As Connecting the Dots has mentioned before there are people loyal to Thaksin just beneath the surface. These people are imbedded inside the police and military, and they most certainly are in a position to sabotage the government to give Thaksin an edge.
When you think about this, the sudden porousness of the police lines in Pattaya when it came to protecting international leaders supports that there are Thaksin loyalists in the ranks. Bangkok is under the close eye of people who are loyal to King and country. However move away from that watchful eye and things can happen.
Suddenly this looks like Thaksin’s game again. Thaksin has never been one for just a single approach, and the Pattaya incident is just one example that supports that. The big concern here is Thaksin is a seasoned expert in this game, and Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva is still a bit of an amateur despite his education. In fact the only person that Connecting the Dots has seen that is Thaksin’s match is General Sonthi Boonyaratglin who was the leader of the 2006 coup. That is not to say there are not others, but General Sonthi Boonyaratglin was the only person to openly demonstrate his ability to successfully counter Thaksin. This particular game of Thaksin’s most closely resembles a game of Chess.
So this new but old game Thaksin is playing can only be named ‘Alpha male’ as Thaksin’s sleepers try to make Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva look impotent. Connecting the Dots has already observed that many of the lesser educated Thais will follow the Alpha male, and on the surface the score is Thaksin 1 and Abhisit 0. With Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva’s reluctance to use force to control the protesters, Thaksin has seen a way to exploit that as a weakness. Although Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva’s approach would be admirable in the west, Thais are use to a stronger hand and read this as weakness in Abhisit. This will require a tactical change on the part of Abhisit as one or two more of these hits and he could come crashing down. Tea and crumpets are not yet popular in Thailand, but flaming hot food is.
The approach must be more decisive in the wall of military and police that oversee the red shirt mob. That wall must be simply like an electric fence, touch it and you are instantly and decisively notified of your mistake. Unless Abhisit changes Thaksin will win, and for the moment Thaksin controls the game. Thaksin can order an attack and at the same time order a porous wall, and Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva takes another hit in the Alpha male department.
Connecting the Dots for the moment suggest to Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva that he retain General Sonthi Boonyaratglin as an anti Thaksin consultant to know what Thaksin plans next.
Note: This post was written before 11:00 am on April 12. Events after this time are not considered.
Western governments would have authorised the use of tear gas in such a situation. What is Abhisit doing?? A toothless state of emergency once again?
I would agree with you that there are people that are loyal to Thaksin just below the surface and always will be, however, I will add that this is not all about Thaksin.
Thaksin and many of the red shirts are in ways uneasy bed partners. Both need each other to move forward. Thaksin needs the red shirts in order to fulfill his greedy motives of returning to power and stripping Thailand of it’s assets for himself. Many of the red shirts understand this. Yet, the red shirts also need Thaksin. Thaksin is a symbol of democracy for them. In addition, he offers them the political muscle and the funding necessary to continue on their fight.
Thus, even if Thaksin is removed from the equation in some way, the red shirts will still carry on as they do not want to be held down and under the control of the old elite any longer. They would have to find a leader to galvanize them again, and it may be some time before they could get organized, but for a core group of the red, their fight is for democracy as opposed to Thaksin. Thaksins’ fight is all for himself and he wiill use anyone he can to accomplish that goal. If in the long-term, the red shirts are able to secure more rights and empowerment, they too will want to rid themselves of Thaksin.