“America’s Pacific Century“, Foreign Policy magazine declared in an op-ed published by then US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. The by-line would continue by saying, “the future of politics will be decided in Asia, not Afghanistan or Iraq, and the United States will be right at the center of the action.”
And indeed, it has been in the middle of the action. With an army of deeply entrenched US-funded NGOs masquerading as human rights, press freedom, and pro-democracy advocates, the US has been busy subverting and attempting to overthrow indigenous institutions across Southeast Asia either in support of US proxy regimes already in power, or to pave way for disruptive “color revolutions” seeking to install them.
The idea is to align Southeast Asia, along with India and Pakistan, as well as Korea and Japan, into three united fronts to encircle and contain China. Detailed first in the Vietnam-era “Pentagon Papers” and continuously updated over the following decades, confrontation with China is now the admitted purpose of the US “pivot.”
For Thailand, the only Southeast Asian country to avoid European colonization, it has suffered over a decade of rule by a US-proxy regime installed for just this purpose – the regime of convicted criminal, fugitive, billionaire Thaksin Shinawatra – supported fully by an army of faux-rights advocates, with the full weight of the Western media behind it, and with the support of the US State Department itself.
Beginning in the 1990’s Shinawatra was a Carlyle Group adviser. Upon taking office he would privatize Thailand’s petrochemical conglomerate, raise limits on foreign shares, and sell it off to Chevron and Hess. He would send Thai troops to Iraq in support of the US invasion and occupation, as well as allow the CIA to conduct their horrid “rendition” program on Thai soil. He would try, but fail to ramrod through a US-Thai free trade agreement, and has been supported either directly or indirectly by an army of Washington-based lobbying firms for years.
A recent, peaceful military coup, the second aimed at uprooting Shinawatra’s regime, has been successfully carried out this week. Unlike the previous coup of 2006, this coup is proving to be far more effective and thorough with nearly every aspect of the ousted regime being exposed, detained, warrants arranged, and trials to follow. Assets are being traced and face possible judicial review for their subsequent freezing and/or seizure. In other words, the regime is being utterly uprooted, financially and politically.
Thai Coup Stings US Meddlers the Most
In the immediate aftermath of the coup, the US State Department, through a strongly worded condemnation penned by US Secretary of State John Kerry, claimed:
I am disappointed by the decision of the Thai military to suspend the constitution and take control of the government after a long period of political turmoil, and there is no justification for this military coup. I am concerned by reports that senior political leaders of Thailand’s major parties have been detained and call for their release. I am also concerned that media outlets have been shut down. I urge the restoration of civilian government immediately, a return to democracy, and respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms, such as press freedoms. The path forward for Thailand must include early elections that reflect the will of the people.
While we value our long friendship with the Thai people, this act will have negative implications for the U.S.–Thai relationship, especially for our relationship with the Thai military. We are reviewing our military and other assistance and engagements, consistent with U.S. law.
The US would move to suspend ongoing military cooperation with the Thai military, canceling future training exercises, and suspend millions of dollars in aid. The Thai military would in turn, allegedly suspend broadcast of Western news channels, including US-based CNN and UK-based BBC.
The US has since made several demands, in a press statement on May 24, which read as follows:
We are increasingly concerned about actions the military has taken, just a few days after it staged a coup. It has dissolved the Senate, detained a number of people, called in some academics and journalists, and continued to restrict the press. We again call on the military to release those detained for political reasons, end restrictions on the media, and move to restore civilian rule and democracy through elections.
In essences, the US is demanding the release of its proxy regime, the so-called “academics” and “journalists” it has groomed for years to support the regime, and restrictions placed on their propaganda bullhorns to be lifted so as to continue coordinating strife within Thailand.
Joining the US State Department’s calls, are the various faux-NGOs inside of Thailand funded directly by the US National Endowment for Democracy (NED), including the Human Rights Lawyers Association, Cross Cultural Foundation, Union of Civil Liberties and the Enlawthai Foundation, and Prachatai. The Bangkok Post in an article titled, “Anti-coup rally on streets, social media,” would report that the faux-NGOs demanded “the return to civilian rule” and for soldiers to “return to their barracks,” a verbatim repeat of both US demands and those of the ousted regime of Thaksin Shinawatra.
The coup could not have come at a worse time for US global ambitions. With the recent signing of a historical 30 year, $400 billion natural gas contract between Russia and China with direct pipelines circumventing entirely the Pacific region the US has invested much in terms of stifling China’s growth, the loss of America’s client regime in Thailand weakens an already tenuous geopolitical agenda.
West Prepares to Strike Back
The ousted regime of Thaksin Shinawatra, represented by Washington lobbyist Robert Amsterdam of Amsterdam & Partners, is organizing a “government in exile.” It is currently shopping for a host nation to base itself in – with Thaksin Shinawatra already admittedly running his ruling party mainly from Dubai for the past several years.
In a statement released from Amsterdam’s official website titled, “Statement: Consideration Given to Formation of Thai Government in Exile,” it claims:
“…a number of foreign governments have already expressed their willingness to host such a government in exile under internationally established rules and practice. He emphasised that the Army of Thailand has no legal authority to govern and has acted in violation of both local and international law.”
Just like US-EU-organized opposition “governments” formed in Europe used to undermine besieged nations like Libya and Syria, the West will most likely coordinate a campaign of systematic destabilization within Thailand while attempting to boost the credibility of the exiled Shinawatra regime beyond its borders.
With the coup having remained so far peaceful, attempts to shed blood to undermine stability and the image of the military-led government appear to be underway. Amsterdam in another statement warned of a “strategy of tension,” in an attempt to shift blame for impending violence of the West’s own design onto the new military-led government.
The statement titled, “Open letter to Red Shirts, UDD Supporters and Those Committed to a Democratic Thailand,” released from his lobbying firm’s official website stated:
In the meanwhile we would ask that all pro-democracy activists, Red Shirts and those committed to returning Thailand to civilian and legally mandated rule remain peaceful. The Army may attempt to unleash a “strategy of tension” in the days to come – something which could include terrorist actions – and Red Shirts must do their utmost to stay disciplined, calm and focused.
In reality, this is setting the stage for rallies to be targeted by the West’s infamous “mystery gunmen” – snipers deployed to conflict zones to kill both security forces and demonstrators to then leverage the violence to expand the conflict and undermine the targeted government. Such tactics have already been used once in Thailand during violence in 2010, as well as throughout the opening phases of the so-called “Arab Spring,” and most recently in Ukraine where “Euromaidan” leaders brought in snipers to kill both Ukrainian security forces and their own supporters.
Amsterdam’s “premonitions” of impending violence have previously manifested themselves in openly armed terrorism confirmed to be the work of his client, Thaksin Shinawatra and his political machine inside of Thailand. Just weeks before the coup, Shinawatra’s militants were caught with AK47s, M79 grenade launchers, and hand grenades with the same lot numbers of those used in previous attacks.
While waiting for Western-orchestrated bloodshed – Thailand can expect a torrent of slanted media reports condemning the coup and the protests that led up to it, covering up the 6 months of terrorism carried out by the Shinawatra regime against his political opponents that precipitated the coup in the first place, and media reports inflating the numbers and significance of protesters organized by Shinawatra to portray the population as being “anti-coup.”
It appears that the US “pivot” is turning instead into an ever more precarious “stumble.”