In late October 2010 we reported on the preliminary submission made by Robert Amsterdam, on behalf of the UDD, to the International Criminal Court.
Amsterdam will shortly be submitting an updated application to the Court. Amsterdam and his team will conduct a press conference by video link commencing at 11am on Monday, January 31 in the Meeting Hall, Imperial Lardprao.
The updated application to the Court will include a series of detailed witness statements about the events of April and May 2010, which left more than 80 red shirt protesters dead and many more injured.
One expert statement has been prepared by Joe Witty, a former US Green Beret who states that he is a trained sniper and explosives expert who has previously participated in training exercises with the Thai army. According to the statement Witty is currently employed by the Los Angeles Police Department SWAT (Special Weapons and Tactics) team and provides training within the LAPD on crowd control.
Witty has been retained by Amsterdam to prepare a detailed statement on the Thai army’s response to the red shirt protests, with a particular focus on the April 10 clash near Democracy Monument.
Witty’s full report is available here (warning: there are some graphic images). Here is the summary of his findings:
a. On April 10, 2010, the Royal Thai Army did not engage in a rational or reasonable crowd-management operation, which would necessarily have involved a genuine attempt to disperse the demonstrators without inflicting injury. Instead, the Royal Thai Army intentionally sealed off exit routes, herded the crowd into a confined area, and engaged in various illegal acts designed to provoke the crowd to violence so that the Army would appear justified in its use of deadly force against demonstrators. These illegal acts included, but are not necessarily limited to:
i. The use of highly trained military snipers to shoot unarmed demonstrators with live rounds from elevated, concealed positions, without provocation or justification;
ii. The intentional, indiscriminate discharge of military weapons, including M-16 rifles and other automatic weapons firing live rounds, directly into dense crowds of unarmed demonstrators, without provocation or justification;
iii. The intentional detonation of multiple military-grade explosive devices within the immediate vicinity of Army troops, in a deadly form of “friendly fire” designed to create the false impression that the Army was under attack by demonstrators.
b. The Royal Thai Army formally adopted rules of engagement that comport with accepted crowd management standards in order to create the false impression of reasonable conduct. However, the Thai Royal Army systematically violated its stated rules of engagement in a manner constituting criminal conduct.
c. The Royal Thai Army’s operation on April 10, 2010 was military in nature. Its objective was to kill innocent civilians, without provocation or justification, in order to suppress the Red Shirt demonstrations.
d. The Royal Thai Army repeatedly targeted unarmed civilians during the period April 10 through May 19, 2010, using deadly force in a manner that was wholly inconsistent with reasonable law enforcement standards, but rather was unprovoked, unjustified, intentional and criminal.
e. The Royal Thai Army’s operations during the period May 13-18, 2010 were military in nature. They did not comport with accepted standards of crowd management or with the Royal Thai Army’s own stated ROE, and they were criminal in nature.
f. The Royal Thai Army’s operations on May 19, 2010 were military in nature. They did not comport with accepted standards of crowd management or with the Thai Royal Army’s own stated ROE, and they were criminal in nature. They were designed to kill innocent civilians, without provocation or justification, in order to suppress the Red Shirt demonstrations. objective of the operations was to kill innocent civilians, without provocation or justification, in order to suppress the Red Shirt demonstrations.