BANGKOK, Thailand — For a time during the dark, stormy night it was feared that rival military factions might clash on the rain-swept streets of Thailand’s sprawling capital for control of the city following a coup during Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra’s absence at the UN General Assembly. But by dawn Wednesday it became apparent that despite calls by Thaksin in New York for the arrest of the coup leaders, no one was riding to his rescue. Pro-Thaksin elements in the military, police and political hierarchy, including the army supreme commander who had talked directly with the mercurial political leader by [...]
Six weeks in hell — or, more precisely, in Helmand Province in southern Afghanistan. That sums up the brutal fighting endured by the NATO troops who took over from U.S. troops in the area at the end of July. But while British, Canadian and Dutch troops have had an unexpectedly hot reception, pleas from the area British commander calling for other NATO countries to “pull their weight” and commit 2,500 more troops to the southern war have fallen on deaf ears. Though 1,000 more Polish troops were announced last week as “on way” to the region, it had nothing to [...]
BANGOK, Thailand — The shadow of China and India looming over them is propelling ten much smaller nations of Southeast Asia to fast-track their heady dream of creating a European-style union — a single market and, perhaps, some form of political cohesiveness. The prospects are tantalizingly attractive: a region of 530 million people stretching from the Bay of Bengal and the borders of India to the west Pacific, competing against the economic juggernauts of China and India for foreign investment and a place at the global decision-making dinner table, instead of being one of the dishes. But a new target [...]
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