Thai Faces Jail for Insulting King’s Dog

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A Thai faces prison after being charged with lese majeste for insulting the king’s dog, his lawyer said today, in an escalation of the already draconian royal defamation law.

“Thanakorn also faces lese majeste, sedition and computer crimes charges for clicking ‘like’ on a doctored photo of the king and sharing it, plus an infographic on a growing corruption scandal engulfing the junta.”

Thanakorn Siripaiboon, 27, has been charged by police with lese majeste for a “satirical” Facebook post about the king and his dog, lawyer Pawinee Chumsri told AFP.

“There was a post including three photos on his Facebook page on December 6 with a message that satirised the king’s dog,” she said.

Thanakorn also faces lese majeste, sedition and computer crimes charges for clicking “like” on a doctored photo of the king and sharing it, plus an infographic on a growing corruption scandal engulfing the junta.

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“Thanakorn, an auto-parts worker, could face up to 37 years in prison. There has been a recent trend towards record-breaking sentences on transgressors, many of whom are also regime critics.”

Thailand has one of the world’s harshest royal defamation laws. Anyone convicted of insulting the revered but ailing 88-year-old King Bhumibol Adulyadej, or the queen, heir or regent can face up to 15 years in jail on each count.

Prosecutions have soared since the army, which styles itself as the champion of the monarchy, grabbed power in a coup last year. Read the rest of this entry »


[VIDEO] Dashcam: Shooting Star, Bangkok Thailand, Nov 2, 2015 

Fireball, iridium flare ? Bangkok, Thailand. The time in video is not correct because camera time setting (It should be around 20:38 in bangkok time) Jukin Media Verified (Original)


China’s Desperate Battle Against Separatist Terrorism

Zunyou Zhou writes: Thailand’s police have linked the August 17 bomb attack on the Erawan Shrine, a popular tourist attraction in Bangkok, to Uighurs, a largely Muslim ethnic group some of whom have been fleeing Chinese rule. The bombing killed 20 people, including seven Chinese tourists, and injured more than 100 others. Nobody has claimed responsibility for one of the worst terrorist incidents in recent Thai history.

Two men are currently in Thai custody: one is an ethnic Uighur carrying a Chinese passport while the other’s nationality hasn’t been confirmed. Thai police and security analysts have said that the perpetrators may have sought retaliation for Thailand’s forced repatriation to China of more than 100 Uighurs in July or for Bangkok’s crackdown on a human smuggling ring that had transported Uighurs from China to Turkey.

If the Thai allegation proves to be true, the blast would mark a rare spillover of violence related to Uighurs outside China. This attack would add a new dimension to the serious issue of terrorism in China, with significant security implications not only for China but also for Turkey, Thailand and other transit countries in connection with the movement of Uighurs.

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Uighurs are a Turkic-speaking minority group who call China’s far-western Xinjiang region home. Overseas-based exile groups and campaigners say that Uighurs face brutal repression in China; Beijing denies any religious or cultural discrimination and maintains that its policies help bring stabilityand prosperity to Xinjiang.

[Read the full story here, at WSJ]

Since 2008, China has faced an increasing number of violent attacks which Beijing has blamed on Uighur separatists connected to overseas terrorist organizations. The violence had typically been confined to Xinjiang until October 2013 when a jeep careened onto the sidewalk near Beijing’s Tiananmen Square, killing two pedestrians and injuring more than 40 others; the three perpetrators set the vehicle on fire, taking their lives.

Several months later, a handful of Uighurs mounted a mass knifing at a train station in the southwestern city of Kunming, leaving at least 29 civilians dead and more than 140 others wounded. Beijing said the perpetrators were separatists who had carried out the attack after they failed to flee China for Southeast Asia. Read the rest of this entry »


Japanese journalist pulls a ‘Weiner’ in Thailand

Japanese media said the bureau chief, who is in his forties, had meant to send the picture to a female friend, but instead uploaded it through popular messaging app Line

Japanese broadcaster TV Asahi apologised Saturday after its Bangkok bureau chief posted an image of his genitals on a mobile forum set up by Thailand’s foreign ministry, which warned of “consequences”.

A spokesman for the channel said the unnamed employee had been removed from the job due to his “extremely inappropriate” behaviour.

“We deeply apologise to the Thai foreign ministry and other people concerned.”

— Spokesman for the channel

The ministry demanded an explanation for the graphic picture that appeared late Monday in the forum, which was set up for foreign journalists working in Thailand.

“We deeply apologise to the Thai foreign ministry and other people concerned,” the spokesman said, adding the journalist had been urged to “seriously reflect” on the incident.

Japanese media said the bureau chief, who is in his forties, had meant to send the picture to a female friend, but instead uploaded it through popular messaging app Line to about 150 journalists who belong to the forum.

He left the forum immediately after the incident, prompting a warning that “actions will be taken” from a ministry official and a vomiting emoji from one group member as a few others in the forum questioned what had just happened.

“May we remind you that this (forum) is for official purposes. Actions will be taken,” the ministry official said.

“Just leaving the room does not mean this action won’t have consequences.”

Cases of so-called “sexting,” or sending sexually explicit images by phone, have exploded with the prevalence of smartphones and other mobile devices. Read the rest of this entry »


Pirate Bay Co-Founder Arrested in Thailand

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PSY/OPS: The Thai Junta Is Using Sexy Babes in Skimpy Camo to Win Some Popularity

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Because a sexy smile is totally going to make up for arbitrary detention and suspension of civil liberties

For TIMECharlie Campbell writes: After seizing power in a coup d’état on May 22, Thailand’s ruling military has faced street protests, the wrath of rights groups and international censure.

But now the generals have launched their own PR campaign to win the hearts and minds of their compatriots — using music, dancing and, well, pretty young women in skimpy military fatigues.

On Wednesday, a crowd of several thousand thronged Bangkok’s militaristic Victory Monument — which has actually been the hub of fervent anticoup protests over the past fortnight — for an evening of music and hawkish propaganda. Read the rest of this entry »


TV Stations Silenced, Schools Shut After Thai Army Coup

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Thai soldiers stand guard at a checkpoint near the pro-government ”Red shirts” camp site on the outskirts of Bangkok on May 22, 2014. Photographer: Manan Vatsyayana/AFP via Getty Images

For BloombergChris Blake and Anuchit Nguyen report: Schools were shut and international television channels were off air as stations broadcast military logos and periodic army statements, a day after Thailand’s military seized control following a six-month political stalemate that has sapped economic growth.

Traffic was light in Bangkok after the army ordered schools and universities closed until May 25. Army Chief Prayuth Chan-Ocha, who announced the coup on national television yesterday, imposed a nationwide curfew from 10 p.m. until 5 a.m. and banned political protests. Read the rest of this entry »


China Flexes Muscles, Pounds Chest, Like Tarzan, in U.S.-Led Military Exercises

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BANGKOK — Richard S. Ehrlich reports:  The U.S. is leading the largest multinational military exercise in the Asia-Pacific region, and Chinese media are hailing Beijing’s first-time participation in the annual drill as proof that the communist nation’s “regional military impact” cannot be ignored.

Nearly 14,000 troops from the U.S. and Asia-Pacific countries are participating in Cobra Gold 2014, which opened Tuesday at Camp Akatosarot, about 230 miles north of Bangkok.

“Cobra Gold truly replicates the dynamic security environment we find ourselves in today, and what we will face in the future,” Navy Adm. Samuel J. Locklear III, commander of U.S. Pacific Command, said at the opening ceremony for the military exercise.

Read the rest of this entry »


JACKPOT, BABY: $1.2 Million in Gold Bars Found Stashed in Boeing 737’s Bathroom

A customs officer (right) shows 24 gold bars to the media after it was seized at the Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose International Airport in Kolkata, India, on Wednesday.

A customs officer (right) shows 24 gold bars to the media after it was seized at the Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose International Airport in Kolkata, India, on Wednesday.

Alexander Smith NBC News reports:  A hidden stash of gold bars worth $1.2 million was found in a commercial jet’s bathroom on Tuesday, according to officials in India.

An aircraft maintenance crew found the 24 gold bars in two bags aboard a Jet Airways Boeing 737 while they performed routine end-of-day checks at Kolkata, India, airport.

“It was quite a surprise,” airport director BP Sharma told NBC News. “The bars were packed in bags so we did not immediately know what it was. The bags were inspected and found to be gold.”

Read the rest of this entry »


Women Biggest Buyers of Voodoo Dolls in China

Among the voodoo curses are those that target former boyfriends, colleagues, bosses, and women who steal boyfriends.

Among the voodoo curses are those that target former boyfriends, colleagues, bosses, and women who steal boyfriends.

A search for voodoo dolls on China’s online shopping platform Taobao yields thousands of results, with most of the 6,000 comments posted by females, according to the Chengdu-based West China City Daily.

Among the voodoo curses are those that target former boyfriends, colleagues, bosses, and women who steal boyfriends. Read the rest of this entry »


Red Bull Heir Faces Thai Arrest

Vorayuth Yoovidhya (R) being taken by a plain-clothes policeman in Bangkok (3 Sept 2012)
Vorayuth Yoovidhya was detained after police traced petrol to the family home

Thai authorities will seek to arrest a grandson of Red Bull’s billionaire, co-creator Chaleo Yoovidhaya, after he failed to appear at a court hearing.

Read the rest of this entry »


Navy replaces admiral leading Mideast strike group

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Rear Adm. Charles M. Gaouette receives honors from side boys during a change of command ceremony aboard the USS John C. Stennis on April 5, 2012.

KENNETH ABBATE/US NAVY

By ROBERT BURNS

The Associated Press
Published: October 27, 2012

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Rear Admiral Charles Gaouette
DEFENSE DEPARTMENT

WASHINGTON — The Navy said Saturday it is replacing the admiral in command of an aircraft carrier strike group in the Middle East, pending the outcome of an internal investigation into undisclosed allegations of inappropriate judgment.

Rear Adm. Charles M. Gaouette is being sent back to the USS John C. Stennis’ home port at Bremerton, Wash., in what the Navy called a temporary reassignment. The Navy said he is not formally relieved of his command of the Stennis strike group but will be replaced by Rear Adm. Troy M. Shoemaker, who will assume command until the investigation is completed.

It is highly unusual for the Navy to replace a carrier strike group commander during its deployment.

The Navy did not reveal details of the allegations, citing only an accusation of “inappropriate leadership judgment” that arose during the strike group’s deployment to the Middle East. Rear Adm. John Kirby, the Navy’s chief spokesman, declined to discuss the investigation.

The Stennis group deployed from Bremerton in late August and had entered the Navy 5th Fleet’s area of operations in the Middle East on Oct. 17 after sailing across the Pacific. The Stennis made port visits in Thailand and Malaysia on its way to the Middle East.

It deployed four months earlier than scheduled in response to a request by the commander of U.S. Central Command, Marine Gen. James Mattis, to maintain two aircraft carriers in the Middle East. The Stennis replaced the USS Enterprise carrier group.

Defense Secretary Leon Panetta visited the Stennis and its sailors in Bremerton shortly before they departed. He thanked them for accelerating their deployment on short notice.

“I understand that it is tough,” Panetta said. “We are asking an awful lot of each of you, but frankly you are the best I have and when the world calls we have to respond.”

via Navy – Stripes