Wednesday, April 15, 2009
I was getting the impression, watching the repression in Thailand this week, so different to the lack of it when the "yellow shirts" did exactly the same last year, that the current "yellow" government is basically a puppet of the king and very especially the army and that in the end Thaksin and his "red shirts" would be the party of the people and the others just the usual political dogs of the estabilishment. But I don't know too much of Thailand (other than it being the main vassal of the US Empire in the region, together with Philippines), so I have kept a cautious "neutral" attitude.
Finally I have found at The Guardian (via Rebelión) an article that explains what is really going on.
The author, Giles Ji Ungpakorn explains that, yes, Thaksin is evil, burgueoise and corrupt but he managed to lead the popular discontent against the de-facto monarchical dictatorship and the estabilishment in general, which is even more evil, burgeueoise and corrupt. After the reaction managed to take him out, the real party behind him is emerging and their new name Real Democracy (instead of the rather silly "Thai Loves Thai" used in the past) speaks a lot.
Ungpakorn explains that what is going on is in fact just the normal class war going on everywhere else: the people demanding real democracy and social change, some of which Thaksin implemented in fact. But he argues that the red shirts are far from being just mere passive followers of Thaksin, that they have reacted in anger in fact to some of his policies and lack of them in the past and that, now that Thanksin is in exile, have become even more radicalized.
In turn the yellow shirts are denounced as a monarchist fascist old guard trying to impose a "new order" where most public positions, including parliamentary seats, would not be elected. Fascism.
Ungpakorn had to exile himself last February to avoid being persecuted under the fasicst laws of the SE Asian realm that severaly persecute anyone who criticies the totalitarian monarch.
In a sense we are watching some of what happened in Nepal last year, with the difference that the red shirts, by the moment, are not so much radicalized and certainly (unlike the yellow shirts) are not armed like the Maoist guerrilla of the Himalayan country. As the confrontation deepens the republican sentiment grows and, well, anything may happen. Moreso in such an awful general economic context as the one we suffer now.