Special Circumstances

17 Jul 2015
Khaosod English just reported General Prayuth Chan-ocha’s lecture to a group of young Thais who were raised abroad on the importance of revering HM the King, who he described as like a "deity", presumably the sammuti devaraja concept or ‘quasi god king’, which derives from Hinduism but which has parallels, though not exact, in the pre-World War II Japanese concept of the ‘Emperor as God’, wherein the Japanese Emperor claimed direct lineage from the gods.
16 Jul 2015
Dear Dao Din Students,
9 Jul 2015
Before anyone can hope to comprehend Thailand’s performance in terms of human rights and therefore have the temerity to develop policy implications, it is necessary to first understand the obstacles that have to be overcome in their totality. In fact, in the situation Thailand is currently facing, the problems appear to be enormous, and the concepts involved are huge and widely discussed, with a massive associated academic literature.
1 Jul 2015
This analysis is based on a Business Insider column earlier this year about preparations for the demise of Queen Elizabeth II of England (my Queen, as I am British). Of course, it is rude to discuss the impending death of anyone in polite society, yet the case of a monarch in an advanced Western democracy presents special circumstances.
29 Jun 2015
The story of embattled human rights activist Sombat Boonngam-anong, aka Nuling or the Polka Dot Editor, is now reaching the international media. Currently being persecuted by the Thai state in what has become an absolute military dictatorship due to General Prayut invoking Section 44 of the Interim Charter, Sombat is facing approximately five charges, including the possibility of lèse majesté (Section 112).
20 Jun 2015
The International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) on Thursday 18th June "red flagged" Thailand over major safety concerns within the country's aviation system due to its failure to reform the sector within 90 days, following an earlier warning in March. The ICAO is a United Nations agency tasked with overseeing the world’s management of air safety, air navigation capacity and efficiency, security, the economic development of air transport, and environmental protection.
16 Jun 2015
HBO's Last Week Tonight with John Oliver from June 1st, 2015, includes a major segment on the use of images of Hitler in Thailand: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Wraq6VnXmGo
9 Jun 2015
“The road to hell is paved with good intentions” is a traditional English proverb.
13 May 2015
The Crown Property Bureau (CPB) is one of Thailand’s most revered yet opaque financial institutions. In recent years, however, there have been moves, including by the CPB itself, to increase transparency and discussion of the CPB in the public sphere. Most recently, at a March seminar sponsored by the Institute of Southeast Asian Studies in Singapore, Associate Professor Dr.
26 Apr 2015
In the draft constitution, there is no explicit mention of minorities or minority rights, making this constitution the only one in ASEAN to not have a provision for such rights.
10 Apr 2015
Prachatai recently carried a column by this author suggesting, based on this column by the Bangkok Pundit in association with Allen Hicken of www.thaidatapoints.com, that over 30 mountain peoples in the North, as well as the approximately six million Khon Mueang, would be disenfranchised in the proposed MMP party list (not constituency) system to the extent that the vote of an
2 Apr 2015
  The Bangkok Pundit, in partnership with thaidatapoints.com, has just published a


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