Anti-government rally at Sanam Luang - 10:00pm, June 15, 2007
It was a large crowd--perhaps 15,000. By 10:00pm the crowd was thinning out. A speaker read out a long and loud harangue against General Saprang. Then there was another loud and sarcastic speech about how Thaksin was the only Prime Minister for the nation. The speaker brought up other options such as Sonthi, Chuan, Abhisit, Somkit, Banharn and skewered each one for being an aloof politician not connected to the people. All the speakers kept repeating the charge that Sonthi is a liar.
The crowd was enthusiastic, vocal, and extremely attentive, cheering and calling out in laughter.
YouTube clip from the rally - Here is a clip from the anti-government rally at Sanam Luang on Friday night at around 10:32pm.
The speaker is former TRT executive and PTV director Nattawut Saikua, known for his harsh and fiery speeches. In general the speeches on Friday denounced Sonthi, Saprang and the military as "liars" as well as demanded Thaksin return for the sake of the country.In this clip Nattawut says: Saprang [outspoken Gen. Saprang Kalayanamitr], wasn’t it you who forced Tortrakul to criticize Thaksin? [I think this is a reference to Tortrakul Yommanak, director of the Airports of Thailand Plc] Give me an answer, or I, together with all people here, will go and ask you about this at Royal Thai Army headquarters. [This is a threat to besiege army headquarters again.] Why do you keep doing bad deeds? Why do you persuade people to criticize Thaksin? Did you forget that Thaksin was the one who promoted you to army chief?
2Bangkok.com editor Ron Morris notes: Few taxi drivers wanted to go to Sanam Luang after government warnings for them to stay away. A taxi driver who was willing to go was listening to "92.2 Democracy Radio." The volume was adjusted from the taxi's radio, but the radio did not seem to be on. The station was crystal clear and without advertising. I got the feeling the taxi had some kind of alternate receiver installed to receive the broadcast. The speaker on the radio was warning that it was dangerous for the country if Thaksin did not return as Prime Minister. When the taxi driver saw me taking notes, he got nervous, turned off the station and refused to turn it on or speak about it.
The north part of Sanam Luang after 10:00pm
Looking towards the stage
At 10:45 the crowd began to empty out of Sanam Luang - Groups of 5 or 6 left in tuk-tuks, taxis, and pickup trucks
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