Debating the Crisis in Thailand: Is Red Shirt Movement a Genuine Grassroots Struggle, or Front for Ousted Ex-PM, Billionaire Tycoon?
In Thailand, the government has rejected an offer by anti-government protesters to enter talks after a bloody week in Bangkok that has left at least thirty-eight protesters dead. Some fear the standoff could lead to an undeclared civil war. The protesters are mostly rural and urban poor who are part of a group called the UDD, the United Front for Democracy Against Dictatorship, more commonly known as the Red Shirts. We host a debate between Giles Ji Ungpakorn, a Thai dissident living in exile in Britain who supports the Red Shirt movement; and Philip Cunningham, a freelance journalist who has covered Asia for over twenty years. [includes rush transcript]
May 16, 2010 — Red shirts continue to stand their ground at their protest camp in central Bangkok, openly defying a warning of a possible military crackdown despite clashes that have killed dozens in just four days.