Updates on the situation of the anti-establishment Red Shirt supporters in the North and Northeast, 2015: how their ways of thinking and living have changed since the 2014 military coup
The veteran politician, closed-aid to ex-PM Thaksin Shinawatra has lived in self-imposed exile for 6 years. In part 3 of the interview, Jakrapob Penkair talked about the conflicts among the Thai elites within the junta regime, the role of Pheu Thai Party, and his life outside the country.
The veteran politician, closed-aid to ex-PM Thaksin Shinawatra has lived in self-imposed exile for 6 years. In Part 2 of the interview, Jakrapob Penkair discussed the alleged violence of the red-shirt movement and prospect of Thai politics after the coup.
On 11 November 2015, Changpuak police station, Chiang Mai, issued summons for a group of six academics from various universities.
While the Thai junta insists their primary mission is to reform the country, a year has lapsed since the National Reform Council (NRC) presented 505 reform proposals to the National Reform Steering Assembly (NRSA).
Since the 22 May 2014 coup, many academics, media workers, and citizens have been arrested or summoned to report themselves to undergo forced attitude adjustment by military and civilian officials under the command of the National Council for Peace and Order (NCPO). Even though nearly eighteen months have passed since the coup, it is well-known that those who have undergone attitude adjustment experience continued de facto probation by the NCPO.
Although Jakrapob Penkair may have disappeared from the Thai political scene many years ago, his name still resounds. This confirms his status as a 'political man' whose latest achievement is to co-found 'Seri Thai'--an organisation whose mandate is to fight the junta’s National Council for Peace and Order (NCPO) from outside the country. It is the task which has prompted another round of surveillance on him by the authorities. Jakrapob has led a life of a great variety.
Since 2006, Thailand has been plagued with an unending storm of political conflict. Political thought is divided on nearly every single issue; from former Prime Minister Thaksin’s reign, the monarchical institution, nation development, democracy, elections, reform, politicians, political parties and so forth. The 22 May 2014 coup has exacerbated Thailand’s political situation. Activists, politicians, and even ordinary citizens branded as “ideologically hardcore” were left with no choice but to flee the country in self-imposed exile.
This year is the 50th anniversary of the coup that led to the deaths of an estimated 500,000-3 million, one of the worst episodes of violence in the post-World War II world. Today, few have been held responsible for the killings, which remain a rarely discussed and barely understood topic in now nominally Democratic Indonesia. As Thailand enters its second year under its own military dictatorship – one that shows no signs of leaving - here are some lessons and warning signs from its Southern neighbor.
“Faiyen” is a pop and luk thung band well-known to red-shirts. With their lyrics sharply criticizing the elite, the band seeks to politically “enlighten” listeners. Faiyen have been harassed by the military until they have had to flee to a neighbouring country. Although their lives in exile are quite difficult and fraught with limitations, Faiyen is still continuing to write and sing songs for a revolutionary change in Thai society. One of Faiyen’s new songs is a chilling cover of The Hunger Games’ “The Hanging Tree.” Although both Faiyen and Katniss may sing this song, the place Faiyen are exiled to is no District 13.