The USA sees Thailand’s martial law as stepping on freedom and democracy, and to some extent it is. But when you understand that Martial law is keeping want to be dictators and other trouble makers in check, it is suddenly viewed in a different light.
Anyone who has been living in Thailand since the 2006 Coup, can clearly see who the trouble makers are. They openly lie, distort facts, twist things around to try to get the masses to march for their cause. Many of their lies are so bad they fall apart even before they turn the microphone off. People like this who look to make trouble and cause unrest really don’t deserve the freedoms of democracy, and often find themselves in jail.
Even in the United States there are laws about causing panics. For example shouting ‘FIRE’ in a movie theater is the classic example. That example was from the US Supreme court, so that limitation on free speech was from the very top. In Thailand’s case it is a bunch of Thaksin supporters who have done that on a regular basis that fed the political unrest. So Martial law has done the same thing as the US Supreme court by limiting what can be said.
But even now if Martial law can be described as a cork in a bottle, there are small bubbles forming around the sides. There is a clear and obvious increasing effort by the pro-Thaksin camp to make political statements and stir the pot. They are testing the limits and trying not to get hauled away by the military.
So the US Government’s take on Martial law is clearly not thought out or understanding of the reason, and their comment looks like it came out of a standard response book. Even a quick pole shows 4 out of 5 Thais think the US does not understand, with nearly the same amount happy with Martial law because they do understand what will happen if it is lifted. The other 1 out of 5 Thais are most likely the ones that want to cause trouble.
That also says that the Thais have had enough of all of this. They remember the days of what things were like before the prolonge political storm, and they want that level of happiness back.
Another way to put this to the US is think of a broken leg. The broken leg was the state of Thailand for the first half of 2014. So to help that broken leg to heal, a plaster cast is often used to keep it from moving. So in this case Martial law is that plaster cast. In the future that plaster cast will be removed once the bone has healed and the new laws will reduce the chances of the leg breaking again. It is very simple, very basic, and most of all it makes sense.
So if it makes sense, why is the US not following common sense one may ask. The answer is, Martial law is marked as a bad thing in their generic book of understanding.