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Army is the suspect

The army should stop insisting it can impartially investigate the death of army cadet Pakapong "Moei" Tanyakan on campus, for "The louder he talked of his honour, the faster we counted our spoons" (Ralph Waldo Emerson).

The army has been surreptitious about this death from the start, including concealing from his parents the fact it had removed many vital organs before handing over the body -- and the family's own secret autopsy disclosed that this apparently healthy youth had suffered four broken ribs.

As the Bangkok Post headlined in an opinion piece, "Cadet's death sinks public trust in army", (Nov 24). Society's question is not just "How did this youth die?" but "Who's the guilty party, if any?"

Thai army conscripts have been brutally assaulted during training before, for example Pvt Noppadol Worakitpan, whose heart and spleen were fractured, with a bleeding chest and lungs, apparently after being crushed.

He died after returning from barracks last August. Yet the army claimed that its "careful and thorough investigation" showed that no assault had occurred.

As the police are fond of telling suspects, "If you're innocent as claimed, you should have nothing to hide, so cooperate fully with us."

In this case, the army is the suspect.

Thus, if he is to help restore our trust, Deputy Prime Minister Prawit Wongsuwon should insist an independent and credible commission investigate this tragedy.

Burin Kantabutra


Barbarism does harm

Regarding the unfortunate death of military cadet Pakapong Tanyakan, over many decades l have often heard apologists (and enthusiasts) for "strict discipline", "institutionalised hazing" and "corporal punishment" defend their penchant with the words: "Well ... it never did me any harm".

Ironically, they are invariably living proof of the harm it can do.

Yanawa David


Misogyny at play?

Re: "Cabinet revamp gets mixed views", (BP, Nov 26).

I found it interesting that out of the 36 members of the new cabinet there was only one woman. Does Gen Prayut think only men are fit to govern?

Martin R


Junta did mislead us

Re: "Flip side of the coin", (PostBag, Nov 26).

I think the writer should take a course in English comprehension to improve his reading skills. The premise of my letter was the junta misled us about the World Bank's Index, "Ease of Doing Business for 2018", saying it moved Thailand up from 46th to 26th.

Actually the ranking was worse because prior to the coup we were ranked 18th. I did not say anything about GDP or household debt. My point was the junta deceived us.

Somsak Pola
Samut Prakan


Look at ourselves

Re: "English gone wrong", (PostBag, Nov 26).

Before he castigates Thais for incorrect English, Colin Rose might ask himself whether we have the ubiquitous sign "Do not use lift in case of fire", correct ourselves. Whether it is written as Mr Rose quotes or as the more common "In case of fire, do not use lifts", this is a highly ambiguous warning.

When my family was young we stayed on the third floor of a hotel and I wondered why my five-year-old son insisted on using the stairs instead of the lifts, until he pointed at the sign and said he didn't want to use the lifts in case it started a fire. The sign would read better as "If there is a fire, do not use lifts".

With falling standards of English literacy across the English speaking world, where some students can barely write a coherent sentence, we should be putting our own house in order before criticising others.

Apart from which, spotting "Thinglish" is a time-honoured expatriate sport that provides many a lighter moment, such as when I contemplate a restaurant menu trying to decide whether to have the crap soup, the frogs logs, or the prawns in prostitute's dust.

David Brown


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