The bomb attack on Buddhist monks in Sai Bury in the South is a terrible act. So is the Thai State’s use of death squads, police and soldiers, to kill local Muslim Malay activists who seek independence from Thailand. The use of armed force by Thailand to enforce colonial rule in Patani for hundreds of years is also something which we must condemn.
When considering the details of the recent Sai Bury attack on Buddhist monks, who were “being protected” by soldiers, it is worth remembering that the policy of involving monks with soldiers was harshly criticised by Ajarn Chaiwat Satha-Anand a few years ago. He warned that it amounted to the militarisation of Buddhist monks in an area where Thai soldiers were regarded as oppressors. What made matters worse was that the army tried to encourage soldiers to become monks in Patani. It seems that the chickens have now come home to roost.