Jul 13th, 2009

BioThai website hacked

BioThai website hackedThe Nation, July 13, 2009

Leave a comment

Road show to explore new land link

Road show to explore new land link The Nation, July 12, 2009
The Foreign Trade Department will lead local businesses on a roadshow to Cambodia and Vietnam next week in a bid to explore trade and investment opportunities along the new land link between the three countries…

Leave a comment

Earthquake preparedness in Bangkok

Earthquake preparedness in Bangkok – July 12, 2009

Interesting earthquake safety sign in the elevators in the SCB headquarters build at Ratchayothin. It explains earthquake procedures for people in high-rise buildings.

Leave a comment

Lifes’s liquids

Lifes’s liquidsBangkok Post, July 11, 2009
[This strangely titled articles is actually about traditional Thai flavored drinks.]
Beverages have had a long and colourful history in Thailand…

Leave a comment

National Assembly in Thailand foiling demining efforts: officials

National Assembly in Thailand foiling demining efforts: officialsPhnom Penh Post, July 11, 2009
Cambodian government says it needs Thai approval to demine border…

Posted in 2Bangkok News, Cambodia | Leave a comment

Drugged and mugged in Bangkok

Drugged and mugged in Bangkok Telegraph, July, 2009
[This seems to be a variant of a scam card-playing scam from the Philippines]
…By this time I seemed to be floating in a dreamlike place. I started giggling, which annoyed the man. He asked to see my wallet and roughly went through it. Other people came and went. We played cards but I had no idea what I was doing. He then took my camera and put it in a cupboard. I was incapable of saying or doing anything…

Posted in Crime | Leave a comment

Thai probe shows tiger parts came from Malaysia

Thai probe shows tiger parts came from MalaysiaThe Star, July 10, 2009
Investigations by Thai wildlife authorities have confirmed that some of the tiger parts confiscated in Thailand last year belonged to the Malayan tiger, a specie found only in Peninsula Malaysia…

Leave a comment

Giant shirt


(Photo: 2Bangkok.com)

Giant shirt – July 10, 2009
It reads: This coming 14 July, the best Breeze’s detergent powder will change your life – [the name of the new product] OCSI Max

Posted in 2Bangkok News | Leave a comment

OMA’s Ole Scheeren designs Bangkok’s tallest tallest building

OMA’s Ole Scheeren designs Bangkok’s tallest building interiordesign.net, July, 2009

Posted in Buildings | Leave a comment

U.S. settles with family of Southeast Asia scholar

U.S. settles with family of Southeast Asia scholar Los Angeles Times, July 8, 2009
Roxanna Brown was both informant and target in a probe into donations of allegedly looted Thai antiquities to museums. Days after her arrest, she died in custody. The government will pay $880,000…

Leave a comment

PM: Not necessary to seal country

PM: Not necessary to seal countryThe Nation, July 8, 2009

Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva said on Wednesday it is not yet necessary to seal the country to control the spread of H1N1 flu as advised by Chulalongkorn Hospital doctors.
He said, however, that the matter will be raised at the cabinet meeting on July 9 to mete out more preventive measures such as closures of tuition schools and internet shops from which the flu was said to have spread.
The Public Health Ministry on Wednesday reported 290 addition cases of H1N1 flu, bringing up the total to 2,718 with 11 deaths…

Posted in Health | Leave a comment

Thai red tape delays moves to bring Luke Mitchell’s killers to justice

Thai red tape delays moves to bring Luke Mitchell’s killers to justiceMelbourne Herald Sun, July, 2009
…The wanted men have been at large in Thailand for two months since flying out within hours of the death of Luke Mitchell, who was bashed to death in Brunswick after going to the aid of a man…

Posted in Crime | Leave a comment

Broadband fees ‘reasonable’

Broadband fees ‘reasonable’Bangkok Post, July 7, 2009
True Corporation says it can’t cut high-speed internet access prices by 50 per cent as the government has requested because the current price is reasonable…

Leave a comment

Tourists lift British inmates’ spirits at Thai prison

Tourists lift British inmates’ spirits at Thai prisonThailandnews.net, July 7, 2009
Julian Gilbey bounds along the corridor of the so-called “Bangkok Hilton” with a sweaty face and a wide grin, excited by the rare treat of contact with the outside world after seven years behind bars…

Posted in 2Bangkok News | Leave a comment

Istanbul and Bangkok become sister cities

Istanbul and Bangkok become sister cities Turk.Net, July 6, 2009

Leave a comment

Wanted: volunteer detectives, only dogs need apply

Wanted: volunteer detectives, only dogs need applyReuters, July 5, 2009
Jame and Richy help bust drug smugglers and guard royal events in Thailand. These law enforcement volunteers are also great at sitting and fetching…

Leave a comment

Durian dilemma: Would I be bold enough to eat Thailand’s exotic fruit?

Durian dilemma: Would I be bold enough to eat Thailand’s exotic fruit?Pioneer Press, July 4, 2009
In all that time, I’m ashamed to admit, I couldn’t bring myself to eat a single slice of durian — a fruit so entwined with Thai culture and cuisine that to refuse its embrace is tantamount to blasphemy...

Posted in Food and Drink | Leave a comment

Tensions put aside as new road opens

Tensions put aside as new road opens Bangkok Post, July 4, 2009
Tensions between Thailand and Cambodia could ease as friendly feelings were recalled yesterday in a joint ceremony opening a new road linking the two countries, said Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva…

Leave a comment

A long name


(Photo: 2Bangkok.com)

A long name – July 4, 2009
A short url for a long name. This was on the side of a bus downtown.

Leave a comment

Fallen billboard


(Photo: Ai)

Fallen billboard – July 3, 2009
Tony writes: (These photos) come from the western Outer Ring Road, the Bang Bua Thong exit area… my wife and I drove by after what must have been quite a squall, in early May, and saw these massive roadside billboards blown down.

Leave a comment

Safe-T-Cut workers protest


(Photo: 2Bangkok.com)

Safe-T-Cut workers protest – July 2, 2009
Safe-T-Cut works who were fired without pay or benefits demonstrate in front of the Labor Department in Bangkok. Most will know Safe-T-Cut from the ubiquitous breaker boxes in most older Thai buildings.
The words on the sign above reads “Lose the job – Help!” Another banner, out of frame, reads “Why not fire Dr. Nut?” This refers to Dr. Nuttapol Sotthiwanwong, a Safety-Cut executive being blamed by the protesters for their layoffs.
Normally in this situation, the government and police will use all means, legal and otherwise, to force executives to
make good on severance pay. In the past this has included holding foreign company executives in jail without charge until they come up with the money. In cases where executives are able to successfully flee, the government quietly settles with the workers.

Also: Safe-T-Cut workers join plant closure protestThe Nation, July 3, 2009

Leave a comment

ILoveThailand.org

ILoveThailand.org – July 2, 2009
New nationalistic website launched by Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva as an “online community promoting national unity.”
The site includes this video lamenting Thailand’s “Lost Territory” (above) and a couple of tram photos (here and here) first featured on 2Bangkok.com.

Posted in History, Thai Politics | Leave a comment

Enraged elephant stomps 3 Thai workers to death

Enraged elephant stomps 3 Thai workers to death AP, July 1, 2009

Leave a comment

Red Publications – July 2009

Red publications – July 2009
Red publications index

Thai Red News, July 31, 2009
The cover reads: The way out of the double standard justice problem
The EC [Election Commission] unanimously agrees to delay democracy
Thaksin at age 60 in joyance –
Talks with "Red in the Land" via Facebook and Twitter
Democracy lovers can communicate and listen to community radios

Column: Sang Ban Pang Muang
The headline: Brainless Homework Copier [referring to accusations that PM Aphisit committed plagiarism while in school]

The headline: The Abhisit government ignores the role of Chinese Yuan currency in international trade

Truth Today – July 21-23, 2009
The cover reads:
Come with soldiers –
Go with elephant tusks
[Meaning a scandal involving the gift of elephant tusks will force the PM from office. The Pheu Thai party is calling for an investigation of the Prime Minister accepting a gift of elephant tusk ivory.
The Red Shirt-related publications feature lots of simulated blood.]

Truth Today (Mahaprachachon), July 31, 2009
The cover reads: Petition royally offered [to HM King] to end suffering of the whole land
At Right is the cover article inside the magazine.

Column: Fadong Top Boot [many publications have a "top boot" column to cover news and gossip relating to top military brass appointments]
The headline reads: The tree pole politics involved with the Army? [meaning something like army influence is dictating the appointment of top politicians]

The headline reads: Revolting [for] Siamese democracy – The ultimatum of the Khana Rassadorn (part 10) [Part 10 in a series of articles.
The Khana Rassadorn was a democratic reform group in the reign of the King Rama VII.]

Posted in Red Shirt Publications | Leave a comment

Deep South Violence Statistics – January 2009-June 2009

Index of violence statistics for the Thai Deep South

Number of incidents that occured by district

Numbers of incidents

No

Pattani

720

Narathiwat

690

Yala

688

Songkhla

70

1

Saiburi

123

Rangae

155

Muang

188

Sabayoi

 

2

Yarang

112

Ruesoh

147

Bannangsata

155

Thepa

 

3

Nongchick

101

Bacho

57

Raman

135

Natawee

 

4

Muang

93

Muang

55

Yaha

105

Chana

 

5

Kok Poh

66

Srisakorn

54

Krongpinang

36

Hadyai

 

6

Yaring

58

Cho Airong

51

Thanto

35

Muang

 

7

Mayo

49

Sungaipadee

46

Baethong

17

 

 

8

Panare

38

Chanae

39

Kabang

17

 

 

9

Kapo

27

Takbai

38

 

 

 

 

10

Thungyangdaeng

25

Sungaikolok

20

 

 

 

 

11

Maikhaen

21

Yeengo

14

 

 

 

 

12

Maelan

7

Waeng

11

 

 

 

 

13

 

 

Sukirin

3

 

 

 

 

Note: 10 incidents had no province specified

Number of incidents classified by place of occurrence

No.

Places of occurrence

Number of incidents

(%)

1

Roads or highways

1,300

59.7

2

Homes and residential places

256

11.8

3

Shops and service stores

209

9.6

4

Other places

138

6.3

5

Plantations

119

5.5

6

Educational institutes or public places

64

2.9

7

Public sport park

18

0.8

8

Construction sites or factories

11

0.5

9

Dormitory or employee residential sites, military camp

8

0.4

10

Unknown

55

2.5

 

This chart shows numbers of events classified by place of occurrence with regards to the period that the events occurred in.
The different colors refers to the period when the events occurred. Left to right (starting with dark brown): January-September 2007, October 2007 to June 2008, July-December 2008, January-March 2009, April 2009, May 2009, June 2009
On the x-axis: The place of occurrence (left to right) road or highway (with the total of 1297 events), homes/residential areas (255 events), local shops/stores/service area (209 events), others (138 events) and plantation/fields (119 events)

This chart shows the distribution of events that occur each month (January 2007 to June 2009). The different color bars indicate  places of occurrence.
Light yellow – roads/highway
Dark yellow – homes/ residential area
Light orange – local shops/stores/services area
Orange – Other places
Dark orange – plantation fields
Red – educational institutes


Spot map that reveals the number of deaths according to the place that the event occurred
The number of casualties are classified by the size of the circle.
The events are classified by shades of color (left to right): January-September  2007, October 2007-June 2008, July-December 2008, January-March 2009, April 2009, May 2009, June 2009

­

This chart shows numbers of events classified by province and time that the event occurs (each spot represents one event). The light blue represents events in Songkhla, dark blue for Pattani, green for Yala, red for Narathiwat and black represents the total numbers of events.

This chart shows events classified by the monthly timeline (x-axis). Each color represents the following:
Black (top) – June 2009
Light violet – May 2009
Light blue – April 2009
Dark blue – January-March 2009
Green – July-December 2008
Red – October 2007 to June 2008
Black – January-September 2007

This chart shows the distribution of events that occur during the day of the week ranging from Monday to Sunday (bottom) and the place of occurrence: Songkhla (light blue), Pattani (dark blue), Yala (green), Narathiwat (red), total (black).

This chart shows the distribution of events that occurs by day of the week ranging from (left to right) Monday to Sunday and the date of occurrence.
Black (top) – June 2009
Light violet – May 2009
Light blue – April 2009
Dark blue – January-March 2009
Green – July-December 2008
Red – October 2007 to June 2008
Black – January-September 2007

This chart shows the numbers of events that occur classified by place of occurrence and monthly timeline (one spot represents one event)
The x-axis shows a monthly range from January 2007 to June 2009. The four provinces are represented by colors: Light blue (Songkhla), dark blue (Pattani), green (Yala), red (Narathiwat), black (total events).

 

Numbers of violent incidents since January 2004. Across the bottom are the years (2547 is 2004, 2548 is 2005, 2549 is 2006, 2550 is 2007, 2551 is 2008, 2552 is 2009). The blue line shows the number of all violent incidents that took place as reported by the Deep South Coordination Center (counting all incidents both injury and non-injury). The red line shows data according to the Violence-related Injury Surveillance (a form that hospitals, doctors and clinics are supposed to fill out to report violent incidents). The black line indicates the numbers of dead reported to the VIS.

 

This chart shows the number of incidents that occur monthly from January 2004 up to present. The x-axis shows the 12 months of the year (from January to December). The blue line represents the average incidents that occur during the years 2004-2009 reported by the Deep South Coordination Center (DSCC). The red line represents the VIS (Violence-related Injury Surveillance) incident report reporting deaths and injuries for the present year.

 

Below: Number and rate (/100 hundred thousand population/month) of casualty and death and fatality rate(%) according to provinces that the incidents occur, reported by casualty rate, death rate and fatality rate consecutively.

Ranking and rate (per 100,000 population per month) of casualties and deaths

No

Casualty

death

Fatality rate

district

number

rate

district

number

rate

district

Rate(%)

1

Bannangsata

318

20.9

Bannangsata

113

7.4

Thungyangdaeng

51

2

Kapo

71

15.5

Srisakorn

43

4.9

Srisakorn

47.8

3

Ruesoh

289

15.3

Rangae

116

4.6

Panare

44.6

4

Yaha

224

15.3

Yaha

67

4.6

Sabayoi

42.7

5

Rangae

351

13.9

Thungyangdaeng

25

4.4

Raman

35.7

6

Sukirin

83

12.8

Ruesoh

75

4

Bannangsata

35.5

7

Choairong

138

12.6

Kapoh

18

3.9

Chanae

34.4

8

Saiburi

220

11.9

Raman

91

3.7

Chana

33.3

9

Bacho

166

11.8

Saiburi

68

3.7

Rangae

33

10

Maikhaen

39

11.8

Chanae

33

3.6

Yarang

31.7

 

Below: This table shows numbers and ratio (per 100,000 population per month) of injury and death victims and death. The information is classified by the ratio of injury, death and the Case Fatality Rate (CFR –  percentage of dead compared to the overall incidents) of each province.

Provinces

Injury

Death

CFR

 

number

ratio

number

ratio

Ratio(%)

Songkhla

145

0.4

49

0.1

33.8

Satun

Pattani

1424

7.6

416

2.2

29.2

Yala

1412

10.2

326

2.4

23.1

Narathiwat

1739

8.3

402

1.9

23.1

Unidentified

10

2

20

Total

4730

4.7

1195

1.2

25.3

 

This chart shows the numbers of injured and dead classified by place of occurrence (left to right: Narathiwat, Pattani, Yala, Songkhla).The orange bar represents injuries and the black represents dead. Above each bar is the CFR (case fatality rate) percentage.

 

This chart shows numbers of injured and dead classified by province and the time period when the events occurred (left to right: Narathiwat, Pattani, Yala, Songkhla). Black represents the dead. The rest of the bar represents injured.
Brown – January-September 2007
Dark orange – October 2007 to June 2008
Orange – July-December 2008
Dark yellow – January-March 2009
Yellow – April 2009
Eggshell – May 2009
Shaded – June 2009
There were a total of 1744 dead and injured in Narathiwat, 1429 in Pattani, 1427 in Yala and 146 in Songkhla.

 

This chart shows numbers of injured and dead classified by place of occurrence. The bottom line indicates each district where the events occurred. On the y-axis are the numbers of events. The orange represents injury and the black represents death.
Left to right on the x-axis: The city district of Yala, Rangae, Bannangsata, Ruesoh, Raman, Yaha, Saiburi, City district of Pattani, Nongchick, Yarang, Bacho, city district of Narathiwat, Yaring, Choairong, Kokpoh, Sungaipadee, Chanae, Srisakorn, Mayor, Sungaikolok, Sukirin, Takbao, Sabayoi, Kapo, Krongpinang, Panare, Yeengo, Tarnto, Thungyangdaeng, Waeng, Maikhaen, Natawee, Thepa, Kabang, Baetong, Maelan, Hadyai, Chana, city district of Songkhla.

 

This chart shows numbers of injured and dead classified by place of occurrence and month. The top five places that the events occurred (left to right) Yala, Rangae, Bannangsata, Ruesoh, Raman
Black – dead
Brown – January-September 2007
Dark orange – October 2007 to June 2008
Orange – July-December 2008
Dark yellow – January-March 2009
Yellow – April 2009
Eggshell – May 2009
Shaded – June 2009

The above chart shows the relationship between the place of occurrence and the residence of the injured. The size of the spot shows the number of the casualties. The five provinces on the chart are (left to right) Songkhla, Satun, Pattani, Yala and Narathiwat

 

Number and rate(per 100,000 per month) of casualties and deaths and fatality rate (%) ranked by the tambon where the incidents occurred

No

Casualty

Death

Fatality rate

Tambon

Number

rate

Tambon

Number

Rate

Tambon

Rate(%)

1

Sukirin

81

43.6

Patae

41

13.9

Makrood

100

2

Patae

103

34.9

Bacho

27

13.3

Takae

100

3

Ruesoh

114

34.2

Sribanphot

12

11.9

Saikhao

100

4

Khuanbanglang

31

28.8

Kaeraw

22

10.6

Torlang

100

5

Bacho

52

25.7

Khuanbanglang

10

9.3

Kalupang

100

6

Laharn

35

25.4

Tabing

15

8.9

Datoh

100

7

Kaeraw

52

25

Dorn

9

8.1

Lubohsawor

100

8

Paklaw

43

23.9

Laharn

11

8

Khae

100

9

Sribanphot

24

23.8

Tanyonglimor

18

7.7

Plaknoo

100

10

Karubee

34

22.9

Arsong

11

7.6

Bannork

100

 

 

 

 

Bongo

31

7.6

Thankhiree

100

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Kamiyor

100

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Yatae

100

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Mamong

100

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Khaodaeng

100

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Manangtayor

100

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Laempoh

100

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Sakor

100

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Namnoy

100

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Sateng

100

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Hadyai

100

 

This chart shows numbers of injured and dead classified by place of occurrence. The top 10 tambons: (from left to right) Ruesoh, Tanyongmas, Satengnork, Bannangsata, Patae, Sukirin, Bongo, Dusongngo, Bacho, Juab. The orange color indicates injury and black indicates death.

 

This chart shows numbers of injured and dead classified by tambon. The top 5 tambons (left to right) Ruesoh, Tanyongmas, Satengnork, Bannangsata, Patae. Black represents the dead and the rest of the bar represents the injured.
Brown – January-September 2007
Dark orange – October 2007 to June 2008
Orange – July-December 2008
Dark yellow – January-March 2009
Yellow – April 2009
Eggshell – May 2009
Shaded – June 2009

 

Number of casualty and death and fatality rate (%) of the top 5 report following the hospitals that provide medical treatment

No.

Hospital

Casualty number

Hospital

Death number

Hospital

Fatality rate(%)

Provincial and college Hospitals (total casualty of 1,114, death of 51,fatality rate of 4.6%) 

1

Yala

878

Yala

38

Hadyai

10.4

2

Prince of Songkhla

188

Prince of Songkhla

8

Yala, Prince of Songkhla

4.3

3

Hadyai

48

Hadyai

5

 

 

General hospitals (total casualty of 1,306, death of 76 and fatality rate of 5.8%)

1

Pattani

557

Narathiwat

46

Baetong

11.1

2

Narathiwat

545

Pattani

26

Narathiwat

8.4

3

Sungaikolok

179

Sungaikolok

2

Pattani

4.7

4

Baetong

18

Baetong

 

Sungaikolok

1.1

5

Songkhla

7

 

 

 

 

Community hospitals (total casualty of 2,736, death of 212, fatality rate of 7.7%)

1

Rangae

227

Kokpoh

19

Chana

40

2

Ruesoh

209

Ruesoh, Panare

16

Panare

27.1

3

Bannangsata

187

Saiburi

15

Mayor

20

4

Saiburi

169

Mayo

14

Kokpoh

18.1

5

Yaha

163

Bannangsata, Yarang

13

Thungyangdaeng

15.2

 

This map shows the rate of casualties according to the tambon where the incidents occur. The number of injured are classified by monthly period as following:
Dark green – January 2007 – September 2007
Green – October 2007 – June 2008
Light green – July 2008 – December 2008
Yellow – January 2009 – March 2009
Light orange – April 2009
Orange – May 2009
Red – July 2009
The brown color indicates the rate of injured in each district (per 100,000 population per month).

Source: Deep South Violence-related Injury Surveillance statistics

Index of violence statistics for the Thai Deep South

Posted in Deep South Violence Statistics | Leave a comment

Thai Media Project – June 2009

H.U.G.Matichon Weekend, June 5, 2009

The three letters in the abbreviation
represents “I will take it” which is written in full in the parenthesis below where it reads "I will take it no matter what happens." If you remove the dots in the abbreviation, the letters read “hug.”

The men are Prime Minister and Newin Chidchob. Newin’s Bhumjaithai Party plays an important role as a coalition party in
forming the Democrat government–represented by the hug between Abhisit and Newin. The blood stain on their shirts refers the NGV project to rent 4,000 buses and its impact on the Democrats who attempt to represent themselves as a more upstanding party.
The NGV project was proposed by the Transport Minister from
the Bhumjaithai Party. Like most transport projects it is riddled with irregularities and the costs of the individual vehicles turn out to be many multiples of the actual cost. The extra money is normally spread throughout the cadres of a party and the party financiers as part of the recouping of investment made to come to power in the first place.


The NGV project, if approved, is thought to cause problems to the Democrat-led government which has tried to present itself as a party that does not have to continually push through mega-projects to fill the coffers of its financiers. However, to the Bhumjaithai party, the project will promote its populist policies to develop transport system–and is very likely the price that tempted them into forsaking Thaksin and joining the Democrat government. The Bhumjaithai Party has erected billboards around town to explain the NGV deal and since the party is key in countering Thaksin-family influence in the Northeast, the Democrats seem to have to accept the deal in some form. Such a coalition would have been in the realm of fantasy even in last December, but the parties were pushed together in an attempt to forestall another Thaksin-dominated government.


What this means is that the stain of the Newin-based party and the NGV deal is impacting the Democrats who have had to embrace them into the coalition.

Cancel the NGV bus rental project! – It would be a sign of "new politics" – translated and summarized from Thaipost; Column: The editorial; June 3, 2009
The NGV bus rental project is one of the proposals in the cabinet meeting which is held on June 3, 2009. This project will impact on the future of the Democrat party. Many groups of people disagree with this project, except the Bhumjaithai Party because of its undisclosed reasons.
It is possible that some politicians can get benefits from purchasing the buses so the people will have no faith in the government if it approves this project. Conversely, if the government postpones this project, it may have to dissolve the House as the government’s action makes the Bhumjaithai party dissatisfied.
However, PM Abhisit Wejchacheewa should first think of people’s benefits. Although he may administer the country only three months due to the Bhumjaithai party’s desertion, many people have seen in Aphisit a touch of "new politics." Specifically, he can work continuously and can be insulted by Thai people if he first thinks of the personal interest. The government should show its power to cancel this project because cancellation would be good for Thai people. Even if the PM has to dissolve the House, Thai people will support him to work as a prime minister again because of his goodness.

The hidden agenda: 60 billion is a budget for the NGV bus rental project – translated and summarized from Komchadluek; Column: The editorial; June 2, 2009
The NGV bus rental project has been proposed since the Samak government, but many groups of people disagreed with this project, including the Democrat Party which was part of the opposition at the time.
Democrat party leader Abhisit Wejchacheewa gave many reasons showing that some politicians could obtain [corrupt] benefits from purchasing 4,000 buses and tried to cancel this project. We are seeing that Sophon Sarum [part of Newin’s group], acting as Transport Minister, tries to push this project by putting it on the agenda of the cabinet meeting which will be held on June 3, 2009.
Why the politicians, who came from Newin’s group, have been trying to push this project after Samak proposed it? This may be the cause of the breaking of the good relationship between the Democrat Party and the coalition party [Bhumjaithai party], because the Bhumjaithai Party seems to be run by Newin Chidchop, who supported the Democrat Party to form a new government. The Bhumjaithai Party may definitely need this project to be carried out. Thus, it is possible that a good relationship between the Democrats and the Bhumjaithai party may be broken if this project is cancelled.
Although Thai people can get benefits from this project, there is a way to see the personal interests of politicians and parties are served as well. The government should show its moral bravery and cancel this project. Possibly, PM Abhisit Wejchacheewa realizes that a disordered situation [lack of support for a Democrat-led coalition] will occur if he cancels this project. However, the government should not shirks its responsibility by simply asking other sections of government to address this case for prolonging time [thus forever stalling the project].


June 5, 2009, Nation Weekend – Let’s see the little panda
June 12, 2009, Matichon Weekly – We come to the right way already? [commenting on PM Abhisit riding a country tractor and the unlikely juxtaposition of his patrician image and this rural scene]
June 12, 2009, Nation Weekend – Victims! of the unfair [referring to the shooting in a mosque last week]


Not the same fortune between bear and men Thai Rath, Chai Ratchawat, June 14, 2009
[This cartoon contrasts the birth and other circumstances of the Giant Panda in Chiang Mai with the lives of common people.]

Top left: Many flock to see baby bear [the baby panda], but never watch their own child.

Top middle: The pregnant bear is widely reported in the news, but pregnant girls secretly get abortions.

Top right: In joy when a bear’s eye sockets turn black [meaning people like pandas], but in worry when men’s eye sockets turn black [referring to brawling students].

Bottom left: The zoo joyfully greets the baby bear, but men greet their "freshy" with bruises. [Refers to the brutal hazing practices of universities.]

Bottom middle: The baby bear resides in a 60 million baht dorm, but some man’s child resides in a garbage pile [contrasting the pandas’ expensive winter environment in the zoo with the living conditions of some people]

Bottom right: Baby bear promote tourism, but man’s child destroys it [Noting how the actions of man have hurt Thailand tourism.]


Punch to punch – Thairath; June 8, 2009
Left: Chaowarat Charnweerakul: Although the 4,000 bus NGV rental project belongs to Ministry of Transportation, the Cabinet does not approve or postpone this project. They should have a good reason to explain why they act like this.

Right: Abhisit Wejchacheewa: The Cabinet will consider everything carefully and would assure the public’s benefit–in so many words. We will keep an eye on anyone who acts illegally or tries to create corruption. We would not let anyone create corruption during this economic recession. [This refers to the controversial NGV bus plan.]


Violent problems in the south Krungthep Turakit, 500  type + 1 Author: Mor, Column: Tassanavijarn, June 11, 2009
On the side of the elephant: Violent problems in the south
The men pushing the elephant are PM Abhisit and a figure representing the military. They are saying: petty [conversational language to indicate something trivial]


Repeated old film Matichon, Cartoon column: Kaolao Ruammit, Author: Tin, June 14, 2009
[This cartoon refers to incidents and situations that have been repeated time and time again.]

Top left: The caption reads: The gang of four
[Explanation: In the government of Samak in 2008, Samak joined with Newin Chidchob, Deputy PM Surapong Suebwonglee, and Theerapon Noprumpa, the PM’s secretary to reshuffle the cabinet in such a way to sideline Thaksin influence. MP Sakda Kongpetch said this group was trying to seize power from Thaksin (who was obviously controlling and had bankrolled the People Power Party).
Recently, Mr. Sakda claimed again that there was a new gang of four monopolizing power. The figure on the right looks like the Bhumjaithai Transport Minister.
Or, the cartoon figures could refer to a group of four men mentioned by Democrat MP Chalermchai Sriorn who failed to a receive ministerial post. He complained that there is a gang of four in the Democrat ruling party consisting of Deputy Democrat Party Secretary General Siriwan Prasjaksattru, Democrat Party bursar Anchalee Vanitch Theppabutr, Democrat executive Sathit Wongnongtory and deputy party leader Wittaya Khaewparadai. These men alleged have the ear of the most powerful party executive members.]

Top middle: Finance Minister Korn Jatikavanit rips a document. The caption reads: Inheritance tax aborted [This refers to Korn, who is one of the richest people in government, expressing the government’s line that Thailand is still not ready for an inheritance tax.]

Top right:
Bhumjaithai Party ministerial members ride on a tractor. The caption reads: Reality Show [This refers to trips that government members have made to the countryside to meet with rural people. These trips have been the butt of jokes and parody in the Thai press for their obvious and perhaps insincere attempts to curry favor with Thaksin supporters.]

Bottom left:
Minister to PM Office Sathit Wongnongtoey says: Gas carrier truck. The words on the truck’s gas tank reads: To bomb the south. [This refers to the April incidents when Red Shirts stationed LPG tracks around Bangkok and rigged at least one to blow up. Here, a government minister fancifully thinks of attempting the same type of threat to pacify the deep south.]

Bottom middle: The caption reads: Cruel freshy welcome [This refers to the violent hazing that new university students ("freshies" or "freshmen") endure each year.]

Bottom right:
The caption reads: Dissolve Thaksin’s party. The words next to the hammer read: Framing Bhumjaithai. [This is a series of Thai letters that are the symbols of political parties controlled by Thaksin and dissolved by the Election Commission. On the left is That Rak Thai, then the People Power Party, then Pheu Thai. The letters and design are intentionally designed so voters can tell the new party is really the successor to the old party. Both the Bhumjaithai Party and the Pheu Thai Party have urged the Election Commission to dissolve each party for election fraud.]


Left: Matichon Weekly
The cover reads: 800,000 million – A-ro-ka – Nee [debt] – Pa-Ra-Mee-La-Pa?
[This is a a play on a Buddhist Sanskrit saying "arokaya parama lapha" which is a blessing that refers to good health (no disease).
The phrase on the cover is a rhyming phrase that puts the word “debts” into the blessing to say something like "being without debts is a blessing."

Right: Nation Weekend
The cover reads: Sood Kan San Rak [A song by Lookthung (Thai country) singer Poompuang Duangchan pictured on the cover. The song tells the story of a woman who faces disappointment in love. Poompuang died June 13, 1992.
The conflict between Poompuang’s only son and his father is the talk of the town.]


 

True situation in the Deep South? Smart News, No. 184, June 16-30, 2009
Left to right:
The first man says: Mr. Suthep [Deputy Prime Minister Suthep Thaugsuban] says it will take three years for the South to be in peace, what do you think?
The second man says: I am not sure… (because) the chaotic situation in parliament has not been solved.


Unclear and untrustworthy – translated and summarized from Matichon; Column: Editorial; June 19, 2009
It is now nearly two weeks after people praying in a mosque in Amphoe Joh I Rong, Narathiwat, have been killed and injured. However, no progress is seen in the investigations. Several parties come out to unveil their opinions. They question whether Abhisit’s new strategy to let the politics lead the military works.
High-ranking officials and politicians in the cabinet all believe that the mosque attack was committed by southern insurgents. But local politicians in three southern border provinces do not believe so. They see that the attack could also be done by local officials. Lots of Thai Muslim people see that it is not possible that Thai Muslim people will kill people in the same religion in a mosque. They think that it was the government.
To end the rumors and recover the government’s image, the government should form a central committee, consisting of local people and experienced ones, to investigate the matter, instead of letting the police do so. If the mosque attack still cannot be solved, insurgents could successfully coax the mass into siding with them.


Southern unrest – The new “war” – translated and summarized from Naewna; Column: Kuanjai Hai Sa-ard; Author: Tapo Paopee; June 19, 2009
The government has to renew its thoughts and concept on tackling the unrest problem. The government’s declared politics leading army policy needs some clear visions on the matter before it starts. The politics-led war refers to a “no bloodshed” war, but the Army war refers to blood in the war. The “politics leads army” policy for the unrest needs the right approach in operation as well as the right understanding on the characters of the “new war” in the unrest. I comment that 3 important issues to be reviewed clearly are
1) The fight of the militants ; the strategy, events and aims
2) the understanding of masses; the winning over masses in the unrest (this is important at this moment as the government still face problem on local masses supporting government )
3) the understanding of the power in hand of authority or militants ; including the new concept of war
The government has to understand the points clearly to move on the right track for the ongoing violence in the unrest south.


Unexpected conspiracy theory – translated and summarized from Matichon; Author: Thavi Meengern; June 18, 2009
The unrest in the three boundary provinces of southern Thailand has lasted for many years, but the violence in the area has continued unabated.
Criticizing about the issue, people in the area remarked there might be other groups that obtain advantages from the upheaval apart from those insurgents. This could be an unexpected conspiracy and a source of the violence.
Local and national politicians who are familiar to the area analyzed that the insurgents commit crimes and terrorism in a bid to raise the violence and put Thailand in the spotlight. As a result, the United Nations would interfere the issue, and separatists would have more bargaining power. Demonstrating their power shows their potential to foreign supporters who provide them financial assistance.
Meanwhile, some mentioned that civil servants in security departments is another group gaining advantages from the violence. It cannot be denied that the more severe the situation, the more budget is earmarked for the south. However, it seemed the huge budget did not actually resolve the violence and it is deemed a “gold mine” for those opportunistic officials.
The last group is general criminals such as smugglers, human traffickers, and so on. These other  crimes are outweighed by the separatist issue and state officials usually overlook these crimes.


JI members arrested in the South – DSI says they are involved in 9/11 attack – translated and summarized from Naew Na; June 18, 2009
High-ranking authorities jointly announced that following collaboration among four agencies, the Security Centre, the National Intelligence Agency, the Royal Thai Police and the Department of Special Investigations, a Rohinya suspect named Mahamad Ali Husen, arrested on June 15 in Kaset Sombun district, Chaiyaphum province.
On 5:00 pm of the same day, officials from four agencies jointly arrested Mr. Mahamad Madbameh, a 39-year-old Rohinya, and Mr. Chubri Awae, aged 20 years old, with several document-making devices, in Hat Yai, Songkhla province. They were arrested for official document forgery.
The agencies confirm that all suspects have a relationship. Mr. Mahammad Ali Husen is a step brother of Mr. Mahamad Madbameh, who is capable of forging official documents for Rohinya people.
Evidence also shows that they have something to do with an international criminal network, which is involved in the southern unrest.
It is disclosed that the human trafficking movement is related to influential people in the South. It is found out that Mr. Mahamad Ali Husen is a leader of an international terrorist group. He is involved in human trafficking, document forgery as well as weapon trading.
It is also found out that Mr. Mahamad Ali Husen was the one who provide the Al-Queda with fake documents, allowing the movement’s members to undergo the 9/11 sabotage. Later, he hid in Malaysia and then Thailand. Here, he contacts influential people in the South, including people involved in the unrest.
Former Fourth Army Region Commander Gen. Watanachai Chaimuenwong said that southern insurgents have revised all strategies. New commandos are formed, using members from Al-Queda or JI. He added that following the new strategy, the attack will be more severe. Government officials are not likely to overcome them.


Al-Furqan incident – Abhisit-Suthep-Anupong’s reaction – translated and summarized from Matichon; June 17, 2009
From March to June this year, four teachers were killed and five were injured. 15 soldiers were also wounded. Moreover, another 11 bombing attacks led to the death of two civilians and injured 19.
The one deemed the most brutal was a massacre at the Al-Furqan mosque in Ai Payae village of Narathiwat’s Cho-airong district that left 10 Muslims dead. After the incident, the insurgents attempted to frame the government of the charge by means of word of mouth and leaflets.
The attempted frame-up made Deputy Prime Minister Suthep Thaugsuban, as well as Army Commander-in-chief General Anupong Paojinda to defend the administration, saying state officials were not behind the attack.
The point is that the result of those incidents is worrying because, no matter how the case comes out, it is to the advantage of insurgents.
Meanwhile, Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva did not refute that officials were not involved clearly, but explained that no policy legalizes the use of violence.
In the case of Al-Furqan mosque, it is relatively complicated as there are a number of likely motivations such as personal revenge, drug dealing, and smuggling. Therefore, the government should not rush to the conclusion and distort the truth.
During an interview on his Sunday television talk, Mr. Abhisit answered Vatsana Nanuam, a reporter, that every case should not be hastily concluded as long as the suspect is not tried.


Government warned not to provide citizens with firearms – translated and summarized from Matichon; June 16, 2009
Nonviolence International South East Asia warns government not to provide citizens and volunteer units with firearms. According to the organization’s research report, arming the citizen and expanding the civil volunteer unit would fuel the situation, causing more conflicts in the restive south. The government’s intention would involve the issue concerning religious discrimination as only Thai Buddhists are allowed to carry firearms while Thai Muslims are not. If they do, they would be suspected of being insurgents.
Some of respondents who are officers admitted that security in the area is currently under responsibility of those volunteer and semi-military units which were screened and trained incompetently. Consequently, instead of reducing the violence, it may spark anger and dissatisfaction in the area.
The research report suggests improving police’s potential rather than supporting people with firearms. The problem should be solved by peaceful means and good governance. Moreover, strict law enforcement are also vital.


Two army members holding general rank and one colonel involved in militant attacks in the south – One more teacher shot dead – Blast attack killing police – translated and summarized from Matichon; Page: First page, June 17, 2009
Two militants on their motorcycles on June 16, 2009 staged attacks targeting female school teacher Rekha Issara from the Banpormeng School in Yala’s Raman district, killing her in Tambon Kayuborkoh in the district while the teacher was traveling to school. At the same time, the militants in Pattani lured police at the Saiburi district in Pattani to inspect an accident on the Maikhaen-Saiburi road in Tambon Taluban. The militants detonated a bomb that was hidden on the motorcycle killing 2 and injuring 1 police officer.
Meanwhile, an MP of the coalition parties reveals to a source that he believes that the mosque massacre in Narathiwat was a plotted scheme and claims that many MP in the unrest province and high-rank army officials and Army Commander-in-chief General Anupong Paojinda and Defense Minister General Prawit Wongsuwan have information about the group that was involved. According the coalition party MP, leaders of the group that staged violence for their own benefit consist of one army member holding General rank in the Narathiwat area, another army officer holding the same rank looking in Pattani and one colonel in the Yala area.


Analyzing why the Southern Border Provinces Administrative Office plan has been shelved – obstructed by soldiers? – translated and summarized from Matichon; June 11, 2009
The Abhisit Vejjajiva government announced during its campaign for election on December 29, 2007, that it would launch a tool to ease the unrest in the southern border provinces. It believed that the tool would bring peace back to the provinces again. The tool is to set up a special organization called the Southern Border Provinces Administrative Office.
The new organization will be directly supervised by the Prime Minister. It is aimed at solving administrative problems in the area and create unity in operations. However, five months have passed and the plan has not been proposed yet.
The reason is that the government manager, Deputy Prime Minister for security Suthep Thaugsuban, fears that the proposal will offend the ‘Big Green’. We all know that the government is backed by the military.
The Internal Security Operations Command is now the lead actor in the three southern border provinces with around 60,000 military officers.
After the robbery of guns in Amphoe Joh I Rong, Narathiwat province, more and more budget has been allocated to the southern provinces – from 13.45 billion baht in 2004 to 27.547 billion baht in 2009. Over 50% of the budget is under the control of the Defense Ministry and the Internal Security Operations Command. The ISOC receives around 7.5 billion baht in advance. They will come up with projects later.
People wonder if the budget will be spent on the right stuff. It is said that high-ranking authorities get a lot of money for themselves per month. Meanwhile, the Southern Border Provinces Administrative Command got less than 10% of the 27 billion baht budget.
Are these the reasons the military oppose the plan to form the new Southern Border Provinces Administrative Office? The Abhisit administration should restructure military organizations and revamps strategies under the approaching and understanding concept.


Half a decade of southern unrest – fighting for the masses or fighting for the budget? – translated and summarized from Matichon; June 21, 2009
The unrest in Pattani, Yala, Narathiwat and some districts in Songkhla has been going on for half a decade, from January 4, 2004. The situation is not stable, depending on chances of both sides.
Commander of the Southern Border Provinces Administrative Command (SBPAC) Pol. Lt. Gen. Peera Poompichet says that so far, administrative officers cannot thoroughly stop them. He adds that we are now fighting with criminals who have high capacity and resources to carry out their plans.
According to the Royal Thai Police, from 2004 to May 2009, a total of 3,513 people were killed. 3,078 out of them were ordinary people, 223 were policemen and 222 were soldiers. A total of 6,220 people were injured. 92 teachers were killed, while 96 were injured. Five monks were killed and 15 were injured. Officials were able to seize 316 gun from insurgents.  The police have been working hard for five years to get the statistics.
However, there are several units trying to intervene with the operations to get this work and the budget that goes with it.
On June 8, 2009, a tragedy happened again when insurgents attacked the Alfrugon at Ban Ai Payae, Tambon Chuab, Amphoe Joh I Rong, Narathiwat province. Eleven Muslim people praying in the mosque were killed and lots were injured.
It is still doubtful who killed those people. Is it insurgency movement, or another group with a secret goal?
The incident intensifies the unrest. Teachers, monks, old people, soldiers and policemen are victims.
Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva insists that he will let the politics lead the military to end the southern unrest. He also mentions about a plan to form the Southern Border Provinces Administrative Office.
Several parties wonder if those billions baht spent in the South for the past five years were worthwhile. The budget does not include the secret budget and another 20 billion baht which has just been approved.  People wonder if the government is able unveil the information on budget allocation during the past five years?
It is also doubtful if it is a fight against insurgents in the South, or a fight for budget allocated to ease the southern unrest.


Local force teamed up to fight militants in the South – The Army on alert – translated and summarized from Naewna; Column: political news; June 21, 2009
The Region 4 Internal Security Operations Command Public Relation Head Colonel Parinya Chaidilok reveals that the Narathiwat task force along with police and military will closely perform security operations in every district in the province, especially in the Chorairong district, following many tense violent attacks operation in the area recently. The army strategy is aimed at controlling militants operating in the area and regaining public confidence. The hunting operations are launched in the suspected militant hideouts. Helicopters are used in the air force operation against militants in mountainous areas and checkpoints are set up in communities. He adds that the local force is to be teamed up by village security force, village guard defense volunteer team, and popular training units in the local areas.
Meanwhile, four Islamic Khmers were seized at the border area in the Aranyaprated district in Sakaew province. The authorities found that the four have items such as radio transmitters, Kratom leaves used to produce hard drugs, electric volt transformer machine, and mobile devices in possession. The four claimed to travel to the Southern border province and to visit cousins in Malaysia. Police are investigating the case.



(Photo: Naewna)

Islamic Khmers: Deputy task force commander of the Burapa force Lieutenant Ekkarat Methawattananan seized four Islamic Khmer people while they were entering the Aranyaprated border in Sakhaew province with many items used in forest and Kratom leaves. The four are suspected militant supporters.


Revealing the ‘Taksin 2’ plan – Fugitive Thaksin aims to run a war to hunt ‘Mark’, privy councilors – translated and summarized from Manager Online; June 24, 2009
[The concept of a "Taksin" plan draws parallels between deposed PM Thaksin and King Taksin. King Taksin was deposed by a coup in 1782. His reign was followed by the founding of the present Chakri Dynasty.]
On June 24, it is reported that a security unit has reported about the Taksin 2 plan to the government. The five-page plan comes with a more violent strategy and more aggressive than the Taksin 1 [the term applied by the first attempt of Thaksin to return in April].
The Taksin 2 has seven strategies and six methods, aiming to destroy the 2007 Constitution and promote a new one. More violent measures will be applied to bring down the government.
A source said that red-shirt people are responding to the strategy. They create conflicts among Thai people. They are urging the change of national day from December 5 to June 24, in order to reduce the importance of the royal institute.
All media will be used to spread negative rumours about the Prime Minister and other ministers. Government’s information units will also be interfered with.
From June 27, which is a big meeting day of the red-shirt people, people will be mobilized to fight against the government’s power. All violent measures will be applied through well-trained forces. Teams will be set up to hunt down aristocrats like privy councilors, and government members. The first target in the government is Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva, followed by deputy security minister Suthep Thaugsuban.
Security units have already sent a report about the Taksin 2 plan to deputy security minister Suthep Thaugsuban. All authorities are working hard to prevent all problems.

Posted in Thai Media Project | Leave a comment

Southern Violence Statistics – June 2009


Map of four provinces in the deep south (Songkhla, Pattani, Yala, Narathiwat) showing numbers of the dead and injured by location.

Southern Violence Statistics – June 2009
Index of violence statistics for the Thai Deep South

This chart shows violent incidents classified by the hour of the day (x-axis) and the province (y-axis). Songkhla=light blue, Pattani=blue, Yala=green, Narathiwat=red, total events=black

This chart shows violent incidents classified by day of the week (x-axis) and the province (y-axis). The days of the week start with Monday on the left. Songkhla=light blue, Pattani=blue, Yala=green, Narathiwat=red, total events=black

This chart shows violent incidents classified by day of the month (x-axis) and the province (y-axis). Songkhla=light blue, Pattani=blue, Yala=green, Narathiwat=red, total events=black

Numbers of violent incidents since January 2004. Across the bottom are the years (2547 is 2004, 2548 is 2005, 2549 is 2006, 2550 is 2007, 2551 is 2008, 2552 is 2009). The blue line shows the number of all violent incidents that took place as reported by the Deep South Coordination Center (counting all incidents both injury and non-injury). The red line shows data according to the Violence-related Injury Surveillance (a form that hospitals, doctors and clinics are supposed to fill out to report violent incidents).

The blue line shows the average monthly level of violent incidents from 2004 up to the present. The red line shows the information provided to the Violence-related Injury Surveillance in the present year. The y-axis shows the numbers of events from 0-300. The x-axis shows the months of the year from January to December (left to right).

The numbers of injured and dead reported from each province where the events occurred (Pattani, Yala, Narathiwat and Songkhla). Black= dead, orange=injured. The CFR (Case Fatality Rate) of each province is above each bar.

The toll of dead and injured (y-axis), classified by the districts where the incidents took place (x-axis). Black= dead, orange=injured.


Map of four provinces in the deep south (Songkhla, Pattani, Yala, Narathiwat) showing the number of violent events by tambon (village). Starting at light yellow, the levels are 1-10, 10-20, 20-30, 30-40, 40-50, and greater than 60.

The numbers of dead and injured, classified by the victims’ profession. Black= dead, orange=injured. From left to right: laborers, agriculturists, police officers, army officers, others, students and college students, merchants and businessmen, housewives, Education Ministry Officials, unknown, unemployed, other officials, interior officials, volunteer defense guards, lawyers, village headmen, fisheries and marine transport

Source: Deep South Violence-related Injury Surveillance statistics

Posted in Deep South Violence Statistics | Leave a comment

Michael Jackson’s death in the Thai-language press

Komchadluek, July 1, 2009 – It reads: Michael Jackson autopsy revealed – Stomach examination indicates dosages of medicine used – Scrawny – Balding – Injection traces left on body – King of Pop’s will quested – Mother to take care according to law – Father’s word claiming absolute right – Clarifying music fans’ doubt – Decoding medicines that killed Jack-o

Michael Jackson’s death in the Thai-language press

Left: Matichon Weekly, July 3, 2009
It reads: Moon Walker – “Mark-kle” Jackson
steps regressively [moonwalks backwards] “in lost” [This pokes fun at Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva by changing Michael Jackson’s name to add in the PM’s nickname "Mark" and implying he is not making progress.]
Right: Nation Weekend, July 3, 2009
It reads: The final song

Daily News, June 29, 2009 – 6-8 weeks to know autopsy result of Michael – Unexpected death shocking the world – Heart attack – Possible drug overdose involved

Kom Chad Luek, June 28, 2009 – It reads: Fear for Jackson’s fans to commit suicide following (his death) – Investigating doctor’s overdose prescription – Autopsy to be known in 2 months – Fame raised to compare to Elvis

Matichon, June 28, 2009 –
Leaving a great debt of 14 billion –Jackson passed away – Heart attack – Drug overdose – His fans mourn the death!

Matichon, June 28, 2009 –The caption reads: Picture from the past – The picture in the past when Michael Jackson was on tour to his concert in Thailand. Thai girls dressed up in Thai dress to welcome him on November, 1996.

Khoasod, June 28, 2009 – The caption reads: Mournful – Michael Thang, Thai “Michael Jackson” impersonator brings flowers to mourn the death of the King of Pop at the US embassy in Bangkok, Thailand on June 26 (2009).

Daily News also reprinted a headline from 1993 when one of Jackson’s concerts was postponed in Bangkok.
Daily News
, August 28, 1993 –
It reads: Worn out in dancing, “Jackson” weakens – Tolerates – (Performs) crotch-grabbing dancing till the end [Meaning something like: He felt sick, but continued his crotch grabbing dancing until the end of the show]

The man, his music, that walkBangkok Post, June 27, 2009

Die-hard Thai fans mourn “King of Pop” MSNBC, June 26, 2009

When Michael played BangkokBangkok Post, June 27, 2009
In August of 1993, Thailand had the fastest growing economy in the world. The country and its entrepreneurs were addicted to daily jabs of extravagance, using massive foreign reserves to order the aircraft carrier Chakri Naruebet, throw hundreds of moo baan to encircle Bangkok, and convert green acres into malls.
All that excess and waste looked grey and ordinary when it was announced in July that the Dangerous tour with Michael Jackson was coming to town…

Michael Jackson in Bangkok – June 26, 2009
On August 24, 1993, Michael Jackson resumed his Dangerous World Tour in Bangkok. We seem to recall photos of Jackson marching along with Thai army cadets, but we are able to local this photo.
Michael Jackson’s Dangerous Tour DatesMichael Jackson Dangerous World Tour Collectibles

Don adds: Jackson played Muang Thong Thani on November 5, 1996.  You can see his world-tour schedule here. That was pre-Impact. Nothing out there but a field. I was always curious why he played on a temporary stage way out there instead of someplace like, say, the National Stadium.
[The answer is bribes. This is the reason the stadium is rarely be used for international events. Even right before the 1993 concerts at National Stadium, last minute extortion by those who control access to the stadium nearly scuttled the concerts.]

Also: Thai fans join world in mourning ‘King of Pop’The Nation, June 26, 2009

Also: Jackson dies, almost takes Internet with himCNN, June 26, 2009

Posted in Culture and Society | Leave a comment

Nominees will need to find ‘real’ Thai partners, says JFCCT

PROPERTY: Nominees will need to find ‘real’ Thai partners, says JFCCTBangkok Post, October 27, 2009
…In the worst-case scenario, property will be seized by the Lands Department,” he said.
“Foreigners now are really panicked. But they need to familiarise themselves with the changes. Everybody always resists change, so the beginning could be a struggle…”

Earlier: Taste of the Thai life: Thailand’s property market is still hot and spicyDaily Mail, June 25, 2009
[There continue to be baffling articles like this coming out of the English press about how easy it is for foreigners to own property in Thailand. The local story is how authorities insist that foreigners cannot own land/property and accusations of a witch hunt to find foreigners who hold land through work around solutions. Also, the traditional method of holding property through a locally created company has been called into question in recent years. Against this backdrop, the English press continues to put out these press release-type articles touting what a great deal Thai property remains for foreigners.]

Earlier: No witch-hunt, says Lands Department – Foreign ownership debate intensifiesBangkok Post, June 15, 2009
…The Lands Department does not have a policy to scrutinise acquisitions in which illegal use of Thai nominees on behalf of foreigners is suspected, says director-general Anuwat Maytheewibulwut.
We have some regulations and processes to investigate illegality, but not that many. We must respect individual rights and assume individuals will not give fake statements to officials – Anuwat Maytheewibulwut Director-general, lands department
Land ownership revocation cases mostly occur when a complaint or conflict is brought to the department’s attention, he said…

Earlier: Land purchase through Thai spouse forbidden: Land DeptPhuket Gazette, May 27, 2009

Earlier: International Real Estate For Sale In… ThailandNew York Times, May 26, 2009

Earlier: Tourism Increases Property Investment in ThailandBigNews.Biz, July 16, 2009
[Another bizarre press release… Did you know both tourism and property investment in Thailand has been increasing?]
The world class tourist industry of Thailand attracts re-locators and property investors contributing to the increase in property investment of the country…

Posted in Property and Development | Leave a comment

Recently worsening violent attacks – Doubt on the statistics of the decreased violence toll

Recently worsening violent attacks – Doubt on the statistics of the decreased violence toll – translated and summarized from Issara News Center; Author: Issara news team; June 10, 2009
Regarding the Southern violent attacks that were reported during the previous 20 days (May 18, 2009 to June 8, 2009), 4 teachers were killed and 5 injured. 15 security guards for school teachers were injured. The militants staged 9 blast attacks in the downtown of Yala on May 27, staging car-bombing attack in Narathiwat’s Yeengo district that killed 2 and injured 19 on June 7 and also the deadly Mosque shooting attack in Narathiwat’s Choairong district killed 11 people on June 8.
The security agency insists that the statistic record of violent situation has decreased during the previous one year period. To explain the intensified degree of violence, the joint civil police military source states that the related cause is the militant attempt at revenge on authorities.
According to the source’s review:
1) the teacher attacks occur usually during the school opening period, but this year, the loss is revealed as greater than the previous year
2) the car bomb attack in the Yeengor district and the mosque massacre in the Choairong district is related to the seizure of militant “zone” leaders during the past 2 months.
The Army views that the peace-reinforcing project in 217 villages also greatly impacts the militant operation in the red area and, additionally, the Islamic Conference Committee’s recent meeting did not include discussion of Thailand’s southern violence as its agenda. Therefore, the militants have to increase the degree of violence to make world see that the unrest situation in the South is a “problem.”
Regardless of what the army and the national security panel claim, the question is that the government and the security agency have to explain why the policy, claimed to be “on the right track” generates such problems. This is what the army and the security units have to answer to the public. Likewise, to answer doubts about the large amounts of budget recently allocated to the army.

Panithan believes red-zone seizure cause of mosque attack – translated and summarized from Thai Rath; June 10, 2009
On June 9, Deputy Spokesperson to the Prime Minister’s Office Supachai Jaisamut announced that the Cabinet approved a budget of 400 million baht from the central budget for victims of southern unrest. The budget will be allocated to government units to help people affected by the southern unrest.
The Cabinet has also approved special monthly payment for officials operating tasks in the southern border provinces and four districts of Songkhla.
Panitan Wattanayakorn, Spokesperson for the Prime Minister’s Office, gave his comment about a mosque attack in Amphoe Joh I Rong, Narathiwat province, which killed ten people. He said that the attack was an effort to counter the government. Government’s projects in the South have turned local people into siding with it. Several leaders have been arrested. These make insurgents unhappy. However, the overall number of violent attacks declined by 40-50 percent. Malaysia is willing to help Thai government ease the unrest. It will visit Thailand’s southern provinces at the end of the year to increase the efficiency of local schools.

Statistics in April reveals high toll – Daily shooting attacks increase – Pattani reported critical high toll – translated and summarized from Issara News Center; Author: Issara news team; June 4, 2009
[In coming days we will be posting reports detailing separatist activity in May and June.]
The record of violent attacks that occurred in April, 2009 is slightly higher than the record of the previous month (March). However, the death toll decreases with 29 dead. The accumulative death toll from January, 2004 up to the present reaches 3,550 already. The report reveals that there were 89 violent attacks in April, 2009.
36 violent attacks occurred in Pattani province, 9 of which were from the Yarang district, 8 of which from the Saiburi, 6 of which from the Nongchick, 2 apiece of which from the city district, the Kokpoh, the Yaring, the Mayor, the Thung Yang Daeng and the Kapo district and 1 of which from the Panare district.
There were 21 violent attacks that occurred in Yala province, 8 of which were from the city district, 4 of which were from the Yaha district, 3 of which were from the Raman district, 2 apiece of which from the Bannungsata, the Krongpinang and the Tarnto district.
There were 32 violent attacks in Narathiwat province, 8 of which were in the Rueso, 6 of which were from the Bacho, 5 of which were from the Rangae, 3 a piece of which were from the Janae and the Choairong, 2 apiece of which were in the Waeng and the Sungaikolok, 1 apiece of which was in the Takbai, the Sungaipadee and the Srisakorn district.
There were 60 shooting attacks, 26 of which were in Pattani, 16 of which were in Yala and 18 of which were in the Narathiwat. There were 13 bombing attacks, 2 of which were in the Pattani, 2 of which were in Yala and 9 of which in Narathiwat. There were 16 torching attacks, 8 of which were in Pattani, 1 of which in Yala and 7 of which were in Narathiwat.
Regarding the violent victims, there are the total of 100, 29 of which were dead and 71 of which were injured.
Pattani reports 41 on toll, 14 of which were injured officials, 13 of which were dead locals and 12 were injured locals. 1 militant died and 1 other suffered injured.
Yala reports 37 on toll, 3 of which were dead officials, 13 of which were injured officials, 10 of which were dead locals and 11 of which were injured locals.
Narathiwat reports 22 on toll, 8 of which were injured officials, 1 of which was dead local, 12 of which were injured locals. One militant died.

Table 1: Summary of Violent Incidents in Pattani, Yala and Narathiwat Provinces, and 4 districts of Songkhla Province

Types of Incident

Pattani Province

Yala

Province

Narathiwat Province

4 districts of Songkhla Province

Ambushes with gunfire

26

18

18

Arson attacks

8

1

7

Bomb attacks

4

3

10

Attacks injuring people

2

2

9

Attacks damaging assets

Incidents in which nails were strewn on highways

1

1

Table 2: Victims Injured or Killed in Pattani, Yala and Narathiwat Provinces, and 4 districts of Songkhla Province

Group

Pattani Province

Yala Province

Narathiwat Province

4 districts of Songkhla Province

State officials injured

14

13

8

State officials killed

3

Ordinary local citizens injured

12

11

12

Ordinary local citizens killed

13

10

1

Insurgents injured

1

Insurgents killed

1

1

 

The loss of three southern border provinces comes close – translated and summarized from Phujatkarn; Author: Sirianya; June 11, 2009
This column is to express concern on the ongoing violent situation in the South for fear that in the near future Thailand might have to lose the southern border lands. The mosque massacre that killed 12 in Narathiwat on June 8 did happen and it has not happened in this country before. After the shooting a rumor was spread putting blame on the state authorities for the massacre. What should be mentioned here is that firstly, the bloody event that occurred has removed the previous view that the policy on violent situation is on the right track and the situation has improved. Secondly, the state authority, even now, does not know who they are fighting with.
The truth to be accepted here are
1. The government has spent more than 100,000 million baht up to now in the South. This amount could make the south prosperous economically. However, the southern economy is still not progressively developed.
2. Despite a large number of police military forces dispatched to the South, the loss of life of the people continues, likewise the violent attacks.
3. The strategy that military forces become target of the militant operations in the local areas ensures continuous losses.
4. The geographical area of the South is canvassed by militant supporters who work in villages and the militant exercises continue.
5. We are lacking the profound understanding that the militants are using a prolonged war strategy to reach their goals and at the same time, they are pushing ahead on making the issue become internationally discussed by the Islamic Conference Committee. We do not really focus on His Majesty the King’s royal suggestion on developing policy with profound understanding for the locals. If one wants to understand the real “military leads politics policy”, they should read the book named “Land philosophy” by Statesman Gen. Prem Tinnasulanonda to get to the concept. As for land development, I comment that if we followed it, things would be less problematic and open hope of opportunity for the great Thai-Muslim land to be well-developed with cooperation with world Islamic community.

Sound from the South: Three brave governors – translated and summarized from Matichon; June 17, 2009

http://www.matichon.co.th/news-photo/matichon/2009/06/pol03170652p1.jpg

Winai Kharuwannapat
Narathiwat governor

He is in charge of aiding people in distress, boosting civilians’ morale and confidence, holding a talk among people, and devising a scheme with other organizations to solve problems.
When we visit his place, much safety cautions are required and we have to avoid the risk and always be careful.
"I have to admit working here is tough because governor of the three affected provinces not only have to work like other governors, but we also have to deal with the crisis here which is far tougher than in other area,” he said.

http://www.matichon.co.th/news-photo/matichon/2009/06/pol03170652p2.jpg
Teera Mintrasak
Yala Governor

The core strategy is to create understanding among people so that it will ease conflict, restore faith, and reduce mistrust. In order to raise their feelings of justice, it is significant to make them apprehend cultural and racial diversity, or the so-called scheme “Solving Southern Unrest by Culture”.
The activities are aimed at creating unity and peace among the population. Moreover, people can file their complaints at “Peaceful Yala Centre” that was organized for a year. State officials including soldiers, policemen, and sheriff are based there to provide assistance.
Besides, the centre is also available for the accused that want to surrender themselves. Up to now, there are 275 sympathizers and eight accused insurgents presenting themselves at the office.
"I visit my people and check on projects initiated by his Majesty the King and other projects such as living quality development, village development including youth and female’s right. If our children are strong it will bring peace to Yala. We have to focus on drug abuse problem by giving them education, sport, and jobs. All of these are to keep them from joining the insurgents. My security is not that important because I do it for the sake of the country,” he said.

http://www.matichon.co.th/news-photo/matichon/2009/06/pol03170652p3.jpg

Teerathep Sriyaphan
Pattani Governor

He places emphasis on raising the quality of life and supporting family businesses, either full time or part time. Civilians should have security and income which the state is responsible for.
Justice is the first priority. Every case should be tried equitably to find the real motive. We should create the feeling that provincial organization is the place they can rely on.
He, therefore, employs His Majesty the King’s principle saying understanding, approaching, developing, and unity will lead to love among human being. Furthermore, he resolved to fight poverty by supporting careers and offering jobs for fresh grads. Otherwise, unemployment would lead to drug abuse as well as, afterwards, unrest in the area.
“When we have to work in a dangerous area, we cannot be careless. Sometimes, we need to call for reinforcement. Although working here is tiring, I will to do it for the country. To me, being a governor is the peak of my life, so I devote my life to it. If I have to sacrifice my life for the civilians’ happiness, I will do,” he said.

Posted in Deep South Violence Statistics | Leave a comment