The Dictator General Prayuth Chan-ocha has spoken in his weekly television speech, declaring that he wants “little or no conflict,” something he calls “democracy” and a country where “people must know the law.”
Coming from the boss of a thuggish gang this may seem more than a little rich. After all, the military junta broke the most basic law when it overthrew the constitution, provokes conflict by, for example, using military personnel to instigate violence and it murders citizens. In addition, junta members are, like little kings, seemingly above the law.
But what does The Dictator mean in his calls?
He reportedly “expressed concern over people breaking the law during the holiday period.” He asked: “If people do not follow the law, the law will be less sacred. Please do not break the law. How can we live in a lawless land?”
He is explaining that the nation’s “children” must follow the law as determined by its “elders,” who seem above the law, at least if they are fabulously wealthy or wearing a uniform of a senior officer. “Good people” are by definition “moral,” so they are not required to be controlled by the law. The lower classes are subordinates and are subject to the lures of politicians and must be controlled and subject to the law.
The Dictator “said people must know the law and, as such, should be aware if they break the law.” He explained: “You want to express your political opinion, claiming democracy. But is it time to do that?”
It is only time to express political opinions if “children” are directed to do so by their betters. So demonstrating at the US Embassy is fine, but pointing out military corruption is verboten. Nazism and fascism come to mind. In Thailand, it is called despotic paternalism.
The Dictator also explained that “some Thais did not believe in the justice system because they did not understand justice procedures.” While we are sure that Prayuth hasn’t a clue about justice, what he means is that double standards need to be better understood. Again, he is declaring that the nation’s “children” must understand that their “betters” and “elders” will not be treated the same as they are.