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‘Hunger Games’ three-finger salute adopted by Thai protesters (PHOTOS)

Published time: June 03, 2014 10:14
Edited time: June 03, 2014 13:33
Screenshot from the film Hunger Games (left). Photo of anti-coup protesters on June 1 taken from Twitter user Nok_KN (right).

Screenshot from the film Hunger Games (left). Photo of anti-coup protesters on June 1 taken from Twitter user Nok_KN (right).

Protesters in Thailand have been seen adopting the 3-fingered salute from the film “Hunger Games” as a mark of silent defiance against the military government. Thai officials are reportedly considering arresting citizens who make the three-finger salute.

Photos of Thai protesters raising three fingers in protesters have taken social media by storm under the hashtag #ThaiCoup. One activist tweeted a photo of himself making the salute, claiming to be inspired by the Hollywood film.

The movie is based on the novel of the same name by Suzanne Collins which is set in a dystopian future where adolescents are forced to fight to the death in yearly “Hunger Games” to entertain the population of the fictional state of Panam. The three-finger gesture is used in the film as a show of defiance against Panam’s authoritarian rulers.

Protesters against military rule gesture by holding up their three middle fingers in the air, during a brief demonstration at a shopping mall in Bangkok June 1, 2014 (Reuters / Erik De Castro)

However, there is some divergence in the meaning of the salute in Thailand. Thai newspaper the Bangkok post writes that the three fingers stand for the slogan of the French Revolution – liberty, equality and brotherhood.

Either way, the gesture is quickly becoming adopted as a symbol of silent protest against the military leaders who took control of Thailand in a coup on May 22, banning protests and instituting martial law.

Defying the ban, thousands of people took to the streets over the weekend, calling for democratic elections. Many of the protesters made the three-fingered salute and one woman was detained for making the gesture at police, the Bangkok Post reported.

Protesters take part in a brief protest against military rule at Thammasat University in Bangkok June 1, 2014 (Reuters / Chaiwat Subprasom)

Army deputy spokesman Colonel Winthai Suwaree, for the military’s National Council for Peace and Order (NCPO), says the junta is currently looking into whether it should classify the gesture as a sign of protest and therefore a criminal offense under the ban.

“[The NCPO] must look at their intention, what they want to communicate and surrounding circumstances,” Winthai said.

The unrest in Thailand has been going on for the last several months and began with mass protests calling for the resignation of former Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra. She has since been detained by the junta and remains in custody along with hundreds of political activists.

Yingluck’s lawyer has decried the military coup as “illegal” and warned it could lead to a dangerous power divide.

Protesters against military rule gesture by holding up their three middle fingers in the air, during a brief demonstration at a shopping mall in Bangkok June 1, 2014 (Reuters / Erik De Castro)

Comments (9)

 

Sein Clearly 05.06.2014 10:29

The Scouts salute is bent arm. The staged pro Thaksin supporters straight arm salute resembles the Nazis salute. Didn’t Hitler come from winning a corrupt democratic election?

 

Klaas van der Vlag 04.06.2014 06:35

Basically the politic system is the problem. The military has a unique opportunity to create real change in Thailand by getting rid of the political system, and replace them with a system where people with integrity and knowledge can run the country for the good of all, without the pressure of political interference.

 

thirumal srikantha 04.06.2014 06:22

ah...V finger saluters group organized themselves and now running new image of 'three' finger salute 'request' are they...?
Google thiruvalluvar statue in kanyakumari as example of three finger 'request'...request as in 'act in balance'...its an ancient symbol...nothing is exempt these day to promote self deceit to others while serving self...

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