I write in praise of Prof Kamheang Chaturachinda's letter, ''Abortion access is crucial'' (BP, Jan 30), which clearly identified feasible and sensible solutions for a major problem facing thousands of Thai women. If only all Thais, especially the politicians, could understand, accept and act on his suggestions, then we all would be living in a more compassionate country. So many Thai women suffer needlessly because of inaction by people who could make a change. Some Thais have told me that religious principles do not permit abortions, but I have talked to some senior and respected monks who assure me that is not the case. There is no excuse for not updating the laws to meet the legitimate needs of so many.
Take the high road
Re: ''Kamman Poh behind bars'' (BP, Jan 30). Central Investigation Bureau commissioner Pol Lt Gen Pongpat Chaiyaphan and Pol Col Arthip Taennil, of the Crime Suppression Division, deserve three chaiyos and a promotion for their excellent work in bringing convicted first-degree murderer Somchai Khunploem, aka Kamnan Poh, to jail. This despite the fugitive being the father of a serving cabinet minister, and despite the recent chiefs of police having been appointed by the minister's ally.
Culture Minister Sonthaya Khunploem, too, deserves praise - if he sticks to his word - for vowing not to do anything to help his father and to allow the law to take its course. The high road will be a very difficult one to take, for Thais have traditionally placed family interests before those of the country, as demonstrated by Kamnan Poh or Thaksin's corruption convictions, yet it is one which must be taken if Thailand is to progress.
Minister Sonthaya might look to former British PM Tony Blair as an example of how he should act towards his convict father. During Mr Blair's prime ministership, his son Euan was arrested for being drunk in public. Rather than seeking to have the arrest suppressed, Mr Blair and his wife insisted that justice not only be done but be seen to be done, with their son being treated with transparency. But, as parents, Mr Blair and his wife accompanied Euan to the police station to give moral support. Thus, Euan learned to be accountable for his actions and learned that his parents loved him enough to have him learn that lesson, and the world saw justice done even in the case of a prime minister's son.
Kamnan Poh case curious
There are still a few unanswered questions regarding Kamnan Poh's arrest. Who was the female doctor in the car with him? Neither her name nor her photo has been released. It is also difficult to believe that the celebrity Kamnan Poh received treatment at Samitivej Hospital without being recognised.
And then there is the fact that all these things have been going on for seven years; the Medical Council should check into this.
Now for the next fugitive
Suddenly the cry of ''No one is above the law'' rang true when I read your newspaper's headline, ''Kamnan Poh behind bars'' (BP, Jan 30). It will be forever quoted that Thailand does have honest policemen. The officials' sincerity and love of being protectors of the law made me weep with joy. The Central Investigation Bureau commissioner Pol Lt Gen Pongpat Chaiyaphan, his assistant Pol Col Arthip Taennil and the team of the Crime Suppression Division deserve thanks for giving our laws credibility.
Now, who will be the next fugitive to be arrested?
Band-aids won't fix South
Re: ''Fire in the South poses existential threat to the nation'' (BP, Jan 31). Mr Cunningham might have further said that as long as the government and the press continue to use misleading terminology such as ''Malaysian insurgents'', ''insurgency'', ''Muslim radicals'', ''separatists'' and the like, they will never address the fact that Thailand is in a sate of civil war.
The continuous application of band-aids such as reassigning military commanders, PR visits and placing armed guards at schools has not, and will not, solve the problem.
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