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I The Kingdom of the Chakri 3

Revolt 5
Cold War monarcho-militarism 5
Soldiers of the King for the Government of the King 7
Regal jealousy 8
The Old Power Gang 9
Living with the fortune-teller 12

II The costs of monarchism 12

Consorts and concubines 13
Thainess 13
Brainwashing 15
Corruption Chakri-style 17
The Kingdom’s budget 18
Public, financial costs of the Chakri monarchy 20

III Thailand Dangerous 21

Victims of persecution 21
Lèse majesté 22
Cyber war 24
Democracy under monarchy 25

References: 34
Appendix ONE: Kanaratsadon Manifesto 1932. 37
Appendix TWO: Political assassinations, murders & extra-judicial killings from 1947. 39
Appendix THREE: Some cases of lèse majesté. 56

In May 1992 the popular uprising that ousted General Suchinda, leader of the 1991
military coup, came to the boil. 48 protesters were massacred by the military.
According to established practice, the King summoned the belligerents, pardoned
everybody and appointed a new Prime Minister who, with no electoral mandate, pushed
through 267 bills in one year.
This was Thai democracy-under-monarchy in action: a confusing tale of sorry events that
repeats itself over and over again.
With customary hopeless optimism there were people who hoped Bloody May 1992 would
be the last time that Thai people would fight the Thai Army, that it would mark the end of
the long story of brazen corruption, greed and ignorance that began in 1947, when the
Royal Thai Army first sabotaged Thailand’s fledgling democratic movement.
The elections that followed Bloody May ’92 gave some reason for hope. The drafting of
the 1997 ‘People’s Constitution’ provided basic rights previously denied - like Freedom of
Assembly, but the 1997 Constitution was no magic wand. Exorcising the corruption
embedded in the civil service, military and police, and consequently the political culture,
needed more than clauses in a constitution.
These signs of positive development were completely shattered by the 2006 military coup
that brought down Thaksin Shinawatra and began pushing Thailand to civil war.
The 2006 coup made it impossible for many Thai to remain on the side-lines. In their tens
of thousands people became politically active, many brushing aside their fear of monarchy
and openly discussing why, for six decades, their hopes and aspirations had been
smashed and stunted by the Privy Council, Royal Guard and Chief Justices.
There are 66 million people in Thailand of whom more than half are still either fully or
partly dependent on produce from their family farmland. 5.7 million farming households
represent about 40% of the population, less than half with less than 10 rai (1.6 hectares) -
people that engage in share-cropping and migrant labour. Not less than 45% of all credit
in Thailand is handled by the black market with exorbitant, arbitrary interest rates, usually
charged to the poor on a monthly basis.
The average Farming Debt / household is 300,000 Baht, about double the average
Household Debt for all Thailand. Limited social protection reaches some 27% of the 38
million workforce. The vast 24-million self-employed sector has almost no social
protection and difficulty to register for health care. In short, about 70% of the population is
living without social welfare.
Thailand was ranked 73 by United Nation Human Development Indicators in 2005. In
2010 it was ranked at 92.
Following-up on two previous articles - ‘The Voters Uprising that is changing perceptions
in Thailand’ (2009 / 2010) and ‘Why I don’t love the King’ (2010) - this article looks a little
deeper into the forces of feudalism that continue to torture the socio-political development
of the Thai people.
All articles can be found at


The Kingdom of the Chakri

In 1767, after the Burmese had reduced the bankrupt, vice-ridden Kingdom of
Ayuthaya to ruins, it fell on the luck of the common-born Governor of Kamphaeng
Phet to drive out the Burmese and stabilize the fiefdoms and factions of a
disintegrating, multi-ethnic Siam.
Facing their own problems the Burmese withdrew leaving the City of Ayuthaya under
the command of a weak garrison. Within a few months Governor Taksin had
defeated the garrison and brought most local barons to heel. Aged only 34, he
installed himself as the new Ruler of (central) Siam in 1768, in Thon Buri, on the west
bank of the Chao Phraya River opposite a trading post called Bang Makok.
Another fifteen years of campaigning to re-establish dominion over the old territories
of the Ayuthayan kingdom, and a bit more, appears to have left Taksin tired -
probably from bloodshed itself. According to most sources his days ended when he
was dragged-out from monastic retreat by order of his long-time associate Tong-
Duang, and beaten to death in a sack.
Much thanks to Taksin, Tong Duang had risen through the ranks to become Taksin’s
right arm - his Minister of War, his Chao Phraya Maha Chakri. To complete the coup
Tong Duang executed all 30 of Taksin’s children, all his wives and all his loyal
generals and their families. He then installed himself as the new Ruler in Bang
Makok in 1782 - the first-in-line of the Chakri dynasty.
Feeling the need to legitimise their common, bloody origins, the Chakri court began
adopting a plethora of regal customs - borrowing from Ayuthaya, from Angkor, from
Brahmanism, Confucianism - from wherever. And they imposed and developed
rachasap, the old court language of subservience for those who must serve or
appear under the feet of the monarch. All of this was mixed into a genuine soup of
Chakri confusion.
Royals and generals on the top, workers and slaves at the bottom, Siam became not
less but increasingly feudal. Until the 1870ies slaves born into slavery continued to
represent about one third of the population. From the age of 20 until 60 all males
were bound to serve royal or military masters for (a total of) 6 months in every year.
A man could buy his own freedom on an annual basis with cash or produce, and
perhaps permanently if he could provide the military with three sons.
In 1826 the Treaty of Amity and Commerce with the UK was Siam’s first commercial
treaty with a western power. Leading to the arrival of more armaments, more wealth
and more westerners in Bangkok, it had long-term impact.
In 1827 Thai forces destroyed Vientiane, divided Laos into small units and forced
huge numbers of Laotian people to re-settle south of the Mekong, on the Korat
Plateau, as slave workers in Bangkok and so on. Also, the war waged by Siam
against the Vietnamese between 1842 and 1845, whether won or lost, at least
tightened Siamese hold on some Khmer lands.
To maintain a grip on his over-stretched ‘Greater Siam’, King Mongkut (Rama IV,
1851 - 1868) began to form his Armed Forces in western style, but he could not
protect himself from western colonial encroachment. British gunboat diplomacy
forced Mongkut into the Bowring Treaty of 1855, a kind of free-trade document that

gave the British privileged access to, especially, timber and agricultural produce. By
the end of 1856 Thailand had signed similar documents with the USA, France,
Denmark, Portugal, Netherlands, Germany, Sweden, Norway, Belgium, Italy, Austria-
Hungary, Spain, Japan, and Russia.
To be able to placate the British and especially the French, first Mongkut and then
Chulalongkorn (Rama V, 1868 - 1910) had to trade away most of the territories
conquered by Taksin and Tong-Duang - city states in Lao, Cambodia and Malaysia.
Even then Chulalongkorn was still under pressure to show that his Kingdom could
stand-up, and standing-up in an era of competitive, imperial pomposity was an
expensive business.
To be able to counter western imperial moves with least possible loss, Chulalongkorn
had to learn and, to some extent, mimic the attitudes, postures and approaches of
the colonial powers. To remain in the command seat he had also to bolster his brand
of monarchism - by fostering nationalism, and he had to increase his revenues. The
only way he could do that was to bring the peripheries of Siam under direct control,
and the only way to do that was to send his own princes to take direct command of
provinces long accustomed to living as kinship societies with their own social order.
Outside Central Thailand most people thoroughly resented any Chakri attempt to
further their subjugation.
The Sultanate of Pattani had resisted Thai colonisation for centuries and was never
fully incorporated into the Kingdom of Ayuthaya. With the fall of Ayuthaya the
southern sultanates were relieved to find themselves free of Thai vassalage for a few
years, but the Chakri were no less determined than their predecessors to incorporate
Pattani - still a lucrative trading hub. After several failed attempts to subjugate ‘the
South’, in 1831 Rama III despatched a vast army of 300 000 soldiers. The violence
was terrible and ended in the symbolic marching of 4000 hamstrung prisoners 1000
km to Bangkok. The ancient trading hub was smashed - gone the golden age, never
to return.
Again, when Rama V attempted to place Pattani under direct taxation armed
resistance was fierce. Like all before and all that followed, the 1902 Phrae Revolt
was mercilessly crushed by Bangkok.
Distrust of the Jawi-speaking Malay-muslim population led to consistent failure of
Bangkok’s heavy-handed Thai-ification programmes, and to a less-than-minimal flow
of development aid. When Thaksin Shinawatra’s authoritarian ‘war on drugs’ arrived
in the South it inflamed tensions and triggered a new insurgency. With no end in
sight, about 4 400 people have died in recurrent spats of horrendous violence since
Today’s Red Shirt movement has roots going back through uprisings on the Korat
Plateau in 1960, 1932, 1924 and 1901, and much further. During the 1901 Kabot Roi
Et resistance fighters fought Chulalongkorn’s army with knives and spades.
Hundreds of Isan partisans were executed, many at public be-headings by the sword
- at Thung Sri Muang for instance, in Ubon Ratchathani.
The wars to consolidate the Kingdom of the Chakri went hand-in-glove with the
imposition of the Thai language and an artificial re-centring of religious identity - to fit
the borders set by the Anglo-Siamese Treaty of 1909. (By this treaty Britain loaned
Bangkok many millions in sterling to build the railway to Penang in exchange for
dominion over the city-states of Kedah, Kelantan, Perlis and Terengganu.) Roads
were built to join all corners, and schools and temples to infuse the required religious

Absolute slavery was gradually ruled out and finally abolished in Chakri Year 124
(1905), but the population became increasingly subject to Chakri taxation, with 80%
of all tax revenue flowing to the Royal Treasury in Bangkok. It was Chakri taxation
that kick-started the modern resistance to Chakri hegemony, especially over the
nominally subjugated out-lying provinces.

The first calls for constitutional democracy came from a band of young officers in
1911, during King Mongut’s first year. Fearing assassination Mongut arrested 150, of
whom 25 spent 12 years in prison. This ‘Chakri 130 Rebellion’ in 1911 proved to be
the first step in the formation of the Kanaratsadon, the People’s Party, formally
established in Paris in 1926.
It was during the first global, economic recession, from amongst the dissatisfied
voices of the newly westernised Thai elite, that the Kanaratsadon, led by Pridi
Phanomyong, was finally able to engineer the surrender of monarchical power. After
a bloodless coup the manifesto of the People’s Party (Kanaratsadon) was read out in
front of the Throne Hall in Bangkok at 06.00 on 24 June 1932 (Appendix One). Three
days later Siam’s first Constitution came into effect, and 24 June was declared
Thailand’s National Day.
The Kanaratsadon had two key leaders: Colonel Plaek Phibunsongkram leading the
military wing, and Pridi Phanomyong, a socialist with a farming background, leading
the civilian (intellectual) wing. Phibun, Thailand’s war time leader and, in all, 14 years
Prime Minister, was a tough disciplinarian. However, in the end, both lost to the ‘Old
Power Gang’ and both died in exile - Phibun in Japan and Pridi in Paris.
Pridi, credited with being the founder of Thailand’s democracy movement, did much
for Thailand. For example, during his time as Minister of Foreign Affairs between
1935 and 1938, he was successful in annulling most of the humiliations of the old
trade pacts with the old colonial powers.
On 24 June 1939 Phibun’s government changed the name of the Kingdom of Siam
to the Kingdom of Thailand, reasoning that the name of the country should reflect the
nationality of the citizenry! (A growing movement, especially amongst academics,
would like to reconsider to Siam.)
Although Pridi had the support of some princes and high-rank military people, he
faced royalist opposition throughout the 15 years before his expulsion by the royalist
military coup of 1947. By failing to reach out to the people and build a popular base,
the Kanaratsadon was forced to make unsavoury compromises with the military,
leaving the military too much political space and thereby ensuring that post-war
Thailand would not be able to experience much in the way of democratic
Although several parliaments did manage to convene before the outbreak of World
War II, the Chakri Palace never embraced democracy and continued, together with
the USA, to look for ways to limit the process of democratisation, as it has continued
to do so all the way to the present.

Cold War monarcho-militarism

Emerging with a freshly re-built industrial economy from the horror of World War II,
the United States lost no time in moving into the bombed-out mercantile vacuum with
infamous, bucko diplomacy. As the US attempted to coral the world’s autocrats,

Stalin and Mao did their best to extinguish them, especially the blue-bloods. Before
the last Japanese soldier had left Indo-China the world was back in geo-political
Throughout South-East Asia the people’s struggle for democracy against autocracy
was cruelly exasperated by the contorting impact of Cold War politics, whose right-
wing component needed and fed monarcho-militarism.
While the ordinary folk struggled with rice shortages, in Thailand a Pentagon-backed
Royal Thai Army was fighting an ugly duel with a CIA-backed Royal Thai Police, both
sides tramping in the mud of who shot young King Ananda and why in 1946.
Immediately after King Ananda (Rama VIII), aged 21, was found in bed with a bullet
through his head, Prince Bhumibol, his younger brother, aged 19, had been declared
King (Rama IX).
The People’s Party 1932 Constitution stated that Monarchs were inviolate provided
they did not breach the Constitution, but also that issues regarding the Monarchy and
the Constitution are to be decided by the Parliament. In 1949 the Constitution of
Prime Minister Field-Marshall Phibun replaced this with . . “The King shall be
enthroned in an inviolable position of revered worship. No person may expose the
King to any sort of accusation or action”. All 16 constitutions since then have carried
an almost similar clause, the clause that keeps the door to obsessive monarcho-
militarism wedged open, that orders people to revere the King whatever he is or is
not, does or does not do.
On 16 September 1957, Field-Marshall Phibun, as a Prime Minister loosing power to
the militarists, fearing a military coup and secretly wishing he could have Pridi back,
went too late to seek support from Bhumibol. The divine young king was already in
cahoots with his favourite general and asked Phibun to resign. Phibun refused. Two
hours later Field Marshal Sarit Thanarat seized power, two hours after which
Bhumipol imposed martial law throughout his Kingdom and issued the following
“Because the Prime Minister P. Pibulsongkram is not trusted by the people and could
not keep peace in the country, the military led by Field Marshal Sarit Thanarat has
taken over the administration and the position of the Military Defender of the Capital.
I therefore appoint Field Marshal Sarit Thanarat to be the Military Defender of the
Capital from now on.”
Prime Minister Phibun didn’t have time to grab a toothbrush. He fled with a couple of
aides first by car and then by fishing boat to Koh Kong in Cambodia. Police Chief
Phao, an opium baron, fled to Switzerland.
Nobody countersigned this 1957 Bhumibol command. Openly breaching the
Constitution, Bhumibol acted and spoke as an absolute monarch. From then on his
own Privy Council (returned to him by Phibun’s 1949 Constitution) began to assume
absolute power - to function as the Kingdom’s supreme body of command.
Backed by the USA, blessed by a king with no interest in democracy, the 1957 Sarit
Coup brought back monarcho-militarism über alles with vengeance.
Article 17 of Sarit’s 1959 Constitution gave Sarit absolute power to crush any activity
that Sarit considered a threat to the nation or throne. Full powers of dictatorship! In
thanking Bhumibol, Sarit re-introduced crawling before the feet of the King. From
thence forth any person not actively demonstrating loving reverence for the King, or
refusing to grovel at his feet or speak rachasap or to stand for his anthem risked
violent repercussions.

Since 1947 Bhumibol has approved 8 successful military coups, each coup boosting
the power and income of the Chakri family, and of the generals, architects, engineers
and Bangkokians within the gravity field of Palace patronage. Royalist-autocrat Field-
Marshall Sarit Thanarat set fearfully high standards for the string of dictators that
followed him.
The ten years or so between 1947 and 1957 form a critical period in Thai history.
One can always blame misfortune on external forces but better to admit that, to a
great extent, the future of Thailand and the problems of Thailand today were
stamped by the character of the kingdom’s home-grown, elitist power-struggles of
this period.
Never-the-less, for the sake of the future of Thailand, there is a most important
historical question that needs more exploration. Could post-war Thai monarcho-
militarism have drummed-up all the hatred it was about to throw at it’s own people -
at tens of millions of self-sufficient small farmers and fisher-folk, and at the hill tribes -
without the anti-communist back-slapping and big dollar promises of Uncle Sam’s
Cold War deals?
At first secretly then openly supported by the USA - the confidence of the Privy
Council and Royal Thai Armed Forces grew in leaps and bounds.

Soldiers of the King for the Government of the King

When Sarit came to power he and fellow monarcho-militarists had already had
several months ‘convalescing’ in the USA. The King visited and the Queen enjoyed
several extravagant visits.
At the start of 1958 Sarit was once again ‘very ill’ in a military hospital in the USA -
providing U.S. investors with assurances that Pridi would not be allowed to return to
Massively oppressive, Thai-centric anti-communist campaigns were launched by the
Sarit junta - to brainwash the people, smoke-screen the usurpation of their
democratic rights, legitimise military intervention in democratic procedure and hide
endless royalist violations of constitutional law, scandal and stupidity.
In 1960 Sarit announced that henceforth Thailand’s National Day would be
celebrated on Bhumibol’s birthday (5 December), not on 24 June etc.
‘Arrest them all, kill them all, burnt them all’.
During the monarchist campaigns on so-called communists in the 60ies and 70ies,
whole villages were burnt to the ground, notably in the Northeast. Those not arrested
or killed were pushed into the jungle where, whatever they were or were not, they
had no choice but to seek the protection of the Communist Party.
The horrors of these times remain inexplicable. Take just one example - the so-called
‘Red Barrel Incident’. Between 1971 and 1973 about 3 000 villagers from the
southern province of Pattalung were brutally put to death by Royal Thai forces. The
villagers were burnt alive in drums of oil, pushed off the top of mountains and
dropped in sacks from helicopters.
By 1970 there were almost 50 000 US military personnel stationed in Thailand,
mainly USAF engaged in carpet-bombing Vietnam, Cambodia and Laos, and in
booting Thailand’s sex industry into the 21st century.
It was the people’s uprising in October 1973 that finally terminated the brand of
monarcho-militarism practiced by Sarit and Thanom. Nearly 80 students and young

workers were massacred by the military, some of them right outside the gates of the
Jitlada Palace.
The King appointed a PM, the PM organised a National Assembly to draft a new
constitution, and a relatively broad-based General Election in 1974 gave the peoples
of Siam a remarkable, rare, two years of democratic governance, which they used, in
May 1975, to order US forces out of Thailand.
Having lost all face in their war against the Vietnamese people, the US military was
already running from massive war crimes, and 27,000 troops and 300 aircraft had all
but fled Thailand by June 1976. Nevertheless the departure of US armed forces
presented Thailand with a serious problem - a whole bunch of fat generals hanging
on a high hook at risk of loosing their pants.
Needless-to-say, very soon Palace and US-sponsored paramilitary gangs were once
again out on the rampage, head-hunting ‘communists’ and, in thousands, the lists of
murdered and assassinated people became gruesome. Dozens of leaders of the
Farmer’s Federation were assassinated. After the military crackdown came in
October 1976, when 42 students and workers were massacred, the labour
movement was, more-or-less, silenced.
Just seven years after the people had managed to get rid of Field-Marshall Thanom
the Thai found themselves back again under the dictates of yet another monarcho-
militarist, General Prem Tinsulanonda, and once again condemned to the stultifying
mantra of ‘Nation, Religion and King’.
In a dispatch to London from the British Embassy in Bangkok, 3 days after the 1976
massacre, the King is reported to have told a not-named UK guest that “ . . he
doesn’t like dictatorship, but if he has to make a choice between military government
and students he would choose the military. Although students have ideology they
lack experience, responsibility and are very much under the influence of the outside,
whereas the military are disciplined, responsible and concerned for the well-being of
the country, and have experience in running the Government”.
The people of Thailand are still attempting to free themselves from the ‘Government
of the King’ by ‘Soldiers of the King’.

Regal jealousy
The Privy Councils and juntas of the 60ies and 70ies adopted all measures to ensure
that they controlled all public resources and could maintain a never less than
satisfactory flow of public money (and US military dollars) to the Royal Guard, Royal
Projects, Chakri Treasury and their own pockets.
To advance his own interests, when Thaksin Shinawatra came to power in 2001 he
tried also to please the Monarchy, and channelled huge money to the Chakri
treasury. If the Royal Household requested 3 billion Baht for a Boeing 737-800 to
add to their fleet, which already included a Boeing 737-400, Airbus 319-300 and
Airbus-ACJ 319, he signed the check. But, paying tribute to a bottomless pit like the
Chakri treasury was an unlikely winning card.
The trouble was that Thaksin had gathered real power and that, in the Kingdom of
Chakri, was not permissible or forgivable. Through his sweeping electoral victories
with the Thai Rak Thai Party in 2001 and 2005, through his connections in earlier life
as a Police colonel, through family connections to the military and through his own
dynamic intercourse with big business, Thaksin had gained power enough to be able
to re-structure post-war Thailand and put the wind under the skirts of the Old Power

Gang - the Monarchy, Privy Council, military top-brass, Crown Property Bureau and
1946 Democrat Party.
He played their game, out-manoeuvred them all and gave himself, and the great
majority of the electorate, possibilities to neutralise the Old Power Gang, but Thaksin
was, like them, too greedy. He used rather than tackled deep-rooted corruption. He
himself provided his enemies with reasons and space enough to mobilize and pull
him down. Under ‘Protect the Monarchy’ slogans they did, and kicked him out, but in
so doing - in their blatant absence of respect for the democratic process - the Palace,
Privy Council, Royal Guard, Democrat Party and the Yellow Shirt mob pushed
Thailand to the edge of civil war.
The people benefit nothing from this soul-destroying, high-level gaming.
Since 2004 more than 7 000 innocent people have been put to death without trial in
Thailand’s spiteful royalist arena, but it is becoming more difficult to cow the people
through use of massive military force and, hard as they may try, the Old Power Gang
can no longer white-wash their atrocities. Red Shirts are again rallying in their tens of
On 20 September 2006 a conversation between the US Ambassador in Bangkok and
General Sonthi, the army man in charge of the coup, revealed that “last night”
General Prem Tinsulanonda had led General Sonthi and other military chiefs to the
Palace for the King to bless their actions: “the King was relaxed and happy, smiling
It was the support for the 2006 coup shown by the Palace, and the Palace-supported
political sabotage that followed, led most noticeably by the Queen, that slapped the
people in the face, raised their indignation to new levels and fired their determination.
Just the name adopted by the 2006 junta - Council for Democratic Reform Under
Constitutional Monarchy - was a direct insult to the people.
In the last 60 years, tens of thousands of innocent people have been murdered by
Palace-approved purges and crackdowns. Official records are hard to come by or
non-existent but, as time goes by, research will most likely indicate close to 30 000.
One outstanding feature of all this murderous ‘democracy under monarchy’ is that
not one single military officer, not one person in authority - simply nobody - has ever
been held accountable. All have been pardoned by His Majesty. The worst offenders
have been made members of the highest Order of the Crown, and the very worst
have been given Royal Cremations.
The last 60 years of Thai history reveal that periodic, public sacrificing of a few dozen
protesters and periodic assassination of a handful of non-compliant intellectuals, is
an integral part of the Chakri game-plan for upholding the (national) security of the
Kingdom of the Chakri.

The Old Power Gang

The Chakri bloodline is headed by the richest monarch in the world who, as an
individual, is the top investor in the Thai Stock Exchange. Chakri-bloodline families
provide the Kingdom with it’s ambassadors, judges, executive directors, senior
bureaucrats, Democrat Party MPs etc. Many are active in ‘Protect the Monarchy’
The Privy Council, appointed by King Bumibol (83), comprises a crew of nineteen
men (youngest 63) still led in principle by General Prem Tinsulanonda, Thailand’s
Grand Manipulator; ‘Pappa Prem’ is now 92. All members are generals, ex-PMs, ex-
Chief Justices etc. All are deeply embedded in the machinations of the Chakri
Consortium. No elected PM has ever been a member of the Privy Council. The three
ex-PMs (two of them generals) who sit on the Council today were all King-appointed
PMs. Military strategy is largely determined by the generals within and close to the
King’s Privy Council. (None of Thailand’s 27 prime ministers could ever have held
office without declaring themselves royalist.)
The Royal Thai Armed Forces have some 315,000 regular soldiers, 200,000
reservists and over 1000 generals. In terms of military strength the Thai Army is
ranked 28 in the world, in terms of military and paramilitary personnel about 18. It
has supply contracts with at least 20 countries and, since the 2006 coup, the top-
brass have managed to double the military budget - from 86 to 200 billion Baht, from
3.9 to 6.6 billion USD (2010).
After the 2006 military coup the Army billed the Government for just one billion Baht,
but the bill for the 2010 crackdown raised even royalist eyebrows: 10 billion - no
accounting, no discussion, no argument - just pay.
The Royal Guard is supposed to be the most elite arm of the Armed Forces, a
cutting-edge force of 30 000, with the generals of the Queen’s Guard appearing most
influential at present.
 After heroic commanding of the troops that shot 91 civilians during the May
2010 crackdown, in October 2010 General Prayuth Chan-ocha, Queen’s Guard,
took-over as Commander in Chief of the Royal Thai Army (from the previous Royal
Guard C-in-C). The Royal Guard has always been used for cracking-down on the
civilian population, the only force that can be fully relied upon to do so.
The Democrat Party so-called, a relic from the time of the 1947 military coup,
survives as the civilian wing of the monarcho-military establishment. The Democrat
Party does not represent more than 40% of the electorate.
 After the military got rid of Thaksin in 2006 and the royalists had clawed their way
back to power in December 2008, the Democrat Party’s Eton & Oxford royalist
yes-man, Abhisit Vejjajiva, declared martial law in April 2010 and gave General
Prayuth the green light to use live ammunition against the people in May 2010. He
has since been trying to tell the world that 91 dead, 2 000 wounded and 470 jailed
democracy activists was justifiable Thai justice. Applying Thaksin’s Emergency
Laws the sweet-faced Abhisit set-up a government-sponsored Cyber-Scouts
operation to block all criticism, and sponsored and promoted the mobilisation of
800,000 Village Scouts, largely young people, to spy in the name of the
Monarchy on the villagers of their own villages.
 When the Thai Baht crashed and triggered the Asian Financial Crisis in 1997, the
Democrat Party borrowed 17 billion USD from the IMF and bound Thailand to full-
scale de-regulation. It was Thaksin Shinawatra not the Democrat Party who
cleared that debt.
In 2008 Abhisit engineered another massive IMF-style loan, this time for 27
billion USD. Deprived of popular support, praying that money can buy love,
Abhisit is already negotiating another 12 billion loan for 2012. Even the self-
censoring Bangkok media is talking about misuse of money. Who is going to
pay Abhisit’s 40 billion dollar ‘protect the monarchy loans’? The Crown Property
 In the past a large part of Thailand’s 2 million civil servants and half million state
enterprise workers formed part of the royalist-democrat core: people taught from
the cradle to never question the policies of the Old Power Gang - if they want a
decent life.

Conservative royalist elite. Carrying a Chakri-bestowed surname makes obtaining
essential services easier - in education and health-care, and it greatly facilitates
finding work in government agencies and royal projects, which in themselves carry all
kinds of benefits. Many support the ‘protect the monarchy’ campaigns.
Thai of Chinese origin. About 14% of the population is of Chinese descent - from
periods of famine in China, Mao’s purges etc. Those who strove to succeed in
business could and did – through hard work, good business acumen and willingness
to join the hierarchy and finance ‘the Corporation’. Much commerce and politics is
run by families of Chinese descent, but it was not until the 1970ies that all people of
Chinese descent were allowed to adopt Thai nationality and surnames. Most of those
of wealth and substance were only too willing to leave racial stigma and fall-in with
the anti-communist, royalist-nationalist, military consortium.
Self-serving civil servants. For most projects, especially in the construction sector,
30 - 80% of funding never reaches the project, half or more goes as premiums and
‘facilitating fees’ to everybody from Minister to Village Headman. Even the most
conscientious bureaucrats find themselves forced, eventually, to become part-and-
parcel of the institutionalised chains of corruption. On 29 November 2010 a Thai
Chamber of Commerce research team released results showing that 80% of
businessmen pay not less than 25% of the value of any government contract to
politicians and government officials.
Royal Thai Police. Thailand has over 200 000 police in uniform but, falling outside
the realm of the elite, they are low-paid law-enforcers who often have to purchase
their own weapons. Most of their time is occupied in searching for and maintaining
channels and windows of opportunity for making extra money, mainly through bribery
involving migrant workers, karaoke bars, casinos, massage parlours, brothels,
underground lotteries, betting shops (football & boxing), drug trades, smuggling and
so on. The 100,000 taxi drivers and 200,000 motorcycle taxies in Bangkok are easy
game for traffic police. All such skulduggery suits the Old Power Gang just fine, since
profit must eventually ‘trickle-up’, and allowing the police to rob the poor to buy
weapons to control the poor is good Chakri ‘sufficiency economy’.
Bangkok snobbiedom. With 80% of all Thailand’s tax revenues flowing to Bangkok,
the post-war military juntas (mentors of today’s Privy Council) took Thailand hostage
- placing their own people in all positions of power and authority. This enabled a
barely literate new-rich middle-class to emerge wanting nothing more than to disown
poverty and lap-up whatever neo-liberal capitalism had on offer. What Bangkokian
middle-class people want and think is consequently usually not what the other 60
million people think or need.
To sustain and maintain their elitist status, one of the critical tasks of the Democrat
Party has been to ensure that the monarchy is able to float above criticism. The King
is thus portrayed as the cleanest, most hard-working person in Thailand, as clean in
deed as the Lord Buddha himself.
The King, the Privy Council, the Royal Guard and the Democrat Party are, in that
order, unable to do wrong and thus cannot be held to account for any problems.
Problems are caused by ‘other’ people or parties – and are not their direct
responsibility. When serious political conflict arises with the ‘other’ part of the
population, Bangkokians will defer to the pure judgement of their King, not to
The tragedy is that, in their long, painful struggle to establish basic democratic
justice, the regular folk have never stopped hoping that ‘their king’ might support
them, but ‘their king’ always ended up turning his back, sliding in behind the military

and the security of his Crown Property Bureau (which has a market value of around
30 billion USD).

Living with the fortune-teller

The vastness of the Chakri Consortium completely undermines the work of the
Parliament. The volume, width and breadth of the Palace-managed ‘royal projects’
strips all the juice from the Thai cake, removing incentive to practice decent, honest
parliamentarianism and egalitarian governance.
Whose land? In the Kingdom of the Chakri any land can be expropriated by the
servants of the king ‘in the name of the king’. In the name of the king, the monarchy
is the royal certifier of the ‘Certificate of Corruption’.
Not being allowed to criticise the monarchy means not being able to criticise the
architects, engineers, developers, financiers and managers of the royal projects that
more-or-less dominate the entire socio-cultural, socio-economic and developmental
Not questioning means poor (absurdly biased) research, poor (wrong) analysis and
loss of any sense of logic. It results in government by paranoid ministers, fortune-
tellers, magicians and genetic manipulation.


The costs of monarchism

For the people of Thailand the huge human and material costs of the constant re-
imposition of patriarchal monarchism have become unbearable. As a system of
governance in the 21st century patriarchal monarchism is just loaded with costs that
cannot be justified, and the cost of hiding the costs of the Kingdom of the Chakri are
insulting everybody.

Consorts and concubines

The first five Chakri monarchs spawned large numbers of children through
impressive numbers of consorts and concubines.
Rama I managed 42 children, Rama II had 73, Rama III did at least better than his
grandfather with 51. Never too late, from the age of 48, Rama IV set an unbreakable
record: 82 princes and princesses in just 16 years - 5.1 children / annum. Rama V
started earlier but managed only 77 children from just 36 of his 92 consorts and
concubines. His four queens were daughters of two of his father’s concubines.
Chakri obsession with their blood-line often led to brutal in-house power plays, not to
mention loss of objective outward vision, but the haremising had a serious function.
Dozens of princes and princesses provided bargaining chips for neutralising
adversaries, negotiating powerful generals and merchants and bonding allegiance.
With so many princes, princesses, consorts and concubines floating around,
mysterious death, especially of young males, was an everyday spice in the life of the
court, and accession by assassination is always at the centre of Thai history, with no
better example than the death of King Ananda in 1946.
As the Chakri strove for consolidation and absolute dominion, access to resources
was institutionalised far beyond the reach of the people.

To help shore-up their hold on power, the Chakri collected, resurrected, adopted and
adapted a whole bathfull of rituals and regalia. During Brahmanic ceremonies all
servants had to take oaths of loyalty - to the King and only the King. Some of this
was terminated in 1932 but revived in the 50ies and 60ies by Sarit and Thanom in
connection with, for example, the receiving of the Order of the Crown, the lower
classes of which are received by (bought by and sold by) tens of thousands of
people every year, providing wide opportunity for royalist photo-ops.
Western culture began to be imported by royals, consorts and concubines in
Mongkut’s time. King Chulalongkorn travelled to educate himself and sent princes to
study in Russia, UK, Germany and France.
Becoming somewhat anglicised, Rama VI (1910 - 1925), a (UK) Sandhurst Military
Academy graduate who enjoyed acting, translated a lot of English literature,
encouraged monogamy and introduced the use of surnames became ‘Father of Thai
nationalism’. He himself bestowed more than 6,400 family names, including 864 to
Royal Guard families, 1,134 to military families, 457 to police and Village Scout
families, 278 to military academy graduates and so on. Monogamy was instituted by
Parliament in 1935.
Rama VI had only one daughter and was succeeded by Prajadhipok, his youngest
brother, the youngest of Chulalongkorn’s 33 sons.
King Prajadhipok (Rama VII, 1925 - 1934), an Eton and Woolwich Military Academy
graduate (UK), inherited a Siam in economic chaos. Taking in part Chulalongkorn as
his model, he surrounded himself with loyalists and strengthened the oligarchy by
setting-up of the Supreme Council of Siam - staffed entirely by high-rank princes.
Prajadhipok, although aware of the need for constitutional change and
decentralisation, became the victim of his own reactionary Council, especially of the
opinions of Prince Damrong (1862 - 1943), brother to Chulalongkorn.
Prajadhipok had no children at all and King Ananda (Rama VIII), born in Germany,
and King Bhumibol (Rama IX), born in the USA, were both grandsons of
Chulalongkorn (Rama V), both schooled in Switzerland and France.
Of Chakri blood-line names (surnames carried into the population by the offspring of
princes) there are about 150. These families tend to serve the Royal Household and
the many hundreds of ‘royal projects’.
With regard to Thainess education, Prince Damrong is known for westernising the
Thai army, establishing military academy, encouraging temples to open schools and
people to go to school, attempting to raise consciousness of western-style hygiene,
health-care centres, hospitals and medical schools and for attempting to improve the
infrastructure of provincial administration, but Damrong is ‘Father of History’,
Chulalongkorn is ‘Father of Education’.
The more than 650 articles produced by Damrong, a self-educated Palace historian,
provided the foundation of the National Library and National Museum. Damrong
exiled himself after the 1932 Democracy Coup and, since then, historians have been
battling, often in danger of their lives, to overcome the absolute Chakri bias in every
aspect of Thai history, in particular with regard to the origins of the Chakri dynasty,
the origins of the Thai language, the becoming of ‘Thainess’ and the causes of the
brutality of the Royal Thai Army.
Dominated from the very beginning by the ‘collected writings’ of Prince Damrong and
Rama VI, and thenceforth by an endless string of kings, princes and princesses, to
this day the Thai education system (Ministry of Education) suffocates under the
oppressive load of the divine educational message of the Chakri, which leaves little
or no space for independent theoreticians, academics, philosophers, writers etc.
For the most part Thai history has been written by the elite for the elite. Until the
beginning of 1980ies all non-Chakri-approved printed material was seen as a
potential threat to national security. Money to public libraries was rare before the
1990ies. From the 50ies into the 80ies people often hid their books. The Kingdom’s
fear of intellectuals and suspicion of books peaked after the 1976 crackdown when,
for their own safety, people buried or burnt all vaguely political literature.
The kingdom’s patronising approach to literacy functioned to suffocate interest in
reading and, as intended, to delay the liberation of the working class. This led
inevitably to the materialistic egocentrism that be-devils the political debate today,
and to deepening insecurity and - to off-set deepening insecurity - to the growth of
superstition, fortune-telling and nonsensical interests. But it also left young people,
those who became aware of the limits on their freedom of speech, hungry for
knowledge - to face up to the hegemony, wanting to know whether their gut feelings
about right and wrong were right or wrong.

In 1996 a survey on the Role of Rural Women in Ecological System Conservation
reported that 54% of women never read a newspaper and 71% never read a magazine.
94% received information from TV, 76% from other people, 73% from village radio
stations and megaphones, 55% from radio and 46% from promotional materials. In
2011 the early morning of more than half the population is still rudely dominated by
government propaganda blasted from Cold War era megaphone towers.
The concept of Thainess that is promoted and sold by the Thai State today is a truly
incestuous concoction - a product of false power. It is not a product of the people, it
ignores and rides over realities, it does not recognise or reflect the interests, hopes
and suffering of the people, or describe (subservience aside) the immense tolerance
and forgiveness the people exercise in order to be able to abide so much autocratic
The Thainess marketed by the nation-state is no more than a reflection of a
patronising, self-indulgent, upper-class life-style: a conjured, cosmopolitan formula:
an image the royalist elite can themselves market to support the continuation of their
opera and ensure that the poor are kept humbled in a manner their establishment
can control.
Siam was and still wishes to be a country of many ethnicities, languages, dialects,
local cultures, styles and colours and shades of wisdom. All of this has been
thoroughly high-jacked, packaged and finally marketed by the Chakri corporation
under their label of Thainess.
When pushed to explain this twisting of culture, or the murder of opposition leaders,
Chakri ambassadors will don a wry smile and speak of ‘Thainess democracy’.
Targeting especially schools and young people, to commemorate Bhumibol’s 83rd
birthday in 2010, the Ministry of Interior distributed (free-of-charge) 1.2 million sets of
four CDs with, altogether, 3 hours of propaganda about the ‘King of Kings’.

Thailand’s first TV station, Channel 4, was launched as a state-enterprise on
Thailand’s Democracy Day, 24 June 1955, but it was a venture that didn’t please
Field Marshall Sarit.
The military top-brass saw TV as an instrument to help break the tradition of
collective work that sustained the autonomy and integrity of the villages and villagers
- the form of social strength the fascists wanted to displace - to paint as the great
‘communist’ threat to the future of the Kingdom.
In 1958 Sarit launched Army TV Channel 5 and, nine years later, Field Marshall
Thanom launched Army TV Channel 7, in 1967.
Channel 5 included more military propaganda, but both channels were used to flood
the country with beauty contests, Cinderella soap, kick-boxing and the activities of
the Chakri household. The latter included militaristic events to popularise the
Monarchy: fund-raising jamborees for ‘royal projects’ conducted by the military in a
manner that obliged people, poor and not-completely-poor, to dig deep in their
pockets to prove, in a competitive, humiliating manner, the depths of their reverence
for the king. This was of course, in other words, open robbery in the name of the
In 1970 a private TV Channel 3 was added - to state-enterprise Channel 4 and Army
Channels 5 and 7, giving Thailand four free channels pumping Cinderella soap,
bingo and celebrity. (Channel 4 was converted to Channel 9 in 1974.)

Two other free channels were added. The National Broadcast Services of Thailand
(NBT) run by the so-called Public Relations Department of the Office of the Prime
Minister began broadcasting in 1988, and ThaiPBS in 2008. TPBS was provided with
a 2 billion Baht / annum budget (from excise duties). It was supposed to be an
‘independent’ channel but, with everybody attempting to gain control, it was soon
dragged back into the security folder of the royalist camp.
Most Thai soap opera bubbles around the big dream of a fat, fancy cosmopolitan
villa, as far from working class reality as possible, although flat-nosed Isan servants
speaking a hilarious dialect were used to add a touch of authentic colour. They are
being replaced with Shan and Burmese characters.
For women who cannot climb the social ladder, for working mothers returning with
aching bodies from a long, hard day in the fields and factories, watching fantastic
soap operas played against a background of glitter can become addictive, and
detract from interest in looking after the community. Tired working men, finding it
difficult to watch endless soap opera on the same mat as their tired working wives,
may find themselves going out for a small drink.
Classic themes are rotated around and around, like the prince who falls for a girl in
rags and suddenly discovers she is of noble birth, which immediately clears his
confusion about how it was possible for him to be attracted to such a lowly woman in
the first place.
Thai soap targets women as creatures of low IQ. Getting pregnant and faking
pregnancy are recurrent themes for hooking men, escaping poverty and stepping up
the social ladder.
And what does this say about struggle for equal rights in Thailand? In Parliament
women occupy 56 seats of 480 in the Lower Chamber and 24 of 153 in the Senate.
The representation of women in Parliament and the reasons why Thai TV is such a
disaster are surely linked.
In Thailand’s state-sponsored soap industry ‘good’ women are invariably noble
virgins. Soap opera men are usually rich, jealous and paranoid about being cheated.
TV soap has no prominent heroes and is devoid of rebels, no need, the compliant
civil servant and the paranoid rich man join forces to rescue the virgin. The rich men
play with several females and always escape accusations of rape, but behind the
slap-and-kiss of the rich there lurk the really bad women, those who seduce the good
men and who are, consequently, eventually scripted into being gang-raped.
The happy ending comes with the shunting of the ‘bad woman’ to the mental asylum
and the raising of the sweet one into the bosom of Thailand’s balmy ‘good people’
society, where rapists can pose as local saints. And, while their mainstream media is
promoting gang-rape for bad girls, the saints of the Old Power Gang can castellate
their sainthood with whipped-up condemnation of independent films like ‘Insects in
the Backyard’, which seem to pose security threat - to the Kingdom’s impeccable
image of morality.
In 2010 Thailand’s grand hypocrisy was on show when 'Uncle Boonmee' won the
Palme d'Or at Cannes. This very real achievement for Thai film-makers was more-or-
less ignored by Thai mainstream media. Why? Because the content was not pro-
monarchy and because, in Cannes, Director Apichatpong Weerasethakul spoke
positively about Thaksin and broke protocol by not carrying a picture of Bhumibol
when collecting his award – as Thai athletes must do on an Olympic platform.
For 200 years Chakri administrators have been encouraging poor Thai to regard their
daughters in terms of their potential exchange value. Deeply ingrained in the Thai

psyche, this aspect of patriarchy has been and remain a large part of the reason why
many Thai women regard themselves as being available at a ‘price’.
The rich-man-rescues-poor-girl Thai soap that floods the free air waves certainly
does help propel adolescents girls into the highly-profitable sex and entertainment
industries of the Kingdom, encouraging girls to dream of being whisked away by a
rich prince - until finally they find themselves sold to a brothel in Thailand or Japan.
200 years after the first Chakri ruler exterminated Taksin’s royal harem and started
his own, state-supported rich-man-poor-girl soap opera is still pumped into every
house, through the four state-owned TV channels.
In August 1990 the long struggle of the people won a significant victory with the
enactment of Thailand’s first Social Welfare Act. True to form the Monarchy followed
this up with a military coup in February 1991 - to break the back of the Thai Labour
Movement. Then, in December 1991, responding in part to the assassination of the
President of the Labour Congress of Thailand, HRH Bhumibol gave his opinions
about social welfare in his birthday speech: “In the end” he said “that person who
receives social welfare money is the person that is no use to society or even to
himself . . ”.
With the Chakri kingdom marketing Thainess around the world as an unlimited
pleasure service, like it or not, every poor Thai family is still forced to live with an
awareness that their virgin daughter, if not a potential gold mine, is a high-value
asset. And two adolescent daughters in a kingdom in which the king has declared
himself against social welfare is a double bonus: through the girls more of everything
can flow to Kingdom and family: all good ‘sufficiency economy’.
Behind the image of Thainess, and the cosmetic modernity of Thainess, is a bunch
of crotchy, finger-wagging old men well-practiced at hiding their personal debauchery
behind high-horse programmes that attempt to impose norms of behaviour they have
never practiced and that never existed, least of all behind the walls of the Palace. So
no surprise if gender-sensitive education tends to move like a broken princess.
With regard to tourism, the Palace-fabricated images of Thainess are used to work
the neo-liberal happiness market. ‘Amazing Thailand’ aims to attract around 13
million tourists for an annual scoop of around 300 billion Baht. So long as customers
get their promised dose of Thainess happiness, and the industry makes some
money, the feudalism that drives the whole theatre can be patronised and dismissed
as quaintness.
Aware or unaware, in this happiness market people are bought and sold like animals.
Images of Amazing Thailand are designed to reproduce the mind-set of the Royal
Household - to look upon people as servants of maximum pleasure at bargain price.
The key to maintaining profit is to keep tourists focused on personal satisfaction so
that the other world, the under-belly of the beast, passes by like a well-framed
documentary on poverty.
The practice of marketing sexuality has been woven into the fabric of Thailand by
two centuries of Chakri patronage. The concept of Thainess is nought but the cruel
legacy of a dynastic order that has out-lived time because it is so oppressive.

Corruption Chakri-style
The impacts of decades of deforestation, of land-use policies twisted around the
devastating U.S. concept of Green Revolution, of damming rivers, mad irrigation
schemes, absent or crazy urban planning and insensitive, corrupt, cruel, greedy

governance are combining with the impacts of climate change to make decent life for
tens of millions of once self-reliant people impossible.
These days half of Thailand’s small farmers can do nothing with their land for half the
year. The dry season has become a fearful period of drought and the wet season a
plague of flash floods.
By the end of the 2010 rainy season some 2 million families from 39 of 77 provinces
had been devastated by floodwaters, leaving about 7 million people in deepening
crisis. The Old Power Gang, in desperate need of evidence to demonstrate that the
Kingdom had not yet fallen apart, was focusing on the King’s 83rd birthday party, but
the Abhisit regime could not ignore completely the plight of 7 million people.
Abhisit promised to fix roads and provide 5,000 Baht (167 USD) / flood-victim family
and 2,000 Baht / rai for loss of crops (1.7 USD / 0.16 hectare). Thousands of soldiers
were sent to the villages to assist, but what happens in practice is another story: the
last thing washed-out villagers need is gangs of soldiers with guns on their shoulders
hanging around village corners protecting the monarchy.
On 3 December 2010, referring to the flood-relief effort, the online News Chaopraya
ran a headline quoting the Army Chief as saying “The Monarch is above all. Soldiers
must follow the King’s command”. It went on to quote the Army Chief as saying “ . . in
crises like a tsunami or flooding, the Army provides support to promote the unity of
the Nation, with His Majesty at the Center.”
With the troops thus deployed, the Abhisit Government could return to concentrating
on how to spend 300 million Baht on the Bhumibol Birthday Party, on two weeks of
spectacular light shows, a week of march-pasts, ceremonials, royal sing-songs,
concerts by orchestras and bands from around the world and, to cap all that, a
Formula One Grand Prix through the streets of Bangkok to blast away the bloody
memories of April and May, and earlier massacres.
What happened to the flood relief is still being told. Huge numbers of flood victims
never received a cent, but seen against the whole backdrop of corruption in
Thailand, the handling of the 2010 floods is but a tiny drop in the ocean.
As tens of millions of Thai watch their security and the quality of their lives decline,
the massive resources being poured into ‘Protect the Monarchy’ campaigns leave a
clear message: royalists don’t really care what other people need.

The Kingdom’s budget

If the designation of the sections of the State Budget appear vague it is because they
cannot be exact, because the primary aim of the Budget is to prop-up the Chakri
corporation – whatever the cost to the people.
Whether or not presenting the State Budget as a form of abstract art benefits the
people is of secondary importance. What is primary is that Thailand’s international
financiers upon whom the economy depends regard the abstractions as
advantageous - which the IMF obviously does.
In the Thai version of the 2011 ‘Budget in Brief’ the fabulous amalgam of ‘Building
belief in the country by imprinting loyalty’ and ‘Building solidarity around the
institutions of Monarchy’ and ‘Solving the Southern Conflict’ and ‘Strengthening the
Philosophy of Sufficiency Economy’ get, together, 5.6 billion USD.
The equally fabulous amalgam of ‘Keeping the state secure and the country at peace
by honouring and protecting the institutes of monarchy’ and ‘developing security

systems’ and ‘organising activities to honour the monarchy institutions at all
appropriate opportunities’ get, together, 6.1 billion USD.
‘Good governance’ - the budget for strengthening corruption, bureaucracy and
hierarchy - gets 10 billion USD. Social welfare gets a little less than ‘Good
governance’ and ‘Environmental issues and impacts of climate change’ get seven
times less.
Since Abhisit took over the Premiership in December 2008, he has been borrowing
at the rate of about 400 billion Baht / year (13 billion USD / annum.) Important to note
is that the cost of administering Thailand (ignore all talk of decentralisation) has been
raised from 1,44 in 2010 to 1,66 trillion Baht in 2011 - an increase of 15%.
To cover-up their moral, spiritual, cultural, financial and political credibility gap, the
Chakri Supporter’s Club is once again deep-diving in the business of selling-out the
soul of the people by channelling vast public resources to the royalist military, to
window-dressing the Chakri Corporation and to strengthening their administrative
hold on the bureaucracy.
At 2.07 trillion Baht (70 billion USD), Total Government Expenditure in 2011 is up
22% on 2010 (20% from borrowing).
After 5 years of political chaos generated by his royalist sponsors, Abhisit’s political
position is too marginal to be able to generate a meaningful agenda. As a puppet of
his own regime he can only commiserate with himself. He had no power to do more
than beg for fiscal stimulus - for the power of money.
Now, with 2 trillion Baht to play with and promises of loans for 2012, the Abhisit camp
is able enough to buy itself out of no-confidence votes in Parliament, and is now in
the process of is gumming-up into tyhe only thing it can be - a sticky ball of
Never-the-less wanting to join the (largely
non-existent) ‘global recovery’ is one thing,
rescuing Thailand’s welfare another.
By staging the 2006 military coup, the
royalists re-opened old wounds and
rekindled their war of attrition with people’s
With no chance of winning at the polls,
Thailand’s monarcho-militarists can only
return to their dirty tricks - to pumping-up the
military, tightening their grip on bureaucracy
and flooding the country with borrowed
(stolen) cash.
They use any excuse they can to push away
a General Election - to delay going to the
polls for as long as possible, to enable them
to activate fully their hegemonic machinery,
hoping in the meantime that the political
ardour of the exhausted people of the land
will cool.
But, a General Election there must be. Time
is up, the times they are a-changin and the
royalist Democrat Party is a desperately top-
heavy, worm-ridden ship.

Public financial costs of the Chakri monarchy
Maintaining the Royal Household in 2011 will consume around 3 billion Baht. Royal hosting, entertaining and
travelling abroad will eat-up a half billion, Bhumibol’s birthday a mere 300 million. ‘Royal projects’ will suck
up 3 billion. Promoting Bhumibol’s ideas on Sufficiency Economy will sweep-away another 11 billion Baht of
public money. The Royal Guard and the various ‘Protect the Monarchy’ campaigns will blow around 70
billion Baht.
In 2011 the running and maintenance of the Chakri corporation will consume between 80 - 90 billion Baht
(close to 3 billion USD) of public money.
Such figures can be culled from the 8 strategy sections of the 2011 Budget. They do not include the widely
dispersed allocations in the budgets of all government departments and agencies for honouring and
promoting the Monarchy. Taken together these add many more hundreds of millions to the monetary cost of
the Chakri corporation. These allocations may not be compulsory but, on pain of death, the cutting of such
expenditure is still beyond the courage of departmental authorities and, as yet, parliamentarians.

Protecting, supporting, promoting patriarchal monarchism

extracted from the Thai language version of Thailand Budget in Brief,
Bureau of the Budget, Office of the Prime Minister.

in millions of Baht USD Euro

Royal Development Projects 2,300 87 65
Bureau of the Royal Household 2,606 77 58
Journeys, Visits, receiving Heads of States etc. 600 20 15
Royal Aide-de-camp Department 560 19 14
Office of His Majesty’s Principal Private Secretary 474 16 12
Office of the Royal Development Project Board 225 8 6
Ministry of Defence
“Constantly reminding people of the importance of
national identity and loyalty to the Monarchy” 10,596 353 264
“Unifying people to protect the Monarchy and
creating national reconciliation” 243 8 6
Implementing the King’s ‘Sufficiency Economy’ 10,019 334 250
King’s birthday 300 10 8
Royal Police Bureau
“Unifying people to protect the monarchy and
creating national reconciliation” (80% of pol. budget) 53,896 1,797 1,347

TOTAL in millions 81,819 2,713 2,063

For rough calculation: one US dollar = 30 Baht; one Euro = 40 Baht.)


Thailand dangerous

The 2011 Freedom of the World Report is categorising Thailand as ‘partly free’ along
with countries ‘declining in freedom’ - with Afghanistan, Bahrain, Burundi, Cambodia,
Ivory Coast, Djibouti, Egypt, Ethiopia, Fiji, France, Guinea-Bissau, Haiti, Hungary,
Iran, Kuwait, Latvia, Madagascar, Mexico, Rwanda, Sri Lanka, Swaziland, Ukraine,
Venezuela and Zambia.
80 years after the dissolution of absolute monarchy the Chakri consortium is still
dominating and controlling the political agenda, all channels of communication and
all development pathways. All grass-root workers for democracy, alert students and
honest citizens are in as much danger of victimisation and assassination as they
were 100 years ago.

Victims of persecution
Thailand has always been a dangerous place for kon eiin - non-royalists or any
persons expressing objection to Chakri domination of this or that aspect of life and of
life itself.
Many thousands have lost their lives resisting the always insensitive, violent, twin
processes of ‘national unification’ and ‘Thai-ification’, which only has ever had one
real purpose - to enable Bangkok to suck the provinces to feed, primarily, the Chakri
In ‘The Voter’s Uprising’ we asked why the international and ASEAN communities
are so silent about military brutality in Thailand - is it because the body count is too
small? Studies are indicating that since 1947 royalists have terminated the lives of
around 20 - 30,000 innocent people.
The insipid smile of the Thai elite is often mirrored on the faces of the major powers -
feigning innocence and ignorance, but most of the data for piecing together the story
of ‘the other Thailand’ comes from their archives – from the US, UK, France etc. The
more research the more shocking the data - revealing how Thailand’s democracy
movement is repeatedly smashed on the altar of, mainly, US foreign policy.
After the May 2010 crackdown, the People’s Information Centre in Bangkok reported
that 470 political prisoners were incarcerated, 333 in Bangkok prisons and 136 in
provincial prisons - mainly in the north-east. Many were refused bail or had bail set
far beyond possibilities for their families to raise money.
During the State of Emergency (April – December 2010) platoons of soldiers
appeared in villages without warning - checking on anybody who showed a red flag,
or a photo of Thaksin, or who had no picture of the King. Large numbers of
government-sponsored agents were sent to the villages to question and map
households according to suspicions etc.
Even after the lifting of Emergency Law, Red Shirt leaders continue to be arrested at
gun-point by military and / or paramilitary gangs. Many remain in hiding, fearing
assassination. At least six Red Shirt leaders have been brutally assassinated in their
home towns since June 2010. The number of assassinations will most likely rise as
Thailand attempts to move to a General Election.
Just now, in February 2011, the leading voice of Red Siam was arrested and jailed
for lés majesté, and the Department of Special Investigations announced it would be
arresting (threatening to arrest) another 39 people on charges of lès majesté – giving
no names.
Not long after Pridi fled Thailand in 1947 many of his ministers were brutally
murdered. Little has changed since then. The message from our royalist overlords is
the same . . ‘If You don’t demonstrate love for the King get out or you will be
Perhaps tourists should be informed that Thailand has no laws prohibiting torture (- a
small matter that can be verified by the 200 000 inmates in Thailand’s over-crowded

Lèse majesté
Contrary to what some Bangkokians might wish to imagine, Thailand and all Thai are
humiliated by belonging to one of the most censored populations on the planet.
It was the popular revolts against Rama V’s centralisation programmes at the start of
the 20th Century that caused the monarchy to formalise laws around lèse majesté -
the crime of ‘insulting the power of the king’.
Lèse majesté appears defined as a crime in 1900, in the Law Code of Chakri Year
118, stating that anyone defaming the King, Queen, Crown Princes and Princesses,
or the Heads of State of a foreign country, will be punished with 3 years in prison or a
fine of 1500 Baht or both. 1500 Baht was a lot of money, enough in 1900 to free 30
‘young slaves’, children above the age of six.
In Chakri Year 127 attempts were made to codify Thai law in closer accord with
western standards. The crime of lèse majesté was written into the Criminal Code as
Articles 98 and 100, the former to protect the Royal Family, the latter all princes and
princesses born to Chakri kings. The maximum penalty was increased to 7 years or
5,000 Baht or both. Foreign Heads of State were excluded.
The dissolution of Absolute Monarchy in 1932 brought in Article 104 as a qualifier to
Article 98. . . stating that criticism of Monarchy or Government or both, in spoken or
written form, was not a crime if the objective could be proven to be to uphold the
Constitution for the benefit of the people.
Not standing-up for the King’s Anthem, and the National Anthem, appeared as a crime
in Article 6 of the 1942 National Cultural Act, and was only rescinded by a revision of
the Act in October 2010, however not-standing-up can still result in persecution, social
sanctions, beatings and LM accusations.

It was Field-Marshall Phibun who re-introduced lèse majesté as a
crime in 1956 - with the addition of the now infamous Article 112 .
. ‘Whoever defames, insults or threatens the King, Queen, the
Heir-apparent or the Regent, shall be punished with 3 - 7 years
After the sadistic massacre of more than 40 students during the
October 1976 military crackdown the military junta issued ‘Order
41’, increasing the maximum LM penalty from 7 to 15 years.
According to LM law any person can file a case against any person for any reason
true or false, and anybody can accuse anybody of defaming the power of the King at
any time during the past 15 years. In the royalist-sponsored paranoia of today there
are a lot of nobodies filing cases against a lot of anybodies.
In 2002 Thaksin set up the Ministry of Information and Computer Technology (ICT),
ostensibly to promote IT, which it may do, but the primary function of the ICT is to
repress Freedom of Speech, a task which includes training hundreds of ‘cyber
scouts’ to monitor internet users around the clock.
The scope of the LM laws were significantly widened by the 2007 Computer Crime
Act pushed through by General Surayuth, the post-2006 Coup Prime Minister
(appointed by the King from the Privy Council).
Section 14 of the Computer Crime Act (CCA) outlines five offences for which the
punishment is 5 years imprisonment or payment of 100 000 Baht or both. Section
14.3 states that any person involved in importing to a computer system “any
computer data relating to an offence against the Kingdom’s security under the
Criminal Code” shall be subject to imprisonment. Section 15 states that any internet
service provider intentionally supporting or consenting to an offence under Section
14 (within a computer system under their control) shall be subject to the same
penalty etc.
Through the CCA and the ICT’s Cyber Scout operation the scope of the lèse majesté
articles has been expanded to enable the police to aim for ‘total control’ of Thai cyber
space - and enter people’s homes with less than minimal and fantastic excuse.
The State of Emergency Act introduced by Thaksin in July 2005 in connection with
the Southern Insurgency and his primitive ‘war on drugs’, exempts all state
authorities from any liability for their actions during a ‘state of emergency’. Since
Thaksin’s departure this vengeful piece of legislation has become one of the
royalist’s most valued weapons.
The war of words between Thaksin (TRT) and royalist talking-heads (PAD) spread
like a poisonous mist, both sides using LM. In attempting to express their legitimate
disgust with corruption, more and more regular citizens are finding themselves
pinned-down between thoughts of years in jail or begging forgiveness on the floor in
front of His Majesty’s feet.
No citizen has any means of finding out how many people are sitting in jail awaiting
trial for or already convicted of lès majesté (LM). Some research (Strekfuss, 2009)
indicates that between 2005 - 2009 about 547 LM cases were sent to trial and that a
much greater number of cases are waiting for the police and prosecutors to decide
how to proceed (to see which way the cookie crumbles). Between 1946 - 2005 the
conviction rate for LM cases brought to trial was 94%.
The situation for LM victims can be worse than for other political prisoners. Usually
arrested without warning, warrant or charge and LM victims can face all kinds of
abuse. The official sanctioning and sponsoring of ‘Love the King’ and ‘Protect the
Monarchy’ campaigns means that LM prisoners are at risk of being beaten-up in jail.
If LM victims refuse to plead guilty or appeal to the king for pardon they can find
themselves facing chronic sentences. Some headline examples of LM cases are
given in Appendix Three. For all kinds of reasons hard data about LM cases is hard
to obtain: just repeating the words of the accused can land a person in jail.
Spurred by the rabid nationalism of characters like General Prayuth, the latest wave
of insanity taking over the Thai civil service is causing on-the-spot lèse majesté
arrests on a weekly basis e.g. for distributing a fact sheet about LM laws, or the
wealth of the monarchy, or for distributing a CD showing an Australian TV
documentary about LM victims arrested without bail or recourse to legal advice, and
so on.
In the increasingly absurd ambience of this Love the King at gun-point politics,
Thailand’s silent majority, grass-root Red Shirts and on-the-fence, yellowish
intellectuals are surely aware that nothing of long-term value can come from looking-
up to the current leadership.
Thailand needs not a monarch above all. Above all Thailand needs justice.
As royalists attempt to tighten-up the screws on their Love the King or get-out
approach, people need to recognise that the ‘leaders’ who seek protection for
themselves by making pronouncements like . . “Only 1% of the population doesn’t
love the King” are doing nobody any service - neither the themselves, the people or
the monarchy.

Cyber war
A study based on data available from official sources (Sawtri Suksri, 2010) indicates
that between July 2007 (when the Computer Act came into force) and July 2010 the
ICT blocked 57 333 URLs for criticising the Monarchy - four times more than were
blocked for pornography (16,740). This is a minimum figure since researchers cannot
access files of the Royal Thai Police and Prosecutors.
Freedom Against Censorship Thailand (FACT), an NGO established after the 2006
military coup, indicates that, from 2006 to the present, the actual number of URLs
blocked by the Thai Government is over 425 000. Just in 2009, under the banner of
‘Protecting the Monarchy’, Abhisit’s Government spent 2.4 million USD spying on
and blocking people’s internet space.
In effect the Abhisit Government is attempting to decapitate the ideal of an open
‘people-to-people’ information society. With increasing focus on spying, his
increasingly paranoid Government is arresting more and more opposition leaders on
LM charges, after spying on their websites, mail and Face Book.
Petrified by social sanctions and LM, Thailand’s mainstream media is nothing more
than a self-censoring bastion of the autocracy.
Internet users who want to be critical of the Palace, Monarchy and royalist ethos
must navigate a complex path through proxy programmes in order to post a
message. Avoiding the Government’s cyber scouts, unannounced police raids and
detention requires skill and courage. Not all manage.
Sawtri reports 185 computer crime cases since the CCA became active in 2007, but
how many are charged under LM 112 nobody knows. As said, how many people are
under surveillance, or have cases against them they don’t know about, or sit in jail
without being charged, or await trial, or are already convicted for LM - nobody knows.
Never-the-less, despite the risks and dangers of being hunted-down by the Thai
Government, or of being publicly mobbed or subjected to social sanctions and death

threats, as fast as sites are blocked new sites appear. The number of Thai Face-
book users increased from 3 million in 2009 to 6.7 million at the end of 2010 - an
annual growth of 240% second only to Brazil (265%).
All information on the pages of this article is available on the internet. The
information is not dangerous until somebody uses it to draw conclusions that are
different to those of the Monarchy and Privy Council. If a Thai starts to use their own
intelligence they become automatically a potential threat to the Kingdom of the

Democracy under monarchy

Any honest pair of eyes looking at Thailand will understand almost immediately that it
is the institutions of the monarcho-military establishment that are blocking democratic
Even reading the Announcement of the 1932 Democracy Coup has become a lèse
majesté crime. Since an accurate English translation of the original Announcement is
difficult to find, we include a translation as Appendix One.
Development from ‘Monarchy under Democracy’ in 1932 to the ‘Council for
Democratic Reform Under Constitutional Monarchy’ in 2006 suggests that, in 80
years, democracy in Thailand has progressed to approximately nowhere and that it is
presently in danger of falling into an unhappy regressive spiral.
The Chakri corporation has dominated politics for so long there are not many
historians who can unscrew themselves, and few who would put their lives on the
line if they could, by talking straight about the present in relation to the past.
Like all aggressively autocratic clans, the Chakri have worked hard to convince
themselves and their audience that they are god-sent to teach civilization, not just
ordinary, self-made opportunists. 80 years after the abolition of absolute monarchy
the evidence points to the latter. The people still face walls of glittering royalist lies,
bullets and bluff, they are still forced to obey and love a Monarch who, dripping in
wealth, lectures them on being content with what they have.
The aim of any autocrat is to confuse people’s natural sense of right and wrong and
convince the people that their misery is their own bad karma. This has been the
primary mission of the Chakri and their military ‘toadies’ since their first Rama
appeared on the scene.
There is no such thing as ‘democracy under monarchy’. Monarchy under democracy
does exist - according to the will of the people.
The overall aims of democracy are to enable all people to get in touch with their own
basic sense of right and wrong, by providing all people with education that helps
them analyse their circumstances so they can design the tools they need to improve
their circumstances.
Chakri paternalism has always stood in opposition to these basic objectives. For 60
years the people have not had a moment in which survival was possible without
adaptation to absolute corruption à la Chakri. No decision can be made that is free of
Chakri patronage. All around the world people are forced to adapt to corruption, but
only uglified people actually want it.
The military regimes of the last 60 years were all corruptly brazen promoters of
monarcho-militarism. Their generalissimos all demonstrated that some people can
get very rich by using public money to prop-up monarchism. They made learning to
live well by bowing to autocracy the main purpose of Thai politics. And they
demonstrated that this process of personal enrichment was greatly simplified by
allowing the imagination to justify crushing protest by calling out the Royal Guard.
Treating democracy as an irritant, every junta since Sarit and the King got rid of
Phibun in 1957 has sunk public money into embedding the institutions of monarchy.
Today the state-financed ‘royal household’ staffs and maintains more than 40
palaces all over Thailand.
Presenting Bhumibol to the world as the most clever and greatest king of kings, as
the greatest artist, greatest scientist, greatest architect, greatest writer, greatest
musician, greatest yachtsman, greatest development theorist, as a true god of
enlightenment that can do no wrong - does not generate love.
Most Thai are petrified by the massively threatening nature of the Chakri circus. Even
without lès majesté the fear factors would still cause most people to shy away from
speaking out about what they felt.
Super-saturated with monarchist propaganda, the people are sick of dictatorship,
sick of corruption, sick of militarism, sick of being patronised, sick of grovelling before
false idols, sick of begging permission to live in fear of ‘Palace justice’. Asked by his
boss what he wants Rambo replied: ‘We want them to love us as much as they ask
us to love them’.
Our history itself is sick of being sat upon by the non-existent victories of the Chakri
dynasty over the people of Siam. Our whole history needs to be re-written with
respect to the people – to our culture of resistance and tolerance, with respect to the
thousand year histories of the people of Isan, of the hard-working farmers of Central
Thailand, with respect for the honour of the Pattani people, for the humility of the
great Kingdom of Lanna with it’s people first diplomacy in the face of invasion.
Humble people wish and hope the Palace will pull it’s talons out of politics,
completely - once and for all. Increasing numbers of people are ready to help release
the Palace from politics, hoping it can be done without a bloodbath. There are

however an increasing number of voices predicting that more bloodshed is
The peacefulness of Thai society now rests on the very edge of the amazing mixture
of patience and tolerance that is Thailand’s greatest virtue. But, tired out by the cycle
of chronic floods and drought, tired-out by being unable to work the land and of
having to live with endless temporary work without security or welfare, huge numbers
of people, forced to live beyond their limits of tolerance, are loosing patience.
Under Chakri dominance the testimony of the oppressed has always overflowed with
pain. It is just now approaching the point of explosion.
The royalist image of thainess must be brushed aside to make space for a full re-
evaluation of social values that sets out to honour all who contribute, especially the
villagers and small farmers.
Although, since 2006, levels of fear, suspicion, insecurity and anxiety in the villages
has increased, as has poverty, we are witnessing huge increases in political
consciousness, networking and the sharing of resources, information, food and
transport - in the building of solidarity between villages, districts and provinces.
In response to the top-down violence and oppression of the Abhisit regime, there is
an encouraging broadening and deepening of democratic organisation at the base of
society - with networking between self-organised, grass-root ‘affinity groups’ taking
over from old-style leadership.
With regard to the diplomatic stage, through it’s amorphous corps of royalist
ambassadors and Democrat Party spivs, the Kingdom of the Chakri functions like a
well-trained butler to neo-liberal globalisation - a true specialist at polishing the tables
of the world’s sloppy Human Rights organisations.
As the civilian wing of the monarcho-military establishment, under the patronage and
protection of the Monarchy and Privy Council, the Democrat Party has a load of
experience in shoe-horning sweet-faced representatives into positions of moral
Just after the military crackdown in May 2010 that murdered 91 people, Sihasak
Phuangketkeow, an elite, royalist career diplomat, was elected to the Chair of the
United Nation Human Rights Council (UNHRC). In June 2010 he explained to Thai
media that . .
“Before I was elected, I had tried to explain to the meetings of our transparency in
dealing with previous political situations. The clarification satisfied all countries, and
that was one of the reasons they voted for us, for they saw our readiness,
transparency and clear explanation, . . ”.
In true Thai style he added that his election is . . “proof that Thailand is accepted by
the international community as a neutral country with progressive human rights.”
Another elitist, royalist democrat, Supachai Panitchpakdi, Deputy Prime Minister
1997 - 2000, first Asian Director of the WTO 2002 - 2005, sits now as Secretary
General of the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD).
No surprise then that, on 26 October 2010, Ban Ki-moon stated (in Bangkok) that the
bloody turmoil in Thailand is an “internal affair”.
No surprise either that the ASEAN said nothing about Thailand’s bloody crackdown
in 2010 - with yet another sweet-talking, royalist-Harvard-democrat (Surin Pitsuwan)
occupying the post of General Secretary (2009 - 2014).

In Thailand, ordinary citizens are once again being made to pay the ultimate price in
the fight for their democratic rights and justice - for standing-up to Chakri domination.
These ordinary citizens, these heroines and heroes who have died for the cause of
justice and given all their courage, strength and determination to others to go on, will
not be forgotten. In Appendix Two we start a list, that can be constantly amended, of
those who have given their lives since 1947.
Instead of stepping aside with dignity in the face of landslide electoral defeats, the
royalists have chosen, once again, as always in the past, to step forward with
massively murderous brutal force.
Most adults have children to think about and naturally hold back from openly
confronting such force. All know from experience that, when challenged, the royalist
command has no compunction about murdering citizens.
The people of Thailand have had ‘protect the monarchy’ pushed down their throats
for so long that, in their heart of hearts, all Thai realise that the blanket of feudalism
that stifles real social, cultural, economic and political initiative must be cast off.
The people are not just playing ‘colour politics’ with Thailand’s power-mongering
elite, they are moving for constructive change on all fronts. The farmers are (as
usual) actively opposing the rice processing and exporting mafia. In February 2011
thousands of farmers descended with their trucks and tractors on Central Thailand’s
Government House in Ayuthaya. The 1995 Assembly of the Poor is again re-
assembling in their thousands together with the Land Reform Network, Southern
Fisher Folk and with the Four Regions Slum Network, which represents two million-
plus slum dwellers. With 540 un-resolved listed issues, they demand attention to
decades of unsolved issues - to basic urban housing and welfare, to the devastation
of millions of livelihoods by dam constructions, mining and energy plants, They
demand action on stalled community land rights legislation and much greater
attention to chaos surrounding ethnic right’s and the statelessness that affect
millions. Thousands of Eastern Seaboard workers have been marching the 100
kilometres to Bangkok demanding attention to the atrocious conditions in Thailand’s
largest industrial zone, and real respect for collective bargaining rights.
We must end this section by liberating ourselves from fear and paranoia.
To do this we note simply that there is a mountain of far more important, far more
urgent issues to discuss, debate and solve than the question of who in the Chakri
household should succeed who.
The people of Thailand have a bright new future to design - a bright new agenda to
set. Let the members of the Chakri household wash their own dirty linen and mind
their own affairs. The people of Thailand must move on.
As the manipulators of the royalist camp gear-up their hegemonic machinery for the
eventual run-in to a General Election, the people of Thailand could be in for another
very rough period. On 28 February 2011, the stressed and once favoured Election
Commissioner Sodsri Satayathum lost her cool, and blurted out that “ . . If there is
an election, it will be violent. If a military coup is now the talk of the town then let it be
so . . because I don’t want to see an election. The past four years has been very
exhausting for us election commissioners”. She apologised but her explosion told the
whole story.
Every thread of analysis concerning the cause of all this out-dated pain and suffering
in Amazing Thailand spotlights the sheer mass of the Chakri corporation - a home-
grown ‘too big to fail’ phenomenon, maybe.

People are slowly understanding that they must stop imagining or expecting that
those in high authority have the wit, courage, will or ability to attend to real issues -
their issues. People are slowly understanding that, to be able to move forward, they
must formulate their own agenda for change: completely new agendas for building
solidarity and real socio-political, socio-economic and socio-cultural change, for
forging new sustainable pathways into the future in which, at least, fear of monarcho-
militarism and monarcho-militarists has ceased to be a factor.

Concluding remarks
Democracy is a process of learning to respect and learn from other people. No
people are ever ‘ready for democracy’, but the honest people of Thailand, the roots
of old Siam, are today more than ready to make, together, Thailand an extensively
de-militarised land that practices progressively sustainable democracy. Thailand’s
problems do not come from people being ‘not ready for democracy’.
Thailand's problems stem directly from the fact that the monarcho-militarists do not
want to listen to ‘the others’ and hate people who think differently.
Even so, Thailand’s problems are, in principle, not connected with the question of
whether Thailand should or should not have a monarchy, but they are directly
connected to the behavioural practices of the Chakri consortium – to the attitudes,
prejudices and biases of the Old Power Gang.

The future of Thailand is directly connected to the practical question of how, now, at
this moment in history, to prevent the Old Power Gang from dragging Thailand down
into the madness of some contemporary version of archaic monarcho-military
The current regime’s attempts to silence opposition only increases the likelihood of
violence. Tensions are high. As public scrutiny of the Monarchy and the role of the
Monarchy gains intensity, so too does the risk of civil war, of revamping the ugly,
unwanted, debilitating war of attrition between the Chakri consortium and the people.
Excluding the ‘Southern Conflict’, more than 100 ordinary, unarmed civilians have
been killed by royalist military and para-military forces since 2006, most shot in the
back of the head.
These dead people were not terrorists by any stretch of the imagination. They were
just ordinary citizens - small farmers, construction workers, nurses, taxi-drivers,
journalists, medics, students, wives, husbands, mothers, fathers, children,
grandfathers and grandmothers.
Hundreds of pro-democracy demonstrators are in jail. Many are in hiding or have fled
to continue the struggle abroad. ‘In the name of the King’ all this is a horrific insult to
the dignity of the people, not to mention the image of Thailand.
It is important to understand that the street violence, assassinations and political
madness of the last 5 years is not just a product of Thaksin’s confrontation with the
Old Power Gang, but a result of decades of rotten governance - of government that
is afraid of the power of the people, afraid of freedom of assembly, afraid of collective
bargaining and afraid of freedom of speech.
The circumstances of the people of Thailand are made worse by the fact that the
huge, smug, diplomatic community in Bangkok rides knowingly on the back of false
government - on the back of the vast multitude of royally-oppressed Thai people. The
community is mute because it is so comfortably accustomed to being pathetically
mute, having never made the effort to raise itself from the Cold War habit of
accepting that the ambitions of the Bangkok kingdom take priority over the real
needs of the people of Thailand.
The people want a clear termination of two centuries of abuse, complete and final
termination of 60 years of illegal, violent, military over-lordship.
The chains that Sarit and
Bhumibol used, illegally, to
subject the People’s Assembly
to the will and bidding of the
‘Bhumibol Council’ in 1957 will
be cast off. The people never
did and do not need those
chains - neither would a royal
family if it was loved.
The people have a normal,
simple, humble modern wish to
be able to place their trust in
free and fair elections, in a
functional, representative
parliamentary assembly that is
dedicated to addressing their
real needs - with real interest,
logic, enthusiasm and joy.

The people are sick of being treated like children and decorative trinkets on the
fringe of this or that Bhumibol project. The people do not need an autocratic patron to
assist their development.
The strength of Thailand rests in the fact that, despite all efforts to Bangkokify the
people, the majority remain in touch with a village they can still call their own. The
majority still retains respect for the life of the rural communities from whence they
came, and for the labour of small farmers, fisher-folk, craftsmen and local traders.
The majority do not believe that the life of down-town Bangkok is either better or
more important than that of the villages and rural markets.
The people need and want a strong domestic economy. In fact they have no
disagreement with the Bhumibol concept of ‘Sufficiency Economy’, because they
lived with sufficiency economy long, long before Bhumibol was born.
The people do not want pseudo-intellectual patronisation, they want to be active,
able to utilize their own incredible inventiveness for building and maintaining strong,
egalitarian, foundations for sustainable development. The people want an organic,
loving, gender-sensitive, egalitarian, sustainable ‘sufficiency economy’.
Suggestions from the people about how to restructure the Thai monarchy for the
long-term benefit of the people of Thailand are only just beginning to emerge.
In view of so much violent, up-front state oppression, it is not surprising that open
proposals for restructuring the Monarchy remain hesitant, but they are beginning to
take shape.
Dr. Somsak Jeamthirasakul, Thammasart University, who has studied the Monarchy
for 30 years has a list of 8 proposals for neutralising at least some of the negative
impacts of the current monarchy:
1. Remove article 8 from Chapter II of the Constitution (2007) and replace it with
the original clause from the 1932 Constitution (which says that issues
concerning the Monarchy should be taken to Parliament);
2. Abolish article 112 of the Criminal Code on Lèse majesté;
3. Abolish the Privy Council;
4. Abolish the 1948 Crown Property Bureau Act;
5. End all one-sided public relations and education about the Monarchy;
6. Terminate all powers and possibilities for the Monarch to interfere in political
7. Remove the power of the Monarch from all Royal Projects;
8. Terminate the right of the Monarch to receive and make donations according to
his / her own will.
This list is just one set of proposals.
The actual list of extravagant, de-humanising Palace customs that defame and insult
the ordinary people is long, and the people need to prepare and brace themselves
for full, comprehensive, parliamentary debate about the monarchy’s place in Thai
In approaching this debate the people can draw strength from knowing that the
debate will be welcomed by people all around the world - by people who understand
and respect the real value of freedom of speech and freedom of expression, in other
words by the great majority of the world’s population.

A royal family that is loved does not need 30 000 soldiers to protect it. One of the
major debates facing the People’s Assembly is how to demob and rehabilitate the
Royal Guard.
Another major task facing the People’s Assembly is how to rehabilitate the assets of
the Crown Property Bureau. The days when monarchists can grow rich by usurping
the power of the people passed long ago, and it is long past time for the people of
Thailand to take the governance of their own resources and their own affairs into
their own hands.
For decades royalist propaganda has encouraged civil servants to place duty to the
monarch before service to the people. The ‘Power of the King’ is abused by all types
of civil servants throughout Thailand ‘in the name of the King’.
Thailand’s 2.6 million civil servants are not paid to serve the Chakri dynasty. For the
good of the country, civil servants that refuse to respond to the needs of the people
by stating that they serve the king need to be disciplined.
Thailand must and can rid itself of despotic paternalism, and it is high time to give full
recognition to the contribution that women make and can make in all fields of society.
Recognising, emphasising and promoting the participation of working women in
decision-making is now, from now on, an essential part of the agenda. We are
speaking here of recognising the courage of exactly those good, working women
who are, these days, leading the revolutionary movement all across Thailand.
Throughout my childhood, in a farming village amongst working-class people, I
witnessed endless corruption - under-table payment of facilitating fees and all kinds
of bribery at every step of every process, and experienced the humiliating non-stop
begging for bits of cash to buy gifts to give to someone more senior to get something
done, to secure a place of work or a place for a child in a better school, or a bed in a
hospital and so on.
There is in Thailand a crying need for better all-around, general education. People
need to increase their levels of literacy so they can find out for themselves how
Thailand came to be what it is, so they can demystify conception of what is great and
what is small, by studying universal principles of right and wrong.
Democracy is our only way forward exactly because it allows people to vote for better
If Bhumibol, or other members of his family, doesn’t understand why social welfare
and security is important, that’s their problem. But, if the Abhisit regime doesn’t
understand that it cannot use elite troops to murder civilians demonstrating for their
basic, democratic rights – obviously the electorate must take action.
Well able to rely on their naturally loving, hospitable, diligent, persevering, long-
suffering qualities to find their way forward, the people of Thailand, the peoples of old
Siam, do not demand more than free and fair elections.
The country is longing to welcome elected leaders with deep, compassionate
understanding of the root causes of Thailand’s problems. The country is in desperate
need of fresh leaders that do not hesitate to lead with an uncompromising attitude to
human rights implementation, and there are plenty of such people in Thailand who
can and will step forward.
Fully accustomed to sharing resources, looking forward to building solidarity and
social security with all the peoples of South-East Asia, the people of Thailand are
more than capable of facing the challenges of sustainable development, with or
without a monarchy.

Governments around the world that have passed through transition from Monarchy
to Democracy know that Thailand is presently at risk of loosing control of its internal
dynamics and destiny. Whatever Ban Ki Moon might think about what constitutes an
‘internal affair’, the international community has a real responsibility to send clear
messages to Thai monarcho-militarists that they cannot stop the citizenry from
growing up.

Junya Yimprasert
March 2010

Many Thanks to
Richard Thompson Coon
for assistance with the writing and preparation of this material.

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Appendix One
Translation of Pridi’s original Announcement June 24 1932

Announcement of the People’s Party

All the people

When this king succeeded his elder brother, people at first hoped that his government would bring peace
and security, but matters have not turned out as they hoped. The king maintains his power above the law as
before. He appoints court relatives and toadies without merit or knowledge to important positions, without
listening to the voice of the people. He allows officials to use the power of their office dishonestly, to take
bribes in public construction and procurement, and seek profit from changes in the prices of money, which
squanders the wealth of the country. He elevates those of royal blood (phuak chao) to have more privileged
rights than the people. He governs without principle. The country’s affairs are left to the mercy of fate, as can
be seen from the depression of the economy and the hardships of making a living – something the people
know all about already.
The government of the king above the law is unable to bring about recovery. This inability to find solutions is
because the government of the king has not governed the country for the people, as other governments
have done. The government of the king has treated the people as slaves (as phrai and kha), as animals not
as human beings. Therefore, instead of helping the people, it plants rice on the backs of the people. It can
be seen that from the taxes that are squeezed from the people that the King is deducting many million of
Baht per year for his own expenses, while the people must sweat blood in order to find just a little money. At
the time for paying government tax or personal tax, if they have no money the government seizes their
property or forces them into public works, while those of royal blood are sleeping and eating happily. No
country in the world gave its royalty so much money as this, except the Tsar and the German Kaiser, whose
nations have already overthrown their thrones.

The King’s government has governed by deceiving and not being straightforward with the people. For
example, by saying the King’s government would improve livelihood in this way and that, but time has
passed, people have waited, and nothing has happened, nothing has been done seriously. Furthermore the
people who should be shown gratitude for paying the taxes that royalty eats have been told they cannot yet
have a voice in politics because they are ignorant. Such words from government are unacceptable. If the
people are ignorant, the King is ignorant too, as we are all from the same nation. That people do not know
what royalty knows is because royalty blocks them from full education in fear that if the people have
education they will know the evil of royalty and not allow them to plant rice on their backs.

Let all people know that our country belongs to the people – not to the king, as has been deceitfully claimed.
It was the ancestors of the people who returned the independence of the country from the hands of the
enemy. Those of royal blood just reap where they have not sown and sweep up wealth and property worth
many hundred millions. Where did all these monies come from? From the method of farming rice on the
backs of the people! The country is facing hardship. Farmers and soldier’s parents have to give up their
paddy fields because cultivating brings no benefit. The government does not help. Everywhere the
government lays off workers. Students who have completed their studies and soldiers released from the
reserves have no employment, and go hungry according to fate. These things are the result of the
government of the king above the law that oppresses minor civil servants, ordinary soldiers and clerks. They
are not given pensions when discharged from service. In truth the monies that have been amassed by the
government should used to run the country by providing work. This would be a fitting way to pay back the
people who have been paying taxes for a long time to make royalty rich. But those of royal blood do nothing,
just go on sucking blood. Whatever money they have they deposit overseas and prepare to flee leaving the
people hungry while the country decays. All this is certainly evil.

Therefore the people, government officials, soldiers, and citizens who know about these evil actions of the
government have joined together to establish the People’s Party and have already seized power from the
government of the king. The People’s Party sees that to correct this evil it must establish government by
assembly, so that many minds can debate and contribute, which is better than just one mind. As for the
Head of State of the country, the People’s Party has no wish to snatch the throne. Hence it invites this king
to retain the position. But he must be under the law of the constitution for governing the country, and cannot
do anything independently without the approval of the assembly of people’s representatives. The People’s
Party has already informed the king of this view and at the present time is waiting for a response. If the king
replies with a refusal or does not reply within the time set, for the selfish reason that his power will be
reduced, it will be regarded as treason to the nation, and it will be necessary for the country to have a
democratic form of government, that is, the Head of State will be an ordinary person appointed by
Parliament to hold the position for a fixed term. By this method the people can hope to be looked after in the
best way, everyone will have employment because our country is a country of natural abundance. When we
have seized the money which those of royal blood have amassed from planting rice on the backs of the
people, and use these many hundreds of millions for nurturing the country, the country will certainly flourish.
The People’s Party will govern and implement projects based on knowledge, not act like a blind man as the
government of the king above the law has done. The People’s Party will:
1. maintain securely the independence of the country in all forms including political, judicial, and
economic etc.;
2. maintain public safety within the country and greatly reduce crime;
3. improve the economic well-being of the people by the new government finding employment for all, and
drawing up a national economic plan, not leaving the people to go hungry;
4. provide the people with equal rights (so that those of royal blood do not have more rights than the
people as at present);
5. provide the people with liberty and freedom, as far as this does not conflict with the above four
6. provide the people with full education.
All the people should be ready to help the People’s Party successfully to carry out its work which will be for
eternity. The People’s Party asks everyone who did not participate in seizing power from the government of
the king above the law to remain peaceful and keep working for their living. Do not do anything to obstruct
the People’s Party. By doing thus, the people will help the country, the people, and their own children,
grandchildren, and great-grandchildren. The country will have complete independence. People will have
safety. Everyone must have employment and need not starve. Everyone will have equal rights and freedom
from being serfs (phrai) servants (kha) and slaves of royalty. The time has ended when those of royal blood
can plant rice on the backs of the people. The things which everyone desires, the greatest happiness and
progress which can be called si-ariya, will arise for everyone.

People’s Party
24 June 1932

Author’s note:
The above translation is by Chris Baker and may be found at We have made some changes
based on what appears to be Pridi’s original Announcement. The draft of the Announcement presented to King
Prajadhipok had some amendments. Chris Baker’s translation gives the People’s Party proposing “a republic form of
government” but we do not see the word republic in Pridi’s original Announcement, we see only that the People’s Party
was proposing “a democratic form of government”.

Appendix Two

Political assassinations, extra-judicial killings and murders from 1947

Compiled by Action for People’s Democracy (ACT4DEM), Thailand

Since Chulalongkorn’s drive to centralise, tax and important because the people have no channels through
unify the cultures of Siam, thousands of people have which they can bring the attention of the outside world to
sacrificed their lives in different struggles for democratic, the atrocities performed just behind the glitter.
representational governance, but the records of political
Why in a country with 200 000 police and massive
assassination, extra-judicial killing and murder do no
investment in administration is even vaguely honest
better than the lotus leaves attempting to conceal the
reporting of gross misuse of power so difficult?
dead elephant.
What is amazing about Thailand is that it is so blazenly
Since the attempt to bury Thai democracy in 1947,
accustomed to getting away with murder, so adept at
accurate notations about people who have lost their
hiding facts and playing with rumours. In fact truthful
lives in struggle for democracy are thin on the ground.
reporting by the servants of the kingdom is simply
The overall picture obtained from the records that are
impossible because making the kingdom look overtly
available iindicates that, since 1947, 20 - 30,000 have
clownish is treasonable. Honest decision-making by
been murdered, assassinated or ‘disappeared’.
high court justices and truthful reporting by Thai
The outstanding feature of all this royalist-approved, administrators would cause the whole royal service to
extra-judicial killing, past and present, is that, in the start paddling for the nearest desert island. That is the
name of the king, all is allowed to pass like jetsam under objective.
a Bangkok bridge. If recorded at all, political murder
A gift from heaven, Thailand has always had more than
appears as car accidents, personal conflict, suicide and
enough resources for everybody, on top of which is has
so on.
for decades been receiving truly vast amounts of
How many innocent people were killed during the years Development aid and foreign direct investment.
of Cold War confusion, when militarised rural
Why then is more than half the population still begging
development programmes sponsored by USAID and the
for justice? A royal question no less, for the King of
World Bank ran hard against mass resistance from local
Kings in deed. But his answer under the slightest
populations? The military juntas of those years had less
pressure has always been bullets.- as it was in 1973,
than no interest in recording who they killed and
1976, 1992, 2009 and 2010 when dozens were
assassinated, and did so with impunity.
slaughtered by his own Royal Guard.
Even today, now, in March 2011, there does not exist
The question is not when will research into who killed
any comprehensive Government report about how and
who and why begin, but why is the research never
why nearly 90 people were shot down in Bangkok by the
Royal Thai Army in April - May 2010. There has been no
proper Government investigation or reporting (to the The question is when will Thailand’s universities start
people) on any of the street violence, political demanding that their staff and students start
assassinations, extra-judicial killings and murders since investigating why the democratic processes is so painful
the 2006 military coup, not to mention the complete and bloody in a country with so much of everything?
absence of any proper investigation into incidents like
This appendix is just an attempt to indicate the numbing
the occupation by the royalist mob of international
extent of suffering born by the ‘other Thailand’, an
airports, Government House (for many months) and so
attempt to indicate how much there is to be investigated
under the thainess veneer, how much must be corrected
Needless-to-say Thailand has not ratified International in our historical record.
Criminal Court protocols. However, since Prime Minister
The appendix attempts to point out that, if Thailand
Abhisit has UK citizenship the UDD has been able to file
wants to become a healthy country, the lives and
a case with the ICC against Abhisit - for his sanctioning
sacrifice of the ordinary working people that have died in
of a ‘live bullet zone’. Whatever the future of the case, it
struggle for justice against autocracy must be
is important because, win or loose, it brings facts to light
recognised, honoured and respected.
- stops them from being swept under the bridge. It is

1949 6
5 members of the ‘Pridi Alliance’ riddled with bullets while handcuffed, one assassinated by order of Police Chief Phao, 28
Feb - 01 March.
Tong-in Puriphat Shot Leader of the Labour Party, former MP for Ubon Ratchatani Province 6 times
Thawil Udol Shot Former MP for Roiet Province, Minister in Tawee Bunyaket Government
Chamlong Dao Ruang Shot Former MP for Mahasarakam Province
Dr. Tongplaew Chonphum Shot Former MP for Nakhon Nayok Province, Gen. Sec., Constitution Alliance Party
Col. Banjongsak Cheeppensuk Shot Chief of Special Branch of Police Bureau
Col. Phon Intrarathat Police Shot in the head. A police colonel. Body found in the Dusit District, Bangkok.

1952 5
Tieng Sirikhan, Leader of the Labour Party, former MP from Sakon Nakhon Province was brutally murdered in Bangkok
together with four friends. Their bodies were taken 200 kms to be burned in Kanchanaburi Province (13 December).
Tieng Sirikhan Strangled by police Leader of the Labour Party, former MP
Sanga Prajakwong Strangled by police Driver
Chan Boonnak Strangled by police Close aid to Pridi Banomyong
Noi Boonnak Strangled by police
Phong Kiewvijit Strangled by police

1953 1
Aree Leevira, Shot by 5 police . Owner of Siamnikorn and Pim Thai Newspaper and
Former Chairman of the Newspaper Association of Thailand. Shot by five
police form Kanchanaburi Province by order of Phao Sriyanond’s camp. (10
November 1953.)
1955 3
Executed by firing squad (17 February) to cover-up the murder of King Ananda in June 1946:
Chaliew Pathumros Kanaratsadon MP, close friend of Pridi
Chit Singhaseni Attendent to King Ananda
But Pathamasarin Attendent to King Ananda

1959 - the year Sarit gave Sarit the right to kill. 13

Supphachai Srisati Labour rights activist, executed without trial according to Sarit’s Article 17. 30 June.
Sila Wongsin A local strongman, executed without trial according to Sarit’s Article 17. 30 June.
11 people Killed during the police raids, nearly 80 people arrested.

1961 2
Krong Chandawong Public execution by firing squad. An MP from Sakon Nakhon Province and close
comrade of Tieng Sirkhan from the Labour Party executed in 1952.
Tongphan Suthimas Public execution by firing squad. Krong and Tongphan, a Primary School teacher, were
arrested together with 148 villagers from Phuphan charged with committing ‘communist acts’.
Krong and Tongphan were executed on the spot, the rest were imprisoned for five years.
Krong’s wife and son were also arrested while his other two children fled the country.

1962 1
Ruam Wongphan Public execution by firing squad. Leading member of the Communist Party of Thailand. He
died heroically shouting out as he was being shot: “US imperialism and Sarit junta go to hell.
Long Live the People’.

1966 1
Jit Phumisak Assassinated by police in the village at the foot of the Phupan Mountain (5 May.)
A provocative, well-known thinker, translator, writer, poet and song-writer, whose songs are
still sung and still popular.

1971-1973 3 000
3,000 villagers Brutally murdered by Royal Thai Army in Pattalung Province, some burnt alive in drums of oil,
dropped from helicopters in sacks and pushed of the side of mountains.

1973 Crackdown 14-15 October 77

77 people died, mostly from gunfire, mostly students, young workers and others from the working class. 847 were wounded.
The records of this massacre are quite accurately recorded. The royalist establishment was forced to recognise these people
as martyrs to the cause of democracy, and most were given ‘royal cremations’ (a funeral pyre lit by a member or
representative of the royal family). This is the only group of civilians murdered in military crackdowns to have a received royal
Ms Chusri Phakpong Running from helicopter machine-gun fire, fell and died on way to hospital.
Aged 42, a paper bag maker. She went to the site of the massacre to search for her son.

Ms Supojjana Jittaladakorn Shot in the head and many body parts from a helicopter above Thammasart University.
Aged 16, a 1st year student of Dusit Commercial School.

Ms Noopin Promjan Died in a car crash while on her way to the demonstration in Nakorn Sri Thammarat Province
on 15 Oct. Aged 17, 1st year student at Nakorn Srithammarat Teachers College.
Kathakorn Cheepthamrong Shot by police. Aged 18, 4 year student of Sent John Secondary School.

Kong Ngiap-taku, 28. Shot in the neck observing the crackdown at the window of the shop he worked for.

Kong-Hai Sae-Jung Shot by an M16 in his stomach. Died 16 October aged 27, a driver.

Jira Boonmak Shot in head carrying a white flag towards the military to tell soldiers not to shoot at the
students. A 29 year post-grad student with the Electrical Generating Authority.

Jamras Prasertrit Shot while trying to rescue a student who carried the national flag. Aged 47, a mechanical
assistant at the State Railway Authority of Thailand.

Jia-seng Saechou Shot in front of the Public Relations Office. A mechanic aged 17.

Chantornkrup Hongtong Shot in the back. 1st year student of the Bangbon Technical School, aged 16.

Chong Jaypat Shot while trying to bring food to the students in the protest zone. Aged 50, a mechanic.

Chusak Chaiyutanan Shot in front of the Poh Chang Art School. Aged 15, a 2nd year student in the Singhrat
Pittayakom Secondary School.

Chaisilp Ladsila Shot in the chest while standing in front of the National Lottery Office. Aged 25, a technician
at a radio broadcast station and 1st year law student at Ramkhamhaeng University.

Chiwin Chaitosa Shot, aged 18, a 2nd year student of the Phra Nakorn Nuea Mechanical School.

Chaiyot Jantornchot Shot while driving his boat towards the military tanks. Aged 16. A boat mechanic.

Danai Kornkaew Shot from helicopter while running from teargas. Aged 24, a worker of Foremost Ice-Cream.

Tea Ti Sae-tang Shot aged 24, a parquet floor worker.

Thanom Pan-eim Shot at the Panfah Bridge, aged 19, a hotel cook.

Tong Jantornrat Shot in front of the Poh Chang Art School. A driver aged 40.

Tada Sirikhan Shot in a restaurant for criticising tyranny, aged 22, a 4th year student of mechanics, South
East Asia University. (18 Oct)

Niyom Uppaphan Shot in the head. Student guard group at Bangson Mechanical School. Aged 20.

Nop Promcharoen Shot in the head in front of the Public Relations Office. Dock worker aged 40.

Nitikorn Giratipakorn Hit with tear gas, beaten-up by military in front of Jitlada Palace, traumatised and died from
heart attack on 21 Nov. Aged 16, a 2nd year student at Amnual Silp Art School.

Banphot Chimwari Fell on the pavement and trampled by demonstrators. Died next day from broken blood
vessels in the brain. Aged 25, 2nd year student at the Somdej Chaopraya Teachers College.

Banthom Phutong Shot at the Democracy Monument. A hotel worker aged 18.

Prasert Wirojthanachai Shot by an M16 at the Panfah Bridge while trying to help his brother who was shot. Aged 19.
A 4th year student of Panjawittaya Art School.

Prasarn Wirojthanachai Shot dead by multiple bullets from an M16. Aged 17, a language student.

Somkuan Sae-Ngou Shot while trying to rescue his friends. Aged 18, a mechanic, friend of Prasarn and Prasert.

Prasert Dejmee Shot aged 19, while entering the university.

Prayong Daungploy Shot in the head in front of the Samutprakarn Police Station. Aged 21, a bus driver.

Pranot Sae-lim Shot, aged 28. Sold BBQ duck to restaurants.

Prayuth Jaemsuntorn Shot in the back while bringing drinking water to his friends at the Panfah Bridge. Aged 17, a
4th year student at Padungsit Pittaya Secondary School.

Prawat Passarakul Shot in the heart. Aged 18, a commerce student.

Prasopchai Somsuan Shot in the stomach in a truck passing the Forestry Department, a fire fighting truck that was
apprehended by protestors to take people to the Bhumibol Hospital to donate blood. Aged
15, a 2nd year student, Khema Pirataram Secondary School.

Phunsuk Pong-ngam Shot through the chest at Panfah Bridge. Aged 20, a 2nd year student at a mechanical

Phansiri Kerdsuk Shot aged 28, a soldier and graduate of the Faculty of Law at Thammasart University.

Montian Pongsri Shot at the Prapinklao Bridge. Aged 20, a 1st year student of Nonthaburi Mechanical College.

Montri Lohsuwan Shot in the head from a helicopter over Bowornniwet Temple. Aged 15, a young monk from
from Bangprek Nuea Temple.

Mongkol Pinsangchan Shot in front of Poh Chang Art School. Aged 15, 2nd year student, Amnual Silp Art School.

Rat Ngonjantuek Shot in the head and the chest. Aged 40, a truck driver.

Riam Kongkanya Shot taking wounded students to hospital through the firing zone. Aged 27, a tuk-tuk driver.

Lert Kongluk Died in the building that was burnt down on 14 Oct. Aged 46, a civil servant.

Wijin Boonsongsri Shot in the back. Aged 19, a mechanic.

Wichai Supakramma Shot at the Panfah Bridge. Aged 18, a textile factory worker.
Wichien Prompanich Traumatised from providing treatment to wounded patients outside the Public Relation Office.
He hung himself on 17 February 1974. Aged 25, a 6th year medical student at Chulalongkorn

Silboon Rojjanasangsuwan Shot in the chest on the rooftop of the Thai Airways Building. Aged18, a fresh food seller.

Somkuan Sae-Ngou, Shot in the head from behind while trying to help his friends, Prasert and Prasarn (see
above). A mechanic and a public bus driver.

Somchai Kerdmanee Shot in front of the Chalermthai Cinema. Aged 20, a student from Nonthaburi Mechanic’s

Surapong Boonrodkham Shot in Panfah in front of the Police Office with two bullets to his chest and one to his head.
Aged 16, a worker in a clothing shop.

Somkiet Phetpeng Shot in front of the Sirirat Hospital. Aged 19, a worker in a cooking gas shop.

Surin Sriviravanichkul Shot by M16 in the Banglamphu area. Aged 20, a worker in a cooking gas shop.

Suphap Sae-wong Shot from a helicopter in front of the Public Relations Office. Aged 16, a garment worker.

Sawee Visetsuwan Died from eating poisoned food brought to demonstrators on 13-14 October. Aged 18, a 2nd
year student at a vocational school.

Sukit Tongprasut Died in a car crash with a truck - trying to mobilize support for the demonstrators in the
Thonburi area. Aged 18, 1st year student of Sesavej Wittaya Secondary School.

Surapong Puangtong Shot in front of the Public Relations Office from a machine gun firing from a tank. Aged 25, a
worker in a private company (died 27 October).

Saroj Warasatien Attacked while observing the situation of the burning of the Panfah Police Station. Aged 48,
head of the delivery section of the Pharmaceutical Office.

Supoj Liansakulyoudee Shot in the eye and fell into the canal while trying to help another man who was shot. Aged
19, a furniture maker.

Somdej Wirunpho Shot with many bullets piercing his chest and legs by police and soldiers from the Panfah
Police Station. Aged 18, 1st year student Economic Faculty, Chulalongkorn University.

Sai Ritthivanich Shot from behind while passing through the Public Relations Office. Aged 44, a carpenter.

Sawaeng Phanbua Shot in the forehead in front of the Revenue Department Office. Aged 16, a worker.

Sompong Sae-tiaw Shot in Banglamphu while observing the crackdown. Aged 14, a 1st year student of Mongkut
Secondary School.

Sompong Ployruangsri Shot in the chest while trying to take a gun from a soldier near the Panfah Bridge. Aged 20,
a 2nd year student at the Phra Jomklao Technology Institute.

Abhisit Pornsirilertkit Shot in the head while searching for a friend at the Panfah area. Aged 18, a salesman in a
radio equipment shop.

Annop Dittasuwan Shot by machine-gun fire from a tank in the Royal Garden. Aged17, a mobile cinema

Anek Patikarnsuntorn Shot while trying to take control of the Panfah Police Station. Aged 41, a food store owner.

Eimchoung Sae-Goi Shot in front of the Royal Hotel. A worker aged 22, died at the Sirirat Hospital October 14.

1. Unidentified woman. Shot in the back and fell into the river near the Pinklao Bridge.
2. Unidentified man. Shot in front of the Panfah Police Office.
3. Unidentified person. Shot, burnt, beaten and / or unable to identify
4. Unidentified person. Shot, burnt, beaten and / or unable to identify
5. Unidentified person Shot, burnt, beaten and / or unable to identify
6. Unidentified person Shot, burnt, beaten and / or unable to identify
7. Unidentified person Shot, burnt, beaten and / or unable to identify
8. Unidentified person Shot, burnt, beaten and / or unable to identify
9. Unidentified person Shot, burnt, beaten and / or unable to identify
10. Unidentified person Shot, burnt, beaten and / or unable to identify
11. Unidentified person Shot, burnt, beaten and / or unable to identify

1974 - 1976
After the First Oil Crisis, prices rose and the life of poor people in Thailand changed noticeably, with an increasing need for
cash and emphasis on cash economies. After the October 1973 massacre the labour movement mobilised. In 1974 there
were over 700 strikes and Thailand’s first Labour Relations Act was introduced in 1975. Small farmers also began to organise
on a provincial basis, and mobilise, and many travelled to Bangkok to protest the price of rice, fertilizer, loans etc. All this was
soon too much for the monarcho-militarists. Allied with the industrialists the militarists walked-over civilian government self-
paralysed by it’s own anti-communist paranoia, and cracked-down ruthlessly on workers, students and farmers. For obvious
reasons, records of political assassination and murder from this period are scratchy, and cover-ups extensive. Dozens of
‘farmer-leaders’ were killed. Attempts have been made to collect data on the people who lost their lives e.g. by Suthachai
Yimprasert, Chulalongkorn University and others, but lists to date do not express the scale of human tragedy of this period.

1974 3
Three villagers Killed brutally. Nasai Village in Nongkhai Province, home to 1500 people, was burned
down by the ‘authorities’ who claimed it was a communist village. 14 January

1975 4
Four muslim villagers A car of five Muslim adults and a boy, heading home in Bajoh District in Narathivat Province,
was held-up between the Bajoh District and Saiburi District. A few days later the five bodies
of the adults were found floating in the river. 29 November
1976 74
Sanong Bancha Shot. A worker-leader in the Temco Mining Company in Pang-nga Province was
shot dead while filling his motorcycle with gasoline. 25 January
Nisit Jirasophon Murdered. Member of Student Federation of Thailand, killed while leading a team of
journalists to investigate the death of the 3,000 villagers in Patthalung Province. 2 January
Boonma Somprasit Shot. A farmer-leader from Angtong Province.
Dr. Boonsanong Punyodyana Shot by an assassin. Secretary-General of the Socialist Party of Thailand. 28 February
Nisit Jirasophon, Pushed out of a train. A student activist from Chiangmai University on his way to investigate
the uprising in Nakhon Srithammarat Province. 1 April
Hieng Linmak Shot. Farmer-leader from Surin Province. 5 April
Eiy Tongto Shot. Farmer committee member from Lamphun Province.
Prasert Chomam-marit Shot. President of Farmer’s Federation in Hang Dong District, Chiang Mai Province. 18 April,
Ngon Laowong Assassinated. Farmer-leader from Ban Nongbuaban, Udon Thani. 21 April
Charoen Dangnok Shot. Committee member of the Nakorn Ratchasima Farmer’s Federation.
Thawin (unknown surname) Shot. Farmer-leader from Pichit Province. 5 May
Mongkol Suknoon Shot. Leader of the Nakhon Sawan farmers.
Kliang Mai-eim Shot. Vice-President, Farmers Federation, Hang Chat District, Lampang Province. 20 May
Put Ponglangka Shot. Leader of the Chiang Rai farmers. 22 June

Mana Intasuriya Shot. A student from Ratchasima College, Nakhon Ratchasima Province, shot while putting
up posters inviting people to demonstration against the US Army base on 4 July. 1 July
Ja Chakkrawan Killed. Vice-President of the Bandong Farmer’s Federation, Mae Rim, ChiangMai. 3 July
Prasat Sirimoung Shot. Farmer’s representative from Surin Province. 8 July
Boonpa Panyoyai Shot in Lamphun Province. Committee member of Farmers Federation of Thailand. 14 July
Boonta Yota Shot dead in Lamphun Province. 18 July
Kliang Mai-aim Shot. Vice-President, Thai Farmer’s Federation in Hang Chat District, Lampang. 22 July
Ms Samran Kamklan Shot by the chief of the factory’s security guards. Factory worker in Kratumban District,
Nakhon Prathom Province. 26 July
Intha Sriboonruang Shot. Vice-President of the Farmer’s Federation of Thailand and the President of the
Northern Farmer’s Federation, Chiang Mai. 31 July
Sawas Tathawan Shot. Leader of Doi Saket Farmer, Chiang Mai was shot. 4 August
Eiy Sitthi Disappeared, never found. Fang District Farmer’s Federation, Chiang Mai Province. 7 Aug
Mee Suanplu Disappeared, never found. Fang District Farmer’s Federation, Chiang Mai Province. 7 Aug
Ta Sitthi Disappeared, never found. Fang District Farmer’s Federation, Chiang Mai Province. 7 Aug
Taah Kaewprasert Disappeared, never found. Fang District Farmer’s Federation, Chiang Mai Province. 7 Aug
Ta Intakham Disappeared, never found. Fang District Farmer’s Federation, Chiang Mai Province. 7 Aug
Put Saidam Shot. Farmer from Ma Bon, Fang District, Chiang Mai. Survived first shooting, but later shot
dead in a hospital bed in front of the doctor. 11 August,
Chuan Niamwira Shot in Utong District, Suphanburi. Committee member of the Farmer’s Federation of
Thailand. 12 August
15 protesters Killed by a bomb, thrown at them when protesting against the removal of the Pang-nga
Governor. 17 others injured. 29 September
Nual Kawilai Killed by a bomb during the crackdown on the protest against mining in Serm-ngam District,
Lampang Province. A farmer leader from Mae Lieng. 12 October
15 protesters Killed by a bomb during the second crackdown on the protest against the Mae Lieng Mining
in Serm-ngam District, Lampang Province. 13 October
Bunyarat Jaiyen Shot. Vice-President, Farmer’s Federation in Saraphi District, Chiang Mai Province. 19 Oct.
12 protesters Killed by a bomb thrown into the crowd in Pattani. 13 December

1976 monarcho-military crackdown on student protest 6 October 42

41 students were killed by a combined force of Royal Thai Army, Border Guard and ‘Protect the Monarchy’ paramilitary gangs.
30 bodies were identified, 10 bodies not identified.
100s injured.
3,154 students arrested
1000s fled to the forest and / or went into hiding.
26 men and 4 women were returned to their families by the Royal Thai Police for cremation.
Ms. Wimonphan Roongtongbaisuree Shot
Ms. Poranee Jullakarin Shot
Ms. Watcharee Phetsun Shot
Ms. Arunee Khambunkerd Shot
Abdulroheng Sata Shot
Manoo Vitayaporn Shot
Surasit Supapa Shot
Samphan Charoensuk Shot
Suwit Tongpralard Shot
Boonnak Samaksaman Shot
Abhisit Thainiyom Shot
Weeraphol Opaspilai Shot
Supoj Phankalasin Shot
Yuttana Burasiriraksa Shot
Phumisak Sirasuppalerkchai Shot
Danaisak Eimkong Shot
Paiboon Laohajiraphan Shot
Chaiyaporn Amornrojjanawong Shot
Ajachariya Srisawat Shot
Somchai Piyasakulsak Shot
Wisut Pongpanich Shot
Suphol Boontapan Shot
Siripong Mantasatien Shot
Wasan Boonraksa Shot
Naowarat Sirirangsri Shot
Pongphan Praomaturos Died from a bomb blast
Anuwat Angkaew Died from a bomb blast
Wichitchai Amornkul Died from shrapnel wounds
Pricha Sae-tia Beaten and died from shrapnel wounds
Sanguanphan Sunsheng Drowned
Wanchat Srichansuk Hanged himself in a cell at Bangkhen Police Station
Jarupong Tongsin Body not found
................................ Body burnt, unable to identify gender
................................ Body burnt, unable to identify gender
................................ Body burnt, unable to identify gender
................................ Body burnt, unable to identify gender
................................. Could not identify the person’s name
................................. Could not identify the person’s name
................................. Could not identify the person’s name
................................. Could not identify the person’s name
................................... Could not identify the person’s name
.................................... Could not identify the person’s name
The above list does not include the names of many people who just disappeared, whose bodies couldn’t be found and who
were, perhaps, destroyed by the ‘authorities’ according to custom. For example Jarupong Tongsin was seen being dragged
around the football ground of Thammasart University with a rope around his neck by ‘Protect the monarchy’ thugs, but his
body was never found.
1977 – 1991 ???

1992 monarcho-military crackdown 44

The Bloody May 17 - 19, saw about 45 killed of which about 38 people were shot.
There are reports of up to 70 people who ‘disappeared’.
Kittikorn Kiewboriboon Shot
Kittipong Supingklad Shot
Kriangkrai Jarusarn Shot
Korbkul Sinthusingha Shot
Jakkraphan Amrat Shot
Jakkrawut Namta Shot
Chairat Na Nakorn Shot
Sihong Sae-tia Shot
Narong Thongtong Shot
Taweesak Panathuek Shot
Nakorn Sonpanya Shot
Boonmee Saengsum Shot
Boonmee Wongsingto Shot
Boonkong Tanna Shot
Pratchaya Srisa-ard Shot
Prasong Thippimol Shot
Prida Eimsam-ang Shot
Piphat Suriyakul Shot
Phuwanat Wilasthorakul Shot
Pirom Ramkhao Shot
Mayunan Yidam Shot
Manas Nonthasiri Shot
Wira Jittichanon Shot
Wongduen Buachan Shot
Wirachai Asawapityanon Shot
Sarakorn Yaempranit Shot
Somchai Suthirat Shot
Samruam Trikhem Shot
Saroj Yamin Shot
Somphen Charoennet Shot
Suchat Papor Shot
Suraphan Chuchuay Shot
Saman Klinphu Shot

Sanya Pengsa Shot
Noo Kaewphamorn Shot
Apiwat Maskhao Shot
Ekpoj Jarukitpaisan Shot
Kritsada Niammeesri Hit and shot.
Tawee Muaydee Hit on the head.
Tanong Phoarn Kidnapped and body never found. President of the Labour Congress of Thailand.
Chalermphol Sangaim Died from swelling in the brain.
Eian Newmegen Disappeared.
Unidentified body ??
Unidentified body ??
Unidentified body ??

1993 ??
1994 1
Ms Suchada Kamfubutra Kidnapped and never seen again. She was protesting industrialisation in Lampang Province.

1995 3
Ajan Bunthawee Upakarakul Thrown out of a train. A leader against toxic waste from the Lamphun Industrial Estate.
Ajan Pravien Boonnak Shot dead. A leader of the movement against mining in Loei Province.
Winai Chantamano Shot dead. An environmentalist campaigning against tree-felling at Ban Namlar, Kuankalong

1996 2
Tong-in Kaewwatta Shot dead. A leader against Jengo waste management company in the Rayong Industrial
Zone. (18 January.)
Tun Boonkhuntod Killed by police from Naongbuarahaew Station (22 July), while leading his members
against the construction of the Pong Khun Phet Dam. Tun was also a Leader of the
Assembly of the Poor from Ban Huay Tapnai, Nongbuarahaew District, Chaiphum

1999 3
Tongmuan Kamjaem Shot dead. The head of a Sub-District who led a protest against a mining concession in
Nongbualamphu. He was shot dead together with . .
Som Homprom Shot dead. Sitting on the back of Tongmuan’s motorcycle.
Aree Songkroh Shot dead. A leader protecting the Klongkram Watershed in Suratthani Province

2001 6
Ms Chaweewan Pueksoongnoen Shot dead at her home on 1 August. A leader who fought against corruption in the
Administrative Council in NaKlang Sub-district, Soongnoen District, Nakorn Ratchasima
Province. Nobody was arrested for her murder.
Jurin Ratchaphol Shot dead. A leader protecting 400 rai of the Pa Klog coastline in Talang District, Phuket,
from Shrimp farming. (30 January.)

Narin Phodaeng Shot dead in front of his home (1 May). A leader against mining and the bombing of Khao
Cha-ang Mountain in Chamao District, Rayong Province.
Pithak Tonwut Shot dead on his way home from a meeting with a government investigation team on 17 May.
A leader against rock and stone mining who was calling for an investigation into the mining
company in Ban Chompu, Noenmaprang District, Pitsanulok.
Suwat Piyasathit Shot dead at a meeting of the community shop in Jamjuree, Rachatewa Sub-district
on 26 June. A leader against waste dumping in his community, which was causing a
putrid smell in nearby communities in Bangpli District, Samutprakarn. The gunman got life
imprisonment and the man who hired him the death sentence, but the cases have been
appealed and remain pending.
Somporn Chanaphol Shot dead while writing a report about the community. A leader for the protection of
Klong Kradae watershed, in Kanchanadit District, Suratthani Province, one of the few
remaining rich forests in the South, which the community successfully prevented from
being inundated from the construction of a dam.

2002 7
Kaew Peenpanma, Shot dead. A member of the Northern Farmers Network and the community leader who led
the villagers to cultivate land in Doilor Sub-district, Chiang Mai province, shot on 23
June 2002. The police arrest the gunman and the court gave him 8 years in prison.
Boonsom Nimnoi, Shot dead. A leader against the construction of Petrochemical of Siam Gulf Mining Rock and
Stone Petrochemical Company shot on 2 September. Two people surrendered to the police
but the case was dissolved because, fearing death threats, no one willing to stand witness.
Preecha Tongpaan, Shot dead. A leader against the wastewater management of Pak Prak, Tungsong District,
Nakorn Srithammarat was shot on 27 September. The two people arrested pleaded not
guilty and were released on bail. One of them was then shot in retaliation but survived.
Boonyarit Channarong, Killed by four forestry officers who were working on his land in Chana District on 15
December 2002. Boonyarit was a local leader investigating illegal logging in the Chana
Forest and collecting evidence to prove corruption by government officers and businessmen.
Also he called for the resolution of conflict on land titles between the Kaeng Krung National
Park and villager’s farmland. The four forestry officers claimed they killed him in self-
defence, as Boonyarit was going to attack them with a knife. All were released on bail.
Boonyong Intawong, Shot dead at his home on 20 December. A leader against Doi Mae Ook-ru Mining, Wieng
Chai District, Chiang Rai, of the Wiengpa-ngam Construction Company.
Kampan Suksai, Killed by Jankaew Jandaeng, an officer of the National Forest and Animal Conservation. A
village headman in Mae Na Sub-district, Chiang Dao District, Chiang Mai. Formerly Vice-
President of the Northern Ping River Community Forest Network, and active in the Chiag Dao
Community Forest Network, which comprises 54 communities working together to look after
380,000 rai. Kampan was a very active leader, setting up the committee to look after the
area and posting signs for the zoning of community forestland. Kampan and villagers
arrested Jankaew Jandaeng on 19 June 2001 for killing forest animals. Jankaew pleaded
guilty and paid a 25,000 Baht fine. In a rage of anger he killed Kampan on 1 February 2003.
He was arrested and given 25 years imprisonment.
Chuan Chamnankit, Shot dead by a gang of people at his home on 4 February. A villager from Chawang
District, Nakorn Srithammarat, who was active in fighting against the drug trade.

2003 2788
107 civilians Shot dead when police and soldiers fired into the Kue se Mosque in Pattani.
5 men in uniform died. 28 April.
2,596 civilians Killed during 3 months of Thaksin’s ‘War on drugs’. According to the Royal Thai
Police Bureau’s own report 1,432 were innocent.

84 civilians Killed by police, 6 from bullet wounds and 78 from suffocation during transportation
from police station to army camp. This Southern Conflict incident sparked when several

hundred Muslim people were protesting at the Tak Bai Police Station in Narathiwat Province,
demanding the release of 6 people that had been arrested.

Samnao Srisongkram Shot brutally in his field in Ban Kambong Pattana, Ubonrat District, Khon Kaen on 25 May.
He was the President of the Lam Nam Pong Recovery and Conservation Group which, since
1992, was active in bringing a case against the Phoenix Pulp and Paper Company
(operational since 1975). The assassin was arrested, convicted and is now facing life
imprisonment. But the man arrested and accused of hiring the assassin, the head of the Sub-
District was released and discharged on lack of evidence.

2004 4
Somchai Neelapaichit Disappeared on 12 March 2004. A respected human rights lawyer, former President of
the Muslim Lawyers Network, actively defending human rights violations in the Southern
Conflict. In April 2004, 5 police officers were arrested. On 12 January 2006, the criminal court
determined that there was no strong evidence because Somchai’s body could not be found.
In the end only one police officer, Police Col. Ngen Tongsuk, was sentenced to 3 years
imprisonment, but was released on bail. Col. Tongsuk himself disappeared in 2008, and the
whole Somchai case remains unsolved.
Suphol Sirichan Shot by a group of gunmen. A local leader working to protect the forest and Mae Mok
Watershed in Thoen District, Lampang Province. He confronted the illegal logging mafias and
many times led villagers to stop their illegal logging activities. He faced many threats but
continued to protect the forest and watershed area. At 8 pm on 11 August 2004 a group of
gunmen killed Suphol while he was closing his gate, just 15 minutes after forestry police
had stopped the illegal logging. No one has been arrested.
Charoen Wataksorn Shot with more than ten bullets in his body. Aged 37, the chairman of the Bonok Environment
Conservation Group, a strong movement against the coal power plants of the Saha Union
Group (Anan Panyarachun business group). Bonok and Ban krud community form one of the
strongest people’s movements to protect the environment in Thailand. They have been
fighting the building of power plants since the late 1990s with a collective style of leadership.
Bonok had submitted two demands to the authorities: First, the construction of the coal power
plant must stop immediately, and second, if you do not understand our demand, please go
back and read demand No.1.
Charoen was killed on 21 June 2004 as he stepped down from the tour bus returning from a
meeting with a state Sub-Committee of the Anti-Corruption Commission formed to deal with
the Bonok complaint.
Five people were arrested, two of them died in prison, one was released, the boss was
sentenced to death in 2008, but details of the case and appeals remain before the courts.
Ms Pakwipa Chalermklin Shot on 14 October. A Vice-President of the Ban Hua Krabue Community in Pamok District,
Angtong Province, who led actions against the business group that is constructing a port to
transport sand excavated from the river. The business group was supported by the wife of an
influential politician in the province.

2005 1
Phra Supoj Suwajo Murdered brutally in his monastery, aged 39. His Suan Metta Dharm forest monastery is in
Chiang Mai's Fang district. Phra Supoj and communities around the monastery have been
working very hard to preserve forestland from outsiders who want to clear the land to
cultivate orange farms. There are already over 200,000 rai of orange farms in Fang, and the
district is known for orange farming, but half of the land used for the farms has been illegally
occupied. Pha Supoj had reported many times to the police that they should clear the mafia
out of the forest, but without result. The monastery staff were beaten badly and, on
June 17, Phra Supoj was brutally murdered in the monastery area. There has been no
progress in the investigation into the murder.

2006 19 September military coup 1
Nuamtong Praiwan Hanged himself from a foot bridge in Bangkok over the road in front the most popular
newspaper Thairath on 31 October. A taxi driver, aged 60, who had driven his taxi hard into a
military tank on 19 September in protest against the military coup. He recovered in part from
serious injuries but then hanged himself to complete his protest.

2007 ??
2008 1
Narongsak Krobtaisong Beaten to death by a mob of the People’s Alliance for Democracy on 2 September, aged 52.

2009 Red Shirt demonstration 2

The UDD claims 6 supporters were killed in the April crackdown but only 2 bodies were found.
Nattapong Pongdi Beaten, tied and thrown into the Chaopraya River. From Udonthani Province.
Chaiyaporn Kantang, Beaten, tied and thrown into the Chaopraya River. From Phare Province.

2010 military crackdown under the ‘license to kill’ 91

91 people were killed during the April-May crackdown, 2000 wounded and 470 Red-shirts were arrested.
When hospital records says ‘wounded’ or ‘died on the spot’, this more-than-likely means by a bullet or bullets.
April 10 crackdown around Democracy Monument (20)
Hiroyuki Muramoto, 43 Shot in chest, died on way to hospital. A Japanese Reuters reporter.
Sawat Wong-ngam, 43 Shot in the head
Todsachai Mekngamfah, 44 Shot in the chest
Charoon Chaimaen, 46 Shot in the chest
Wasan Phutong, 39 Shot in the head from the back
Sayam Wattananukul, 53, Shot in the chest from the back
Monchai Sae-jong, 54 Died from lung failure in the hospital
Amphon Tatiyarat, 26 Shot in the back of the head
Yutthana Tongcharoenporn, 23 Shot in the head from behind
Praison Thiplom, 37 Shot in the head from the front, died in the hospital
Kriengkrai Tanoi, 24 Shot in the thigh and the bullet lodged in his stomach, died in the hospital
Kanung Chatthe, 50 Shot in the right chest
Napaphol Phaopanas, 30 Shot in the stomach, died in the hospital.
Saming Taengphen, 49 Shot in the head, died in the hospital
Somsak Kaewsan, 34 Shot in the chest, died in the hospital
Boontham Thongpui, 40 Shot in the forehead
Mana Arjran, 23 Shot in the head from behind
Anan Sirikulwanich, 54 Shot
Terdsak Fungklinchan, 29 Wounded in the chest, died in the hospital
Unidentified man, 40-50 Wounded by cut through blood vessels in thigh, died in the hospital
Ms. Thanyanan Thabthong, 50 Killed by a bomb blast at Silom Road 22 April

Col. Romklao Thuwatham, 43 Right neck torn, both legs smashed 10 April
Puriwat Praphan, 25 Died from a wound to the head 10 April
Anupong Muangraphan, 21 Died from bruised chest, both legs were torn 10 April
Singha Onthrong Died from wounds to chest and thigh 10 April
Anupong Hommalee, 22 Head hit by a bomb blast, died in hospital. 10 April
Narong Ritthisara Died during crackdown at the National Memorial 28 April
Karnnuphat Lertchanphen, 38 Shot in front of the Krung Thai Bank, Silom Road 7 May
Wittaya Promsari, 35 Died from a bomb blast during the crackdown at gate 4, Lumpini Park 8 May
Chatchai Chalao, 25 Died from wounds to neck during the crackdown at Lumpini Park 13 May
Khattiya Sawasdiphol, 58 Shot in the head. A renegade Major General from the Royal Thai Army who
joined the Red Shirts. He was assassinated by a sniper bullet while being
interviewed by a reporter from the New York Times. 13 May
People that died at Lumpini Park on 15 May:
Ms. Kamonket Hakhard, 25 Shot with six bullets in her body
Ms. Wasinee Theppan Died on way to hospital
Piyapong Kitiphan, 32 Shot dead
Prajuab Silaphan, Shot
Somsak Kilirakka, 28, Shot
Boonthing Pansila, 25 Shot in the neck. A medic from Wachira Hospital.
Phan Kamklong, 43 Shot in the chest. Died in the Moh Lheng area
Mana Sanprasertsri, 22 Shot in the head. Worker for Po Tek Tung Emergency Assistance Foundation
Santana Sappasri, 34 Shot in the stomach and arm in the Moh Lheng area
Pornsawan Nakachai, 23 Shot in many places, died in hospital
Kriangkrai Leantaisong, 25 Shot in the head, died in hospital
Kiettikhun Chatwirasakul, 25 Shot in the chest, died on the spot
Wongsakorn Plangsri, 40 Shot in the chest, bleeding, died in hospital
Somchai Phrasuwan, 43 Shot in the head, died in hospital
Chaleaw deeruenram, 27 Shot below the chest
Sompan Luangchom, 35 Shot in the stomach
Polenchi Fadio, 48 Shot in the chest. An Italian journalist
Mhanachot Chumyen, 34 Shot through kidney and main artery
Pratchaya Sae-Khoe, 21 Shot - bullet through the liver
Akradet Khankaew, 22 Shot - bullet through lung and heart
Mongkol Khemthong, 37 Shot - lung and heart
Wichai Manpare, 61 Shot - bullet through lung and liver
Attachai Chumchan, 28 Shot – bullet destroying his lung
Narin Srichomphu Shot – bullet destroyed his brain

Bonkai community man, 71 Shot in the stomach while searching his grand-daughter in the firing zone. Died on 28 July
from blood infection after treatment.
Songsak Srinongbua, 33 Died from wound in the chest
Samai Tadkaew, 36 Died from injuries of many attacks
Yuon Phothongkam, 60 Died from wounded to his anus on 21 May
Kitiphan Khantong, 26 Died from wound in the ribs in hospital
Surakrai Srimuangpun, 34 Died from wounded in the head in hospital
Amphol Chuensri, 25 Died on the spot
Samaphan Srithep, 17 Died on the spot
Uthai Orn-in, 35 Died on the spot
Supot Yatima, 37 Died on the spot
Tanakorn Piyapholdirek, 50 Died on the spot
Suphan Thomtong, 49 Died on the spot
Thawin Kammool, 38 Died from head wound
Thanwa Wongsiri, 26 Died from wound to the head
Channarong Ploysrila, 32 Died from wounds to the head
Thippanet Jiamphol, 36 Died from wound in the head
Supacheep Jullathas, 36 Died from wound in the head
Warin Wongsanit, 28 Died from wound in the chest
Muhammad Akli, 40 Died from wound to the chest
Inplang Thetwong, 32 Died in the crackdown
Saneh Nilluang, 48 Died in the crackdown
Chaiyan Wannajak, 20 Died in the crackdown
Ploen Wongma, 40 Died in the hospital on 20 May
Prachuab Prachuabsuk, 42 Died at the Charoenkrung Pracharak
Kittipong Somsuk, 20 Burnt in the blaze at Central World, body found on 21 May
1. Ms. Unidentified woman Shot dead
2. Unidentified boy, aged 14 Shot in the stomach and arm. Died at Soi Moh Lheng
3. Unidentified man Shot and died in Ratchaparop area
4. Unidentified man Died from wound in the head
5. Unidentified man Died from beating and bleeding in the brain
6. Unidentified person
7. Unidentified person

Pongchalit Thippanontakarn Shot in the head. A sergeant, aged 31.
Anusit Chansanto, 44 Died on the spot. A sergeant

2010 June – December 5

Five local leaders brutally assassinated, four after being followed and assaulted by M16 rifle-fire, the fifth from being run-down
by a pick-up truck.
Sakkarin Kongkaew Shot dead in his hometown. A Korat area leader.
Sawat Daungmanee Shot dead. Local leader from Rayong Province.
Kritsada Klahan, 20 Shot by a group of people following his car with an M16. He was functioning as a guard for
a DJ from Chiang Mai in hiding.
Noi Banjong, 51 Shot and died from multiple bullet wounds. A Tuk Tuk driver in Chiang Mai and a DJ for
a Chiang Mai Red Shirt Radio programme.
Thanapong Panmee Hit by a pick-up. Local leader from Nattawut Saikua.

2004 - 2010 SOUTHERN CONFLICT 4000

On 2 July 2010 the Cross-Cultural Foundation released figures that since 2004 about 4,000 people have been killed in the
conflict in southern Thailand. (CCF was founded early in 2002 to work on human rights violations in the South of Thailand.)

TOTAL number of victims noted in this appendix 10 191

Amsterdam &Peroff LLP, Application to investigate the situation of the Kingdom of Thailand with regard to the
commission of crimes againsts humanity, The Hague, the Netherlands, 31 January, 2011
Firelamtung, Ruam Wongphan,
Thak Chaloemtiarana, Thailand: The politics of despotic paternalism, The Foundation for the Promotion of
Social Sciences and Humanities Textbooks project, May 2005

Sochai Phatharathananunth, Isan and the Thai State: Domination, Conflict and Resistance, Mahasarakam
Attichai Sirithet, Thai NGOs, People’s History “Communists and Red barrels Case’, 20 September 2004

N/a, 20 Years 6 Octboer 1976, from 14 October to 6 October, the inspiration for struggle for new society,

OK Nation, figures on people died from War on Drugs Raids, 2003,
Thairath Newspaper, Editorial, True Human Rights Defenders, 29 April 2009
List of 89 people died from the Military Crackdown on April – May 2010, Dailyworld Today, 6 Year, issues
274, 28 August – 3 September 2010, page 4-5
War on Drugs, Naewna Newspaper, 25 May 2009

War on drugs report,

Lists of people died from the crackdown on 13-15 October, 14 October 1973 Memorial,

Information of the October 6, 1976 crackdown,

The assassinations of the four members of Parliament in 1949.
The May 1992 uprising and crackdown.

Thai E-News, 100 Years of People’s Heroes, 5 December 2009.

Thai E-News, story of political assassinations. 23 December 2010 23.
Bangkokbiznews, Solving Southern Conflict, wasting budget of 140 billion Baht., 17 January 2011-03-
Kom Chad Luek Newspaper, Krong Jandawong, a Sawang Dindan’s Hero, 30 May 2009,
Wikipedia, The 6 October 1976 crackdown,
Wikipedia, The May 1992 Crackdown,
97%E0%B8%A1%E0%B8%B4%E0%B8%AC , Story on the 6 October 1996 crackdown,
OK Nation, Kor Khon Human Rights, 10 December 2007
Office of National Human Rights Commissioners
Komchadluek Newspaper Online, The Devil’s Shadow ‘The Black May’, 11 April 2009
Wittayakorn Boonruang, Phra Supoj’s mysterious death: a Buddhist monk falls victim to capitalist greed (2),
Prachatai, 3 October 2007,
Wikipedia} Jit Phumsak
Thai E-News Dr. Sanong Punyodyana, 27 February 2010.
The World Today (Thai) Magazine (2010), No. 274, August 28 - September 3, p 4-5.

Appendix 3
Some cases of lèse majesté (LM)
As said, hard and fast data is hard to obtain. How many
people are under LM surveillance, have cases against them
that they do or don’t know about, how many sit in jail without
being charged, await trial, or are already convicted nobody
knows exactly.
This appendix gives a few mainly headline examples of LM
cases, to illustrate how LM is used as a weapon to suppress
freedom of speech and democratic movement.
Most of the information here comes from Political Prisoners
in Thailand (PPT) and LM Watch. The number of LM cases
has risen dramatically since the military coup (‘Palace coup’)
of 2006, with the estimates up around 500 cases.
The current spate of LM cases seems to have a starting
point in 2001, when two western journalists from the Far
Eastern Economic Review were banned from entering
Thailand until their editor apologised - for criticising the
Monarchy and the Government, which he did.
Since September 2003, Bundith Arniya, a well-known
freelance translator of over 50 books and publications on
socialism has been dealing endlessly with police
interrogations and court appearances. During 8 years he has
been detained 7 times, been beaten, sentenced, jailed and
finally, aged 71 and seriously ill, bailed-out for 200,000 Baht
by a non-Thai professor. As he has said, no Thai person
dared to stand bail for him.
Chiranuch Premchaiporn awaiting bail.
Photo: Nick Nostitz

In 2006 Paul Handley’s ground-breaking book ‘The King Never Smiles’ was published in the USA by Yale
University and promptly banned in Thailand.
On 5 December 2006 the tolerance of Oliver Jufer, a 57 year old Swiss man, for all the ‘Love the King’
nonesense snapped. He had been living in Thailand with a Thai wife for 10 years. He was arrested for
spraying pictures of the ‘King of Kings’, 5 of the plethora of mega-scale blow-ups that surrounded him and
that dominate every single cross-roads and every point of command throughout Thailand. He was
sentenced to 10 years in prison. His case was largely ignored by the Thai press, but received much
international media attention. He was deported by the police in April 2007.
Thanapol Eawsakul, Editor of Fa Diew Kan (‘Same Sky’), a printed, quarterly political review, was
accused and charged with LM in 2006, and then later again in 2011. Fa Diew Kan was one of the first
publications, circulating mainly amongst academics and young intellectuals, to begin contemporary, critical
analysis of the role of the monarchy in Thai politics.
NOTE: Thanapol’s case remains, as we say, ‘pending’, as do so many LM cases. Why?
Because if an LM case goes to court there must, by royalist convention, be a conviction,
and because if a judge decides that the accused did not ‘insult the power of the King’, the
judge can himself be accused of insulting the King, and of not protecting the Monarchy etc.
This is the core of the rot in the Thai judicial system, the root-cause of most aspects of the
‘Thai crisis’, the hard-core evidence from the lower courts that ‘democracy under monarchy’
produces only corruption.

Chotisak Onsoong
Chotisak Onsoong and his friend Songkran Pongbunjan, both student activists in many labour movement
activities, were charged, on 5 April 2008, for not standing for the King’s anthem in the cinema in September
For Chotisak the charge totally changed his life. He could no longer hold a regular job because of the
distruptions from police and prosecutors. He all kinds of harassment, but continued to participate political
actions for democracy and distribute alternative books. The U.S. State Department’s annual Human Rights
Report for 2008 mentions their case as follows: “They were released without bail; the case was under
investigation at year’s end. On April 29 and 30, radio station Metro Life 97 urged listeners to attack
Chotisak when he was scheduled to appear at a panel discussion on lese majeste at Thammasat
University. The Web site component of the station also posted his personal information, including his
address and telephone number.”
Case pending.
Jonathan Head
Several accusations of LM seem to have been filed against Jonathan Head, BBC Bangkok e.g. in April
2008 for remarks made at the Foreign Correspondents' Club of Thailand (FCCT) discussion in 2007. He is
no longer stationed in South-East Asia.
Case pending.
Jakrapob Penkair
A minister in Thaksin Shinawatra’s government and spokesman for the United Front for Democracy against
Dictatorship (UDD), Jakrapob was accused of LM after a talk at an FCCT meeting on 29 August 2007.
Facing arrest he has been in hiding since the military crackdown on the Red Shirt Protest in April 2009.
Facing arrest.

Boonyuen Prasertying
Speaking while participating in a Pro-Thaksin rally, Boonyuen Prasertying, 48, was charged with lèse
majesté and sentenced to 12 years imprisonment on 6 November 2008. After confession, her sentence
was reduced to six years. In mid-November 2009, the Appeals Court reduced it to 2 years. Together with
Suwicha Takhor, another LM prisoner, she was released and ‘pardoned’ in June 2010.

Upon release, Boonyuen was taken to the Sirirat Hospital, dressed in a pink’ T-Shirt with the King’s
emblem, to sign in a book to verify her love for the King. (Norte: ‘Love the King‘ is code for submission to
the absolute power of the Monarchy).
Begged pardon and released.
Boonsong Chaisingkanon
A lecturer at Silpakorn University, Boonsong was reported to the Police by members of the Faculty of Arts,
in July 2007. After heavy media attention the case was dropped.
Case dropped

Boonyuen Prasertying, 47
Convicted and jailed, and pardoned after 22 months in jail (November 2008-June 2010).
Pardoned after 22 months in jail
Ratchapin Chanjaroen
Accused and charged of not standing for the King’s anthem in the cinema on 15 June 2008.
Case mysteriously disappeared from view.

Sulak Sivaraksa 75,
A royalist and well known social critic and activist, speaking for reform of the Monarchy, was arrested,
taken to Khon Kaen Police station and charged with LM on November 2008. A victim of LM in the 1980ies
he is out on bail.
Case pending.
Chucheep Chivasut
A radio DJ whose his arrest warrant was issued in August 2008.
The accused has disappeared.

Harry Nicolaides
In January 2009 he was sentenced to 3 years imprisonment for his alleged defaming of the Crown Prince
in four lines of his 2005 novel Verisimilitude. Nicolaides was convicted in January 2009, jailed and, after
begging pardon, was deported to Australia in February 2009.
Jailed, begged pardon and deported.

Giles Ji Ungpakorn
After being charged for quoting Paul Handley’s book (see above) in his own book - ‘A Coup for the Rich’
(2007), Giles, a declared Marxists and Associate Professor at Chulalonghorn University, jumped bail in
February 2009, and went with his wife, who was also being harassed, to live in the UK. A warrant for his
arrest was issued in March 2009 and his book was officially banned in Thailand at the end of 2009.
In political exile, Giles and Num continue to campaign for democracy in Thailand.
Political exile.

Board of the Foreign Correspondents Club of Thailand (FCCT)

In June 2009 LM charges were filed against all 13 members of the FCCT Board for distributing a CD of an
FCCT discussion with Jakrapob Penkair (See above).
Cases pending.
Daranee Charnchoengsilpakul, 48
In August 2009 Daranee was arrested for publicly denouncing the 2006 military coup, and the Monarchy,
during a Red Shirt rally in June 2008. She is now serving an 18 year prison sentence on 3 counts of lèse
majesté. Consistently mistreated, she faces deteriorating health and is in acute need of medical attention. j
Serving 18 years, appeal upheld but still in jail.
Suwicha Thakor, 36
Arrested in January 2009, convicted and sentenced to 10 years in jail. He begged pardon and was
released June 2010.
Begged pardon and released from jail.
Sondhi Limthongkul
The Leader of the PAD was charged with LM on 22 January 2009 for repeating the words of Daranee
Charnchoengsilpakul - while criticizing her. He was released on bail of 300,000 Baht.
This and many other Sondhi cases remain pending.
Chiranuch Premchaiporn
The Prachatai news office was raided by the police on 6 March 2009. Since then Chiranuch, the manager
of this on-line news service, has had to manage her defence against a barrage of LM-type charges, but
according to Chiranuch the Police have been using the Computer Crime Laws “to avoid international media
attention regarding lèse majesté”.

Against the background of the heavily self-censoring mainstream media, great numbers of Thai people
needed, one of the only reliable Thai sources of independent news about Thai social
The attractive chat board was a place where people could share their frustrations about the
political madness in Thailand, from the corruption charges against Thaksin in 2005, to the military coup in
2006 and all that followed, Thailand’s growing, critical cyber army made the Prachatai chat board their
home, increasingly sharing their frustration over the role of Monarchy in Thai politics.
Chiranuch’s impossible task was to attempt to oversee this chaos of opinions.
Returning from the 'Internet@Freedom Conference’ in Hungary, in September 2010, Chiranuch was
arrested at Bangkok airport.
Immediately many groups sent out messages about her arrest, and she was bailed out within a few hours
for 200,000 Baht, but she must now present herself once-a-month at the police station where the case was
filed – which is 400 kms from her home
On 5 November 2010 the Asian Human Rights Commission launched a campaign page for Chiranuch
She is now preparing for her defence against sentences totalling around 50 years in prison.
Prachatai remains on-line, but they have been forced to completely shut-down completely their current
events Web-Board.
Out on bail, preparing her defence
Kitti Sansukrojwong, 39
Arrested on 4 April 2009 in Khon Kaen for distributing information consider to constitute and LM crime.
Case lost from view.
Thossaporn Ruethaiprasertsung
Arrested on 18 April 2009 at a photocopying shop in Nakhon Ratchasima . . “with several leaflets whose
contents is considered offensive to the monarchy and the Privy Council.”
Case lost from view.
Kokaew Phikulthong
After a public speech in Chiang Mai, a warrant was issued for his arrest in 21 May 2009, but often the
police don’t act against well-known public figures. Kokaew was a well-known UDD leader. Together with
470 Red Shirts leaders and protesters he was jailed on 19 May 2010 for leading a UDD protest rally. After
9 months in prison he was released on bail in February 2011 - together with 8 other UDD leaders.
Case pending.
Pitsanu Promsorn
A UDD leader. Arrest warrant for LM issued in July 2009.
In hiding.
Pisek Sanittangkul
Interrogated by police on 4 July 2009 after being accused of posting information on a chat board.
Denied charges now living in the USA.

Nat Sattayapornpisut, 29
Charged and detained on 16 October 2009 under the Computer Crimes Act for sending ‘offensive’ clips to
a blog called ‘StopLeseMajeste’.” Released on 20 November, but unclear if bailed or something else.
Unclear / case pending.

Thiranan Vipuchanun, Khatha Pachachirayapong, Somjet Itthiworakul, Dr. Thatsaporn Rattanawongsa
Arrested between October to November 2009 for ‘spreading false news about the King’s health’.
All out on bail, cases pending.
Phenwat Wattapongsirikul
A leader of Chiang Mai Red that is having to deal with many charges, one of which is an LM case, but as a
leader of a mass movement he remains free at present.
Case pending.
Richard Lloyd Parry
The Asia Editor for The Times (London) had complaints brought against him by the Dusit Police Station in
Bangkok in November 2009, following a published interview with Thaksin.

Pruay Salty Head
Pruay directs TV advertisements and was active in post comment on the and We Are All
Human chat boards. After being arrested and interrogated in May 2010 by the Department of special
investigations, he discovered he had been monitored since 2008. Twelve DSI police raided his home in late
May 2010 and took him and two computers for several hours of interrogation. His computers were
returned after two weeks. He sold his house and car, left his job and submitted his case as an asylum
seeker at a UNHCR office in Asia. His family is frequently questioned by the DSI as to his whereabouts.
In hiding.
Tanthawut Taweewarodomkul, 38
A website designer and father, arrested in April 2010, convicted for LM in February 2011 and jailed for 13
years. He has appeal but is refused bail.
In prison.
Suriyan Kokpuey, 29
Shoe repairer, convicted of LM and sentenced to 6 years in prison, but had his sentence reduced to 3
years in October 2010 after pleading guilty.
In prison
Papatchanan Ching-in
Arrested, convicted for LM on 16 December 2010 and sentenced to 3 years.
Bailed out and lodging an appeal.
Suchart Nakbangsai / Worawut Thanangkorn, 52
Arrested, convicted for LM and sentenced for six years on 2 November 2010.
In prison.
Wiphat Raksakunthai
A businessman and Red Shirt supporter from Rayong Province, arrested on 29 April 2010. He has denied
insulting the King.
Bailed himself out. Case pending.
Kasit Piromya
A Phua Thai Party MP filed an LM case against Kasit, Minister of Foreign Affairs and PAD supporter, in
June 2010, but no charges brought by the police. Kasit is a royalist stalwart.
Ampol Tangnopakul, 61
A worker arrested on 3 August 2010 for ‘sending SMS messages considered offensive to the monarchy
and PM’. An old man, he is now in prison and refused bail. He denies the charges, saying the SIM-card
used by the police to trace the calls was not his.

In prison.
Tom Dundee
A singer, accused of LM by the royalist-fascist ‘Network of Volunteer Citizens to Protect the Monarch’ after
a speech he made at a Red Shirt protest rally in August 2010.
Thanapol Bamrungsri, 32
An ordinary Red Shirt businessman, arrested on 13 September 2010 for posting comments regarded as
offensive etc., on his own Facebook pages.
Out on bail. Case pending.
Wiset Pichitlamkhen
Arrested in September 2010 on charges of LM by immigration police at Suvarnabhumi Airport while leaving
the country.
No further information.
Chanin Khlaikhlung
A Royal Thai Air Force officer, reported to police on 17 November 2010 by fellow officers for outspoken
comments on his Facebook pages. He has been suspended.

Thaksin Shinawatra
In February 2011, the Democrat MP Watchara Petthong filed LM charges against Thaksin Shinawatra,
Robert Amsterdam and Thanapol Eawsakul (as Editor of Same Sky / Fa diew Kan) for publication of the
Thai version of a White Paper prepared by Amsterdam & Preoff on the royalist crackdown and massacre in
Bangkok in April - May 2010.
Case pending.
Robert Amsterdam
February 2011, together with Thaksin Shinawatra (as above).
Case pending.
Surachai Sae Dan
A leader of the Red Siam movement (royalist-communists??) was arrested on 22 February 2011 and
detained for speaking freely.
In prison
Akechai Hongkangwarn, 35
Arrested on 11 March 2011 and charged for distributing of 100 CDs of a documentary on LM victims, and
distributing photocopies 10 Wikileaks documents.
Out on bail, case pending.
Thai Political Prisoners
LM Watch is also a source of info on well-known LM victims.
Bangkok Post etc.