- Posted February 6, 2014 by
THAI FARMERS CHEATED BY SHAM GOVERNMENT ON BRINK OF HUNGER
By Michael Yon
Feb 6, 2014
Photo credited to Nation Channel
Spoke with some farmers today. They want Yingluck to go and may join PDRC. It is clear that they will not vote for PT. They made clear they are sick of Thaksin. The farmer situation is terrible. They ranged from neutral to liking Suthep. They all said they watch Bluesky and trust it. They love Channel 7. None trust ThaiRath. They have no money to buy seed for next planting yet were offering me food. One farmer said he is thinking about suicide.
Farmers now at the Ministry of Commerce
A friend is still with the farmers who arrived today. They are desperate. The Ministry would not even allow them to use the toilets today, though some people at the ministry were obviously on the farmers' side.
The farmers did not get paid and did not get their rice, so they are camping out tonight. They have almost nothing. They were peaceful today and thirsty for anyone to tell their story. They are desparate.
My friend is there now and I just got off the phone with her. She said that Bangkokians have begun flooding the farmers with food and medicine. They have enough for tonight.
She said their nearest toilet is 500 meters away, so 1 km roundtrip. They have no way to bathe. They will sleep on the ground.
Tomorrow Khun Suthep will begin a two day march to raise 10 million baht, which he told me he would present to the farmers so that they can afford their own independent protests.
The farmers were very peaceful and friendly today and welcome any media to tell their story truthfully.
Please go there with your cameras and talk with them and see for yourself, and post it on Facebook or into your newspapers. Their lives are being wrecked.
Talk with Suthep today
We talked for nearly an hour on many topics. I also spoke with about fifteen rice farmers today. They are being destroyed, and this means truly destroyed. Their first harvest just came in, and they do not even have money to plant their second crop. We spoke at the Ministry of Commerce where farmers had come from multiple provinces to demand their rightful payments, or to get their rice back. At the end of the day today, they got neither, and so they are going to camp out at the Ministry of Commerce.
The farmers are selling off their valuables just to eat, and one farmer said he would sell his farm and rent it back. Yet despite all this, during our talk, two farmers offered me a little food. They remain generous in poverty.
Interestingly, the farmers kept saying they watch and trust Bluesky, and they love Channel 7 because Channel 7 tells their story. Then the Channel 7 helicopter flew over, the crowd cheered and waved as the helicopter circled. They all said they do not trust Thairath.
They are sick of Yingluck. They were clear that they will not listen to Thaksin. They were less open yet obvious that they will not vote again for PT, and might even vote Democrat. (Again, they were not clear on this and reticent to speak out, but the mood was clear. The PT base is eroding, which anyone can see, and which the 2 February voting indicated.)
The worst of it all is to see farmers -- farmers -- on the brink of hunger in one of the most bountiful nations on earth, thanks to a flawed democracy, corruption, and massive theft.
After talking with the farmers, I came back downtown and spoke with Suthep for about an hour. Suthep told me he will do a two day march to raise 10 million baht for the rice protestors, so that they can organize and feed themselves during the protests.
The farmers are not like PDRC protestors who donate at the protests. The farmers will go hungry on the streets if people do not donate to their protests. It's that bad.
This is about the saddest thing I have seen short of war. Millions of good people robbed into poverty.