As I was traveling through the Golden Triangle, which is in the north of Thailand and in the border area that it shares with Burma and Laos, public transportation was being harrassed due to numerous police and military checkpoints. I personally experienced this, with the buses that I took to get around from city to city, were being stopped various times by special police and military units. At first, I reached to show them my passport, but it seemed that they were more concerned with the local bus riders. Apparently, they had a list of people to detain. I saw a few detainees on the sides of the roads. I thought of what might have happened to them.
Now I can only think the worse: murder. The news has come out, especially in the Bangkok Post and in INN (International News Network) with stories of the police and military in their war against Methamphetamine sellers. So far, the number of victims in this terror campaign has reached to over a 1,000 deaths - within only a weeks time! The campaign has included an insiduous ploy of declaring an amnesty for some of the sellers and then murdering them in prison. There have also been attacks on people's homes and then assassinating all the adults of the house. The Bangkok Post even showed a photo of a young girl after discovering her parents murdered in their own home.
The Prime Minister and the military elite who run this country and have been known to be some of the worst Heroin dealers in the world. They were first involved in the drug trade through the US government supported KMT drug lords(anti-Chinese Communist units) around Burma in the 50s and 60s; and then later through the US government's CIA front of Air America during the Indochina conflict in the 60s and 70s. In Thailand, the law means nothing: the exception is the will of bribery and extortion. The semi divine King of Thailand has been mysteriously quiet during these disturbances. Now the streets are filled with police and military units that are making many foreigners nervous. The last military coup d'etat was in 1993. The other day, the military junta closed the INN news service declaring its journalism "a crime against the Nation"; consequently, censorship is in order for all news and media outlets in Thailand. Due to this new information blackout, it is quite necessary that concerned travelers in Thailand report on these dangerous times.
Thailand has recently been in a severe Asian economic crisis; meanwhile, the corruption has gotten worse. Extreme Capitalism has taken a toll on the people. The streets are by the day more scattered with beggars, indigent victims and children selling flowers and candy; there is no social safety net here. Nevertheless, the IMF, WTO and the World Bank have declared Thailand to be an "economic giant" of Asia. Thailand does have a history of severe repression. In the 1970s there was a University student movement that was savagely repressed with around 3,000 unexplained murders by CIA trained military death squads. This story is once again being repeated.