Monk – I saw Thai army shoot monk and others at Din Daeng

A Bangkok monk says claims by the Thailand government that the army only fired blanks at red-shirted pro-democracy supporters at Din Daeng last Monday are not true and that those shot include a Buddhist monk.

The accusations by the head monk of a Bangkok city temple come despite repeated claims by Thailand Prime Minister Abhisit Veijajiva that the only fatalities from the government crack-down on pro-democracy supporters were the result of clashes between protesters and residents in the Nang Lerng market area on Monday (April 13th) night.

The monk, who chose the pseudonym “Sajja” (the word truth in Thai) for his safety and asked that his temple not be named, said he went to the Din Daeng area around 6.00am on April 13 after hearing reports of clashes earlier that morning between the Thai army and red shirt protesters.

Claims that the Thai army only fired over the heads of red-shirt protesters is repudiated by this photo clearly showing soldiers at Pratunam taking aim
Claims that the Thai army only fired over the heads of red-shirt protesters is repudiated by this photo clearly showing soldiers at Pratunam taking aim. Photo: John Le Fevre
Puea Thai officials take a statement from relatives of a man shot by Thai soldiers on April 12
Puea Thai officials take a statement from relatives of a man shot by Thai soldiers on April 12. Photo John Le Fevre

Prakal Riddiloy, a PPT complaints officer said “we know many people have been killed, hurt or are missing after the military action earlier this week. We intend to raise this matter as soon as parliament opens next week.”

The state of emergency and clash between red shirt protesters loyal to fugitive former prime minister Thaksin Shinawatra and government troops was the latest in a long-running back-and-forth battle over Thailand’s political future following the ouster of the elected People‚Äôs Power Party government of Thaksin Shinawatra by a military coup d‚Äô√©tat in September 2006.

Late last year hundreds of thousands of tourists were stranded after both of Bangkok’s airports were seized by yellow-shirted so-called People’s Alliance for Democracy (PAD) supporters.

The siege ended when Thailand’s Constitutional Court disbanded the ruling People’s Power Party (PPP) under changes to Thailand’s constitution introduced by the military junta in 2006.

Following the de-registration of the PPP a number of former government coalition members, including members of the PPP, switched sides enabling the Democrat Party lead by Mr Abhisit to form government. Those PPP members who did not change sides formed the PPT party.

The so-called “red shirts” formed under the United Front for Democracy against Dictatorship (UDD), a group with close links to Shinawatra, first laid siege to Thailand’s Government House on March 26 demanding prime minister Abhisit dissolve parliament and call fresh elections.

The UDD stepped up its campaign against the government of Mr Abhisit with a mass rally on April 8 which attracted over 150,000 people.

On April 11 thousands of red shirt protesters caused Thailand enormous loss of face when they stormed the luxury Royal Cliff Hotel and Resort in Pattaya forcing the 10 Asean member heads of state plus those of six regional dialogue nations to flee and the 14th Asean Summit to be postponed.

ENDS:

© John Le Fevre, 2009

More background on Thailand’s political problems can be found at Thailand on the edge ahead of mass pro-democracy protest

Photos of Monday’s clash between red shirt protesters and the Thai military can be found at Battle for Bangkok photo special

A video compilation of the five days is at Songkran Battle for Bangkok, April 8 – 13, 2009, red shirt pro-democracy protests in Bangkok

A video clip distributed by the UDD showing two military assaults on red shirt protesters at Din Daeng on April 13, 2009 can be found here Battle for Bangkok – Thai army verses red shirt protesters.

More video on the Thailand military action at Din Daeng can be found here:
Din Daeng military action Рทหาร vs นปช สลายการชุมนุม สามเหลี่ยมดินแดง and also here:
“Din Daeng” – ‡∏ó‡∏´‡∏≤‡∏£‡∏¢‡∏¥‡∏á m16 ‡∏õ‡∏∞‡∏ó‡∏∞‡πć∏™‡∏∑‡πâ‡∏≠‡πŇ∏î‡∏á 13.04.09

Comments in either Thai or English are welcome by clicking the Comments tag below. However, please also provide a translation of any comments written in Thai. Comments that are derogatory to HM the King of Thailand will be edited due to Thailand’s strict l√®se-majest√© laws.

Thailand, Thailand politics, Thailand current events, Peoples Alliance for Democracy, Abhisit Vejjajiva, United Front for Democracy against Dictatorship, Thaksin Shinawatra, 14th Asean summit, Democrat Party, Thailand Government House, PAD, Thailand military, People’s Power Party, “Red-shirts”, “Yellow shirts”, Buddhism, Thailand Constitutional Court, Phak Puea Thai, Human rights, Human rights abuse
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John Le Fevre

Deputy editor, Thailand & GMS editor at The Establishment Post

John Le Fevre is an Australian national with more than 35 years experience as a journalist, photographer, videographer and copy editor.

He is currently deputy editor and Thailand / GMS region editor for The Establishment Post

Opinions and views expressed on this site are those of the author’s only. Read more at About me

62 Responses to "Monk – I saw Thai army shoot monk and others at Din Daeng"

  1. Cheap textbooks for college   November 3, 2011 at 2:57 am

    God Bless the Thais right now and help them recover them from the floods!

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  2. 2ploenchit   March 23, 2010 at 5:47 pm

    Hi, John.

    Just wanted to know if you were there when that Red-shirt monk dressed in a red instead of the usual orange drapes threw blood over these police officers who happened to be there?

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    • John Le Fevre   March 31, 2010 at 2:11 am

      No I wasn’t. That occurred in Chiang Mai. Please remember though that monks wear robes of different colours. Some are bright orange, but others are very dark orange – almost red. I didn’t see the photos of the event so can’t comment on the monks robes. Please read a forthcoming post that explains the blood donation and splashing.

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  3. Freyk   February 10, 2010 at 12:04 am

    Hi John,

    After re-reading your report I must come to the conclusion that it’s very unlikely for the monks’ claims to be true. It just makes no sense in what he’s saying, soldiers shooting randomly at non-partisan citizens, and then mentioning that there were also some children killed and loaded into a van, as well as a monk makes it all very hard to believe.
    What makes more sense to me as a veteran expatriate here, is that he sympathizes with the red shirts and made the story up to harm the opponent.

    After all, he’s a Metropolitan Monk, often indistinguishable from the common Bangkokian in word, thought, and behaviour, with the difference -besides the dress-code- that he probably has plenty of time to indulge in many earthly pleasures and sins as the donations come easy and a monk’s free time is plentiful. Sins could include holding grudges against- and wanting to get back at others, which could be reason for him to make these claims.

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    • John Le Fevre   February 10, 2010 at 1:04 am

      The points you make are quite valid. I can not say 100 percent if he is telling the truth or not. My role was to follow-up the accusation. The monk was interrogated as strenuously as possible and he was cross-examined on each point. I could find no flaws in his story. He was treated no differently than anyone else making accusations. Unfortunately there was no one else to corroborate his story. He was interviewed through a native-Thai speaker who phrased the questions exactly as they were asked in English. I have seen documents signed by a doctor with a telephone number where injured protesters were taken. Japanese TV footage appears to show a military confrontation and charge much earlier than the widely reported event – the footage is pre-dawn. I suspect this is going to be one of the unanswered questions relating to the Songkran 2009 riots.

      Thanks very much for reading and your comments

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  4. 2ploenchit   May 11, 2009 at 7:58 pm

    John, hi. Nice to know you. Just commenting on the ‘Monk witnesses shooting at people’ story. As I understood soldiers were shooting to disperse the rioting red-shirts by shooting BLANKS, so apparently they were aiming at them to make it APPEAR they were shooting real ammo at them.

    If the red-shirts had been informed the army would only use blanks, then it wouldn’t have had much of an impact on them would it? They’d just keep on rioting, wouldn’t they?

    Thanks for your great work,

    Freyk

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    • John Le Fevre   May 11, 2009 at 8:01 pm

      Hello Freyk,
      Thanks for your comment. There is no doubt that some of the soldiers were firing blanks, paper bullets or training rounds, whatever you want to call them, however it is impossible for an M16 to fire on semi-automatic or automatic mode without a Blank Firing Attachment in the end of the barrel to capture and return the exploded gas to return the firing mechanism. None of the M16s seen on that day were fitted with a BFA yet many were able to fire in semi-automatic and automatic mode. The only way this is possible is with live ammunition. I’ve also copied your comment to the relevant story so other people can see this reply.
      Thanks again for reading.

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  5. Joshua   May 7, 2009 at 7:23 pm

    I had previously believed that the claims any died had been created by propaganda efforts on the part of the red shirts lead by Thaksin. Now, I don’t know what to think. Even the international media seemed to ridicule Thaksin for these claims. I guess they didn’t see this broadcast. The problem is that this is not strong enough proof, but if the monk could be believed, it changes my views indeed. Such cover-ups have happened in Thailand before, so I know it’s possible, but was hoping it was not. Just want to add that although it could be true the soldiers killed redshirts, I believe when Thaksin was PM he had people killed and had it covered up just the same. Or, at least things happened under his tenure and of course it’s not clear how close he was to the murders, such as the Muslim lawyer. The war on drugs can be attributed to him, however.

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  6. David Brown   April 28, 2009 at 8:28 pm

    we have all seen the bodies and some handcuffed and bloody redshirts being loaded into three small military covered trucks before dawn at Din Daeng…

    where were these bodies and people taken?

    if they were taken to hospitals, were they accounted for?

    if not, where were they taken?

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  7. David Brown   April 26, 2009 at 8:27 pm

    the Abhisit government has been remarkably swift in organising identifiaction and arrests of redshirt leaders and those alleged to have been involved in attacks in Pattaya, the Interior Ministry and Lopburi

    but, why has there apparently been no effort to identify and arrest those alleged to have been involved in the murders at Nang Lerng and the gas tanker scare at Din Daeng?

    surely there were many witnesses to both events..

    is it because the government knows that redshirts were not involved in those incidents?

    or some other not so politically sensitive reason?

    .

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  8. David Brown   April 23, 2009 at 10:28 am

    redloveyellow

    please point me at the evidence that support your allegations…

    “attacked Nang Lerng Community and killed 2 poeople. They also attacked a mosque in Petchaburi Rd.”

    I have seen plenty of video and eyewitness acounts of the gas truck but please help me find and review evidence of your statements about Nang Lerng and mosque incidents

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  9. just thais   April 23, 2009 at 12:09 am

    Thank John , . Show me some picture, you are journalist but no photo . prove it and make me believe what you see.

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    • John Le Fevre   April 23, 2009 at 9:33 am

      Thanks for your comment. If there were photos available they would be displayed. In the absence of photos the media has to rely on eye-witness accounts as claimed by this monk. There were few photos of the 52 people officially declared killed by the Thai military in the Black May 1992 protests either.

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  10. thai student   April 22, 2009 at 10:09 pm

    Thank you for the article :-)

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  11. redloveyellow   April 22, 2009 at 8:09 pm

    Strongly support comment of Contemplative. John Le Fevre intentionally ignored unacceptable behaviours of the RED Shirt. They attacked Nang Lerng Community and killed 2 poeople. They also attacked a mosque in Petchaburi Rd. They used a gas truck as a weapon which seriously threatened people in Din Daeng area. But John Le Fevre did not report these events. NOT SURE IF HE IS A REAL JOURNALIST.

    A good journalist should not be biased. . If I were the editor, I would certainly throw this story in a trash bin as it is sub-standard, one sided and imbalanced.

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    • John Le Fevre   April 22, 2009 at 9:56 pm

      Far from ignoring the unacceptable behaviour of the red shirts I have displayed numerous photographs of them in action. I was at Nang Lerng and saw the people there being incited to attack the red shirts. I also was there at the time one of the red shirts was shot. I have also commented about the gas tanker and the attack on the local residents by the red shirts. So, far from ignoring it, I have documented it.

      What I find to be amazing though is your small minded approach to the matter that perhaps some people did die at Din Daeng. The UDD video which is online at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AvY7kzaV9V4 clealry shows a wet road. It is also clearly after 4am. I can see from your comment though that is much more important to attack me, than even contemplate the possibility that people were killed. How many people are still missing from Black May, 1992? Answer: 187.

      That’s the reason why you are not, nor never will be, a journalist or an editor.

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  12. TANTHAI   April 22, 2009 at 5:18 pm

    6days with 30comments, um.. great job and not bad at all for some ‚Äúaccusation‚Äù with, may be some “fact” inside.I just follow the link from my friend’s fwd mail and found your article very entertaining to read. And, just found out that not only some information-shortaged Thai people who have faith in the power of the RED SHIRT, but also some foreigner. Keep staying longer here might help you find some “fact” other than ‚Äúaccusation‚Äù in a short period of time.

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  13. mm   April 22, 2009 at 4:09 pm

    hey, why i comment and not see the statement.

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    • John Le Fevre   April 22, 2009 at 4:18 pm

      Your comment was not posted because you supplied a false email address

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  14. Prapon   April 22, 2009 at 2:47 pm

    Hi John,

    I do not know if you are a REAL jounalist or not but to what I understand journalists are the GATE-KEEPER. The responsibilities of the GATE-KEEPERS are to monitor all the on-going news AND double-check if they are accurate and reliable or not, then later let them in the house for people to consume. If jounalists just let all the news – positive and negative – come in the house without double-checking, how soon you can see PEACE in the society which most people want. To become great people, one must be resposible in what one has been doing.

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    • John Le Fevre   April 22, 2009 at 2:54 pm

      Thanks for your comment. As I have repeatedly said, the monk’s story was tested as much as possible at the time of interview. His claim is not reported as fact but as an accusation. There is a difference.

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  15. narukul   April 22, 2009 at 1:39 pm

    Is it same monk who try to kill PM?

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    • John Le Fevre   April 22, 2009 at 2:48 pm

      I have no idea but I don’t think this old fella could kill anyone.

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  16. tam   April 22, 2009 at 1:26 pm

    If all these people were shot by the army and their bodies taken away in trucks then why a week later are we not hearing stories from the families of the missing people???

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  17. melanie   April 22, 2009 at 11:30 am

    Dear John,

    I know you tried to find the truth from this story, but what do you know exactly? I am not trying to insult the monk or something, but for the fact that the red shirts started to threw the fired-bottle, tried to hit the army with the taxi, and so on, all of that started around 4 o’clock in the morning, and the monk was there around 6am when the army started to fight back and protect the country and themselves. I was up all night and I saw almost everything. If you are the real journalist, IF YOU REALLY ARE MR.LE FEVRE, you would also talk about the gas truck, the people around Dindaeng gathered around and begged the red to move the gas truck, and supported the army by protcting the army while they were moving the truck out of the area!! IF YOU ARE REAL, you would talk about the people around Nang Lerng stood up with the army to banish these ungreatful-to-the-country that think they have “democracy” beneath them. AND IF YOU ARE REAL,

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    • John Le Fevre   April 22, 2009 at 11:44 am

      I was at the location of one gas truck. You can see the photo in the Battle for Bangkok photo special. The danger from a fire or explosion was very real and I spent some time assisting the residents their in trying to stop the gas that was leaking from the gauge at the top of the gas cock. I also informed the Thai army of the leak but they refused to advance and attempt to isolate the truck or even to send someone – even if in civilian clothes – to try to assist the residents. The photograph of two red shirt protesters on a motorbike holding a petrol bomb was taken at the same location as they were readying themselves to throw at the gas truck. I also saw the protesters there engage in a pitched battle with residents on several occasions. An attempt to ignite a gas truck in a residential area can only be labelled as stupidity. Overall, stupidity on the part of the protesters AND an unwillingness to act by Thai military.

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  18. Contemplative   April 22, 2009 at 11:24 am

    Ah! if it ‘s true
    So,they are deserved though.
    Cuz, they tried to bother people and encroach humans’ rights by putting frames around BKK espcially,residences which are wooden-houses and seized the gas tanks and stopped in front of people’s residents.This is PEACEFUL AND HARMLESSNESS Demonstration???!??
    I just dont understand why you just try to protest for the only one who is absolutely futive criminal and hit the roads in anywhere around the world!!!!
    Also,Thaksin committed lese majesty and begged for amnesty from the Majesty??!?? Jesus…..how dare you are :(

    Red shirts shot at the Mosque on Petchaburi Road Soi 7.My friend’s uncle caught them and found that they carried many weapons, like, bottled-bombs,machetes,and etc. So this is PEACEFUL???!????

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  19. ‡πŇ∏≠‡πä‡∏ö‡πŇ∏ö‡πä‡∏ß   April 22, 2009 at 10:48 am

    I don’t know what the purpose of this report, It’s look like drift because of

    1. The elder monk said that he standing far away 200 meter from which side between soilder and people( not the protester ) and he make sure that truth.

    2. If the soilder fires the people ( meaning that people living at dindang area ). Why that no effected from the dindang people inopposite to support the soilder to clear the gas truck that the protestor drive in that area.

    3. If it has blood on the road and the soilder hose it, Why it does not the clue of the wet area on the road?

    4. All the photo of the report are not cleraly that you must be show all of the event that happening both side (soilder and protector side)and keep the decision by the pepole.

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    • faked news   April 22, 2009 at 11:29 am

      Hey I do agree with ya!!

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  20. MB   April 22, 2009 at 10:30 am

    Is this the news? It should call red bald head speaking..
    John,when you stay in Bangkok you should learn more about “THAI” Buddha not “BURMA” Buddha
    REAL Thai monk never go to the street like this ,they calm,say only good thing – never had sky-kicked to the PM car.
    So next time you will go to interview the right people hehe.., ask the street people ,or get your HD video cam to the street yourself.

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    • John Le Fevre   April 22, 2009 at 10:39 am

      Thanks for your comment. As I have repeatedly pointed out, the article says this is an “accusation” by the monk. It does not state the claim as being “fact”.

      Have a nice day.

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  21. Thai loves peace   April 21, 2009 at 9:32 am

    Are you a real/professional journalist? I have checked the Foreign Correspondent Club of Thailand (FCCT) but could not found your record. The FCCT people also told me they have never heard about your name. Are you a real journalist????

    You claimed you used to work for APNS in 1975. Which newspaper was it? I have checked Google and found that APNS is not a news agency at all!!??

    You sense of news is really ridiculous. Normally, a really professional reporter will report a story when he/she gets at least two RELIABLE sources. You got only one source (which could not be proven as a reliable one), then you reported the story right away!

    I am neither a UDD/RED or PAD follower. I am only an ordinary Thai person who want to live in a peaceful country. I really hate people who get paid to create mess in anywhere of the world.

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    • John Le Fevre   April 21, 2009 at 11:02 am

      The FCCT is club that people either choose to join or not. I choose not to join it. APNS closed in the early 90’s.

      You can also telephone the Australian Journalists Association or the Walkley Foundation. The AJA (part of the MEAA) will tell you I have not been a financial member for many years. There is no benefit to me of being a member when I work in Asia.

      The amount of effort you put into checking my qualifications are amusing.

      How much have you put into checking what the monk claims? Have you spoken to anyone who was at Din Daeng?

      Shoot the messenger and disregard the message. Outstanding Thai loves peace

      If a “really professional reporter” waited until they had two sources before writing a story then most investigative stories would never be published. It’s up to you to label the monk a liar or unreliable.

      Have a nice day.

      A barrage of insulting emails from this person along the same lines as this attacking my professional qualifications have been deleted. This person claimed to have been a journalist for a major a media organisation. A very quick investigation showed they used to be a voice over talent for the BBC Word Service and now work for UNESCO, an organisation that is supposed to work for the betterment of oppressed and disadvantaged children, in Bangkok as a senior communications assistant. In other words, a spin doctor.

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  22. David Brown   April 21, 2009 at 7:26 am

    John,

    something strange about the comments… I can only see 20 comments and no way to display a next page….

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    • John Le Fevre   April 21, 2009 at 11:22 am

      I think WordPress counts my replies as comments so it gives an inflated comment count. I think any problems with comments not displaying has now been fixed.

      Thanks for reading.

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  23. The truth?   April 20, 2009 at 11:03 pm

    LOL! The truth and “real journalism” IS out there alright but certainly not here.

    Missed your coverage of the 2 innocent poor vendors shot to death by the freedom loving reds, who were merely trying to defend their street from being burnt up by the same freedom loving reds.

    Also missed your coverage on the 2 dead and over 400 injured when the police actually did come out (on Mr Thaksin’s brother in laws Somchai’s orders). Oh, the cops didn’t bother much this time though… (not their man this time)

    Great reporting John, keep up the good propaganda effort.

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  24. Mathew   April 20, 2009 at 6:48 pm

    These claims have to be taken seriously by someone or governments throughout the world would do as they please. It’s good to see a journalist following up stories that the Thai press can’t or wont.

    However, there are a few stories of people being killed and bodies being lifted off the street with the blood being cleaned up instantly, I don’t think so. Are you really trying to tell me there is a cover up from the Government, The Police, The Military, the general public and any tourists who stayed around to take photos????

    What about the residents of DD? Surely at least a few of them would have come forward, red or not, and told of such an atrocity.

    Someone mentioned before that the red-shirts should have had a cameraman, well there were cameras, hundreds of them, tourists, journalists, international media and Bangkok residents alike. There are no pictures of anyone lying in the street dead after the military engaged the protesters. Surely there would be 1 photo of someone being shot. We could clearly see the effects of the police action against the PAD last year from the same type of coverage.

    Just for the record I’m neither red or yellow.

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    • John Le Fevre   April 20, 2009 at 9:54 pm

      It’s early days yet. Remember it took two weeks for details of Ian Tomlinson’s death at the G-20 protests to come out and that was in a developed country with a supposedly transparent judicial system and after he had already been autopsied once.

      Also remember that the emergency declaration censors news reports considered threatening to public order. More than 66 websites have also been blocked since the emergency declaration.

      Please view my latest post for a video compilation released by the UDD “red shirts” today.

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  25. kk   April 20, 2009 at 3:15 pm

    It is just a one-sided report and lacks strong evidence. Anybody could be an armchair reporter like you.

    To be fair, you should also add background about serious allegations against Thaksin (i.e. human rights violations during his regime – these allegations have been raised by the Amnesty International, suppression of press freedom during his prime ministership and etc) which have led to political turmoil in Thailand.

    Not sure if you did homework before covering this story or just intentionally ignored other angles. I don‚Äôt want to allege that you have been under influence/control of Thaksin’s spin doctor. Do you know how much Thaksin has paid money to international lobbying companies? Just click and see this http://www.opensecrets.org/lobby/clientsum.php?lname=Thaksin+Shinawatra&year=2008

    I strongly believe that journalists should be independent and serve the public, not being manipulated by politicians.

    Last question – are you a real journalist?

    Please do not destroy Thailand by spreading rumour around.

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  26. antipadshist   April 20, 2009 at 1:43 pm

    RESPECT, John ! let the truth prevail.

    “Finding the truth is what real journalism is all about” – unfortunately rare wisdom nowadays.

    the more something is denied, especially OFFICIALLY – the more fishy it looks, and the more people are digging for truht.

    coz in the end people get the drift:

    “Never believe anything until it is officially denied”
    http://antipadshist.wordpress.com/2009/04/16/%E2%80%9Cnever-believe-anything-until-it-is-officially-denied%E2%80%9D/

    P.S. I neither was at DD myself, but I was following up those events whole night till Mon noon on-line – on LIVE broadcast by D-station and later (when it was shut down) on fe of their radio relays. practically all those things this monk said I recall hearing from that broadcast !

    I thought: shit ! UDD leaders has made a HUGE mistake of not having their own at least amature camera-men (or better – professional) to record there on the spot ! “Official truth” is ruthless – no evidence, no credibility ! so, UDD leaders should have taken better care of documenting those events and carefully collecting evidences. coz now with this huge Info Blackout – due to the absence of such evidences government hunts them down like rabid dogs as instigators of iviolence and isurgency ! and any info not in line with government’s “Official truth” endangers the person who provides it.

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    • John Le Fevre   April 20, 2009 at 9:44 pm

      I’m currently uploading a video supplied by the UDD today that has Japanese footage (I think) of the first assault at 4am and a second assault at Din Daeng in morning daylight.

      This would support the monks claim of the attack at 6am. As you will see it is a fairly vigorous charge. The early footage from the BBC clearly shows full metal jacketed rounds being loaded into magazines and in link form on larger calibre guns. It will be subject of a fresh post.

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  27. jan   April 19, 2009 at 11:37 pm

    someone mentioned that parts of the report have been on bbc video footage. think that was the part when the army pulled unconscious people into their vehicles. obviously not a typical army job, but then who knows, maybe they have first air divisions.
    maybe worth to investigate a bit further.

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    • John Le Fevre   April 20, 2009 at 7:06 pm

      I’m currently encoding for upload a video supplied by the UDD today that has Japanese footage (I think) of the first assault at 4am and a second assault at Din Daeng in morning daylight. This would support the monks claim of the attack at 6am. As you will see it is a fairly vigorous charge. The early footage from the BBC clearly shows full metal jacketed rounds being loaded into magazines and in link form on larger calibre guns. It will be subject of a fresh post. Thanks John

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  28. magnanimousrogera   April 19, 2009 at 9:59 pm

    It is very obvious from your blog above that you are very biased in your views. Do you have a vested interest in such reporting? Thai wife maybe? The true art of professional journalism is in being objective and your article above is certainly not objective. Additionally, what you reported is entirely hearsay and would not be admitted as evidence in a court of law.

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    • John Le Fevre   April 19, 2009 at 11:03 pm

      Thanks for your comment. As a matter of fact I don’t have a Thai wife. If you call an interview with someone who claims to have been an eye-witness hearsay then you are correct. However, as the man in question states this is what he saw and as he told this to me directly then it falls well outside the definition of hearsay and I suggest you go back and consult your dictionary for the true meaning. It’s obvious from your comment that you are neither a journalist, or a legal expert. My evidence would be considered hearsay; the statement from the monk would be considered direct evidence in a court.

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  29. zleon   April 19, 2009 at 2:02 am

    Excuse me, without any intention to support either government or red shirt people, but if the picture is at 6 a.m in BKK (as claimed by the monk that it was the time when shooting happened), the weather should somehow be darker than that or without such strong sun, right?

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    • John Le Fevre   April 19, 2009 at 5:48 am

      The photo showing the troops taking aim was not taken at Din Daeng. It was taken at Pratunam considerably later in the day. At 6am though there is plenty of light in Bangkok. Thanks for reading and taking the time to post a comment.

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  30. Rangsitorn   April 18, 2009 at 11:41 pm

    What a load of b@#&cks! I saw MANY monks protesting alongside the reds- before, during and after the clashes…….. seems their political motives and beliefs may not be as genuine as Lord Buddha would encourage.

    I also saw some of the clashes at Din Deang (its my job to be at these places) and saw NOTHING like that… i SAW the army with my own eyes firing blanks……. then again maybe i’m being paid to say that???? Or maybe i’m just manipulating and fabricating things to suit my political preference????

    Who knows? in my heart i know the truth as does the annonymous monk…however….’Do not assert with your mouth what your heart denies.’ Taoism. Tract of the Quiet Way.

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    • John Le Fevre   April 19, 2009 at 5:45 am

      Thanks for your comment. You are right. There were many monks with the red shirt protesters throughout their protest and you will find photos of some of them in the Battle for Bangkok photo special. You don’t say what your job is so that doesn’t add much I’m afraid. I was not at Din Daeng when this incident is alleged to have occurred so can only repeat the accusation made by the monk and preface it by the word “accusation”.

      How do you know the army were firing blanks? The rounds I saw being put into magazines at Pratunam were certainly not training rounds, neither were the linked rounds in the runs mounted on top of Hummers. Likewise the shell casings I recovered from Pratunam do not appear to be training rounds. The bullet holes in the buses at Pratunam would also tend to refute the claim that only blanks were fired. Please provide some more details on how you “know” they were blanks.

      The accusation by this monk is a very serious one and should be explored as much as possible as they have the potential to cause a lot of distress to many people. Thanks for taking the time to comment and I hope you return and add more detail.

      But I guess the round holes in the concrete, windows, and sides of taxis and buses must have been from… borers, perhaps?

      Oh, and in the event you are being paid for this comment, please forward a share of your booty to me at…

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  31. David Brown   April 18, 2009 at 8:31 pm

    thank you

    I saw video of this, I think it was on dstation tv news shortly after the event

    perhaps the army has stolen/destroyed the video evidence?

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    • John Le Fevre   April 20, 2009 at 9:38 pm

      The video I think you are referring to is now embedded as well as hot linked. I’m currently uploading a UDD supplied compilation for a new post that has fresh vision.

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  32. Kajohn   April 18, 2009 at 8:15 pm

    It has been a great cover-up from the government but most Bangkok people believed no one has been killed.

    We must have hard evidences such as VDO or pictures to prove what was going on that day. Otherwise, no one will listen to our voice.

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  33. tang   April 18, 2009 at 4:12 pm

    this inhuman act by thai gorvernment will not go unpunished.

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  34. Redvindicative.   April 18, 2009 at 3:04 pm

    hi john.
    Thanks for your true report.I will ever forget this brutal son of a bitch primnister from a so called Elite Vejchachiva family throughout of my life.Never be too late to revenge,i could wait till reincarnation,i swear..!

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  35. Angel_Red_Shirt   April 18, 2009 at 9:23 am

    hope to take care your self john

    คนที่เข้ามาอ่านบทความนี้นะค่ะ พี่จอห์นคนนี้แก อ่านภาษาไทยไม่ออกหรอกค่ะ
    ช่วยพิมพ์เป็นภาษาอังกฤษดีกว่านะค่ะ

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  36. ‡πч∏û‡∏£‡πà‡∏ü‡πâ‡∏≤‡∏´‡∏ô‡πâ‡∏≤‡πɇ∏™   April 18, 2009 at 7:10 am

    เกิดเป็นไพร่อย่างมากก็ได้ค่าทำศพ แย่หน่อยก็ไม่ได้แม้กระทั่งศพไปทำพิธี

    English translation:

    Born as a commoner, getting paid for your funeral is the most. The worse is your body don’t get to funeral.

    or

    If one is born the commoner, the best one gets is money for the funeral. The worst is that you don’t get the body.

    http://www.scribd.com/doc/8866419

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  37. Angel_Red_Shirt   April 17, 2009 at 8:15 am

    i like this word
    ‚ÄúI‚Äôm not a soldier, but I know what blood looks like. I was very shocked to see them shoot these people”
    my english is not well but read this so understand

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  38. Angel_Red_Shirt   April 17, 2009 at 8:12 am

    yes i think so
    Apisit so bad man of the year

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  39. Angel_Red_Shirt   April 17, 2009 at 2:38 am

    hi John
    yesterday i saw you at Phak Puea Thai.
    so i read your page so good because that true.

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    • John Le Fevre   April 17, 2009 at 2:43 am

      Thank you for your comment. Finding the truth is what real journalism is all about. At this stage this is an uncorroborated claim by one monk and more witnesses are required to substantiate this claim.

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