18 Nov 2010
It is ironic that the “experts” and bureaucrats on the Board of Censors can decide that a film cannot be watched by the general public because it would damage “public order or morals”, yet they don’t seem to get “corrupted” themselves.
11 Nov 2010
The military should withdraw armed soldiers from BTS Skytrain and MRT subway stations and lift immediately the emergency decree which has been imposed for nearly six months. The prolonged decree and soldiers' presence is militarising Thai society and creating fear among those who oppose the government, said Patchanee Kumnak, a committee member of Social Move, a fringe group of Thai leftists.
5 Nov 2010
Writer Sukprida Banomyong, well-known son of the late senior statesman Pridi Banomyong and the late Thanpooying Poonsuk Banomyong, spent much of the latter part of his life defending and reviving the legacy of his father and the 1932 revolt.
5 Nov 2010
In the space of less than a week, the army chief, the defence minister and the police chief have publicly declared war on "the anti-monarchist movement" by vowing to put behind bars those making defamatory remarks about and criticising the institution. The approach is simply wrong, is undemocratic and won't solve the "problem".
29 Oct 2010
After nearly two months of silence, the hard-hitting anti-government Red Power magazine is back in print, though its editor Somyos Prueksakasemsuk is having a hard time moving 30,000 copies of the latest edition from Cambodia into Thailand due to alleged border blockade by the authorities.
22 Oct 2010
There are times when observers will be tempted to ask if Thai society is corrupt in its thinking and morally bankrupt beyond redemption. Consider the following examples: New Army chief General Prayuth Chan-ocha on Monday promoted dozens of Army officers who had taken part in the April-May crackdown on red shirts, which resulted in 91 deaths, even though the government appointed fact-finding panel looking into these deaths is nowhere close to providing details on the exact circumstances on each.
8 Oct 2010
The trouble with the explosions rocking Bangkok and its vicinity - one of which took a deadly turn on Tuesday, killing four people and injuring 10 in Nonthaburi - is that your take on the situation will most likely be influenced by your political stance. If you are a yellow-shirt royalist, then you will likely believe that the explosions are part of a vicious grand plan to turn the Kingdom of Thailand into a republic by first turning it into a failed state.
3 Oct 2010
Khon Kaen-based scholar David Streckfuss recently completed a seminal book on lese majeste law entitled “Truth on Trial in Thailand: Defamation, treason, and lese-majeste” published by Routledge. He answered questions by Pravit Rojanaphruk about lese majeste law and more. Excerpts: 1) Many people who support lese majeste law say Thailand and its monarchy is unique thus the law is needed. What's your view?
1 Oct 2010
Chiranuch Premchaiporn, director of prachatai.com, an online newspaper, which is regarded by some as being pro-red and has been blocked since April, was arrested at Suvarnabhumi Airport last Friday on charges of lese majeste and violating the computer crime law over comments posted by other users. Upon returning from a seminar on cyber liberty in Hungary, she was driven straight to Khon Kaen province to face charges filed against her two years ago. She is now out on Bt200,000 bail and tells The Nation's Pravit Rojanaphruk about her ordeal. Here are some excerpts:
23 Sep 2010
In Thailand, reality and its acknowledgement have a way of being supplanted by fiction and denial. Take for instance the gathering of some 10,000 red shirts last Sunday at Rajprasong intersection to mark the fourth anniversary of the 2006 coup and the fourth month since the military cracked down on the movement. The one thing conspicuously missing from media coverage was the angry messages emblazoned on the corrugated iron wall outside CentralWorld, which is being rebuilt after the red shirts allegedly burned it down in the aftermath of the crackdown.
10 Sep 2010
In a sign of continued resistance, red-shirt print media is starting to lift its head again, with at least four publications now available in some parts of Bangkok and beyond. However, the government appears determined to suppress them, or at least stifle the most vocal ones. At press time yesterday, Red Power magazine editor Somyos Phrueksakasemsuk had reportedly gone into hiding. Somyos' colleague Sriatsara Titali told this writer yesterday that the editor was scheduled to speak at a symposium on the future of the media on Wednesday afternoon in Lat Phrao.
8 Sep 2010
With the mainstream media mostly giving the National Reform Committee a blank cheque in terms of soft PR and uncritical reporting of its activities, it has been alternative media outlets like prachatai.com that have voiced criticism. Two members of the reform committee - noted historian Nidhi Eoseewong and scholar-monk Venerable Phra Paisarn Visalo - recently came under fire on the news website.