Two of the four bombs that went off in Hua Hin over a period of 24 hours, on the mother’s day long weekend and a week after the nationwide referendum, killed two and maimed scores of locals and foreign tourists. The bombs were hidden in flower pots and detonated by mobile phones.
A few months ago, the insurgents delivered bombs on floating foam in Pattani, targeting fishing boats. But flower pots? Insurgents usually use car bombs or bombs hidden in motorbikes. Planting them in flower pots would be too risky and only a local gardener could get away with that before the fingers were pointed at him. The flower pot bombs don’t really have the hallmark of Insurgent terrorists. It’s just too potty an idea, even for them.
The hallmark of insurgents are ball bearings or pellets, which was found in the Hua Hin bombs. Most commentators have dismissed that. It’s got Noordin Mohammad Top written all over it– bomb maker for the attacks on the Marriot Hotel in Jakarta and the Bali bombings. But it’s neither a novel idea either and nor do the insurgents have a monopoly on these crude but deadly bomb making techniques.
Songkhla is another royal seat that could have been bombed to symbolically mark the insurgent’s march towards Bangkok. But it wasn’t.
Hua Hin seems too far from home turf for it to be the insurgents. The idea that they don’t target tourists is plain wrong, though. The insurgents target mostly Asian sex tourists in the deep south which does affect tourism – with more of them coming back for seconds and thirds. Sex and bombs seems to be a magical combination that gets them off – I suppose.
The Deep South is the only place where you can fuck a whore and maybe get blown up said one old Asian hand. ‘I’m surprised there are not more war junkies down there.It’s the ideal place to get a feel of what Saigon was like during the Vietnam war.’
Too fucking shit scared, I replied.
Insurgents use two tier bombs, known as double tap. After the first one goes off, a second one will follow, mopping up the rescue workers and bystanders. But other rogue groups could use the same technique if they wanted it to look suspiciously like their southern insurgents. The recent spate of bombings outside of the restive south look like it was the insurgents while the real culprits this time could be either brown shirt or green shirt – they have been known to do it in the south, to justify beefing up security and that translates as control of illicit trade.
Highly plausible too.
The BBC’s stringer in Bangkok says that if the Hua Hin attack was the handiwork of the insurgents, saying it’s marking a departure of their former tactics of never targeting tourists. I say nonsense to that too.
But I don’t see why the insurgents would already inflame an already protracted war by moving closer to Bangkok to make their demands known. They also never publicize their bombing campaigns, the experts say, which is another reason to point the finger at them. More nonsense. The insurgents have a strong online presence, and many jihadists are quite aggressive about bragging about their carnage.
When I was in the Deep South covering the car bomb in Betong, word was getting out amongst some jihadist twitter users that a white boy was reporting their latest conquest. I was warned to be very careful. Pay the ticket, take the ride, sure I was careful.
Another myth debunked.
Given that over the weekend of referendum, 11 bombs did go off in the Deep South, many fingers are pointing at them while any stealth groups who wants to destabilize the government can conveniently hang under the radar.
But the government has outrightly rejected the claim that the recent bombings across the country were the handiwork of the insurgents. When they could easily have got away with saying it was. Which only raises more questions.
The theory doing the rounds is that the Red Shirts are colluding with the insurgents. I read that wonderful theory in a World of Trouble by Jake Needham, and now it’s seriously being debated. And I suppose the CIA is providing the funding to overthrow the current junta. At this stage it’s all just speculation.
It looks like at last Bangkok is realizing that A Dirty Little War that’s been simmering for the past 13 years might be worth while knowing about. It also looks like the army is abandoning the Deep South with it’s plan in October of passing their security duties to the volunteer guards – armed Buddhist residents. It’s going to get a lot worse before it gets better.
The military is losing in the three restive provinces. They just can’t afford to upset the insurgents more by saying they were responsible for the bombings; if indeed they were. The cards have turned. From being a scapegoat, now the insurgents instill fear even in the army.
Meanwhile, Taksin…He’s out of the equation. The Tak Bai massacre, where 85 Muslims suffocated in a cattle truck, was the catalyst for the 13 year uprise against the government.
Now new reports are emerging that the bombs and arson attacks in seven central and southern provinces has elements of the Deep South insurgent movement. But the government is still sticking to it’s story that they are not the masterminds. Well who is?
Will they make up their mind. I can see a back flip on its way.
Black ops and disinformation works every time.