Historian Charnvit Kasetsiri on L-M-PPT

June 1, 2012

[CJ Hinke of FACT comments: We welcome our longtime friend and mentor Ajarn Charnvit to this battle.]

Charnvit on campaign to amend Article 112

Political Prisoners in Thailand: May 29, 2012



Radio Australia has interviewed Charnvit Kasetsiri of Thammasat University. The interview took place just prior to the rally and march to parliament to present the petition of more than 27,000 names calling for lese majeste law reform, organized by the Campaign Committee for Amendment of Article 112.

Charnvit explained that “the lese majeste law in Thailand is a product of undemocratic regimes,” with overly severe punishments and subject to abuse. He added that the law:

“is not good for the royal institution itself, it’s not good for the country as a whole, and it’s quite unproductive for democratic process in Thailand.”

Charnvit emphasized that the CCAA112 wanted to amend the law but stated that he understood “that some people are unhappy with the law and some people would want to abolish it.” He argued for lessons on the monarchy and democracy drawn from “successful examples in Europe,” not by “following up what’s going on in rather undemocratic Asia or the Middle East.”

Asked why the Yingluck Shinawatra government has been hopeless on this law (PPT’s words), Charnvit was clear:

I am sorry to say that this is kind of nature of the elite in Thailand. They would rather do some kind of compromise for their own benefit up at the top. So a lot of time they do not want to keep their word once they are in power.

He continues, not so clearly, but pointing in an important direction:

ones at the top especially the party in power now, especially the Yingluck government, her supporters, really her brother, Mr Thaksin keep on too much compromising without thinking of the mass in the countryside, the mass down below there might be a split among themselves.

PPT posted on the petition yesterday.

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