Army impunity

24 01 2021

The impunity enjoyed by officials has a long history in Thailand but it is undeniable that it has expanded and deepened since the the 2006 military coup. Under the current regime there is essentially zero accountability for officials. Sure, there are occasional “crackdowns” and the odd prosecution, but the rule that officials can get away with stuff – even murder – holds.

In a Bangkok Post editorial, questions are raised about the Royal Thai Army, which celebrated “its strength and solidarity” on Armed Forces Day.

The editorial asks the public to “keep in mind that military officials still owe a few explanations on its pledge to reform, following several cases, including the Korat mass shooting last year that left a huge stain on its image.”

Clipped from Khaosod

It points out that on 8-9 February 2020, a disgruntled soldier “shot and killed 29 innocent people and wounded 57 others in Nakhon Ratchasima…”. The killer’s problem was “a property dispute” with “the soldier’s senior officer and his mother-in-law…”. In other words, “the army’s side dealings [were]… the root cause.” It adds that “analysts” say that “some army officers enter into private business dealings — and it’s an open secret.”

A few days later, “then army chief Apirat Kongsompong promised to investigate the problem…”. In fact, he did nothing to change the underlying situation. Indeed, this corruption continues. The Post mentions an alleged “illegal allocation of over 70,000 rai of forest land in Nakhon Ratchasima for a real estate project involving senior army officers.”

Yes, the very same province as the mass shooting. The Post adds that there “have been no reports of an investigation, let alone progress and punishment of culprits.”

The Post then recalls the unexplained death of a military conscript – there’s been more than one case – and asks: “How can the RTA restore public trust when it is entrenched in scandals? Why should the public trust a force of armed men who can barely be transparent in their affairs?”

How many times have we heard such pleading. In fact, it is as many times as reform has been rejected by the military as the Army maintains it impunity and its control.

We should note that the Post editorial mistakenly states that the Korat shooting “is considered the deadliest mass shooting in the kingdom’s history.” This mistake reflects some big omissions.

The biggest is the murder of almost a hundred red shirts and bystanders in April and May 2010. Who has been held accountable? No one from the Army.

Who killed protesters in 1992? Who was held accountable? No one from the Army or police.

Who murdered civilian protesters at Thammasat University on 6 October 1976? Who was held accountable? No one from the Army or police.

Who murdered civilian protesters on 14 October 1973? Who was held accountable? No one from the Army or police.

Who murdered people at Kru Se in 2004 and Tak Bai the same year? Who was held accountable? No one from the Army or police.

What about the enforced disappearances of activists and unexplained murder of civilians like Chaiyapoom Pasae? Who was held accountable? No one from the Army or police.

The list could go on and on and on.





Updated: Impunity and violence

24 04 2014

Recent events suggest the importance of understanding violence and the impunity of its perpetrators who are usually state officials or goons associated with state and royalist projects, often in the name of protecting nation or monarchy.

The disappearance of “Porchalee Rakchongcharoen, an ethnic Karen also known as “Billy,” is involved in a lawsuit that accuses Kaeng Krachan Park authorities of damaging the property and homes of more than 20 Karen families living inside the park” again raises questions about state officials solving “problems” by enforced disappearance.

Of course, this is almost a “standard practice” condemned by human rights organizations for many years, but producing little change amongst officials and the military. More than a year ago, the Asian Legal Resource Center made the UN’s Human Rights Council aware of the importance of continued action to end enforced disappearance in Thailand. It pointed out that “[d]ocumented cases indicate that enforced disappearances of citizens, including human rights defenders, dissidents, and ordinary people, have been carried out by Thai state security forces for over forty years.” Somchai Neelaphaijit’s case is just one of dozens that has received considerable attention but no action.

State violence is made more likely because of impunity, and we can mention state violence against protesters in Bangkok in 2010, 1992, 1976 and 1973 and add to the sorry list the cases of state murders at Kru Se, Tak Bai and in the so-called War on Drugs in the fourteen short years of this century as examples. The assassination of political opponents has been unfortunately common, highlighted by the recent murder of anti-lese majeste activist Kamol Duangphasuk.

In all of this, PPT was pleased to see that Tyrell Haberkorn raised these issues at the International Conference on Thai Studies, with a panel on “The State, Violence and the Unspeakable in Thailand.” Dr. Haberkorn has a list of publications that address all of the issues raised above. Unfortunately, the papers in this session do not appear amongst those available at the Conference website.

Update: We added some additional links to the post.





“Bizarre, slightly surreal, and somewhat Kafkaesque”

8 12 2012

Lennox Samuels at The Daily Beast has his take on the charging of former Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva and his former deputy Suthep Thaugsuban. His essential position is the most common amongst the commentariat in Bangkok at present, yet there is much in the article that is worth considering.

It is at once bizarre, slightly surreal, and somewhat Kafkaesque: The most recent ex-prime minister of Thailand, Abhisit Vejjajiva, and one of his former deputy premiers, Suthep Thaugsuban, charged with the killing of a taxi driver during the political unrest that rocked the country more than two years ago. The charges were announced the day after the 85th birthday of the nation’s beloved King Bhumibol Adulyadej.

Part of the bizarre is the response from Abhisit, Suthep and the Democrat Party. Samuels talked to academic-for-hire and former Abhisit spokesman Panitan Wattanayagorn who sees the “charges as politically driven.” PPT wonders what he says about the “charges against 295 red shirts.” No, we don’t ponder this, for we know that Panitan deals in double standards and would dismiss these red shirts as “terrorists.” Panitan does make one good point: “It’s unprecedented to charge two top policymakers, including the former prime minister, like this.” That’s true and deserves to be applauded, not denigrated as when Panitan “likened the situation to charging President Obama with crimes in connection with his lawful execution of his role as commander-in-chief.” Of course, in Thailand, the king is commander-in-chief, so the comparison is flawed.* Other Democrat Party members, like The Economist, argue that the driving force behind the charges revolve around Thaksin: “Thaksin wants to come home and he’s getting desperate as his surrogates in government gain their own power and become more independent…”.

Samuels recalls Thailand’s “long-running political tug-of-war … marked by coups, deadly protests, and the ouster of prime ministers for absurdist reasons like hosting a cooking show on television. And inevitably, a bogeyman lurks in the background—or foreground, depending on who’s telling the story.” The bogeyman is not Privy Council president General Prem Tinsulanonda, the king, queen, old military duffers or someone in the military brass. Of course, it is “Thaksin Shinawatra, the populist billionaire premier ejected in a 2006 coup who has lived in comfortable exile ever since.”

We agree with Samuel that:

In essence, Thailand is divided between reformist democracy activists who want a more open process, and traditionalists who are content with the centuries-long structure dominated by elites that regard the one-man-one-vote ideal as at best premature. The elites, personified for many by Abhisit and the Democrats, have resisted “reconciliation” efforts, loath to agree to anything that would dilute the status quo.

We also agree with a diplomat cited by Samuel who declares that: “The fact is, Thaksin has been convicted of a conflict of interest,” the Western diplomat said. “Barely a misdemeanor. There are several prime ministers in the past who have committed far more egregious offenses. Frankly, it is unsustainable in the long run that the de facto prime minister be barred from his country.”

Abhisit takes a different view and in announcing his impending martyrdom, declares (at The Nation):

I hereby affirm that I will not negotiate for anybody’s interest. I insist that wrongdoers must be brought to justice and will fight the case based on facts. I will not join the process to absolve people who cheated the country. I’ll accept my fate even if the judicial process lands me in jail or gets me executed, but I will not whitewash the wrongdoings of cheaters….

Frankly, the martyrs are those protesters murdered by the state in 2010, and in 1973, 1976, 1992, at Kru Se and Tak Bai and(to mention just a few instances) where no one has been held accountable.

The problem the autocrats have is that Thaksin is electorally popular but, as Samuels explains, “the former premier is anathema to establishment Thais, who regard his populist rhetoric and policies as threats to the societal order…”. They fear and hate Thaksin so the concoct conspiracies that see anyone who is not on their side as a mortal enemy and where proposed constitutional amendments amount to “a process they allege would result in the entire political system being jettisoned, including the monarchy.” That is bizarre.

The outcome is described in the article this way:

In the short term, the political gridlock is likely to continue, as neither side has the leverage to effect change—or the will to compromise. “A lot of people are in a prolonged conflict,” said one prominent political figure. “There’s more and more hatred and anger, and things get more complicated. So it is not possible for them to say, all of a sudden, we want to reconcile.” He added that both sides are “about even,” with Red Shirts having the government on their side while the Yellow Shirts can claim the military, judiciary, and “people in the palace.” … “Reconciliation basically has a better chance when one side dominates,” he said. If so, Thailand’s in for a long slog.

Interestingly, the government also has the majority of the people on its side, but then the autocrats simply can’t accept elections or their results (unless they were to somehow conjure a win). This is one reason why Abhisit always speaks of the rule of law and seldom about issues of democracy.

______

*While there are U.S. politicians who should be held responsible for atrocious acts internationally – think drones and Indochina bombing – we can’t think of a case of post-Civil War mass state killings in the U.S. that haven’t gone to the courts. The Kent State killings come to mind as a case that did go to courts, but maybe readers can remind us of others as we know little about U.S. history.





Soldiers would have killed more

2 09 2012

Loud-mouth Army boss General Prayuth Chan-ocha has been at it again. The Bangkok Post reports that the general has declared that “If soldiers wanted to kill civilians, a lot of them would have died.”

So let’s get this right…. The Army couldn’t have killed civilians and red shirt protesters because if they were killing red shirts, they would have killed a lot more of them the the 80+ who were murdered in April and May 2010. The deaths have to be put down to less efficient and skilled murderers than the Army.

At the same time, the Army mouth-in-chief also “reassured soldiers he will protect them from allegations they might face from their involvement in the political unrest two years ago.” He says they had “performed their duty based on laws so don’t be afraid, the army will protect them…”.

We need to get this right too. The Army, which didn’t murder anybody, and if they had would have killed more, can’t be blamed because those who didn’t kill anybody were doing their duty under orders from the Abhisit Vejjajiva government.

The Army was going to protect the soldiers involved in, well, nothing…. And, all the fuss has to do with the media that has “played up” the affair and the claims of snipers, and he admits to being “bothered” by the whole affair.

In fact, there is another way to look at Prayuth’s nonsensical and imaginative but illogical ranting. He’s “bothered” that the Army is going to face legal action for doing its “duty” of protecting the elite’s state by killing civilians it sees as opponents: in, for example, under General Sarit, 1973-76, in 1992, at Tak Bai and Kru Se and in 2009 and 2010.

 





Baby steps and backward steps

21 09 2011

While there has been some good news on the new government, especially in recent days, there are also some odd reverses being reported.

Good news has come with, for example, Yingluck Shinawatra’s statement that lese majeste is to be addressed. Bad news is seen in a report from Prachatai where it is revealed that Minister of Interior Yongyuth Wichaidit has had the not too bright idea that the previous government wasn’t all that good at protecting the monarchy.

PPT might agree if Yongyuth meant that the emphasis on lese majeste and the monarchy’s willing political entanglements had done little more than reveal the true nature of the monarchy and its associated regime.

Yongyuth, however, states that the monarchy is “above” policy and “to protect the institution was the soul and spirit inherent in the blood of all Thai people.” That’s royalist nonsense and ahistorical drivel. But then this bombshell:

The government has the idea to revive village scouts in concrete form for the sake of the reconciliation of Thais to encourage them to love the country and religion, and to be an important force in the future.  No budget will be allocated for this, but [the government] will promote the idea of sacrificing for the country.  And the main task is to fight the drugs problem….

PPT recognises that there is some mixing of policies going on here, but the sentiment associated with “reviving” the village scouts is truly retrograde. Of course, the scouts were never gone. They may have aged, been turned into cyber-scouts seeking out lese majeste, and so on, but they remained close to the Border Patrol Police and cherished their links to the monarchy (see the scan of the first page of an old academic article (left). Here is how they were described in the official U.S. history of the period:

Political tensions between leftist and rightist forces reached a bloody climax in October 1976. On October 5, right-wing newspapers in the capital published a photograph of student demonstrators at Thammasat University reenacting the strangling and hanging of two student protestors by police the previous month. The photograph, which was later found to have been altered, showed one of the students as being made up to resemble the king’s son, Crown Prince Vajiralongkorn. The right wing perceived the demonstration as a damning act of lèse-majeste. That evening police surrounded the campus of Thammasat University, where 2,000 students were holding a sit-in. Fighting between students and police (including contingents of the paramilitary Border Patrol Police) broke out. The following day, groups of Nawa Phon, Red Gaurs, and Village Scouts “shock troops” surged onto the campus and launched a bloody assault in which hundreds of students were killed and wounded and more than 1,000 arrested. That evening the military seized power, established the National Administrative Reform Council (NARC), and ended that phase of Thailand’s intermittent experimentation with democracy.

The idea of re-engaging the right-wing village scouts belongs to the right-wing of the 1970s and the Jurassic royalist elite of today, not to any serious government.

A second story that reminds PPT of old days and bygone ideas is the Bangkok Post report that the self-proclaimed killer General Panlop Pinmanee is an adviser to Prime Minister Yingluck and wants his old job back at the International Security Operations Command (ISOC).

It isn’t that often that we agree with both the Post’s yellow-hued opinion page scribes and with the bitter Suthep Thaugsuban on anything. However, we agree that the ever-ambitious Panlop is simply someone who should be bypassed. In fact, he is another general who should be tried for his abuses over many years.

Panlop was once accused of involvement in an assassination attempt on Thaksin. Panlop denied this in a curious way:

Thaksin sacked Pallop, a retired Army general, after a car belonging to an Isoc officer was found packed with a significant amount of explosives and parked near the prime minister’s residence on the route normally taken by his motorcade.

The officer, Army Lieutenant Thawatchai Klinchana, was later arrested and charged with possessing explosive materials, including TNT, without a permit.

“You know me. If I was behind it, I would not have missed,” Pallop, visibly shaken, said. “I wouldn’t have sent Thawatchai to drive around Thaksin’s residence. I would have set it off without any warning.”

The officer involved was Panlop’s driver. Panlop explained he was an experienced leader of “death squads,” so he would not have pussy-footed around in killing the premier.By 2008, Panlop was a yellow shirt (see picture right).

Oddly, Panlop later went over to Thaksin’s side and was a divisive but dangerous figure, apparently accepted because he was prepared to spill the beans on royalist coup plotters.

Prior to this, Panlop was already notorious for his murderous actions at the Krue Se mosque. This is Wikipedia’s account:

It was revealed that Pallop’s order to storm the mosque contravened a direct order by Defense Minister Chavalit Yongchaiyudh to seek a peaceful resolution to the stand-off no matter how long it took. Pallop was immediately ordered out of the area, and later tendered his resignation as commander of the Southern Peace Enhancement Center. The forward command of the Internal Security Operations Command (ISOC), which Pallop headed, was also dissolved. A government investigative commission found that the security forces had over-reacted. The Asian Centre for Human Rights questioned the independence and impartiality of the investigative commission. In 3 May 2004 during a Senate hearing, Senator Kraisak Choonhavan, noted that most of those killed at Krue Se Mosque were shot in the head and there were signs that rope had been tied around their wrists.

Why anyone would even think of dealing with Panlop is remarkable statement of extreme pragmatism. But Panlop says “he was ready to work there [ISOC] once he was ordered to do so.” Let’s hope the order never comes and this ambitious old man is sent packing or down with the navy’s submarines.

These are worrying and contradictory times.





Updated: Wikileaks, human rights and the military

30 08 2011

In the most recent batch of Wikileaks cables released over the past few days, two in particular caught our attention. Both are related to human rights in Thailand. After all of the events in the South and long records of human rights violations by the military, police and Border Patrol Police, PPT just finds these cables startling for the light they throw on the U.S.’s lack of official concern for human rights. Of course, we have read Chomsky, so we know, but we never cease to be amazed when we see the “system” at work:

The first cable is about human rights screening for Exercise Balance Torch which was to be held from 11 April to 3 June 2005.

As authorized per Ref A, U.S. Embassy Bangkok verifies that the Department of State possesses no credible information of gross violations of human rights by any of the Thai units listed in Para 2, as of this date. Embassy Bangkok’s Political Officer Robert J. Clarke is the verifying officer for the Department of State.

… Selected units are:

ROYAL THAI BORDER PATROL POLICE (BPP)

– 4th Region BPP Headquarters Combat Patrol Unit

– 4th Region BPP Headquarters Sub-Division

– BPP Region IV Headquarters, Songkhla

– BPP Battalion, Sub-Division 41, Region IV, Chomphon

– BPP Battalion, Sub-Division 42, Region IV, Nakhon Si Thammarat

– 4th BPP Sub-Division 43

– BPP Battalion, Sub-Division 44, Region IV, Yala

– BPP Training Battalion, Sub-Division 8, Region IV, Nakhon Si Thammarat

– BPP Training Battalion, Sub-Division 9, Region IV, Songkhla

PROVISIONAL NARCOTICS SUPPRESSION BUREAU

– NSB Division 1, Sub-Division 5 – Surat Thani, Phuket, Songkhla, Narathiwat

– NSB Division 2, Sub-Division 5 – Chompun, Krabi, Hat Yai

OFFICE OF NARCOTICS CONTROL BOARD (ONCB)

– Regional Narcotics Control Center (South)

ROYAL THAI MARINE POLICE (RTMP)

– Royal Thai Marine Police, Sub-Division 3, Surat Thani

– Royal Thai Marine Police, Sub-Division 4, Songkhla

– Royal Thai Marine Police, Sub-Division 5, Phuket

BOYCE

The second cable also relates to Exercise Balance Torch.

JUSMAGTHAI has requested that the Embassy/State Department complete human rights vetting for units that have been selected to participate in Exercise Balance Torch (BT) 05-2 from 11 April – 3 June 2005. To meet internal DOD advance deployment deadlines, they have requested that the review of human rights reports and files be completed no later than eight weeks prior to the exercise, if possible.

… The Embassy possesses no credible evidence that any of the units listed below in paragraph four have committed gross violations of human rights. The Embassy has important information, contained in paragraph 5, about one of the units. Please advise whether the Department has any relevant information on the units listed in paragraph four below.

… Participants in the Exercise are as follows:

ROYAL THAI ARMY UNITS

Special Warfare Command, 1st Special Forces Division, 1st Special Forces Regiment – (approx. 20 personnel)

1st Army Area, 1st Infantry Division, 1st Infantry Regiment (approx. 440 personnel)

2nd Army Area, 3rd Infantry Division, 3rd Infantry Regiment (approx. 220 personnel)

4th Army Area, 5th Infantry Division, 25th Infantry Regiment (approx. 220 personnel)

ROYAL THAI NAVY

HQ, Special Warfare Group (approx. 50 personnel)

¶5. Thai media reports indicated that members of the 25th Infantry Regiment were involved in the April 28, 2004 assault upon militants holding the Krue Sae Mosque in Pattani Province. 32 militants who had occupied the mosque and who were part of a series of regional attacks against Thai Government institutions and murders of Thai officials were killed by Thai special forces who stormed and retook the mosque. An independent commission was set up by the Royal Thai Government to investigate the incident and concluded that excessive force was used in retaking the mosque. The investigation did not/not name the 25th Infantry Division as having committed human rights violations. MG Surapun Wongthai, G-3 for the Royal Thai Army, has assured JUSMAGTHAI that no members of the 25th Infantry Division have been implicated, or are expected to be implicated, with excesses associated with retaking the mosque. Post notes that an added feature of the training these units will receive in this exercise is an expanded human rights training course. Embassy Bangkok Political Counselor Robert J. Clarke is the verifying officer for the Embassy/Department of State.

BOYCE

Not one human rights violation to be found amongst this group of police and military!

Well, at least one action in the South is mentioned (and then defended and ticked off)…. We might add that, by 2010, many of these units had been involved in several more events that call into question their human rights records, in the South and in violently putting down protesters in 2009 and 2010.

Update: And if readers thought that more serious vetting might have been taking place, see this cable:

¶1. (U) DOD (OSD/POLICY), per Ref A, has requested that the Embassy/State Department complete further human rights vetting for the 25th Infantry Regiment, 5th Infantry Division, 4th Army Area, a unit that has been selected to participate in Exercise Balance Torch (BT) 05-2 scheduled from 11 April – 3 June 2005.

¶2. (U) The Embassy has reviewed its previous vetting (Ref C) on the 25th Infantry Regiment, and made additional inquiries of an academic and an NGO that monitor human rights abuses involving security forces in Thailand. The Embassy possesses no credible evidence that the 25th Infantry Regiment or its personnel have committed gross violations of human rights. Please advise whether the Department has any relevant information on this unit.

¶3. (U) Embassy Bangkok Political Counselor Robert J. Clarke  is the verifying officer for the Embassy/Department of State.

BOYCE

The stated vetting includes: media reports, a Thai government report that has already been seen as a whitewash, one academic and one NGO, with the latter two only completed as a follow-up. Not even Tak Bai and the War on Drugs are considered. Remarkably shoddy work, perhaps deliberately so give the U.S.’s long engagement with the main human rights abusers in Thailand – the military and the police.





One year since Giles Ji Ungpakorn fled Thailand …

6 02 2010

It has been one year since Giles Ji Ungpakorn fled Thailand. He has written the following reflection and analysis on his case and the broader context of repression and injustice. PPT has reproduced it in full in English below. You can also find it posted on his blog here: 5 February 2010, “Who are the real people who avoid justice in Thailand?” and ภาษาไทยที่นี้: 5 ก.พ. 2553, “ผู้หนีคดีตัวจริงไม่ใช่ผม”

***

Who are the real people who avoid justice in Thailand?

Giles Ji Ungpakorn

The 6th February is the anniversary of the day when I had to leave Thailand and seek political exile in Britain. I left Thailand because it had become a dictatorship with no regard to international standards of justice, democracy or human rights. I was charged with lese majeste for writing a book which criticised the illegal military coup in 2006. In the book I questioned the role of the King and the relationship between the army and the monarchy. I asked whether the monarchy should have defended the constitution and democracy. The perverse thing about the lese majeste law is that a person can still be “guilty” for telling the truth. It is a law which tries to prevent open discussion. Court cases are heard in camera in a kangaroo court. Da Torpedo was sentenced in such a court to 18 years in prison.

The Thai government has failed to show how I made any untrue statements in my book. Yet they accuse me of “avoiding justice”. The same accusation is made against Jakrapop Penkare. Yet, who are the real criminals in Thailand who avoid justice? They are the military and conservative elites who use bully-boy tactics to destroy justice.

Sonti Boonyakarin and his fellow junta members, who stage the illegal coup in 2006 and committed treason against the Thai people, are avoiding justice for the crimes committed.  He and his mates are avoiding justice on charges of “conflict of interest and corruption”. They staged an illegal coup and then appointed themselves to lucrative state enterprise and governmental positions. They wrote their own constitution which made sure all governments must increase military spending. They even used public money to stage the coup.

Ex-Prime Minister Surayut Julanon is avoiding justice for his violence and brutality in the May 1992 military crack down against pro-democracy demonstrators. He is also avoiding justice on charges of taking over land in a national park. He is corrupt because he took a position as an illegitimate Prime Minister after the coup, drawing a salary from public funds.

King Pumipon is avoiding justice and has been doing so for decades. He knows how his brother died because he was there and yet he gave false testimony about it. He allowed innocent people to be executed. More recently he has become “unusually rich”, arising from his public position. He is now the richest man in Thailand and the richest monarch in the world. He is avoiding justice for this and for “failing to do his duty” in protecting democracy.

Prem Tinsulanon is avoiding justice for corruption. He still lives in a state owned house despite being retired. He “abused his power” by becoming an unelected Prime Minister in the 1980s and “neglected his duty” to properly advise the King to protect democracy.

Sonti Limtongkul, Jamlong Simuang, Somsak Kosaisuk, Pipop Tongchai, Somkiat Pongpaiboon, Wira Somkwamkit, Suriyasai Katasila, Kasit Pirom and the entire PAD gang are avoiding justice for  “violent acts, using weapons” on the streets of Bangkok. They are avoiding justice for “wrecking Government House and blocking the airports”. They are avoiding justice for “aiding and abetting an illegal coup” and for “causing a disturbance of the peace” on the Cambodian border.

Government politicians Abhisit Vejjajiva, Korn Jatikavanit, Sutep Tuaksuban and Satit Wongnongtuay are avoiding justice for “aiding and abetting an illegal coup”, “murdering” demonstrators in Bangkok in April 2009, “abusing their power and relationship with the military” to set up an illegitimate government, “illegally abusing their power” to instigate widespread censorship and they are also avoiding justice for a “conflict of interest” because they all stand to gain personally from the illegal coup in 2006. Newin Chitchorp is also avoiding justice for “gangsterism” by setting up the Blue Shirt thugs.

Yellow shirt academics and NGO activists are avoiding justice for “aiding and abetting an illegal coup” and “libelling” the Thai electorate for being stupid. They are avoiding justice for having a “conflict of interest” in receiving wages from public funds for accepting positions on bodies set up by the illegal junta. Members of the illegal junta government are also avoiding justice for this crime.

Mainstream Thai media moguls are avoiding justice for the continuous libel of Red Shirt activists, who are usually too poor to sue them.

The list of those avoiding justice goes on…. top politicians, army generals and police commanders who killed people in the South at Takbai and Krue-Sa, in the war on drugs, in the 1992, 1976 and 1973 bloodbaths. Those who killed defence lawyer Somchai and social movement activists and the capitalists who caused serious industrial accidents like the Kader fire etc etc etc…

Compare the above crimes with what I or Jakrapop or Da Torpedo did.

One day when we win democracy, we shall have to bring all those who are avoiding justice to court to be tried by a jury of people randomly selected from the population. The old corrupt judges, who are also avoiding justice, cannot be trusted.