เมืองไทย MIĀŊ-DJ
Also: ประเทศไทย Pradēś-Dj .
Officially: ราชอาณาจักรไทย Rāja-Ānācakra-Dj .
English: Thailand.
Seat of government: กรุงเทพฯ Kruŋdēb .
Status: Not democratic.
Structure: Military rgime, headed by the ranking officer. The รัฐสภา Rat‛a-Sab‛ā , which during constitutional periods is the elected parliament, is currently entirely appointed by the military.
Governing party: คณะรักษาความสงบแห่งชาติ Gana-Raksā-Gŭām-Saŋa'b-Heŋ-Jāti .
Head of government: ประยุทธ์ จันทร์โอชา Prajud(d‛a) Can(dra)-Ōjā , prime minister.
Chief electoral parties of the last parliament: พรรคเพื่อไทย Barrg-Biā-Dj (continuing ไทยรักไทย Dj-Rak-Dj and พรรคพลังประชาชน Barrg-Balaŋ-Prajājan ); พรรคประชาธิปัตย์ Barrg-Prajād‛ipat(aj) ; พรรคภูมิใจไทย Barrg-B‛ūmi-C-Dj (continuing พรรคมัชฌิมาธิปไตย Barrg-Majj‛imā-D‛ipatja ); พรรคชาติไทยพัฒนา Barrg-Jāti-Dj-Bad‛anā (continuing พรรคชาติไทย Barrg-Jāti-Dj ); พรรคชาติพัฒนา Barrg-Jāti-Bad‛anā (continuing พรรครวมใจไทยชาติพัฒนา Barrg-Rŭam-C-Dj-Jāti-Bad‛anā and พรรค เพื่อแผ่นดิน Barrg Biā-P‛en'din ).
Constitutional head of state: ภูมิพลอดุลยเดช B‛ūmibal-A'dulja'dēj , king. The king is frequently described as widely beloved, but given the oppressive lse-majest laws, no evidence on his popularity is reliable.
Assessment: Monarchy with a mixed history of military rule, constitutional democracy, and frequent mob pressure, and a recent history of power struggle in the streets. Politics has been dominated since 2001 by a conflict between the media billionaire and populist ทักษิณ ชินวัตร Daksin Jinaŭatra , his various parties and proxies, and the rural and lower-class massses on the one hand, and the military, royalist, and urban lite on the other, with their respective เสื้อแดง Siā-'Deŋ and เสื้อเหลือง Siā-Hē-Liŋ street supporters disrupting normal politics. All free elections since 2001 have been won by the ทักษิณ Daksin parties. The original party, ไทยรักไทย Dj-Rak-Dj , first won election in 2001, and ทักษิณ Daksin (2001-6) became prime minister. ไทยรักไทย Dj-Rak-Dj was reelected in 2005, winning about four-fifths of parliamentary seats; under mounting opposition and scandal, a new election was held in 2006. An opposition boycott gave ไทยรักไทย Dj-Rak-Dj all of the valid seats in parliament, but numerous seats without a valid mandate, blocking the convention of parliament. ทักษิณ Daksin announced his intention to resign as prime minister when a replacement was found; his deputy ชิดชัย วรรณสถิตย์ Ji'djaj Ŭarrnasat‛it(ja) temporarily acted as prime minister, but ทักษิณ Daksin later resumed control. The constitutional court invalidated the election; a new vote was scheduled for the fall. The military overthrew the government while ทักษิณ Daksin was out of the country, and subsequently banned all political-party activity. Though สุรยุทธ จุลานนท์ Surajudad‛ Culānan(da) (army commander 1998-2002, PM 2006-8) became the official prime minister, สนธิ บุญยรัตกลิน Sand‛i Bujaratkalin (army commander 2005-7, head of government 2006-8) wielded more power, even in the post of deputy prime minister, while royal advisor เปรม ติณสูลานนท์ Prēm Tinsulānan(da) (army commander 1978-81, PM 1980-8) was also influential. พรรค ไทยรักไทย Barrg Dj-Rak-Dj was ordered disbanded after a corruption ruling; ทักษิณ Daksin and a hundred others were banned from office for five years. A new constitution was officially approved in a referendum; elections held in 2007 gave the pro-ทักษิณ Daksin พรรคพลังประชาชน Barrg-Balaŋ-Prajājan a plurality; it formed a broad governing coalition with สมัคร สุนทรเวช Samagr Sundaraŭēj (2008) as prime minister. ทักษิณ Daksin s opponents on both political extremes agitated for the governments removal, and specifically the removal of สมัคร Samagr , rejecting any democratic solution, and specifically calling for an unelected parliament. A court, meanwhile, ordered สมัคร Samagr to stand down as prime minister for taking outside employment for the first two months; his party renominated him but withdrew the nomination after coalition objections, turning instead to สมชาย วงศ์สวัสดิ์ Samjāj Ŭaŋ(ś)-Saŭas(a'di) (2008), who as a brother-in-law of ทักษิณ Daksin faced similar problems. In late 2008, the constitutional court disbanded พรรคพลังประชาชน Barrg-Balaŋ-Prajājan , พรรคชาติไทย Barrg-Jāti-Dj , and พรรคมัชฌิมาธิปไตย Barrg-Majj‛imā-D‛ipatja , and banned their leaders for five years, including สมชาย Samjāj . Subsequent parliamentary defections to the opposition led to a transfer of power; พรรคประชาธิปัตย์ Barrg-Prajād‛ipat(aj) leader อภิสิทธิ์ เวชชาชีวะ Ab‛isid(ad‛i) Ŭējjājīŭa (2008-11) became prime minister, though the real power was the พันธมิตรประชาชนเพื่อประชาธิปไตย Band‛amitra-Prajājana-Biā-Prajā-D‛ipatja , led by สนธิ ลิ้มทองกุล Sand‛i Līmdāŋkul , which had driven opposition to the ทักษิณ Daksin forces since 2005. Elections in 2011 led to a new government led by ยิ่งลักษณ์ ชินวัตร Jīŋlak(san) Jinaŭatra (2011-4), ทักษิณ Daksin s sister, with a coalition of her own พรรคเพื่อไทย Barrg-Biā-Dj , พรรคชาติไทย Barrg-Jāti-Dj , พรรค เพื่อแผ่นดิน Barrg Biā-P‛en'din , พรรครวมใจไทยชาติพัฒนา Barrg-Rŭam-C-Dj-Jāti-Bad‛anā , พรรคมัชฌิมาธิปไตย Barrg-Majj‛imā-D‛ipatja , and พรรคประชาราช Barrg-Prajā-Rāja . Street and court contests against the government resumed, including personal prosecution of ยิ่งลักษณ์ Jīŋlak(san) on bogus charges of corruption; she was dismissed by the constitutional court in 2014, followed shortly by a coup led by ประยุทธ์ Prajud(d‛a) , (army commander 2010-4, PM 2014-), who first declared martial law and replaced the constitutional state, then in 2015 formally assumed complete power.
FH: 4-4, partly free (democratic). Econ: 6.55 (58), flawed democracy.
Updated: 2015 April 3.
 

O.T. FORD