From Nation Weekend, April 29, 2016
Main cover reads: Big retribution
[The monk on the cover is Phra Dhammachayo. In the background is the UFO-shaped Dhammakaya Ctiya, a place for mass meditation and prayers in Dhammakaya Temple.
The covers refers to Dhammakaya’s abbot Phra Dhammachayo who avoided in meeting with the Department of Special Investigation (DSI) to answer charges of money laundering. He sent his lawyer instead to claim he was suffering from a serious illness. However, many people have been skeptical about his sickness since some saw him continuing his duties up until shortly before the appointment date with the DSI.
The title suggests the alleged injury is karmic retribution for the Dhammakaya’s sect heretical slant on Buddhism, its support of politicians such as Thaksin, and it alleged money-laundering activities.]
Top right: Overthrow the referendum [white] Keep eyes on a group of people who have weapons–to promote reform before elections.
[Refers to the situation of having a referendum on the controversial draft constitution. While the junta is trying to urge people to accept the draft constitution, other groups question the draft as not being democratic. The article discusses concerns that the military may use this controversial situation to delay elections to conduct reforms first.]
From Matichon Weekly, April 29-May 5, 2016
Main cover reads: Referendum of [yellow] draft constitution. [green] “An egg inside the rock”
[2nd man from the left is Suthep Thaugsuban, a chairman of the Muan Maha Prachachon for Reform Foundation along with his team.
Suthep declared his support for the controversial draft constitution. He is believed to have close ties with the junta that is trying to push forward the acceptance of the draft in the coming referendum in August this year.
“An egg inside the rock” is a Thai idiom meaning to be very protective. This draft is very protective of the junta, the military’s role in the future, as well as its goals to halt further Thaksin-dominated governments from rising again to do his bidding.]
Top right: A future of ‘Chartthapattana’ after the death of ‘Dragon Teng’ The mission is in hand of ‘LukNa’
[The man in the picture is former PM Banharn Silpa-archa whose nickname is Teng. After he passed away, the future of his party is under control of his daughter Kanchana. ‘LukNa’ is a combination his daughter’s nickname “Noona” and “luk” meaning elder daughter or son. Banharn is sometimes lauded as “Dragon Teng” due to his political power in Thailand’s politics and his background from China.]
From Manager Weekly, May 6, 2016
Main cover reads: Villas de Thammy. If he escapes from the charge [meaning if he flees from police], then where is a place he will go?
[The monk is Dhammakaya temple’s abbot Dhammachayo. In the background are photos of places related to Dhammakaya’s network and assets.
The headline mocks the monk’s supposed poverty as the Dhammakaya temple preaches enlightenment via donations which leaves the monk with considerable assets and places to flee to if he wishes.]
Top: Again! When Lung Kamnun is taking a role of Nora in front of a fire.
[The man in the picture is Suthep as known as Lung Kamnun. We think that this means that, as the leader of many political supporters and as a person with close ties to the junta, Suthep is taking the role of a front man who bears the brunt of attacks as he declared his support of the controversial draft constitution. This headline mimics the Thai proverb “a skin in front of the fire” but instead using the word “skin,” it uses “Nora,” a traditional dance from the south of Thailand to refer to Suthep who comes from the south. It means Suthep is doing a dance–a pre-arranged role in the passage of the charter.]
Bottom: Almost bankrupted. That’s it, [says] the audience.
[The man in the picture is famous anchor Sorayuth Suthassanachinda. Recently Sorayuth was found guilty of cheating the state out of millions of baht of advertising revenue. As he was facing charges, all of ratings of his news programs rapidly declined. The sentence “That’s it” is his famous catchphrase he used at the end of his news program.]
From Lokwannee, 30 April-May 6, 2016
Main cover reads: We will do as we promise, please give us some time. We will do as we promise, please give us 5 more years. We will do as promise, please give us more than 20 years.
[The covers uses lyrics from the junta’s theme song named “Return happiness.” In the song, the junta asks the public to give them time to reform the country in order to accomplish their tasks to return the happiness to the people. However, there is concern that the junta is trying to stay in power much longer.]