The Finland Declaration

I haven’t been following Thai news too closely for a while now, so when I browsed through the Post today it was a bit surprising to find the new speculation on the sinister-sounding the ‘Finland Plan/Declaration’ (ปฏิญญาฟินแลนด์).

Perhaps it’s the logical conclusion of the increasing nasty game of dragging your opponents’/accusers’ names through the mud – in this age of the Da Vinci Code you have to invent a conspriracy.

The basic plot is that the founders of TRT are supposed to have gathered for a secret meeting in Finland to outline their plan for Thailand’s political domination and ‘change of political system’. What the peddlers of this controversy (see Etat de droit in his post here) seem to have done is to trot out the old right accusations against the radical left (building of a one party government with cadre-based mass (vaguely communist) politcal movement, undermining the monarchy and traditional Thai political structures) and update this with a self-contradictory notion that TRT is also also at the same time setting out to build a greedy ‘capitalist dictatorship’.

I don’t like TRT, but this has completely detroyed whatever sympathy I had left for Sondi and the PAD. Out of the muddle, the theme that will most likely stand out is the innuendo that the Thaksin regime is out to undermine the monarchy (make the institution ‘symbolic’ only) – something that the Post was too polite to publish. Reading more on what the various TRT accusers are doing, I’m inclined to agree with Etat de roit that this smear campaign smacks of the tactics used in the run-up to the events of 6 October 1976. How they think Thai people 30 years later will buy it, I don’t know.

We’ll see at least two more seminars expounding on the Finland Declaration – I doubt there will be any sustantiation on the issue. I’m looking to see how the Post’s and The Nation’s coverage of all this will turn out – hopefully they will not prove right the word of this Times editor-blogger (which I, by the way, don’t agree with – at least for now):

The Bangkok Post and The Nation used to be two of the spunkiest and most professional English language newspapers in Asia, and it’s a big disappointment that in the present crisis they should have abandoned any pretence of balance to become little more than propaganda sheets for the anti-Thaksin movement.

7 responses to “The Finland Declaration

  1. On the Finland Plan/Declaration, well, you know my views from 2Bangkok, but there are certainly paralells with 1976, but I really wonder how much respect Sondhi has. I haven’t been able to follow all the Thai papers recently, but The Manager seems to be the main propagator of the story. If you read The Manager, you are likely already in the anti-Thaksin/TRT crowd and for some, I am sure they already believed this already.

    Sondhi’s big problem is that if the plan was true, it would not take long for messages to filter out from the Palace.

    I liked the reference to the Da Vinci Code!

    On the Times Editor-Blogger, I disagree with his assessment of The Bangkok Post and ThaiDay. The Bangkok Post has some good finds, but they are very inconsistent. I find ThaiDay to have the best English language coverage for most stories. They at least try to provide a better picture for more stories – dare I say a little bit more in depth.

  2. JW: And Thaksin has now decided to sue Manager for defamation again. The 1 billion baht civil suit sounds like a bad idea though. I think we’ll see a few more months of this.

    Aside from Manager I think Thai Post has given it prominent coverage and when I last read Matichon there was one story consisting of denials by TRT members.

    KA: Sorry to disappoint you, but I’m not a fan of Thaksin. I just think that this time Sondhi is pushing it too far.

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