putsch also followed months of protests against his government.

In both cases, the military said it was forced to intervene to restore peace and order.

Thaksin has previously asserted that the King’s advisers, especially chairperson of the Privy Council Prem Tinsulanonda, were behind efforts to remove him and his political dynasty from power. In 2006, Thaksin famously referred to Gen. Prem as an “Invisible Hand” that used “extra-constitutional means” to topple him.

Although Thaksin has been living in self-imposed exile to avoid a corruption conviction since 2008, he has remained extremely influential in Thai politics. However, he has rarely spoken in public about politics since the May 2014 coup.

Maj.Gen. Sansern Kaewkamnerd, a spokesperson of the Thai military government, called Thaksin’s remarks in the video “baseless” and “irresponsible.”

“It’s talk about old things. His claims are baseless,” Maj.Gen. Sansern said. “The former Prime Minister likes to see himself like as the center of the universe and see other people as opponents, without considering the fact that throughout his tenure, there was corruption, abuse of power, and creation of unprecedented divisions in Thailand … He should not use his opportunity to be in foreign countries to talk irresponsibly.”

Maj.Gen. Sansern also insisted that the military decided to seize power from the former government to restore peace and order.

“The peace that has taken place in the country throughout the past year is a proof of action of the government and the [junta],” he said. “I believe that the people understand who deserve praises, based on actions, not on words that can be made to look beautiful but is contradictory to the actions.”

Thaksin is an extremely divisive figure in Thai politics. Although he ​has continued to command the ardent support of Thailand’s rural-based Redshirt movement, he is reviled by the country’s mostly-urban conservatives and traditional elite, who accuse him of corruption and disrespect for the monarchy.

Update 1: The Dictator and self-appointed premier, General Prayuth Chan-ocha has responded to Thaksin’s claim that the privy council ordered the 2014 coup. In a story at the Bangkok Post, Prayuth is disingenuous in stating “I made my own decision. I risked my life leading the coup. No one ordered me. Even my family knew nothing about it.” The first claim is pure horse manure. No military commander leading a coup in Thailand has risked his life. Yes, we know of the one case of the failed coupmaker who was executed, but Prayuth took no risk.The denial that he was ordered is, we think, probably reasonable. We guess that there was general agreement amongst the elite, the military and “palace circles” for the coup. In other words, no order was necessary.

Update 2: An op-ed at the Bangkok Post has more on Prayuth’s statement. It states that The Dictator “defended the monarchy, saying it was not fighting against the people but fighting to relieve them of poverty as witnessed by all the royally-sponsored projects being implemented across the country.” We always chuckle about this claim because, the projects have been taxpayer funded since Prem Tinsulanonda’s time in power, many of them fail and all have money poured into them, failures or not. Prayuth continued, making the claim about an anti-monarchy conspiracy: “But there are people who distort the truth and there are people who believe the distortion…”. The distortion is Prayuth’s.

He added further to this by stating: “those who commit lese majeste are in the same league as those who seek to empower themselves and get rid of the military and the monarchy.” What do we say of those who link military and monarchy to empower themselves and maintain social and political inequalities for the royalist elite?

 


Actions

Information

12 responses

27 05 2015
Passports revoked, lese majeste invoked | Political Prisoners in Thailand

[…] A couple of days ago PPT posted on former elected Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra’s comments on the links between military and privy council in orchestrating the 2014 military coup. […]

27 05 2015
Passports revoked, lese majeste invoked | Political Prisoners of Thailand

[…] A couple of days ago PPT posted on former elected Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra’s comments on the links between military and privy council in orchestrating the 2014 military coup. […]

6 06 2015
Speculating on succession and conflict | Political Prisoners in Thailand

[…] PPT must have missed Thaksin’s comments about the monarchy for we only saw commentary regarding the Privy Council. […]

6 06 2015
Speculating on succession and conflict | Political Prisoners of Thailand

[…] PPT must have missed Thaksin’s comments about the monarchy for we only saw commentary regarding the Privy Council. […]

21 07 2015
Denying the undeniable | Political Prisoners in Thailand

[…] We believe that this case comes from Thaksin’s visit to Korea in May. Then, Thaksin told a South Korean media agency that last year’s military takeover was plotted by advisers to the king. He alleged that privy councilors helped engineer the anti-government protests that culminated in the coup that overthrew the Yingluck Shinawatra government. Thaksin stated: […]

21 07 2015
Denying the undeniable | Political Prisoners of Thailand

[…] We believe that this case comes from Thaksin’s visit to Korea in May. Then, Thaksin told a South Korean media agency that last year’s military takeover was plotted by advisers to the king. He alleged that privy councilors helped engineer the anti-government protests that culminated in the coup that overthrew the Yingluck Shinawatra government. Thaksin stated: […]

4 09 2015
It is personal | Political Prisoners in Thailand

[…] particular move, long hoped for by anti-Thaksin activists, is said to have been prompted by Thaksin’s comments accusing “privy counsellors of playing behind-the-scene roles in street rallies that led to last […]

4 09 2015
It is personal | Political Prisoners of Thailand

[…] particular move, long hoped for by anti-Thaksin activists, is said to have been prompted by Thaksin’s comments accusing “privy counsellors of playing behind-the-scene roles in street rallies that led to last […]

12 10 2015
Fearing Thaksin III | Political Prisoners in Thailand

[…] This is the case where Thaksin accurately assessed the scheming of the palace and military to oust Y…. […]

12 10 2015
Fearing Thaksin III | Political Prisoners of Thailand

[…] This is the case where Thaksin accurately assessed the scheming of the palace and military to oust Y…. […]

8 10 2017
Anti-Thaksinism, extradition and lese majeste | Political Prisoners of Thailand

[…] years after the case was first made in May 2015, following an interview in South Korea on which PPT has a full report. Thaksin commented on the links between military and privy council in orchestrating the 2014 […]

8 10 2017
Anti-Thaksinism, extradition and lese majeste | Political Prisoners in Thailand

[…] years after the case was first made in May 2015, following an interview in South Korea on which PPT has a full report. Thaksin commented on the links between military and privy council in orchestrating the 2014 […]