Something Fishy with Thailand’s Fishing Industry

Something Fishy with Thailand’s Fishing IndustryThailand’s military rulers are making another effort to sidetrack European Union threats to hand out a “red card” to the Thai fishing industry for illegal fishing – and the trafficking and labor abuse which are also widespread. In a curious reflection on the competence of Thai armed forces, the junta has sacked the navy chief…

Leicester City Cinderella Story Authored by Thai Oligarch

Leicester City Cinderella Story Authored by Thai OligarchThe discourse of “The Little Club That Could” – Leicester City, which went from near relegation to the top of world football – is beguiling. When an emotional fan broke down on the BBC last year after a Leicester City Foxes victory, it became a news story. The manager recently cried on the field; and the…

Thailand: Making Merit While Escaping the Law

Thailand: Making Merit While Escaping the LawIn October of 1973, amid a storm of nationwide protest, Thanom Kittachikorn, the Thai field marshal who appointed himself the commander in chief of the army and ran a deeply repressive government from 1963, was forced to flee a student uprising. For three years, he remained in exile in the United States, finally returning in…

Thai Facebook Users Under Threat

Thai Facebook Users Under ThreatFacebook has successfully monopolized the social media space in Thailand for more than a decade. Among Thailand’s 67 million people, 28 million are on Facebook. In 2012, reportedly, Bangkok topped the “Global Facebook City List,” having some 8.68 million users, more than any other major city such as New York or London. Now that Thailand…

Thai Junta to Prosecute Corruption Protesters

Thai Junta to Prosecute Corruption ProtestersIn November of last year, the junta that took power in Thailand in May of 2014 was faced with an embarrassing scandal, not only because of the corruption involved but because it involves the inflated price of construction of a park to venerate the country’s seven Chakri Dynasty kings from the Sukhothai era to the…

Thailand Expats Rattled by New Visa Form

Thailand Expats Rattled by New Visa FormMany members of Thailand’s vast expatriate community are up in arms over a three-page Immigration Bureau form introduced recently, asking for a wide range of personal information and raising fears that critics or people the military doesn’t like may be targeted. The information the government is asking for includes bank details, all social media used…

Thai New Year Awash in Groping and Road Deaths

Thai New Year Awash in Groping and Road DeathsOn the first day of Songkran this year, Thailand’s three-day lunar new year celebration and festival, 52 people died in car crashes and another 421 were hurt in nearly 400 road accidents as a combination of speeding and drunk driving took its toll. Even without Songkran, Thailand has the world’s second-highest death toll per million…

Thailand’s Junta Tightens the Screws on Shinawatra Country

Thailand’s Junta Tightens the Screws on Shinawatra CountryA year and a half after Thailand’s junta seized power, the so-called Isaan region – the  northeast that formed the power base of the Shinawatra clan – has seen rights curtailed, land stolen and the military aiding the powerful in stealing resources, according to an explosive new report by Thai Lawyers for Human Rights. “High-profile…

Latest Thai Constitution Draft a Non-Starter

Latest Thai Constitution Draft a Non-StarterIt is a measure of the Thai junta’s distrust of the country’s wider populace that the National Council for Peace and Order, with the aid of the country’s election commission, has banned public criticism or the ability to campaign against a referendum on the latest version of the Constitution promulgated by the junta’s drafting committee.…

Thai Junta Turns Law Enforcement Over to Soldiers

Thai Junta Turns Law Enforcement Over to SoldiersThailand’s junta – the National Council for Peace and Order – has pushed through a new directive that essentially puts army second lieutenants in charge of the entire criminal and civil code, giving them the power to summon, arrest and detain suspects without search warrants and without court oversight. The order was issued on March…