Thursday, February 5, 2009
Bhumjaithai: Coalition of the Desperate
Keep a close watch on the newest political party in town -- Bhumjaithai -- which has turned out to be a collection of some of the best-known former supporters of Thaksin Shinawatra.
Bhumjaithai may be loosely translated as "Pride of Thai."
Thaksin probably thinks they are "traitors" -- but they probably think of themselves as the country's saviours by helping the Democrats -- their former arch-rivals -- to form the current coalition government.
The leaders of Bhumjaithai include such political heavyweights as Newin Chidchob, Suriya Chuengrungruangkij, Somsak Thepsuthin, and Sora-ard Klinpratum -- all of them once standing by Thaksin's side. Now, they are on the opposite side.
Today, the party boasts at least 32 MPs in their stable, having moved from People's Power and Machima, the two parties dissolved by court orders two months ago for breach of law.
The Democrats need them to survive. They need the Democrats to continue in a position of power.
Perhaps, we can call the arrangement the "Coalition of the Politically Desperate."