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From Pattaya with Love, or How To Win Friends and Taser People!

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A training session held last week on Wednesday, June 22, on Jomtien Beach has convinced anyone that public relations are not a strong characteristic in the ranks of the Pattaya Police. Thanks to Adam and The Pattaya News for the video and pics.

The display was an apparent demonstration of the skills of Pattaya police to be able to handle a rogue foreigner with a knife.

Just out of the blocks, they would be well directed at checking the number of rogue Thais with knives before getting too worried about offenders from overseas. But this time it was a foreign assailant playing the bad guy.

So how did they deal with an armed, drunk, and aggressive foreign tourist?

Armed with a plastic shield, a couple of 2 metre-long grappling hooks, and a pair of Segways, five police showed the onlookers how they would subdue this ‘dirty farang’ armed with a knife.

To their credit, the police advised passers-by of their theatrical performance. The pre-performance announcement didn’t make it any less humorous.

From Pattaya with Love, or How To Win Friends and Taser People! | News by Thaiger

The following played out like a crime recreation performed by a theatre group of 12 year olds dressed in brown.

The scenario showed the foreigner (whose acting skills weren’t much better), brandishing a knife and then, almost politely, falling to the ground as the brave boys-in-brown ’subdued’ him… well, gently placed the grappling hook on him. Perhaps he was a HEAVILY SEDATED armed, drunk and aggressive foreign tourist.

The ‘hooks’ appear to be created as a bespoke defensive weapon by a local metalworker who had a few metres of 25mm steel tube left over. If the ‘poles’ had been attached to a 20,000 volt battery they might have been useful.

As it was, a real situation would have had a lot more shouting and a more mobile attacker. Any self-respecting, knife-wielding attacker would have charged at them before the police could even get their walkie-talkies out of their pockets. I’m 63 and would have had them all on the ground before they figured out which end to hold onto their fangled, new ‘pole tool’.

From Pattaya with Love, or How To Win Friends and Taser People! | News by Thaiger

Or, hello, perhaps mace spray or a taser, available on Lazada, would have solved the problem in approximately 10 seconds rather than this bewildering display of “it-will-never-happen-like-this-in-real-life” performance.

Or I would have turned and run away. Armed with full Kevlar vests, bike helmets, tight-fitting brown uniforms, and big black leather boots from a Noddy storybook, the police would have been stuck at the start-line with the ‘offender’ long gone.

During Covid 19 the Thai government proudly rolled out their precautions for the pandemic with face masks, meeting arrivals in full PPE, infrared temperature checking, plenty of paperwork, imprisoning foreigners who test positive (at their cost), and taking every opportunity to shove a probe up our noses.

All this was meant to reinforce our faith in the Thai government to handle the pandemic. In most cases, it projected the exact opposite. It just made Covid scary.

Last week’s demonstration had the same unintended effect. Rather than providing us with confidence in the local police to handle a menacing situation, this farce was more comedy than good PR, more Keystone Cops than Pattaya Police. Then again, in some countries, the police would have shot the ‘foreigner’ before he even got a chance to get his knife out.

The entire performance had a happy ending with the miscreant being skilfully apprehended by the Pattaya Police.

From Pattaya with Love, or How To Win Friends and Taser People! | News by Thaiger

Please enjoy the entire perforce here…

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Tim Newton has lived in Thailand since 2011. An Australian, he has worked in the media, principally radio and TV, for 42 years. He has won the Deutsche Welle Award for best radio talk program (public radio Australia), presented over 11,000 radio news bulletins, 3,950 in Thailand alone, hosted 1050 daily TV news programs and produced 2,100 videos, TV commercials and documentaries. He also reported for CNN, Deutsche Welle TV, CBC, Australia's ABC TV and Australian radio during the 2018 Cave Rescue and other major stories in Thailand.

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