BANGKOK (Reuters) - A soldier smiles awkwardly as a woman hands him a flower and kisses his cheek. Farmers hold signs praising Thailand's military and a song plays out on radio stations urging love, peace and unity.
This is a slice of the daily staple of propaganda from a junta determined to win hearts and minds and reassure Thais their country is in safe hands, on the road to recovery a week after a coup it said it staged to prevent a descent into chaos.
The National Council for Peace and Order (NCPO), as the junta is formally known, has been mixing soft power with rigorous security and censorship, asserting its influence over the airwaves while gagging independent media and warning the press against negative coverage of the armed forces.
Terrestrial television has been dominated by light-hearted images of a supportive public donating snacks to troops and posing with them for "selfie" photos. Recruitment advertisements for a mighty army have been ramped up, sandwiched between commercials for car batteries and fertilizer.
Via Yahoo News. More at link. http://news.yahoo.com/thai-army-seeks-hearts-minds-smiles-stickers-selfies-103414677--finance.html