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Which lady brought the party down?

From Naewna, December 16, 2020
Women: Tuttu, please say clearly which Jae destroys the Phao Thai Party?
Jatuporn: Ha… ha… it will be every Jae.
On the sign: Phao Thai Party

[“Tuttu” is Red Shirt leader Jaturporn. “Tu” is his nickname. Nowadays, it is a trend to add additional syllables to people’s formerly short nicknames. Thus “Tu” becomes “Tuttu.” This is supposed to sound like the “cute” speech of the young. “Jae” is a Chinese word meaning “elder sister.”

This cartoon mocks the Pheu Thai Party by calling it the Phao Thai Party (the “Burn Thai Party”). This means that the series of political parties controlled by Thaksin and his family have only resulted in violent political provocations including the burning of Bangkok and some provincial areas in 2009 and 2010.

The cartoon illustrates a comment made by former Pheu Thai Party member and the leader of the Red Shirts Jatuporn. He recently talked about the conflict in the Pheu Thai Party.

Since August when the student protests started in an organized way, the party has undergone a series of shakeups. Some of this was intended to ensure that the party was not too closely aligned with the student protesters and the Progressive Movement’s attempt to confront the monarchy.

Another rupture dethroned Sudarat as de-facto head of the party after Thaksin’s ex-wife was brought in to purge anti-monarchy elements. Sudarat later left the party entirely, taking her faction with her.

Much of this realignment apparently disappointed Red Shirts and some provincial factions in the party that had hoped that, as the leading opposition party, it would forge a new path away from being a Thaksin-family business. It is also likely that Red Shirts felt they should be standing shoulder-to-shoulder with the students as the bold demands for reform no doubt matched much of Red Shirt ideology.

All of this recent party churn saw powerful women in major roles. The cartoon shows influential women in the party.

From left to right: Sudarat (non-Thaksin family member ousted from her leadership role in the party), Yingluck (exiled former PM and Thaksin’s sister; not thought of as a power-broker, but more of a naive pawn of Thaksin), Potjaman (Thaksin’s ex-wife brought into the party in August 2020 to ensure it was insulated from the anti-monarchy provocations of the emerging student protesters) and Yaowapa (Thaksin’s sister, often referenced as an interfering figure in party politics; she is a major power-broker in the north; her husband was PM of Thaksin’s People Power Party).

Jatuporn mentioned there was a “lady” who brought the party down. The cartoonist shows that the powerful women, all trying to apply their vested interests, are all responsible for the chaos within the party.]

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