Moments of crisis are defining. They help reveal, even momentarily, the make-up of the real conditions we live under. Within these moments changes can be made and narratives re-shaped. Ideas that were once assumed to be radical or impossible can become neutral or natural. These moments or crisis are, in effect, the battlegrounds for the ideas that will shape the future.
Since 2008 I’ve been blogging and writing about the Thai Crisis. Born out of the 2006 military coup that overthrew the democratically elected government of Thaksin Shinawatra the Thai Crisis has seen so-called “liberals” align themselves with vicious fascist groups, the politicisation of the judiciary, the failure of the international human rights organisations, the US-trained and equipped Thai Army blowing the brains out of unarmed Thai civilians and the charging of the former Thai PM, and Old Etonian, Abhisit Vejjajiva, with murder. In addition to all this the use of Thailand’s lese majeste law – a law designed purely to criminalise dissent - has reached staggering levels with 100s incarcerated, some for decades.
My writing on all of this has been deemed controversial, irreverent, extremist and the work of an activist. I am hated by most of the foreign media in Bangkok – largely because I have constantly embarrassed them due to their failure to take anything more than a Thai-elite line on recent events – and have been a hate figure for the notoriously drunk and dysfunctional expat community. My family and I received 100s of death threats and abusive comments, leading to at least one person being charged for and admitting criminal harassment. The international and respected Human Rights Watch – an organisation whose Thai work I’ve been critical of – have admitted passing my name to the US Embassy after I went to them as a source and former cabinet members of the Democrat Party’s “coup government” have attempted to get me banned from UK university property. Several of my exclusives became lead story items in the Thai media and I have humiliated former Thai PM Abhisit and his criminal political party on numerous occasions. Finally members of staff at the US Embassy also launched a smear campaign against me, material that was distributed by a notorious Bangkok Post journalist (co-incidentally this newspaper was started by the CIA forerunners, the OSS).
As I said moments of crisis can be very revealing and I am very proud of my work on Thailand – it has been far from perfect but I believe I have caused great discomfort for some very unpleasant people who I hope were shaken by my interventions.
Now, I want to try to turn some of my attention to the UK and the moment of crisis that is enveloping my home country. Admittedly I have none of the political contacts I had in Thailand and none of the inside line. I am not part of the British political establishment nor have any access to it.
I do know a couple of Labour MPs and am a Labour Party member but have only ever been active at the most local of levels.
I do have an eye for trouble and believe I do have the ability to see through certain amounts of unholy bullshit.
So, if you’re interested, come along for the ride. Given my previous work on Thai politics what could possibly go wrong?