ข้อเขียนจาก Michael Yon
Michael Yon เป็นนักเขียนอิสระ มีคนส่งข้อเขียนของเขา (ซึ่งเขียนเมื่อวันที่ ๑๘ ม.ค. ๕๗) มาให้ ดังต่อไปนี้
Conversation with Khun Akanat
We discussed many topics this evening.
I must write as a stream with no edit because I wish to return to the ground:...
1) Akanat said that today a military hand grenade was tossed into a crowd of innocent, unarmed Whistlers, who were marching with Suthep. Video of the event is consistent with the power of a military hand grenade. I was a short distance away but did not hear the explosion. Akanat was far closer by, as was Suthep. They apparently were the targets. Both are fine but upset for the casualties, of which there were 36. If you have seen how peaceful and friendly these protestors have been, you might shed 36 tears.
The marches obviously are extremely dangerous but Suthep is not blinking. They will march tomorrow like normal, and I will go with them. No doubt the terrorists are lurking. Their attacks are increasing on the peaceful demonstrators who fight with Whistles, not grenades.
2) The biggest threat to the Yingluck government is not the peaceful PDRC Whistlers, but the rice farmers and other farmers who have been ripped off through the rice scheme and other Yingluck/Thaksin mismanagement and theft.
The farmers are descending on Bangkok. I asked Akanat if the PDRC will join with the farmers. PDRC and farmers obviously have a common goal to oust the government, but also are not natural political allies on other matters. From what I have seen and heard, and what Akanat tells me, the PDRC and farmers will have a warm relationship.
My two cents: the farmers are angry, and they will likely go to violence, which will be separate from the peaceful PDRC. The farmers have cause: the Yingluck government is crushing them. Chances of farmers being paid on time: 0%. The bills are months overdue, and the funds are not available and the caretaker government cannot borrow money. The farmers know this. Game on. The normally peaceful farmers represent a proximate and real physical threat to the government. The PT party base has been eroded, and the farmers bring more than Whistles. (End my two cents.)
3) There will be no legitimate elections on 02 February.
4) The nutty Washington Post OpEd. If you read it, and are tracking Thai politics, nothing more needs to be said. Cancel your WaPo subscription if they continue saying the moon is made of cheese.
5) Foreign media is finally paying attention, according to Akanat, which I confirm; today I saw loads of farang journalists. Not as many as 2010 Red Shirt fighting, but plenty. Akanat said that some of the major media players asked him for interviews, and he agreed to them only if they agreed to come to a main venue to see the protests for themselves. (Smart move on his part.) Akanat said they agreed and their coverage was reasonably accurate.
My two cents about Akanat telling the journalist to come to the main venue: During the Iraq and Afghanistan wars, journalists who actually went out with combat troops into combat, and who did not just see the fight but experienced it, produced higher quality work that was more reflective of reality. If I were an Army General, I would say to journalists, “Sure, you can come, and I will give you extreme access, but only if you agree to come for one month. If you do one month in combat with my Soldiers, I will take a chance on you. I do not want journalists who come for one day. That is like a drive by shooting.” This revolution is similar. Drive by journalism is not going to work. (End my two cents.)
6) US-Thai relations: My two cents, informed in part by Akanat and in part by living in the Kingdom. Our important relations are being undermined by false media narratives by reporters who are not even in the Kingdom. US-Thai relations are very important for both countries. The PDRC values US relations and wishes to keep them strong. Yet it is clear that the US is siding with a government that has crushed and robbed farmers, committed terrorist acts, and shows no signs of remorse. By siding with the government instead of staying neutral, the US risks undermining the goodwill of millions of Thai people who otherwise respect the United States.
Still my two cents: A buffalo cannot play a violin. The US needs to listen to advisors who live in the Kingdom, not people out in Ohio who are responding to a WaPo OpEd written by editors who are not here. A buffalo leading other buffalos is still a buffalo, and buffalos cannot lead enlightened people.
Akanat did not say this, but I will: The US government must remain neutral, and it must not support in any way the convicted criminal Thaksin Shinawatra. Supporting this criminal is like supporting a Thai version of Saddam Hussein. (Which means he killed fewer people because he is Thai). Any support for Thaksin reveals that we Americans have no respect for the will of the Thai people, or their wellbeing.
(My apologies for this unedited post. Main dispatches are found only on my main website.)