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  • OPINION

    'My country's got' these socio-political ills

    News, Thitinan Pongsudhirak, Published on 02/11/2018

    » The explosive Rap Against Dictatorship music video that has taken Thailand by storm has raised myriad socio-political questions and issues. Known in Thai as <i>Prathet Ku Mee</i>, the sensational music video has been viewed on YouTube more than 25 million times in just 10 days in a country of 69 million people, a feat in its own right and a record for its artistic kind in Thailand. How this five-minute rap song in the Thai language has done so much says a lot about where Thailand has been and where it is going.

  • 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.

  • OPINION

    A trade war that is about more than trade

    News, Thitinan Pongsudhirak, Published on 24/08/2018

    » The most dangerous risk from the ongoing "trade war" between the United States and China is that it is not fundamentally about trade. With each tit-for-tat escalation and retaliation from both sides, what the world is witnessing is a larger struggle between two grand competitors of the 21st century, underpinned by opposing systems of socioeconomic organisation, values and ideas about global order.

  • OPINION

    Myanmar needs new generation to lead it

    News, Thitinan Pongsudhirak, Published on 10/08/2018

    » Southeast Asia suffers from a crisis of leadership whereby the old guard are unwilling to make way for new and younger leaders to emerge through compromise and accommodation to usher in change and reform while maintaining a measure of continuity.

  • OPINION

    Singapore a lesson for subpar countries

    News, Thitinan Pongsudhirak, Published on 29/06/2018

    » It would seem a cliché to say Singapore has figured it out. But it has, more or less, especially when compared to its subpar neighbours.

  • OPINION

    A year of living dangerously in Thailand

    News, Thitinan Pongsudhirak, Published on 05/01/2018

    » They were supposed to be in power for the royal transition but they have stayed too long and now want to win an unavoidable election.

  • OPINION

    The tragedy of Thailand's Surin Pitsuwan

    News, Thitinan Pongsudhirak, Published on 15/12/2017

    » Much has been and more will be said of Dr Surin Pitsuwan's sudden and unexpected passing due to heart failure on Nov 30, at age 68, just when he appeared to be going from strength to strength after his stint in 2008-12 as Asean secretary-general. Many will also say that among the 13 heads of Asean in its 50-year history, Surin was the most effective and formidable. Indeed, he managed to speak for and champion Asean's causes and roles in Asia and the wider world even long after he left the job. No secretary-general of Asean is likely to come anywhere near the level of his eloquence, charm and charisma, the presence and confidence that his tall frame and good looks yielded. But Asean was second best for Surin. He was better than what he ended up with, unable to find professional landings commensurate with what he could bring to the job.

  • OPINION

    Dire airport, culture hub belie 'Thailand 4.0'

    News, Thitinan Pongsudhirak, Published on 17/02/2017

    » Thailand is prone to policy faddism. Several years ago, the AEC (Asean Economic Community) was all the rage until it officially came into being with a whimper at the end of 2015. Back then, hardly a day went by without some kind of a workshop or conference in Thailand about the AEC. But it all did not add up to much, as Asean today is hardly more economically integrated than it was more than a decade ago when the AEC was conceived. In fact, Asean is more internally divided and beset with more geopolitical tensions and troubles than we have seen in many years. Yet Thailand went head over heels for it until a new fad arrived.

  • OPINION

    Aftermath of Thailand's failed UNSC bid

    News, Thitinan Pongsudhirak, Published on 08/07/2016

    » Thais generally want Thailand to do well anywhere. When it comes to sports, for example, we have even learned the rules of volleyball to support our women's national team, which has shot up from nowhere to be in the global top 10. But when it comes to diplomacy, where Thailand used to be world class, local cheering recently has not led to international results.

  • OPINION

    17,410,742 Britons versus the world

    News, Thitinan Pongsudhirak, Published on 01/07/2016

    » Thailand's recent habit of rejecting voter results through denial, manipulation and contrivance is apparently a global phenomenon. When it comes to the United Kingdom's spectacular referendum decision to leave the European Union, popularly known as "Brexit", the court of world public opinion does not like what it sees. Global critics have lamented and opined widely against Brexit voters, who numbered 17,410,742, representing a 51.89% overall majority from nearly a 72% turnout. But in many ways, Brexit may just be the wake-up call that the EU sorely needs. Making the best of Brexit should now be the task at hand rather than its reversal.

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