Posture for conflict in Thailand

Things quickly seem to be coming to a head in Thailand. The red shirt army of the convicted fugitive Thaksin Shinawatra seems hell bent to bringing conflict and violence any way they can, and things seem to be playing into his hands.

It is no longer a secret that Thaksin wants blood in the streets, Connecting The Dots made that prediction back on March 24 (read it here) while others still had their doubts. So now the Thai government is posturing itself to let it be known, that if violence erupts, they will not have caused it. They will do this by ordering the police and military to have only riot control equipment and no firearms. This also was a prediction we had as it for the most part disarms a significant number of troops making it easier to stage a coup. (Read it here)

The posturing of the government to be unarmed or at the least not to have lethal weapons is simply planning ahead for media fallout. Letting it be known they are unarmed will clearly shift the blame to Thaksin. However most certainly there will be some accusation by someone associated with the red shirts that the military was armed. That is actually a no brainer prediction when it comes to this bunch. It may cause some media speculation for a while, but eventually it will be written off as just another lie.

Thaksin’s red shirt army even plans to disrupt the Asean Summit in Pattaya as a further effort to spark a violent conflict. If this happens it will cost Thaksin some big points in they eyes of the leaders in attendance. The countries that will be attending the summit are doing so to move their country forward, and when some want to be dictator threatens to crash their summit, you can use your own imagination how Thaksin will be treated when he seeks a visa for their country as he continues his endless visa run.

The next new flash point is the announcement that the People’s Alliance for Democracy (PAD) would  mobilize the same day if violence erupted. Although their intentions are good, it is just another headache for the government as even more police and military will need to be deployed to oversee them. This will also invite the red shirts to get out their rocket propelled grenades again and start bombing the PAD counter rally as they did before.

As all this is going on Thailand will quickly be found on the do not visit lists again as countries look to protect there citizens. This situation will be worse than the last flair up from last year as the groups will be everyplace you look. Getting around Bangkok while trying to avoid these groups will be a challenge to say the least.

To connect all the dots here is what we see. The Thai government will do its best to let the world see the problem is deliberately being cause by Thaksin. This in turn should make the world more receptive to helping Thailand bring Thaksin to justice. That could be in revised extradition treaties and denying Thaksin visas to their respective countries.

The Thai government will if needed in a response, disburse the red shirt rally and have various international groups observe to substantiate the governments claim that excessive force was not used. This will add credibility to the government and that the situation was forced onto them. Ultimately it will be this third party observation that will either save or condemn the government in the eyes of the world.

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