Submitted on Tue, 2014-10-21 12:23
The military has again attempted to censor the anti-establishment Same Sky (Fah Deaw Kan in Thai) publishing house by banning its t-shirts, one of which has the image of a dinosaur, with possible charges of lèse majesté. Earlier the military pressured its embattled editor to delete Facebook comments on the military’s censorship attempt.
The military asked for samples of three T-shirts for inspection:
- A white t-shirt with a Jurassic Park logo and the message “The Lost World of Monarchical Absolutism.” The image was derived from the theme of the issue of the Same Sky Journal published in 2012.
- A blue t-shirt with a tree in the middle. The root of the tree reads “Constitutional Monarchy” that grows into a tree formed from the text “Absolute Monarchy”. It is an image from the journal published in 2011.
The last one is the cult symbol of “Khun Sab Sueng” or Mr Grateful with his mouth zipped shut. The symbol of Khun Sab Sueng, normally shown crying, has been used by the anti-establishment to mock the ultra-royalists.
From Left: Blue t-shirt with a tree in the middle. The root of the tree reads “Constitutional Monarchy” that grows into a tree formed from the text “Absolute Monarchy”; White t-shirt with a Jurassic Park logo and the message “The Lost World of Monarchical Absolutism”; and Khun Sab Sueng” or Mr Grateful with his mouth zipped shut.
Jaran Homtianthong, President of the Publishers and Booksellers Association of Thailand which organized the 2014 Book Expo Thailand at the Sirikit Convention Centre, Bangkok, revealed to the BBC Thai Service that three military and police officers on Sunday asked him to request the Same Sky to stop selling the T-shirts at the fair.
The military claimed that t-shirts could be deemed defaming the revered Thai monarchy.
On the same day, Thanapol Eawsakul, the editor of Same Sky journal and publishing house, stated that the military ordered him to delete a Facebook status which stated that the military officials has come to search the Same Sky’s booth, claiming that some of the books have contents that could be deemed as defaming the monarchy as well.
Jaran, however, said to the military that he will not infringe upon the Same Sky rights and he has no rights to judge if the t-shirts could be liable for lese majeste or not.
“Thanapol, the editor of Same Sky journal, was arrested and released twice already without being judged by the court. He has the right to set up the booth. If I infringe upon his rights then i would be guilty because he did not do anything wrong,” the BBC Thai Service quoted Jaran as saying. He added that he was not surprise that this might happen because the martial law is still in place.
In 2006, Same Sky and Thanapol were threatened with lèse majesté because of the issue “The Monarchy and the Thai Society” aka “The Coke Issue,” which was banned by the Thai authorities. Because of this issue, Thanapol was charged with Article 112 but the police did not file the case.
Read related news: Military orders ‘Same Sky’ journal to delete FB status which talks about junta’s attempt to censor