May 6, 2010

Rian Dundon: The Long Haul In Bangkok

I’ll be the first to admit that, probably like most Americans, I had little idea of the issues at stake in the Red Shirt protests which have paralyzed downtown Bangkok for weeks, in distant Thailand.

The demonstrators support former Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra who was deposed by a military coup in 2006. However, this isn’t a fairly clear-cut case of people power vs. democracy, as in neighboring Burma, but rather a confusing clash of opposing personalities, because Thaksin was also accused of human rights violations during his tenure in office.

Twenty-five people were killed in clashes on April 10, and since then, the stand-off remains with little hope of easy resolution any time soon. Photographer Rian Dundon gives us a good sense here of the discipline needed for the long haul; the boredom and the exhaustion that washes over the politically committed.

–Alan Chin


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