Updated: Military sadism

25 03 2020

PPT has long posted criticized Thailand’s murderous military. One of these criticisms is the impunity the military enjoys that allows it to act illegally and with great savagery.

On impunity and the belief that the Royal Thai Army can ignore the law and public safety, see a recent report at Khaosod. (These days, the “Royal” bit is important as it is the Army’s constant pandering to the monarchy that it believes provides it with its legitimacy.)

In that report, it is stated that the Army’s “Lumpinee Boxing Stadium … declined to explain why it proceeded with the match on March 6, two days after the venue was told to shut down.”

It is added: “Of about 800 people infected with the coronavirus so far, the Ministry of Public Health traced at least 132 to the fateful boxing match at the stadium on March 6.”

So propaganda photos of Army commander Apirat Kongsompong swabbing streets count for nothing when his commanders act in dangerous ways.

Then there’s the disturbing new report by Amnesty International that “exposes how the Thai military routinely subject[s] new conscripts to a barrage of beating, humiliation and sexual abuse that often amounts to torture.” The sexual abuse includes rape.

The report is difficult to read for the horrid acts it details.

Clare Algar, Amnesty International’s Senior Director for Research, Advocacy & Policy states:

Abuses of new conscripts in the Thai military have long been an open secret. What our research shows is that such maltreatment is not the exception but the rule, and deliberately hushed within the military….

It is added: “The full chain of command bears responsibility for this culture of violence and degradation.”

Conscripts are repeatedly abused:

Not a single day passed by without punishment…. Every time the trainers have an excuse to punish you: you’re not chanting loud enough, you’re too slow in the shower, you failed to follow orders strictly, you smoked.

Sexual abuse is rampant:

Eight conscripts, trained in four different cycles in camps located in eight different provinces, told Amnesty International that they and dozens of fellow conscripts were collectively forced by commanders to masturbate and ejaculate in public.

In response, the military has engaged in its usual arrogant responses, lying to Amnesty International. Deputy Chief of Staff Air Chief Marshal Chalermchai Sri-saiyud “stated that the military follow a policy of ‘treating new conscripts as family members and friends’.”

This pathetic response is what we have come to expect of Thailand’s officer corps.

We doubt that reform of the military is possible until it is placed under civilian oversight, with that oversight by elected civilians, and it is detached from the corrupt monarch. In addition, investigations of serving and retired military responsible for murders, coups and torture must face real and independent courts.

Update: Belatedly, General Apirat has ordered “an investigation into the alleged involvement of senior army officers in organizing the “Lumpini Champion Kiatpetch” Thai boxing event at the Lumpini boxing stadium…”.

We are not at all sure why “alleged.” It is sure that the event was held and that dozens were later found infected.

But the report continues with the nonsensical kowtowing to the military’s impunity, saying Apirat:

ordered General Ayuth Sriviset, head of the Army Personnel Department, to form a committee to investigate the boxing event and the any involvement by army officers.

Seriously? The joint is owned by the Army. This is the usual buffalo manure. Impunity reigns supreme.


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11 05 2020
Dogs of internal war | Political Prisoners in Thailand

[…] is widespread unhappiness with this throwback enlistment and its associated modern-day slavery and its sadistic violence. It is noted that just 13% of “42,000 conscripts scheduled for discharge at the end of April […]

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