The Government Must Step Down!

From Thai Rath, Cartoon by Sia, October 20, 2010
The cartoon headline reads: At front side showing the sacredness and what is being shown behind?
The word on the rode of the hooded figure reads: Order crackdown on the people
The smoke from the incense reads: Do not dissolve [parliament]

[This is another in a series of very similar anti-government cartoons by cartoonist Sia.

One of the ideas behind it is that since there was a violent confrontation in which a government used force against protesters, the government must immediately step down. This follows traditional Thai political protocol in such situations. This sort of idea came to the fore in both the 1970s and 1990s when governments were considered disgraced once they opened fire on their citizens.

Since the 2006 coup, pro-Thaksin groups have attempted to confront the military to spark such a confrontation. Much of the anti-monarchy allusions were intended to provoke a traditionally prickly military into acting.

However, the military cannily pushed the police forward to handle protests until finally being forced onto the streets in April 2009 when police refused to act against Red Shirts.

In the aftermath of the April 2009 rioting, both the Red Shirts and Thaksin kept insisting that many had been killed--because that would indicate that the government had to step down.

The Red Shirt activity in April and May 2010 was also an attempt to provoke a reaction by the authorities. However, this time, despite the many deaths on the streets of Bangkok, there has been no pressure from within the establishment to immediately dissolve government.]

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