United front of Democracy against Dictatorship (UDD) statement at the UDD Regional Directors and Co-leaders Meeting, on August 3rd2013 at Don-Muang Technical College, Bangkok.
To assess the current political situation in which there are protests against the deliberation of Amnesty Bill in the Parliament which led to the movement of the People’s Democratic Force to Overthrow Thaksinism (PEFOT):
1. Explanations for the Movement of PEFOT
1.1 The reason for the so-called “people’s troops” movement against the deliberation of Amnesty Bill in the Parliament and the adoption of the slogan, “Down with Thaksin’s Regime,” is completely illogical.
The core idea of the Amnesty Bill proposed by MP Worachai Hema is similar to that of Executive Emergency Decree Amnesty which was proposed by the UDD (Red throughout the Land) in the past and the purpose of the Bill remains the same; to grant pardon to all political prisoners of all colours, except co-leaders and other authoritative figures.
The objection against this Amnesty Bill by claiming that it would only give benefits to politicians, co-leader, and former PM Thaksin was aimed to distort the actual detail of the Bill which clearly states; “Amnesty for people only.”
1.2 The slogan “Down with Thaksin Regime” or “Down with Thaksinism” does not make sense simply because it does not exist. Thaksin Sinawatra is a successful politician and businessman who gained the majority support of the people and in the parliament; this is normalcy in a democratic system. Using Thaksin’s name to refer to an authoritative system is a misleading notion.
The creation of the term “Thaksinism” is used to gather mass by fabricating an exaggerated word out of thin air. The use of the term “Thaksinism” only portrays the level of hatred and backward political thinking of the people who are using it. The term was also coined as a mockery against the UDD’s strategic aim to eradicate the Am-mart Regime or Aristocracy, which exists in the gap between Absolute Monarchy and Constitutional Monarchy.
2. Political Activities under the Democratic System in Thailand
2.1 The current movement of the Democrat Party and the Extreme Conservative Groups is an expression of a clear rejection of democratic practice and fair competitiveness under majority rule in this country. The extreme conservative forces are searching for means to overthrow a democratically elected government in order to put themselves into the governing position by means of a coup d’état of all forms; military, judicial, and power outside the system. This vicious cycle of coup d’état is the primary source of the relentless fighting for democracy in Thailand because the extreme conservatives and the Am-mart refuse to accept defeat under the norm of democratic practices.
2.2 The using of the phrase “people” in the slogan “People’s Democratic Force to Overthrow Thaksinism” is deceitful. This point of view belongs to some politician, ex-civil servant, and retired military personnel only. The people who occupied the rally sites of the PEFOT were convinced by Am-mart servants to come out. They represent only a small portion of the whole population. They are not the majority of the people who elected the government.
3. The Consequences
3.1 The movement intensified the political situation that is already vulnerable due to internal conflicts. These turmoils can be used as an excuse for the military to stage another coup d’état to solve political conflicts.
3.2 The implementation of the Constitutional Court power and Independent Organizations authorities to undermine the working process, the power of the legislative branch and the administrative branch in an attempt to destroy democratic institutions in this country.
3.3 As a result, the country’s development through democratic process is being slowed down substantially.
4. What should the people, especially “Red Shirts” supporters, do?
4.1 Red Shirts supporters should oppose all types of coup d’état, either by the means of the military, judicial, and/or power outside the system.
4.2 Red Shirts supporters should continue their support for the legislative and the administrative branch that came from the election of the people and allow them to represent the needs of the people. Red Shirts should also oppose all interferences that targeted the authority and the working process of the administrative power which represents the power of the people. This battlefield is truly a confrontation between Democratic system, and Autocratic system.
5. The obligations of the Regional Directors and Co-leaders of the UDD
5.1 Regional directors and co-leaders of the UDD should strive to improve the communication and coordination efforts between themselves and Red Shirts supporters in their respective regions and between themselves and all other levels including the central command, regional, provincial, district, and village level.
The way to improve the communication network is to spread the workload of the directors to other capable individuals who can be promoted and given more responsibility. The positive effect of this effort is the increase in coordination capability between the coordinators, the mass and the UDD central command.
5.2 Regional directors should provide political education to Red Shirts supporters in their area through recorded videos of meetings such as this one and through instructions given at UDD political school’s introduction class and VTR such as the “Shooting Bird in the Cage” VTR.
5.3 Regional directors and co-leaders should continue to follow UDD news and events through social network such as our Thai (uddred.blogspot.com) and English (thairedshirts.org) blogs constantly and take a subscription for our SMS service, which is currently in the trial process, in the near future.
5.4 Regional directors of the UDD should be prepared for communication efforts during critical situations. Panicking and random response to attack without coordination and responsibility is prohibited and should not be practiced at anytime due to the fact that it can cause chaos and damage to the society.
5.5 Be prepared for instructions and schedules for rallies in case of emergency situations.
Bravery and determination to fight for the benefit of the people should be incorporated with collective knowledge and conscious of a group. The combination of these values will surpass any obstacle on the path toward the victory of the people.
The United front of Democracy against Dictatorship (UDD),
August 3rd 2013.