Wednesday, September 20, 2006

Coup in Bangkok

Well, I was just relaxing watching the news, CNN to be precise, when suddenly they started flashing "Tanks in Bangkok" across the screen. I was pretty surprised, as I thought democracy had a pretty firm foothold here now despite the turmoil back in April.

This is just what this country doesn't need. Even if it passes quickly, investor and tourist confidence will be damaged, both essential to the continuing development of the Thai economy. It's really important they keep trying to make democracy work. It's almost as if the whole thing was just an experiment, if the army can just "take back power" whenever it wants.

What do others reckon? Is anything good going to come out of this?


Alexander said...

Greetings, Rob. Came to your Blog via Branden's Blog, after seeing you reside in Thailand. I thought maybe you would have some first hand reports about the incidents in Thailand regarding the Military Coup that is being reported globally. We can only go by media reports of course. Reports are saying that Thaksin still has much support in the rural communitys, and in other areas of the Army (uh oh). So what this will bring, is still uncertain. Let us hope things don't get violent.

tropicalrob said...

Hi Alexander. The situation seems pretty calm at the moment. It all depends on how Taksin will react and whether he has any support in the army. Just a few soldiers around, at strategic points, many with yellow ribbons on their guns to show their support for the king. From about midnight last night, they blocked all the foreign news channels, like CNN and BBC. I must say I found that pretty offensive. It's the first time I've experienced that kind of censorship. It makes you realise how much we take media access for granted. I'll get some pics up in due course. Unfortunately, I'm a primitive beast and still use film!

Alexander said...

Thanks, Rob. I read on BBC news last night, an ex-pat commenting from Phuket (I think it was) that it appeared to be a gradual shutdown of media starting from TV, all the way eventually to the Internet (time will tell). If it is true that these troops have already visited the King, then I guess whatever the King chooses will be the solution. He is being very carefull at the moment to be non-commital either way it seems, until he sees which side it is wise to side with. At the end of the day, the Thais will obey the King at all costs of course (for better or worse), whatever his choice.