DefMin Seeking Legal Action Against Crackdown Graffiti

“#SeekTheTruth” projected onto the structure of BTS Siam on May 10, 2020.
“#SeekTheTruth” projected onto the structure of BTS Siam on May 10, 2020.

BANGKOK — The Defense Ministry will file legal action against those responsible for a light spectacle commemorating the 2010 crackdown on anti-government protests that left about 90 people dead, a spokesman said Tuesday.

Defense spokesman Kongcheep Tantravanich called the stunt “politically motivated” that sought to cause disunity in the country, though a Deputy PM told reporters he was unsure whether the laser gimmick violated any laws.

“I personally believe it is inappropriate,” Maj. Gen. Kongcheep said. “It can incite disunity and mistrust among the public, which is not beneficial to the current situation the country is facing. If one wants to seek for the truth, they can find it from the court cases where justice is delivered.”

He continued, “I see this as a politically-motivated act seeking to cause misunderstandings to institutions and organizations. Security officials are working to find the perpetrators, which should not be difficult for them.”


But Deputy PM Prawit Wongsuwan on Tuesday said he could not determine whether the stunt violated any laws, including the Emergency Decree, which bans any acts deemed to cause unrest.

“Authorities are looking into it,” Prawit said.

The slogan #SeekTheTruth was projected onto various landmarks across Bangkok on Sunday night.

It appeared briefly on locations where the military crackdown on Redshirt protesters took place in months of April and May 2010, including Wat Pathum Wanaram, the Democracy Monument, and Soi Rangnam.

A larger projection detailing the aftermath of the crackdown when a fire broke out at CentralWorld was also casted onto the Ministry of Defense building.

Photos of the projections later became viral on social media, prompting renewed discussions on the deadly clashes between Redshirt protesters and the military.

More than 90 people, mostly civilians, died during the months of confrontation.

The Progressive Movement, a group of politicians loyal to the now-disbanded Future Forward Party, appeared to claim responsibility for the actions Monday night by posting a timelapse, behind-the-scenes video from inside a van.


“How many times have innocent people been killed in cold blood? How many times have killers and those behind them never been prosecuted, and even moved higher up the rankings?,” the post said.

The group is led by former Future Forward Party leaders who were banned from politics for 10 years such as Thanathorn Juangroongruangkit, Piyabutr Saengkanokkul, and Pannika Wanich.

In March, messages critical of the government were also projected onto buildings in the Ari neighborhood. It was later revealed that a well-known DJ and party organizer Dudesweet was behind the show.