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Thread: Prime Minister's Buri Ram visit
12-07-09, 09:02 PM #1
Prime Minister's Buri Ram visit
I was trying to read how the Prime Minister's Buri Ram visit went. The Nation reported he received a "rousing welcome" and the Bangkok Post reported his speeches brought a "lukewarm" reception from the audiences. Make me wonder if the reporters even attended the same event.And I still don't know the truth.
15-07-09, 04:50 AM #2Paknam Web Online Staff
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Re: Prime Minister's Buri Ram visit
Based on some blogs and Thai language news, I would lean toward the interpretation given by the Post. But, as usual, the short soundbytes in those papers aren't going to help much with the complexities.
Buriram politics is heavily influenced by Newin, whose Bhum Jai Thai party became one of the coalition partners of the current government. Newin stayed away from appearing with Abhisit during the PM's visit. so already you can guess that there are various political motives at play. Abhisit was criticized by some for choosing Buriram, both because of the connection with Newin and the fact that Abhisit's Democrat party has little base there. Some articles in Matichon called the PM's trip a "show" (โชว์, a rather common and probably overused word in news articles), pointing out things like how Abhisit purposefully used Isaan language (sam bai dee bor = "how are you?") or posed for a photo-op on a traditional Isaan vehicle.
It's not hard for any politician of note to bring a few dozen supporters to manufacture a "rousing welcome" for the media. On the other hand, Abhisit knows his party has to make a lot of inroads in places like that to gain a wider base of support in the region. He also knows that one visit isn't likely to make immediate changes in the perceptions of the locals.
Later this month, I believe, the PM is supposed to visit Ubon Ratchathani, a province of Isaan where the Democrat base is somewhat stronger. It will be interesting to see how this all plays out, both in the short and longer terms.
Last edited by Tim; 15-07-09 at 09:33 AM. Reason: typos corrected
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