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Thursday, January 08, 2009
The red shirts and the Law of Karma
January 8, 2009
The image of two red-shirt leaders, Jatuporn Promphan and Nathawut Saikua, taking cover from missiles hurled against them by their 'rebel' red-shirt supporters at an election campaign rally in the northeastern province of Buri Ramon January 7 would be unthinkable just a month ago when the Puea Thai party was not shaken by the defection to the Democrat-led alliance of the Friends of Newin faction. The unexpected incident was ironically a carbon-copy of several similar incidents previously perpetrated by red-shirt supporters against the Democrats. The latest missile attack involved former prime minister Chuan Leekpai of the Democrat party who was pelted with an egg when he was on a campaign trail to help a Democrat candidate in the northern province of Lampang.
I only hope that both Jatuporn and Nathawut would not press any charges against their assailants and let bygone be bygone as the two of them have never condemned such uncivilised conduct by their red-shirt mobs agianst the Democrats anyway. Remember what they said about such missile attacks when asked by reporters. "The Democrats should better dissolve the House and call a fresh election so the red-shirts will all disperse." they were quoted to have said.
The unpleasant experience faced by the two red-shirt leaders is, for we the Buddhists, a good example of the Law of Karma which, in its most basic sense, teaches that similar actions will lead to similar results. That is if we do a wholesome action, we eventually will get wholesome result. And if we do an unwholesome action, we will eventually get an unwholesome result.
But overall, the conduct of the red-shirts, especially that of their leaders is totally negative and harmful to the health of the country. Foremost of all is their threat to disrupt the forthcoming Asean Summit which was once postponed by the previous Somchai government as a result of the protests by the anti-Thaksin People's Alliance for Democracy.
The decision by Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva to switch the location of the summit from Bangkok to the seaside resort town of Hua Hin in the South is the right and timely move. The government simply cannot afford to miss the opportunity to hold this crucial meeting for a second time for the damages to be rendered to the country's credibility and image will be too much to bear. Rather than facing the red-shirt protesters in Bangkok which appears to be more vulnerable, Hua Hin is relatively safer as far as security and arrangement to prevent a disruption of the summit by protesters are concerned. Moreover, the people in Hua Hin are not supporters of the red-shirts and are likely to put up resistance if the red-shirts stage a protest there.
The red-shirt leaders will be making a big mistake if they protest in Hua Hin to try to disrupt the summit.