Thai army chief says that there is no vaccine to cure the disease of hate

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Thailand’s Army Commander-in-Chief, General Apirat Kongsompong, told army cadets today that COVID-19 is curable, but “hating our own country is an incurable disease.”

He made the remark after asking some of the cadets, on the occasion of the 133rd anniversary of the founding of the Chulachomklao Royal Military Academy in Nakhon Nayok, whether they were afraid of being infected by the virus while they were training in Hawaii.

The army chief was apparently referring to anti-government elements, who often speak ill of the country on almost every issue.

Many former and retired alumni of the academy, among them Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha, Deputy Prime Minister Prawit Wongsuwan and privy councilors, also attended the event.

Responding to a reporter’s question about how the “disease of hate” could be cured, General Apirat said that there is no vaccine for it and the only remedy is to instill, in the minds of young Thai people, a sense of unity and patriotism.

Regarding the arrival in Thailand of about 100 US troops, for joint exercises with their Thai counterparts, the army chief said that they had strictly adhered to Thailand’s anti COVID-19 measures, have been subjected to three swab tests and have confined themselves to alternative state quarantine.

He insisted that the army has already postponed or downsized the joint exercises. For exercises which are necessary, they have been reduced, but troops need to undergo training to ensure combat readiness, he said.

 

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