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  • OPINION

    Global turmoil and Thailand's political reset

    News, Thitinan Pongsudhirak, Published on 21/12/2018

    » As the world moves into 2019, there is a consensus that the roughly seven-decade-old rules-based liberal international order no longer works. Either it has to be fundamentally revamped to suit new realities and the international distribution of power and wealth, or it will be increasingly violated and marginalised. In a remarkable parallel, Thailand's hitherto political order that lasted about seven decades also requires adjustment and recalibration.

  • OPINION

    Global disarray as institutions falter

    News, Thitinan Pongsudhirak, Published on 17/08/2015

    » The international system as we know it is unravelling. Rules and institutions that were set up seven decades ago no longer hold the same weight and authority as they used to. As we grapple with an exacerbating global disorder, established powers and players and old rules and institutions need to be revamped and reinvented to accommodate new realities. Otherwise global tensions will mount, most probably accompanied by confrontation and conflict.

  • OPINION

    Semantics and Thailand's political divide

    News, Thitinan Pongsudhirak, Published on 25/09/2015

    » Language can be about power as much as communication. It can tear societies apart or bring them together, depending on its design and application.

  • OPINION

    New cabinet puts power grab on display

    News, Thitinan Pongsudhirak, Published on 12/07/2019

    » As if to remind the Thai public of what the past five years of military-authoritarian rule has been all about, the first post-election cabinet under Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha now represents the full manifestation of what was no less than a power grab.

  • OPINION

    The evolving Thai political fault lines

    News, Thitinan Pongsudhirak, Published on 05/07/2019

    » Over the past five years under military government, it is clear that Thailand's political polarisation has not been bridged. It has, in fact, expanded into new fault lines. Apart from the longstanding yellows versus reds revolving around supporters and critics of the established political order premised on military, monarchy and bureaucracy, we now have a clear demarcation between pro- and anti-junta and authoritarianism versus democratisation camps. Newer fault lines are generational and ideological in orientation. While some of these divisions are global in nature, bringing them in line towards a new consensus in Thailand will necessitate a kind of leadership and compromise without which the country will be unsettled for the long term.

  • OPINION

    What went wrong for the Democrats?

    News, Thitinan Pongsudhirak, Published on 07/06/2019

    » It is hard to believe today that Thailand's Democrat Party was widely worth rooting for not so long ago. In past eras of military-authoritarianism, Democrat MPs used to be seen as a force for good, pitted against ruling generals in support of popular rule. Somehow during the current military regime that dates back to the September 2006 coup, Thailand's oldest party has tilted away from democracy towards authoritarianism. But just as the party is demoralised and in disarray, it offers a silver lining in new and fresh faces that could offer a way forward if party elders are willing to step aside.

  • OPINION

    Thailand's lessons from the Prem years

    News, Thitinan Pongsudhirak, Published on 31/05/2019

    » In a galloping world of communications instantaneity, Gen Prem Tinsulanonda's passing earlier this week is likely to be framed by popular expectations and grievances so far in the 21st century rather than the conditions and circumstances of the 20th century where most of the late elder statesman's life was rooted.

  • OPINION

    5 years backwards under military rule

    News, Thitinan Pongsudhirak, Published on 24/05/2019

    » Now that five years have elapsed since Thailand's last military coup, it is an opportune juncture to take stock of where the country is heading. When it seized power in May 2014, the military junta, known as the National Council for Peace and Order, initially had legitimacy from royal ascent and broad approval from its restoration of stability and order after more than half a year of street protests in Bangkok by the People's Democratic Reform Committee that was intent on overthrowing the Pheu Thai government.

  • OPINION

    Anti-regime? Join the opposition ranks

    News, Thitinan Pongsudhirak, Published on 17/05/2019

    » Five years after it seized power in May 2014, Thailand's military junta, known as the National Council for Peace and Order (NCPO), has achieved what it envisaged.

  • OPINION

    Poll results point to clear way forward

    News, Thitinan Pongsudhirak, Published on 26/04/2019

    » Despite the controversy and confusion over Thailand's March 24 election outcome, its immediate and far-reaching implications are indisputable.

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