In Thailand The People’s Alliance for Democracy (PAD) has been instrumental thus far in keeping the light on Thailand’s ruling party the People power Party (PPP), and the PPP does not like that one bit. At least from the outside and for the moment the PPP has seemed to back away from some of the controversial things it has done and clearly still wants to do.
The PAD was formed in 2005 as a people’s response to then Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra’s self serving behavior and for destroying the checks and balances of democracy. The PAD was seen as one of the catalysts that lead to the September 2006 coup that ousted Thaksin. After the coup the PAD disbursed itself as it’s goal had been achieved.
The PPP essentially is the reincarnation of Thaksin’s party the Thai Rak Thai, and all the same problems are reemerging. The day the PPP took power and was sworn into office it started to rain in Bangkok for several days. Rain in Bangkok is not unusual however at that time of the year rain is virtually unheard of, and for it to continue for several day is even more rare. Many Thais took this as a bad omen.
The PPP was given the chance to prove itself when they took office, however from the word go they started to do things that were seen as serving Thaksin Shinawatra’s interests. This persisted and little if any work was done for the people. The only thing that was different was the new constitution was starting to show it’s teeth at the PPP, however the PPP did it’s best to ignore the constitution and do what it wanted. These actions and others lead to the PAD returning. The PAD is fueled by the PPP not doing things that are seen as common sense by nearly everyone, and by doing just the opposite. One of those thing was the PPP expressing desire to trash the constitution that was designed to keep the bad boy politicians from being bad.
The government made threats that they would disburse the PAD rally however this had the opposite effect because the PAD was allowed to protest under the constitution. That threat only make the numbers of people attending the rally swell.
The next thing the PAD did was start to hold smaller temporary rallies to deal with what the PAD felt were issues of importance, however from the outside it started to look like they PAD was starting to scrape to bottom of the barrel as parliament had entered a period of recess. The PAD however was still able to bring in several thousands of people even that the protests were held weekdays during what would be seen as working hours.
Now the parliament has entered a short temporary session to address some issues. The democratic party also known as the opposition party has been placed in Que two things the PPP lead government wants desperately to avoid. The first is a no confidence vote and the second is a censure debate. The PPP is looking for every excuse it can find and even make up some to avoid needing to answer to questions about their actions that they know will be difficult or impossible to justify. Because of this the PAD seeks to move it’s rally to the Government house to apply pressure.
This has resulted in the PPP lead government talking tough and making threats. Police Lt-General Vichien-chote Sukchotirat, the Government House spokesman, issued a warning: “The PAD has committed itself to becoming either a coup-maker or a traitor,” he said.
“The protesters can’t besiege Government House, which is the symbol of democracy and of the administration. When they stage a coup, they have to take over Government House. If they are successful, we call it a coup or a reform. If not successful, we call it the act of a traitor.”
However in reality the Thai people do have the right to demand that their government do the work for the people. Words like ‘traitor’ are strong words with no substance in this case.
However in reality one of the strengths is the PAD is they are non violent and do not break the law. However in a continued propaganda attack by the government, they frequently accuse the PAD of breaking the law. Just looking into the crowd you will see mothers with their young children in strollers to give you some sort of picture of the PAD that very effectively counters the PPP propaganda of a violent mob. If any blood is spilled, it will be seen as being caused by the PPP lead government.
The news that is being spun by the PPP now is there will be a confrontation between the PAD and the police and the PAD will be blocked from going to the Government House. This once again is the PPP government violating the constitution for it’s own reasons, and ultimately will result in more self inflicted wounds as the PAD has the right to do just that. This will also bring the misdoing of the PPP into more of the international spotlight and not just in Thailand. Any conflict will just strengthen the PAD. The constitution clearly is on the side of the PAD, and the PPP will be seen as resorting to force to avoid answering questions. The march to the Government House is planned for Friday June 20.