Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Too simple to be true - Bangkok, Thailand

Ding daeng now on TwitpicFor days the red shirts have been saying: "Withdraw the troops!"
And the government replies: "You disperse first!"
But the unrest continues, new barricades are set up, more tires burn at key battle spots, unaccounted-for snipers shoot from skyscrapers windows, the military is using live ammunitions, the protesters throw stones, Molotov bombs, homemade rockets, if not something worse. As a consequence the number of the victims keeps increasing, the city-center is blocked, the transport service has been stopped, the school term start postponed, the number of tourists sinks by the day and the national economy as well.
The foreign governments and the non governmental organizations and institutions issue their typical futile and non-committal statements.
The international media provide a confused, incomplete and often apocalyptic picture of the situation, and they're almost always late. On top of that many newspapers tend to take sides. Based on what kind of deep knowledge of the situation? Their comments don't make it clear.
After five days of clashes though, someone finally comes up with some sensible proposals. Some leaders of the minor parties that belong to the government coalition have proposed a set of steps that would guide the country towards a feasible solution to the crisis: the red shirts should stop the demonstrations, then the government will have to withdraw the troops and they will eventually abandon the coalition. Which would lead to new political elections
In the meanwhile the senate speaker has let everyone know that the assembly is available for mediation talks.
It appears obvious that somehow the rally has to disperse, the troops must withdraw and new elections will have to be held. The parties backing the red shirts will then be able to play their card in a political way, and not with the use of force and blackmail. On the other hand the government will have a chance to submit their emergency management methods and policies to the judgment of the electorate. 
The government, though, seems to have a lot to lose in this story. As well as some of the protest leaders, secretly financed by the ex premier in exile.
Will reason prevail over the intransigence that got hold of the conscience of such a big share of the population?
It seems just too simple to be true.

Photo taken at Din Daeng-Bangkok, by agnesdherbeys, from twitpic

Other great photos of the unrest here

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