Thailand Student Protests: FORSEA stands in solidarity with Thammasat University Students on Monarchical Reform in Thailand
For several decades now that the so-called “constitutional monarchy” of Thailand has proven to be fraudulent. The call from Thammasat University students is both timely and crucial in moving Thailand forward in the democratic direction.
Pavin Chachavalpongpun, FORSEA’s co-founder, sent his message to the large gathering of Thammasat University students, Bangkok, August 10, 2020, supporting them in their endeavour to bring discussion of the monarchy into the open.
Civil society is usually seen as a force for liberal reforms, but uncivil society merits more scrutiny. It represents the dark side of the 3rd sector, is subject to elite capture, and can be an advocate for an agenda conducive to authoritarianism. We examine religious organisations in four of Asia’s plural societies– Bangladesh, Indonesia, Myanmar and Sri Lanka.
The failure of the Thai government takes many forms. Ex-generals occupying top political positions whose frame of thought is confined within their military expertise were not the right people to lead the country against this non-traditional threat.
The people of West Papua have suffered decades of oppression and discrimination at the hands of the Indonesian state. Now they’ve drawn inspiration from the Black Lives Matter protests to mount popular resistance to yet another authoritarian clampdown.
No global justice or international accountability process will be complete without Sitagu being named as a criminal who despite his saffron robe and high honours has provided spiritual patronage to genocidal leaders of Myanmar while offering scriptural justifications for “killing millions of non-Buddhists.”
After printing "I'm losing faith in the monarchy" on a tee shirt, a critic of the monarchy was locked in a mental asylum. Not surprisingly, it did little to reassure Thais that authorities were acting in their best interests.
With the advent of laptops, synths, mixers and other musical gadgetry, the DIY ethic endeared by small indie labels is back on track. The indie culture keeps artistry aground since in today’s music industry, the story will always be an issue between the haves and the have-nots.
The painful but necessary question – How will or can Myanmar be de-constructed, or more alarmingly, disintegrated? – needs to be asked openly and debated publicly.
FORSEA co-hosted a Special On-line Seminar: The Future of Crisis-Torn Rakhine State in Myanmar, with the School of Interdisciplinary Studies, SOAS, and Free Rohingya Coalition
"Our seminar today embarked on the long term program of de-imagining and de-colonizing Myanmar as an internally colonial state and re-imagining a new type of genuinely post-colonial society and a cluster of autonomous regions with a set of inclusive national and regional identities based on common good, multiculturalism, and respect for all faiths".