Good people can’t live in this country


From Thairath, October 17, 2014
At the funeral of Col. Apiwan Wiriyachai, left: Good people can’t live in this country.
Middle: Weng: You shouldn’t say that again.
Thida: Why?
Right: People will think that we can stay in this country because we’re bad. (Sent by Mathurin Arm)

[Red Shirt Col. Apiwan died in the Philippines after fleeing the country after the 2014 coup.

In the cartoon, Thida and Weng, two Red Shirt leaders, attend the funeral of Col. Apiwan. Red Shirts have been quoted as saying that a good person who supports democracy like Col. Apiwan cannot stay in the country and that is why he fled after the coup to live abroad.

Col. Apiwan was known as “Col. Romanov” by the Red Shirts. This was because of his frequent rhetoric describing the circumstances of the slaughter of the Russian royal family. This was meant as a way to skirt lese majeste laws and be able to threaten the Thai monarchy and stir up revolutionary fervor.

The Pheu Thai government–like all governments controlled by Thaksin–was tolerant of anti-monarchy rhetoric, but with the military taking power after the coup, those who threatened the Thai monarchy with impunity before had to flee abroad.

The joke the cartoonist is making is that the Red Shirt leaders are bad people. If good people have to flee, those Red Shirt leaders who are left must be bad.

“Sent by Mathurin Arm” means the idea for the cartoon was suggested by a reader as is common with Thai editorial cartoons.]

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