thailand political situation

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cooran
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Re: thailand political situation

Post by cooran »

Thailand issues warrant for Thaksin over protests"

The Thai government says Mr Thaksin was a key player in recent unrest
A Thai court has approved an arrest warrant for ousted leader Thaksin Shinawatra on terrorism charges related to recent anti-government protests.
The nine-week protest paralysed parts of Bangkok and left more than 80 people dead.
Many of the protesters were supporters of Mr Thaksin, and the Thai government accuses him of fomenting the unrest.
In a separate development, authorities have extended an overnight curfew in Bangkok and 23 provinces.
A curfew has been in force since the government operation to disperse protesters on 19 May and the subsequent fires and unrest across the city.
Authorities said the curfew would run for four more nights, between the hours of 0000 and 0400.
'Enough evidence'
Mr Thaksin was ousted by the military in a 2006 coup, then convicted of corruption in absentia. He now lives overseas.
Many of the red-shirt protesters who arrived in Bangkok on 14 March and shut down key parts of the city for two months support him.
Thai prosecutors have accused him of co-ordinating the protests, and an official said that the court found there was reason to issue a warrant.
"The court said there was enough evidence to believe that Thaksin was the mastermind, having played a significant role in instructing and manipulating the incidents," Department of Special Investigations chief Tharit Pengdit told Reuters news agency.
Mr Thaksin rejected the charges in a statement issued through a legal advisor.
"I have never supported violence," he said. "The arrest warrant against me is unfair. I am ready to prove that I am not a terrorist and the accusation is politically motivated."
This is a much more serious charge than anything Mr Thaksin has ever faced before but, say correspondents, whether the warrant will be effective is the big question.
It is not known where Mr Thaksin lives. He travels widely, splitting his time between Dubai and Montenegro, which recently issued him with a passport.
http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/world/asia_p ... 152436.stm" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
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Pannapetar
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Re: thailand political situation

Post by Pannapetar »

nathan wrote:Globalization appears to be having the net effect of reducing the vast majority of all citizens of all countries to conditions of increasing deprivation, poverty and powerlessness while elevating the remaining few to positions of previously unachievable wealth and power. The wealthy and powerful increasingly don't identify with the citizens of any country and are effectively non-national or global citizens who can go where they please and do as they like.
I doubt this is true for Thailand, because Thai society was always very hierarchic and stratified. There used to be a very large class of "regular" people (farmers, workers, servants), a relatively small group of officers of the state and a tiny elite, mostly royals and land-owning gentry. Industrialisation and globalisation have actually helped making these class barriers fuzzier and more permeable. They also fostered the development of a new middle class centered in Bangkok. Of course, globalisation likewise had some negative consequences. The biggest mistake yet was probably the free trade agreement with China (and to a lesser degree that with the US and Australia) which was ratified by the late Thaksin administration in 2004 due to Thaksin's pushing. Especially the China free trade agreement has hurt farmers in an unprecedented way.

Overall, globalisation was good for Thailand, but ruthless politicians like Thaksin have unfortunately gambled away some of the advantage in exchange for personal gain, i.e. international business interests of the oligarchs (such as Thaksin).

Cheers, Thomas
nathan
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Re: thailand political situation

Post by nathan »

Pannapetar wrote:
nathan wrote:Globalization appears to be having the net effect of reducing the vast majority of all citizens of all countries to conditions of increasing deprivation, poverty and powerlessness while elevating the remaining few to positions of previously unachievable wealth and power. The wealthy and powerful increasingly don't identify with the citizens of any country and are effectively non-national or global citizens who can go where they please and do as they like.
I doubt this is true for Thailand, because Thai society was always very hierarchic and stratified. There used to be a very large class of "regular" people (farmers, workers, servants), a relatively small group of officers of the state and a tiny elite, mostly royals and land-owning gentry. Industrialisation and globalisation have actually helped making these class barriers fuzzier and more permeable. They also fostered the development of a new middle class centered in Bangkok. Of course, globalisation likewise had some negative consequences. The biggest mistake yet was probably the free trade agreement with China (and to a lesser degree that with the US and Australia) which was ratified by the late Thaksin administration in 2004 due to Thaksin's pushing. Especially the China free trade agreement has hurt farmers in an unprecedented way.

Overall, globalisation was good for Thailand, but ruthless politicians like Thaksin have unfortunately gambled away some of the advantage in exchange for personal gain, i.e. international business interests of the oligarchs (such as Thaksin).

Cheers, Thomas
I see what you're saying Thomas but the same could be said of perceptions in most every country although the time lines and cultural perceptions are all particular to each country and region. For instance in the USA most people in the working class consider themselves middle class whereas the elite classes are under no such illusion. The trend most prominent in the last century of rural migration to the cities and the growth of the middle class is now slowing. Now and for the foreseeable future the middle class is actually in decline while the numbers of working class poor, both rural and urban, is rapidly growing and this is much less visible due to the lingering presence of the middle class. Still it is something betrayed by statistics as occurring on a global scale as the wealthy continue to consolidate their positions and slowly marginalize and impoverish the middle classes. I don't think we are seeing a real shift in middle class attitudes in any country yet as they still feel somewhat secure in their status but as middle classes continue to experience growing stress I expect they will be more inclined to side with the working class poor and perhaps then a more realistic politics will eventually emerge from the social instability which will very likely precede it for some time still to come.
But whoever walking, standing, sitting, or lying down overcomes thought, delighting in the stilling of thought: he's capable, a monk like this, of touching superlative self-awakening. § 110. {Iti 4.11; Iti 115}
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gavesako
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Re: thailand political situation

Post by gavesako »

There are some Buddhist monastics with a broad knowledge of social structures in today's world and are able to suggest new interpretations of Buddhist principles to be relevant to such changed conditions. One of them is the Thai monk P.A. Payutto who has written quite a lot on these subjects (e.g. Buddhist Economics).

Also see this video series by Bhikkhu Bodhi:

Towards a Postmodern Model of Buddhism
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NDy2G3obN04" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
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gavesako
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Re: thailand political situation

Post by gavesako »

More about Wat Pathum:

Army task force denies role in killing 6 at temple
Questions raised over 'skytrain special forces'

... A monk at the temple told the Bangkok Post he saw protesters shot in front of the temple and the gunfire had come from the skytrain track. He said other protesters moved the wounded into the temple.

"First aid volunteers also emerged to help injured people and they were shot," the monk said.

Military officers responsible for overseeing the temple area said they suspected several monks in the temple were red shirt supporters and helped harbour armed militants.

The monk said most of the monks at the temple came from the Northeast but he denied that they were red shirt supporters or that they had allowed armed militants to hide out in the temple.

http://www.bangkokpost.com/news/local/3 ... -at-temple" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
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gavesako
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Re: thailand political situation

Post by gavesako »

Something about millenial movements in Thai history:

http://2bangkok.com/2bangkok/thaimediap ... ment.shtml" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

From Rattanakosin Bicentennial, 1982 - During the long reign of King Chulalongkorn, there were some disturbances to the peace of the Kingdom, such as the invasion of the Hos, a hilltribe in the North, a revolt of the Phrae; but those who were engaged in the disturbances were quickly defeated by the government authorities.

In 1901, a man, named Phi Boon, lived in Ubon Ratchathanai, a north-eastern province, declared that he was the super, no weapon could do any harm to him, and he could communicate with God and Spirits. He persuaded people and collected arms to build up forces. The government had to send the army unit to defeat them and keep the country in peace.
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Re: thailand political situation

Post by Pannapetar »

A little miracle occurred yesterday. My sister in law was allowed for the first time to enter Central World again, after the shopping mall had been destroyed by the red shirts last week. The management had made an appointment with her and the other shop owners. The section of the building where my sister in law's shop is located did not burn down (miracle no 1). However, since this was the jewelry section, it was heavily damaged and looted. Most vendors found their shops destroyed; all the glass was broken, and much of the merchandise was missing. Watches, rings, and necklaces were strewn all over the floor. However, my sister in law's shop was completely intact (miracle no. 2). Not only was the glass unbroken, but not a single item was missing. It was the only jewelry shop that did not suffer any damage; even the manager could not explain it. My sister in law now believes that Luang Pu Du, whose amulet and image was installed at her shop, helped protecting it. And since this is the stuff of legends in Thailand, Luang Pu Du suddenly became very popular and all the other vendors wanted amulets as well.

Cheers, Thomas
nathan
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Re: thailand political situation

Post by nathan »

gavesako wrote:There are some Buddhist monastics with a broad knowledge of social structures in today's world and are able to suggest new interpretations of Buddhist principles to be relevant to such changed conditions. One of them is the Thai monk P.A. Payutto who has written quite a lot on these subjects (e.g. Buddhist Economics).

Also see this video series by Bhikkhu Bodhi:

Towards a Postmodern Model of Buddhism
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NDy2G3obN04" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
Thank you Ven. Gavesako, this is noteworthy and I am sure there are some monks with this kind of learning and understanding. Unfortunately my internet connection is too primitive for viewing anything but text but if and when it is possible I will try to view this talk.
But whoever walking, standing, sitting, or lying down overcomes thought, delighting in the stilling of thought: he's capable, a monk like this, of touching superlative self-awakening. § 110. {Iti 4.11; Iti 115}
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gavesako
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Re: thailand political situation

Post by gavesako »

Thanks for the miracle story, it shows how deep the Thai animism really runs, and how relatively shallow the Buddhist roots are...

Sanitsuda Ekachai urges all Thais to remember the 5 precepts tomorrow which is Visakha Puja:
http://www.bangkokpost.com/opinion/opin ... mal-are-we" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;


And here is a self-critical piece from a Thai who does not believe all the propaganda about "foreign enemies":
http://www.bangkokpost.com/opinion/opin ... thai-idiot" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;


...But I now believe that if we continue with this long-running charade of self-deception, Thailand is on its way to becoming a failed state shortly.

We present Thailand as the Land of Smiles full of gentle Buddhists. We regularly give alms to monks and often make donations to temples, believing that those are selfless acts for the welfare of others.

Deep down, however, we do that only because we wish to get something in return - to go to heaven or have a richer next life. It is a trade, pure and simple, nothing kind or selfless about it.

Few of us give for the sake of giving. We are basically very selfish.

Every time we go to the temple or attend a Buddhist ceremony, we duly accept and recite the Five Precepts as a guide to our daily lives, but we leave them there, as we always make promises without ever intending to keep them.

Actually, we understand little about Buddhism.

Even among the ranks of the monks, most do not know the teachings in-depth and lead their lives accordingly - all they know is how to conduct ceremonies from which they earn easy income.

This reflects something deeper - we are generally lazy and like to take short-cuts to the sabai (do-nothing) state. Lottery tickets, therefore, always sell out at premium prices; prostitution is rampant and young women readily marry foreign pensioners.

We love to talk but rarely listen. Even when we do, we often fail to hear, as we never learn to think critically.

We cannot put up with different points of view nor can we work cooperatively.

Many of the over 30,000 Buddhist temples were built next to one another because when we disagreed with one, we just built another.

That the cooperative movement has never been successful here is another indication of our inability to tolerate different points of view.
Bhikkhu Gavesako
Kiṃkusalagavesī anuttaraṃ santivarapadaṃ pariyesamāno... (MN 26)

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gavesako
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Re: thailand political situation

Post by gavesako »

Jotman has now collected all the evidence about the Wat Pathum shootings here:

http://jotman.blogspot.com/2010/05/kill ... emple.html" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
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gavesako
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Re: thailand political situation

Post by gavesako »

And finally, some direct report about the "Ronin fighters" helping the red shirts and responsible for the violence called "terrorism" by the government:

Unmasked: Thailand's men in black
By Kenneth Todd Ruiz and Olivier Sarbil

http://atimes.com/atimes/Southeast_Asia/LE29Ae02.html" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
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gavesako
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Re: thailand political situation

Post by gavesako »

Why was forgiving zone violated?
Wat Pathum Wanaram was opened up as a refuge to red shirt protesters, but there were several obstacles preventing it from becoming a true haven

http://www.bangkokpost.com/news/politic ... e-violated" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

Chaiwat Satha-anand of the Peace Information Centre at Thammasat University, who was among those who were instrumental in initiating the apaiyatan, pointed out that Thai temples have historically been separated from the social and political arenas. Thus the traditional apaiyatan zones in Thai temples might have been perverted to become safe zones only for fish and birds, and it may be hard for many people to extend their compassion to human beings.

"In general, the moral and social force of the temple in Thailand has been violated," said Mr Chaiwat, "as temples are not free from crimes or other moral violations. For example, many temples have signs warning people about pickpockets."
Bhikkhu Gavesako
Kiṃkusalagavesī anuttaraṃ santivarapadaṃ pariyesamāno... (MN 26)

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Re: thailand political situation

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http://asiapacific.anu.edu.au/newmandal ... ling-zone/" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
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Re: thailand political situation

Post by Virgo »

Pannapetar wrote:A little miracle occurred yesterday. My sister in law was allowed for the first time to enter Central World again, after the shopping mall had been destroyed by the red shirts last week. The management had made an appointment with her and the other shop owners. The section of the building where my sister in law's shop is located did not burn down (miracle no 1). However, since this was the jewelry section, it was heavily damaged and looted. Most vendors found their shops destroyed; all the glass was broken, and much of the merchandise was missing. Watches, rings, and necklaces were strewn all over the floor. However, my sister in law's shop was completely intact (miracle no. 2). Not only was the glass unbroken, but not a single item was missing. It was the only jewelry shop that did not suffer any damage; even the manager could not explain it. My sister in law now believes that Luang Pu Du, whose amulet and image was installed at her shop, helped protecting it. And since this is the stuff of legends in Thailand, Luang Pu Du suddenly became very popular and all the other vendors wanted amulets as well.

Cheers, Thomas
The shop your sister-in-law owns was not damaged at all because of the fruit of some wholesome past kamma. That is the only reason. The amulet of Luang Pu Du does nothing but entrench your sister more in samsara because it makes her more superstitious.

Kevin
The Hunger Site

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gavesako
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Re: thailand political situation

Post by gavesako »

The video of snipers shooting from BTS towards Wat Pathum has been released here:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=77xvkhnW ... r_embedded#" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;!
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