Friday, April 03, 2009

Reference: Loophole aids identity theft, Bangkok Post, April 3, 2009

With respect to the ID card musical chairs that are possible in Thailand and the legal loopholes that were demonstrated in a recent case involving a faked death for financial gain (
Loophole aids identity theft, Bangkok Post, April 3, 2009), one should note that these loopholes are not unique to Thailand and are rather common all over Asia. As a famous example consider the case of Mr Nguyen Tat Tanh of Vietnam. While in Kunming, China, he purchased the identity card of a dead beggar named Ho Chi Minh allegedly to hide from certain embarrassing political accusations. Later in life, he maintained two identities - one as Ho Chi Minh, Communist Party supremo, and the other as Tran Dan Tien, journalist and writer. It was the very same Tran Dan Tien who was the author of the now famous interview with Ho Chi Minh. This imaginary interview became the source material for later biographies of Ho Chi Minh that served to enshrine him as a national hero. Of course this is not to say that Mr Nguyen Tat Tanh is not deserving of his hero status with or without the help of Mr Ho Chi Minh or Mr Tran Dan Tien.

Cha-am Jamal

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