Thailand has always been a peaceful, prosperous nation and one of the most-favored tourist destinations in Southeast Asia. It was one of the first countries to recover from the Asian Financial Crisis of 1997-1998.
In the past few years, however, Thailand fell into a series of political crises, namely the conflict in Muslim-majority Southern Thailand and the toppling of Thaksin Sinawatra—the most popular prime minister in modern Thai history—in September 2006.
While Thaksin was living in exile, the government of Thailand was in the hands of military leaders who ousted him. In December 2006, an election took place, and the People Power Party (PPP), a reincarnation of Thaksin's disbanded Thai Rak Thai (Thais Love Thais) political juggernaut won. But Prime Minister Samak Sundaravej is under attack by opposition leaders as a puppet of Thaksin, and a coup in the near future to overthrow Thailand's current government is not impossible.
This book will help readers understand the causes of these events and give them a sense of Thailand's political future. With contributions from experts and a reader-friendly structure, this book is a most timely, comprehensive and insightful reading for academics, students, investors, diplomats and anyone who is interested in the politics of Thailand.