Putting Yingluck’s Populist Foreign Policy in Perspective

Putting Yingluck’s Populist Foreign Policy in Perspective – The Irrawaddy, September 7, 2011
…Populism is nothing new to Thai politics, differing between governments only in terms of scale and consistency. In response to the new regional political landscape in 1975, the 1975-76 government led by former prime minister Kukrit Pramoj’s Social Action Party was the first to infuse a populist agenda into domestic and foreign-policy realms. With the anti-US sentiment inflamed by the 1973 bloodbath still high, Kukrit’s first move was to ask US forces to leave Thailand and to shut down their air bases. He also set forth the country’s foreign policy towards Asean, whose potential to counter major powers and improve the bargaining power of its small-nation members he greatly valued. He often urged the Thai people to understand themselves and neighboring countries, both near and far…

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