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Thai Gov't Sets Up Site For Snitching On Royals' Critics 329

Posted by timothy
from the yes-yes-the-king-is-good dept.
An anonymous reader writes "In a move that would make the old eastern German Stasi green with envy, the Thai government has modernized a system that allows citizens to snitch on fellow citizens. 'Internet users are being urged to show their loyalty to the king by contributing to a new website called protecttheking.net, which has been set up by a parliamentary committee. On the site's front page it is described as a means for Thai people to show their loyalty to the king by protecting him from what it calls misunderstandings about him. It calls on all citizens to inform on anyone suspected of insulting or criticising the monarchy.' An large unknown population of political prisoners are currently being held for 3 to 15 years in Thai prisons for being interpreted as insulting the monarchy."
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Thai Gov't Sets Up Site For Snitching On Royals' Critics

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  • Ants (Score:5, Informative)

    by Man On Pink Corner (1089867) on Sunday April 05, 2009 @10:45PM (#27471153)

    Those people really are nothing but ants.

    That, and their king has a fugly wife and a really dumb-looking hat.

  • Slashdotted? (Score:4, Informative)

    by CrazyJim1 (809850) on Sunday April 05, 2009 @10:46PM (#27471161) Journal
    Anyone else actually try and go to the website? I did and I got nothing.
  • Re:Slashdotted? (Score:3, Informative)

    by Keen Anthony (762006) on Sunday April 05, 2009 @11:03PM (#27471325)

    Would the site respond at all in that case? I just get read errors after a while.

    But maybe it is for the best as I have it on good authority that His Majesty isn't actually quite "the Great" at all, that most of his $35 billion fortune is in fact Monopoly money, that he molests dead farm animals in the pale moonlight while "Twilight Time" by The Platters plays gently on his Zune, and that the queen is a whore and the prince holds the money. LÃse majesté crimes are fun!

  • by praksys (246544) on Sunday April 05, 2009 @11:29PM (#27471535) Homepage

    He was sentenced to either 3 or 6 years in prison (the article you linked to gave both numbers). He spent about six months in prison. Still way bad enough.

  • by SpottedKuh (855161) on Sunday April 05, 2009 @11:31PM (#27471553)

    [...] he was deported after he'd been jailed for 6 years

    As a quick correction to your post, he was actually jailed for six months. He had been sentenced to six years, but that was reduced to three years because of his guilty plea. He was pardoned about a month after his guilty plea, having spent a total of six months in prison.

    Of course, it's still absolutely ridiculous!

    (Source [wikipedia.org])

  • Re:Silly Thais (Score:4, Informative)

    by belmolis (702863) <billposerNO@SPAMalum.mit.edu> on Sunday April 05, 2009 @11:42PM (#27471647) Homepage

    This isn't coming from the Palace, it is coming from the military. It's the Thai version going after the opposition for not being sufficiently patriotic. I've read that the King actually doesn't approve of harassing people for lese majeste.

  • by nathan.fulton (1160807) on Sunday April 05, 2009 @11:44PM (#27471659) Journal
    http://www.thekoratpost.com/Protectthekingwebsiteenglishdetails.html [thekoratpost.com]

    It contains, in part, this: How To Report Tips

    Tips â" This link provides a couple of methods on how to report tips in. One method is to mail to P.O. Box 999, Bangkok . Another indicated is to email directly to protecttheking@parliament.go.th As well, there is an in-page form in Thai for users to complete.

    Law & Punishment

    This page has five separate links under this title, numbered as shown for convenience. The unnumbered links are:

    1. Article 2 - Use of Criminal Law

    This section is a verbatim lift from Thai Criminal Code Chapter 2, Articles no. 4-7.

    Article 6 - Principals and Supporters [of cr= iminal acts, i.e., lÃse majesté]

    This section is a verbatim lift from Thai Criminal Code Chapter 6, Articles no. 83-89.

    3. Article 7 â" Concurrence of Offenses
    This section is a verbati= m lift from Thai Criminal Code Chapter 7, Concurrence of Offenses, Articles no. 90-91.

    4. Article 9 â" Statute of Limitations

    This section is a verbati= m lift from Thai Criminal Code Chapter 9, Prescription (statute of limitations.), Articles no. 95-101.

    5. Part 2 â" Offenses Related to National Security; Article 2, Offenses Against the king, queen, heir to the throne or regent. [Translatorâ(TM)s note: This section is a verbatim lift from the = Thai Criminal Code Book II, Specific Offenses, Title 1, Offenses Relating to The Security of the Kingdom, Articles no. 107-112.
  • Re:Slashdotted? (Score:2, Informative)

    by itsthebin (725864) on Sunday April 05, 2009 @11:49PM (#27471691) Homepage
    from a TRUE connection in bangkok it comes back after a while with a blank page with firefox
  • Awesome - (Score:3, Informative)

    by bizitch (546406) on Monday April 06, 2009 @12:21AM (#27471891) Homepage

    I clicked the link for the snitching website - but it didn't work right away - so to be sure - I just clicked the link again - over and over and over and over - but it still didn't work ...

  • by jrhawk42 (1028964) on Monday April 06, 2009 @12:52AM (#27472053)
    King Bhumibol Adulyadej is actually against the lÃse majesté law. So you're probably asking yourself why is this a problem? It's a problem for two reasons. One is the Thai people for the most part love their King, and insulting him is like insulting the country. Highly conservative groups feel like this is treason and should be treated as such. The other reason the lÃse majesté law is still in effect is that the current Thai government relies on the good name of the king. In their eyes if the King is no longer respected than the government that is supported by the king is no longer respected either. Yea it doesn't make much sense to normal people, but these are politicians we are talking about. I'd also like to point out that the Thai Monarchy is a shining example of how a Monarchy should behave. The Thai's have good reason to love their king.
  • by Killjoy_NL (719667) <slashdot&remco,palli,nl> on Monday April 06, 2009 @01:21AM (#27472193)

    This king has (to my knowledge) always pardoned people who were convicted of this crime and he has also tried to get rid of this law.

  • by achurch (201270) on Monday April 06, 2009 @02:01AM (#27472405) Homepage

    You think Monarchy that locks up anyone who criticizes it, in any way is... a 'good example' of a monarchy?

    Perhaps you missed the part where the OP wrote, "King Bhumibol Adulyadej is actually against the lèse majesté law"? It's the government that's at fault here, not the King. And notice that he's not grabbing power from the government to abolish the law himself, either; he's only stating his wishes and hoping that the true seat of power (the government) listens to him.

  • by Daengbo (523424) <daengboNO@SPAMgmail.com> on Monday April 06, 2009 @03:44AM (#27472951) Homepage Journal

    Under the infamous PM Thaksin, the "War on Drugs" gave Thai police the authority to execute drug dealers in the north on the spot with no trial. It became simply a way to consolodate the drug business and/or get rid of trouble makers. The police (corrupt and involved in drug trafficking themselves) killed whomever they wished and planted drugs on the body after.

    Now that was a war on drugs. This new affair will end similarly.

  • Re:Ants (Score:2, Informative)

    by Daengbo (523424) <daengboNO@SPAMgmail.com> on Monday April 06, 2009 @06:57AM (#27473923) Homepage Journal

    The king has no political power to make any laws. He is merely a figurehead. This law was made by politicians during the ratification of the constitution and is included therein. In fact, the king himself has called repeatedly for he law to be repealed and pardons (his only real power) those convicted of it.

    Considering this and your other comment [slashdot.org], I'd say you don't know much about Thai politics. Is that correct?

  • Re:Ants (Score:3, Informative)

    by Ihmhi (1206036) <i_have_mental_health_issues@yahoo.com> on Monday April 06, 2009 @07:14AM (#27474009)

    Who says its his idea?

    A typical court is going to have the leader - king, queen, etc. - and a whole bunch of staff. Retainers, advisors, etc. It could be his head advisor that is saying, "But it has to be this way! We must protect the honor of the King!", to which he would reluctantly agree to get the guy to shut the Hell up.

  • by Ash Vince (602485) on Monday April 06, 2009 @09:02AM (#27474757) Journal

    You do realise you are subject to other countries laws right? And other countries can pass whatever laws they choose.

    It is quite possible the law Thailand has against insulting their monarch applies to people in other countries. Thailand could then apply to extradite you to their country to face trial. In this case extradition would be unlikely but if you are stupid enough to rock up in their country of you own accord there is nothing the US State department can do apart from provide you a lawyer.

    A good example is Spain. According to Spanish law if you kill a Spanish citizen then that is a crime under their law even if you committed the offence in a country where murder was legal. This also applies to torture. Their are currently investigating whether to prosecute certain members of the US military who were involved in Guantanamo Bay. If successful this would make it awkward for the people involved to travel to anywhere in Europe since they may then be extradited to Spain to face trial.

  • by fantomas (94850) on Monday April 06, 2009 @09:07AM (#27474795)

    Only two countries in the World refuse to sign up to the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child, and declare their right to execute children as part of their legal processes:

    1. Somalia
    2. United States of America

    Careful who you are calling barbaric, some people might also call executing kids a pretty primitive practice.

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