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Censored to Protect Participants in a Private Conversation from Lèse-Majesté Charges

Introduction
 
In a country like the UK, which has a detailed written history of its monarchs going back far earlier than that of Thailand’s, if Her Majesty the Queen were to be severely indisposed, then another member of the family would take over the role as spokesperson, or this role would be delegated to the Head of the Privy Council. This would minimize the amount of gossip or speculation about the status of Her Majesty. In Thailand, where this option is not available, all sorts of conversations about the Thai monarchy take place every day. Most of these conversations take place in private, whether electronically or in person. When the difference between the private and public spheres breaks down, the police state takes over. At this point, the only question that matters, as pointed out in a previous column, is ‘Who watches the watchmen?’, the answer being, of course, ‘More watchmen’. In the case of the Stasi, the secret police in former East Germany, tens of thousands of recordings of private conversations were made – and are now publicly available. If the Thai military were to record private conversations on a mass scale, the question is not if they will leak, but when. 
 

 

            X’s MEETING WITH Y, FEBRUARY 16, 2005

Date:

2005 February 17, 10:10 (Thursday)

Canonical ID:

05BANGKOK1233_a

Original Classification:

SECRET

Current Classification:

SECRET

Handling Restrictions

-- Not Assigned --

Character Count:

7248

Executive Order:

-- Not Assigned --

Locator:

TEXT ONLINE

TAGS:

BM - Burma | BURMA | PGOV - Political Affairs--Government; Internal Governmental Affairs | PINR - Political Affairs--Intelligence | PREL - Political Affairs--External Political Relations | TH - Thailand

Concepts:

-- Not Assigned --

Enclosure:

-- Not Assigned --

Type:

TE - Telegram (cable)

Office Origin:

-- N/A or Blank --

 

Office Action:

-- N/A or Blank --

Archive Status:

-- Not Assigned --

From:

Thailand Bangkok

Markings:

-- Not Assigned --

To:

-- N/A or Blank --

 

 

Classified By: Ambassador Ralph L. Boyce, Reason 1.4 (d)