There are two rival narratives about what is happening in Thailand. According to the first story, a privileged elite has decided to hold onto power by gunning down unarmed demonstrators, drawn from the rural poor, on the streets of Bangkok. This makes Thailand today sound like a replay of the French Revolution – only with the royalist reactionaries winning.
But according to the rival narrative, a sinister and thuggish protest movement – manipulated by an exiled billionaire with a criminal record – has been holding Thailand to ransom by occupying the capital city and making normal business and government impossible. The constitutional government has offered to hold early elections to defuse the protests, but was spurned. It had no option but to act. Read more