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Deposed Thai PM “Snuck Out” 114 Trunks

From those lovers of elected government at the DNC’s Associated Press:

AP caption: A Thai airline passenger passes through a x-ray device as he checks in at Bangkok International Airport in Bankok, Thailand, Sunday, Sept. 24, 2006. Former Thai Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra may have whisked some of his assets out of the country aboard two aircraft days before a military coup ousted him from power, airline officials said Sunday.

Spotlight falls on ex-Thai PM’s assets

September 24, 2006

BANGKOK, Thailand (AP) — Former Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra may have whisked some of his assets out of the country aboard two aircraft days before a military coup ousted him from power, airline officials said Sunday.

An official from Thai Airways International, who demanded anonymity because company policy did not allow him to speak to the press, said he wanted the new ruling military council to investigate the incidents…

Thaksin departed for Finland to begin a foreign tour on September 9, loading up his government-assigned aircraft with 58 large suitcases and trunks, the official of the national carrier said.

The prime minister’s aircraft, named Thai Koofah, was then inexplicably left parked in Finland for more than a week as Thaksin continued on his trip on other transportation.

A second aircraft carrying 56 suitcases — an Airbus 340-600 — was dispatched from Bangkok to meet up with the prime minister just days before the coup, the Thai Airways official said.

Another official in the airline industry, requesting anonymity because of the issue’s sensitivity, confirmed the second flight, saying it left on September 17 — two days before the military toppled Thaksin in a bloodless coup…

A spokeswoman for the airline said she was not aware of the incident "and even if it is true, Thai Airways would only report it to the (council), not to the media." She said company policy did not allow her to use her name.

The Thai Airways official said it was not known what was taken aboard the second aircraft because only Thaksin’s aides, citing security concerns, were allowed to supervise the loading.

"I want the (military) council to investigate this because we, the employees of Thai Airways International, believe that Thaksin exploited the company through his power as prime minister by using a company airplane to transport his assets out of the country," the official said…

Earlier, one of Thaksin’s staunchest opponents, publishing tycoon Sondhi Limthongkul, alleged the former leader had chartered two Russian aircraft to take some of his assets out of Thailand.

Sondhi, a key leader of mass street demonstrations against Thaksin earlier this year, made the allegations on his weekly television program a week before Thaksin departed for Finland and repeated them the following week.

Rumors of such an airlift by Russian aircraft have continued to circulate in the international airline community in Bangkok but could not be confirmed…

Thaksin’s family is among the wealthiest in Thailand, and in 2004 the American magazine Forbes ranked Thaksin as the 16th richest man in Southeast Asia.

In January, the then-prime minister sold the centerpiece of his empire — telecoms giant Shin Corp. — to Singapore’s state investment company, Temasek Holdings, for a tax-free 73.3 billion baht (US$1.9 billion; euro1.55 billion).

The head of the country’s central bank, Pridiyathorn Devakul, has said the proceeds from the sale were probably still in Thailand.

"I estimate that no large amount of Thai baht has been converted into overseas currencies. However, I don’t know whether the money could have been packed in suitcases and taken abroad," he said last week.

Thaksin and one of his children have stayed in London since the coup, while his wife and two other children remain in Thailand.

This is just laughable on so many levels.

For one thing, Thaksin fully expected to be re-elected (for the third time) in a landslide in November. All the polls showed him very far ahead. It’s clear that the coup was a complete surprise to him. (Note that his wife and two of his children are still in Thailand.)

Secondly, Thaksin was a billionaire long before he was elected office (in two landslide). As the article notes, he was the owner of Thailand’s main telcom company. Surely, like any businessman, his money is spread all around the globe in various investments, and not squirreled away in bags under a loose floorboard in his hut.

Thirdly, being the (former) head of a communications company don’t you think Thanksin could find other discreet ways to get his assets out of the country besides carrying them out? Like maybe wiring a bank on one of his own private and secure phone lines?

Lastly, are we supposed to believe that Thaksin needed two airplanes to carry out his 114 trunks of pearls and rubies and gold doubloons and jewel-encrusted goblets? Are we back in the 15th century?

It is hilarious but not surprising to see the Associated Press publishing such obvious anti-Thaksin propaganda. Propaganda ginned up by his political opponent and anti-democratic rabble rouser Sondhi Limthongkul.

Here’s another example of Sondi’s many preposterous charges against Thaksin, courtesy of Wikipedia:

The Phra Phrom Erawan Shrine incident

In the early hours of 21 March 2006, Thanakorn Pakdeepol, 27, broke into the Phra Phrom Erawan Shrine in central Bangkok and attacked the god Brahma with a hammer. After destroying the god, he was attacked and beaten to death by several people in the vicinity. Thanakorn Pakdeepol had a history of mental illness and depression. Thai police are still investigating the case.

On his talkshow on 22 March, Sondhi claimed that Thaksin Shinawatra masterminded the destruction of the god along in order to replace Brahma with a "dark force" aligned to Thaksin. Sondhi claimed that Thaksin hired Thanakorn through Khmer (Cambodian) black-magic shamans.

The vandal’s father, Sayant Pakdeepol called Sondhi is "the biggest liar I have ever seen". Thaksin called Sondhi’s accusations "insane".

But never mind all that. The AP will say whatever it takes to forward their jihad against elected secular governments — and for the caliphate.

They can’t wait to be slaves.

This article was posted by Steve on Sunday, September 24th, 2006. Comments are currently closed.

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