The Nation


Letters to the Editor

History will judge the PDRC demonstrations non-violent

Re: "Tolerate violence at your peril", Letters, April 8.

Letter-writer Eric Bahrt clearly demonstrates he doesn't understand what he is criticised for. Thailand is not at war. Despite that, war-weapons like grenades and live ammunition are being used to assassinate anti-government demonstrators. Amid this level of deadly violence Mr Bahrt dares to counter by calling the demonstrators violent. Minor, non-fatal (though regrettable) incidents have occurred, yes, mainly caused by hothead students. There was the defacing of a police sign, invasion of government buildings, beating of a journalist and attack on a red-shirt bus, as Mr Bahrt has pointed out.

It is sad to see a man so much out of touch with the real "violence" on the streets as Mr Bahrt. In my native Scandinavia we call people who write such opinions pedants or fusspots for their overemphasis on minor details. And his evidence is definitely minor when set against assassinations and murders with war weapons, and means that debate gets lost in details and never reaches conclusions. Debating this way is never-ending and stifles the possibility of writing a definitive history.

A Johnsen

Chon Buri

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