Thaksin’s nightmare: He still can’t get rid of Prem

From Manager, December 8, 2016
Thaksin thinks: Going back home without carrying any cases. [meaning Thaksin’s main goal of returning to Thailand after having his legal cases dismissed is fading as he realizes the Privy Council is not appreciably changing]
Thaksin holds a Manager newspaper with the headline: Appointing Prem Tinsulanonda as head of the advisory council to the King.
Caption: News that is breaking his dream.

[Shortly after the first coup that ousted Thaksin from power in 2006, Thaksin was recorded telling supporters that the coup was because of a disagreement he had with Privy Council President Prem.

Since then, Thaksin’s actions, and the actions of the Red Shirts, can be seen as a long, drawn out attempt to pressure or threaten Prem in one way or another.

The first Red Shirt mass action was a surprise strike attacking Prem’s residence in 2007. Red Shirt publications, from the mainstream to the most radical, constantly attacked Prem as their greatest enemy.

Red Shirt faithful reacted in horror when Yingluck was sent to fawningly greet Prem in 2012 (Yingluck attempts detente with Privy Council President Prem and Yingluck Sent to Honor Prem). This reinforced the growing belief that the Red Shirt movement itself was simply a bargaining chip for Thaksin and his family.

The cartoonist alludes to the fact that a new monarch has the ability to appoint his own Privy Council from scratch. Thaksin must have surely hoped that Prem (as well as other generals who oppose him like Gen. Surayut) might have been removed from their posts in a Rama X era.

However, the composition of the new Privy Council demonstrates that the existing nexus of powers remains intact and that Thaksin’s return to power will continue to be blocked. See also: Weekly News Magazines, December 9-16, 2016]

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