Round Two: Everyone Loses

country_lose

“Whoever declares victory on this national loss is the nation’s enemies,” Abhisit said. “Whatever my status from now on, I will not allow anyone to have such influence over our country.”

Even though Thaksin Shinawatra may be laughing, there is no winner after the Pattaya infamy

Pattaya will lose billions of baht. Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva has lost his face, and his job is under greater threat. To other Thais, Songkran has been pretty much spoiled. Thailand’s image as a whole has taken a new hit. Economically struggling Asean has to defer discussing some crucial plans.

The red-shirted movement, while having achieved a key objective of preventing the Asean summit with dialogue partners, can’t be content with the glaring truth that, like its rival People’s Alliance for Democracy, it has become its own worst enemy.

And Thaksin Shinawatra will only get brief satisfaction from the turmoil in Pattaya that led to the cancellation of the summit and declaration of state of emergency which leaves everything hanging in the balance.

He will be cheering a “triumph” of his supporters in the next address through video link, but deep down he must know that he is not fighting to win, that to get even is the best he can get. He has been way past of the point of no-return, and what happened in Pattaya on Saturday only serves to lengthen the distance between the man and his motherland.

The biggest loss, however,  belongs to us, no matter what colours of the shirts we are wearing. The political divide was not about to be bridged any time soon, but the Pattaya incident has further dimmed the fragile hope. We had wanted things to improve, but now we would be glad if they don’t get any worse.

It’s been an-eye-for-an-eye showdown. You can seize Government House, so we can block city traffic. You can take over the airport, so we can torpedo an international summit. You fight for democracy that rejects corrupt polticians, we can fight for democracy that respects the voices of the poor.

A common sense of national values has been a long-time victim, who was beaten to near death on Saturday. The nation has lost its way for some time, and the Pattaya infamy ensures there will remain no light at the end of the tunnel in the foreseeable future. The vunerable national harmony has been dealt a new blow, and the threat to nationhood has never looked more real.

Those involved in the years-long power struggle have done their best to make sure that politics affects everyone’s life. Too bad the general Thais have only been feeling the negative effects of a war that those responsible insisted was for a greater good. We have come to learn that perhaps people go into war not because they are different. Maybe what has been happening was caused by the fact that we are all too much alike.

By Tulsathit Taptim/ The Nation

FURTHER READING

PM: reds ‘public enemies’

Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva last night called the red-shirts “public enemies” for declaring a victory over the cancellation of the Asean Summit with dialogue partners in Pattaya.

“In this loss to the country, anyone or any group of people that announces a victory should be regarded as true enemies of Thailand. Whatever status I have, I will never allow these people to become influential,” he told a press conference at the summit venue…..

Asian neighbours express sympathy to the government

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