Talking protest with Attapon Buapat: Inside the “Khon Kaen’s Had Enough” group

Attapon Buapat, one of the prominent faces of the rallies and an organizer with the “Khon Kaen’s Had Enough” group talks about the birth of the movement, funding of the protests, the growing harassment by the authorities, and his hopes for change.

Activists are concerned about unchecked government power during the COVID-19 pandemic

Suwit Kulapwong, head of the Human Rights and Environment Association, warns the state of emergency limits the public’s ability to check the powers of the government.

Remembrances of Red Trauma (28) – No democracy without justice

Niran Pitakwatchara, a former human rights commissioner, talks about the implications of the violence in 2010 for the country’s democracy and calls for “the perpetrators to be brought to justice, so as to deter repeat offenders.”

Remembrances of Red Trauma (26) – Crushing democracy: From Red Shirts to Future Forward Party

Political scientist Chaiyan Rajchagool reflects on how the ruling class have constructed a politico-military complex, and co-opted state institutions in a bid to keep democracy at bay.

Remembrances of Red Trauma (24) – Rebuilding shattered dreams of democracy

The bloody crackdown on protesters in 2010 is seared into the mind of Thanat Thammakaew. For the writer, known by his pen name Phu Kradat, the traumatic events became a political awakening and a source of inspiration for his writing.

Remembrances of Red Trauma (20) – A fire burning down below

“There has never been a time, no other era, where the ordinary villager has cursed the ruling class so much as now. There’s a fire burning down below and the military coup has only poured fuel onto that fire.” Teerapol Anmai speaks about the aftermath of the 2010 protests and the state’s violent response.

Remembrances of Red Trauma (18) – Writing about atrocity, a challenge for Thai literature

Duanwad Pimwana, one of the most prominent voices in contemporary Thai literature, talks about the challenges Thai literature faces in dealing with the trauma of the April-May 2010 violence.

Remembrances of Red Trauma (11) – A war of words: ‘red buffaloes’

Linguist Saowanee T. Alexander talks about the evolution of the term “red buffaloes” that had been used pejoratively to describe Red Shirts and supporters of the Pheu Thai Party. But in recent years, pro-democracy activists have reclaimed the slur, partly shifting its derogatory usage.

The Soul of Molam (15) – Masters of the khaen and the future of disappearing molam styles

The molam we know today stems from a century-old Lao tradition that is being transformed by its mingling with central Thai forms and international styles. What do we know about that original tradition? Are there khaen-playing practitioners still performing today in Isaan? John Garzoli, an ethnomusicologist looking precisely at these issues, shares his views.

The Soul of Molam (11) – Pong Lang Sa On: A molam revolutionary

Thawit Sitthongsi, former member of Pong Lang Sa On, talks about the molam troupe’s reputation as a leader in changing contemporary molam music and molam performances forever. [VIDEO]

The Soul of Molam (10) – The legacy of molam revolutionary Pong Lang Sa On

Fifteen years ago, a molam troupe made history by taking the molam sound of temple fairs and village festivals to the stage of Bangkok’s Impact Arena. We talked to former band member Thawit Sitthongsi about the troupe’s reputation as a leader in changing contemporary molam music and molam performances forever.

Sombat Boonngamanong: The Red Shirts are not dead, just wait for the “rain”

Prominent political activist and founder of the satirical Kian Party Sombat Boonngamanong talks about his live after the military coup in 2014 and the fate of the Red Shirt movement.

A blue Mekong means sinking biodiversity and hard times for river communities

After the unusual change of color of the Mekong River last year, environmental expert Santiparp Siriwattanaphaiboon warned that manmade changes “will eventually bring an end to the civilization of those living on the banks of the Mekong.”

Work in progress: a decade of human rights in Isaan

“Isaan people have become more rights-conscious, which means they won’t submit to anyone easily. No one can mess with them anymore because they won’t allow it,” says former human rights commissioner Sunee Chaiyarot in this interview on human rights in Isaan.