When a group of 93 insurgents turned up to discuss amnesty deals with the military in Narathiwat last month, the incident was played up as a mass surrender that would pave the way toward peace in the restive deep South. Nothing can be further from the truth.
Instead of a lull in the violence, the "surrender" was followed by a surge in terrorist attacks which took many lives. In typical form, the military dismissed the ensuing violence as desperate attempts by fringe extremist groups trying to make their presence felt.
That may well be true. But for people in the restive South who have to live with the daily violence, such an explanation is useless. The increase in violence only displays the military's failure to ensure safety for the people. This is why they have had no choice but to comply with the insurgents' no-working-on-Fridays order, albeit unwillingly, for they know that the security forces cannot protect them.
This article is older than 60 days, which we reserve for our premium members only.You can subscribe to our premium member subscription, here.