View Full Version : Understanding Jihadis: First the EU, Now the Thais

05-26-2007, 11:16 PM


Thai generals ask former assassin to be security adviser
By Thomas Fuller
Friday, May 25, 2007

BANGKOK: Frustrated by their inability to pacify a Muslim insurgency and concerned about rising impatience toward their rule, Thailand's generals have named a former commando and self-described assassin as their top security adviser.

The appointment this month of Pallop Pinmanee, a retired general notorious for his harsh tactics but admired for his survival instincts, appears to be an acknowledgement that the military-backed government's conciliatory approach toward Muslim insurgents in southern Thailand has failed.

"The way to solve the problem in the south is to get the people on your side," Pallop said in an interview this week. But if the violence continues, he said, the military should carry out "search and destroy" missions against the insurgents. "If we cannot make them surrender, then we have no choice - we have to destroy them."

Pallop's appointment also seems to signal that the generals who overthrew the government of Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra in September, and who have trodden lightly against their political opponents so far, are contemplating harsher and more repressive actions toward dissent. :cool:

Pallop said Sonthi Boonyaratglin, the general who led the September coup, asked him to serve as an adviser during a round of golf in March. The two men once served together in a special warfare unit.

Pallop, a retired general who turned 71 on Friday, speaks about his days as an army-appointed assassin in a casual, matter-of-fact tone and offers little to dispel his tough-guy reputation. He was the leader of what he called the "killer team," a secret seven-man unit of the army in 1970 that carried out extrajudicial killings. "The assignment was to kill the leaders of communist groups all over Thailand," Pallop said.

Pallop also served as a guerrilla mercenary for the CIA along the Ho Chi Minh Trail in the 1960s.

But he is perhaps best known for his decision to raid the Krue Se mosque in southern Thailand in 2004, a controversial move that left 32 insurgents dead. The raid helped reignite the centuries-old conflict between Thai Buddhists and ethnic Malay Muslims.

"Diplomacy is not his strong point," Thitinan Pongsudhirak, director of the Institute of Security and International Studies at Chulalongkorn University, said of Pallop. "His expertise is to kill people and deal with things by force."...

05-29-2007, 11:43 AM
It's about time they started doing something in southern thailand. Hope this guys not a muslim. I understand a lot of the commanding generals are muslim, so nothing is going to get done there while they are in charge.