2Bangkok Situation Update: Colonel Romklao’s Revenge

Right: From Nation Weekend, February, 2010
The headline reads: Black tigers roar! - bloodshed over the land

[Field army soldiers are known as "sons of the Payak (tiger)" or the "black army." The cover refers to the cooperation between Maj. Gen. Khattiya (or "Seh Daeng," left) and Gen. Pallop (right). The two recently met Thaksin in Dubai and their involvement, along with Khattiya's statements about assassination of judges involved in prominent cases, has fueled rumors that the lead up to Thaksin asset ruling would be marked by violent events.]

2Bangkok Situation Update: Colonel Romklao's revenge - May 14, 2010

It was likely not a difficult decision for the military to resolve to take out Seh Daeng. This is assuming the military was behind the sniper attack and we believe this is a very likely scenario. Seh Daeng's recent attempts to reconstitute the Red Shirt leadership into a more revolutionary group opposed to the reconciliation offer means that even the government would be opting for his removal.

In the past, Seh Daeng correctly predicted multiple attacks on the Commander-in-Chief's headquarters, warned that judges would be assassinated, and implied at every turn he was behind armed resistance to the government. In doing all this and more he was provoking a very dangerous foe--the Thai military in the defense of the nation.

Recent years have been an anomaly for the military. They have tolerated provocation and resisted being provoked by pro-Thaksin forces. This is unusual behavior for the military which historically has always clumsily leaped forward to defend its sense of the nation despite any negative ramifications.

Those with memories of only the past decade perhaps have forgotten what a dangerous beast the Thai military can be when roused to action. It was an incredibly preposterous notion that protesters could take off their red shirts could somehow be safe during a crackdown. Once the military gives a final warning, all are fair game and are dealt with in broad strokes. Such an organization does not hesitant carrying out what it sees as necessary action--even when their target is being interviewed by the international press.

As we have previously noted, the armed resistance to the military culminating in the apparent targeting of Colonel Romklao on April 10 likely set in motion the final fate of Seh Daeng.

Once it was clear Seh Daeng was also standing in the way of the government brokered end to the rally at Rajprasong, and even trying to put together a more radical leadership bent on revolution, even the government would have likely agreed to Seh Daeng's killing.

Above: Colonel Romklao

(Source: Seh Daneg's trip to meet Thaksin in December 2009)

Above: One of a series of photos of Seh Daeng's visit to Thaksin's Dubai residence in December 2009

Earlier: Seh Daeng: Thaksin Appoints New Red Shirt Leaders - TAN, May 10, 2010
Earlier: No new team of red shirts leaders : Nuttawut - The Nation, May 10, 2010

The title reads: Dust fighter - Seh Daeng - read interview word by word before assassinated: "No one can order She Daeng, even if that person is Brother Thaksin, [he] cannot order me because I am here due to my heart" - Collection of the pictures of Seh Daeng - Special news team - Major General Khattiya Sawasdipol, a soldier of one side for justice and democracy. His name is hero of red shirt and who was assassinated at Saladaeng - Collection of interviews, articles –political views of Seh Daeng

Update - June 1, 2010

["Dust fighter" refers to a red fighter following the title of a red shirt anthem, composed by Jin Kanmachon, a poet who commentated October uprisings of the past.
It is worth noting that Seh Daneg was not a leader with a popular public following. Seh Daneg was used to publicly oppose some of the country's most powerful and dangerous institutions. He was backed by a few top names--some who can be mentioned and some who cannot.
His prominence is recent months was in response to intense efforts by the government to co-opt the Red Shirt leadership. He ended up being a personal representative of Thaksin who was tasked to ensure no government compromise would be accepted by the Red Shirt leadership and the protest would continue no matter what.
Only blatant misinformation coming from his handlers, combined with his ego, allowed him to openly strut around the Red Shirt encampment even after signs were clear that major powers had decided to decisively end the rally at any cost.
There was little popular outcry, even among the Red Shirt protesters, after his death. Like the death of Seh Daneg himself, any blowback from his assassination will occur between shadowy figures for their own power vendettas behind the scenes.]

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