Opinion > All-Article
22 Dec 2013 : The first really good news concerning diplomatic relations in East Asia in some time came out on Friday with the announcement that Japan's foreign minister and the Chinese envoy had met and had what was termed a "friendly" discussion. There were no details of the topics discussed but Japanese Foreign Minister Fumio Kishida said afterwards that he and the Chinese ambassador, Cheng Yonghua, had "meaningful exchanges" based on their "mutually beneficial relationship". It may be a small thing, but anything to get the ball rolling toward greater diplomacy and peaceful negotiations between the two Asian powers is highly welcome, and hopefully a meeting between their leaders, Japan's Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and Chinese President Xi Jinping, will also soon be in the offing.
22 Dec 2013 : In his letter to PostBag on Thursday (''Pheu Thai must win trust''), Burin Kantabutra asks readers how Pheu Thai can earn the trust of anti-government protesters prior to the election.
12 Nov 2013 : Monday, Nov 25 marks the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women, as designated by the UN. The commemoration serves to raise awareness as well as encourage action to end all forms of violence against women, be it domestic abuse, rape, genital mutilation or human trafficking. The list is endless. Abuse against women is the most prevalent form of human rights abuse.
11 Nov 2013 : There is a lot of trepidation surrounding today's reading of the Preah Vihear verdict at the International Court of Justice. The ICJ will assemble this afternoon for what one hopes will be the last time on this issue. Since both countries have agreed to put the problem before the ICJ, they have no option except to accept the legal decision and move ahead.
11 Nov 2013 : There is something odd and disturbing about the conventional wisdom surrounding the Third Plenum of the 18th Central Committee of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP). As the Nov 9-12 conclave is taking place, the international community's attention seems to be focused mainly on technocratic policy changes deemed essential to restructuring China's state-dominated economy and re-energising growth.
11 Nov 2013 : Re: ''Reds kick off pro-govt rallies'' BP, Nov 9. The anti-government groups have done a great job. They have succeeded in blocking the abuse of majority rule by the Pheu Thai-led government.
11 Nov 2013 : Two important events which will have consequences for the country are to take place today. The first is that the Senate is due to deliberate the first reading of the widely-condemned blanket amnesty bill. It seems definite that the bill will be rejected as all signs from the government and Senate Speaker Nikhom Wairatpanich have pointed to that direction.
11 Nov 2013 : There is one particular minute that indisputably defines Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra's stance on corruption.
11 Nov 2013 : Should we take Thai politics seriously, given the fact that the current struggle over the controversial amnesty bill reveals nothing but a great sense of irony?
11 Nov 2013 : This week, governments are gathering in Warsaw for a crucial round of climate negotiations, with both expectation and ambition running at an all-time low. But it does not have to be like this: the Warsaw meeting provides an opportunity to galvanise action on one of the most potent forces driving climate change _ the billions of dollars spent by governments on fossil-fuel subsidies.
11 Nov 2013 : The trauma of moving house has been slightly softened by the novelty of a new neighbourhood.
10 Nov 2013 : With all the controversy raging over the amnesty bill and speculation over tomorrow's verdict from the International Court of Justice (ICJ) on the 4.6km2 zone around the Preah Vihear temple on the Thai-Cambodian border, there isn't much news space, much less government action, left for anything else. This is unfortunate because in a very real sense both of these problems are manufactured. That's not to say they aren't real problems and ones that could become much greater than they already are, nor that the protesters who have been filling the streets in the past week are wrong to do so. But regarding both the amnesty bill controversy and Preah Vihear, these are problems that can be solved fairly easily with a little wisdom and compromise, and hopefully that will yet turn out to be the case.