This video from the USA says about itself:
Don’t Mess with Thailand King’s Dog
16 December 2015
James Corden looks at a few stories about animals, including a man facing a harsh sentence for insulting the first dog of Thailand and a painting seal.
These two men were both well-known persons. They died at nearly the same age: Dario Fo was 90; King Bhumibol was 88.
However, for the rest there were big differences. Dario Fo mocked oppressive authority. King Bhumibol allowed himself to be used as a symbol for oppressive authority, often wielded by cruel military dictators.
The dictatorship in Thailand meted out draconian penalties for supposed lèse majesté against the king; though the criticisms for which people were punished harshly were often not against the king, but, eg, against the king’s dog or against the military dictators.
Translated from Dutch NOS TV today:
Thai King Bhumibol is dead. This was announced by the Thai court. King Bhumibol (88), also known as Rama IX, struggled for years with poor health. …
Prayuth further said that the government will observe a mourning period of one year and for thirty days flags will hang at half-mast. …
The Thai king was the longest reigning monarch in the world. He ascended the Thai throne in 1946 after his brother had died from a gunshot wound. Who fired the bullet was never cleared up completely. Two members of the royal household got the death penalty for it. Bhumibol was crowned king in 1950.
Britain’s Queen Elizabeth (90) is now the longest reigning monarch. She has today been on the throne for 64 years and 250 days.
The death of the Thai King Bhumibol Adulyadej yesterday afternoon at the age of 88 has provoked fears in ruling circles in Thailand and internationally that the country’s protracted political crisis will worsen. The king had close ties to the armed forces and was the linchpin of the state apparatus, currently presided over by a military junta: here.
Monarchist mob threatens Thai who, long before the king’s death, had written that ‘everyone will die at some time’.
KENNY COYLE writes on the strangeness and waning support of Thailand’s King Rama X, a monarch with very few friends: here.