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06BANGKOK1971 THREE COMMENTARIES ON ELECTION RESULTS, THE PM’S FUTURE

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“59107”,”4/3/2006 12:21″,”06BANGKOK1971″,

 

“Embassy Bangkok”,”CONFIDENTIAL”,””,”VZCZCXRO0371

OO RUEHCHI RUEHDT RUEHHM

DE RUEHBK #1971 0931221

ZNY CCCCC ZZH

O 031221Z APR 06

FM AMEMBASSY BANGKOK

TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 7630

INFO RUEHZS/ASSOCIATION OF SOUTHEAST ASIAN NATIONS

RHEFDIA/DIA WASHDC

RHHMUNA/HQ USPACOM HONOLULU HI

RHHMUNA/CDR USPACOM HONOLULU HI

RHFJSCC/COMMARFORPAC”,”C O N F I D E N T I A L

BANGKOK 001971

 

SIPDIS

 

SIPDIS

 

E.O. 12958: DECL: 02/01/2016

TAGS: PGOV, PHUM, TH

SUBJECT: THREE COMMENTARIES ON ELECTION RESULTS, THE PM\’S

FUTURE

 

Classified By: Ambassador Ralph L. Boyce reason 1.4 (b) (d)

 

1. (C) Summary: The Ambassador spoke to an opposition

leader, a Thai Rak Thai (TRT) \”dove\” and a TRT \”hawk.\” The

picture that emerges: each side feels a measure of

vindication by the poll result, and each side is assessing

its next move. The hawk claims Thaksin is ready to claim

victory and forge ahead. The opposition leader said the

protesters are ready to resume demonstrations. According to

the dove, Thaksin is still mulling over his options. End

summary.

 

THAKSIN WILL FIGHT

——————

 

2. (C) Ambassador spoke to PM Thaksin\’s close advisor,

Pansak Vinyaratn, a \”hawk\” who has consistently told us that

Thaksin would vanquish his foes and continue in office.

Pansak portrayed the election results as a success for TRT.

He said that, after months of \”black propaganda\” by the

press, TRT was \”delighted\” with its (almost) 50 percent of

the vote in Bangkok. He predicted they would sweep the north

and northeast. With well over half the vote nationwide,

Thaksin would have a mandate. Nevertheless, in his

appearance on TV tonight, Thaksin would again offer a

national reconciliation government to oversee constitutional

reform. Thaksin was resigned to the likelihood that that

government would last about a year, and then there would be

new elections again.

 

3. (C) Pansak said there would be no crackdown on

government opponents, but the PM would \”begin to administer\”

the country again. Demonstrations would be permitted, but

only if they were carried out according to law, without libel

or violence. The so-called \”coup without tanks\” has failed,

Pansak said, adding that there was no possibility that the PM

would step down. He admitted that the party had erred badly

in the handling of the Shin Corp sale.

 

THE OPPOSITION WILL FIGHT

————————-

 

4. (C) Democrat Party stalwart Surin Pitsuwan spoke to the

ambassador from his native South, where TRT got trounced in

the elections. He said that the single TRT candidate got

only 12 percent of the vote in his district, and that the

total was expected to fall with successive re-votes.

Therefore, there would be no way to get a clear winner from

that constituency. (Many other districts, especially in the

South, have produced similar results.) He said the

opposition was prepared to launch more demonstrations

starting April 7, expecting to mobilize the large number of

citizens in Bangkok who voted \”no\” to turn out in \”endless

demonstrations.\”

 

GIVE PEACE A CHANCE

——————-

 

5. (C) Deputy PM Surakiart Sathirathai, one of the TRT

\’doves\’ confirmed that the PM would likely offer a government

of national reconciliation as his opening gambit.

Surakiart\’s assessment, however, is that the PM is still

analyzing the situation, and his views may change. He, like

we, will be watching the PM on TV later tonight.

 

COMMENT

——-

 

6. (C) We agree that Thaksin will be weighing his options

while the vote count is still coming in. We expect the

opposition to flat-out reject the olive branch of a national

reconciliation government. As was the case before the

election, both sides still believe that they have the upper

hand. It would be very uncharacteristic of Thaksin to step

aside now, but if he is to avoid more direct challenges to

his authority, he will need to come up with proposals more

palatable to the opposition and to the many people who

voted, \”get out.\”

BOYCE

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Written by thaicables

July 11, 2011 at 7:33 am

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