History of Thailand
Ban Chiang is an archeological site of the North-East of Thailand, close to Udon Thani. In 1967 vestiges of an unknown culture were discovered there dating from the old Bronze Age from 2500 to 4000 years front J. - C.Les inhabitants of this site, had developed bronze tools and had begun the culture of rice in rice plantation what indicates the beginning of a company organized. Burials and a great number of painted potteries and objects out of later bronzes were put at the day. The site is classified World heritage of UNESCO in 1992.
Before the arrival of the Thais
Insane-nan and Chen itAt the 3rd century, a known power maritime only by the name that give him the Chinese texts, the Insane-nan , whose economic center were located in the current area of Oc-Eo in the south of the Vietnam, control south of Vietnam, the low valley of the river Chao Phraya and the north of the Malayan Péninsule. Description that the report of a Chinese mission come between 245 and 250 gives some, which described them like " all ugly and black with curly hair, energy naked and naked-pied" , it is thought that the inhabitants of Insane-nan was ethniquement Khmer.
At the end of the 5th century appears, in the south of current the Laos, a new power, agrarian this one, and also known only by its Chinese name: Chen it. This kingdom extends soon on north from the current Kampuchea and the North-East of what is now Thailand, and ends up annexing the Insaneone. It is considered that Chen is to it the ancestor of Kampuchea.
This vast area (equivalent of Indo-China minus the Dai-Vietnamese soldier) was known by the foreigners like Sovannaphum or Sovarnabhumi.
MonsBetween, the civilization which one calls Dvaravati opens out on a territory located in the center of Thailand (see Indianisation of the Indochinese peninsula). This civilization belongs to people, the Mons, which populate an area active of low the Burma in the north of the Malayan peninsula. The dispersion of the sites allotted to Dvaravati carries out to think that its prosperity is related to the trade which furrows the continental Southeast Asia.
With, Mons base on the site of the current city of Lamphun the kingdom of Haripunjaya, which maintenance until the 13th century.
India, that one calls sometimes the Sea route of silk. The harbor city-States of the peninsula adopt cultural and political models Indian (see Indianisation of Indonesia). Chinese texts of the 3rd century after J. - C. mention a city which they call Dun-sun, located in the north of the peninsula, which controls the two coasts.
More in the south, one found, close to the current city of Chaiya, of the vestiges which one dated from the beginning of the 5th century and pertaining to a city that the Chinese texts call Side-side.
In Chaiya even, one found an inscription gone back to 697 of the era Saka (either 775 close J. - C.), which proclaims that a king of Sriwijaya, city-State whose site was on the current town of Palembang in the south of the island Indonesia of Sumatra, set up a Stupa there.
Angkor (see Histoire of Kampuchea), gradually take the control of the whole of the continental Southeast Asia, imposing their domination on their cousins the My.
At that time, of first Thai groups of , coming from the southernmost China, starts to be established in the septentrional steps of the Khmer Empire, in the north of the Dangrek mounts. During the S, the Thai element becomes dominating in the population of the area.
Kingdoms of Sukhothai and Lannathai (± 1238 - 1558)
According to the tradition, the Thai chiefs of clan of Sukhothai free themselves from the suzerainty of the Khmer in 1238 and elect a king. The son of this king, Rama Khamhaeng (Ramkhamhaeng), is known by an inscription gone back to 1292, that the Thais regard as the founding document of their nation. After its death, the capacity of Sukhothai declined and became prone kingdom of Ayutthaya in 1365, which dominated southernmost and central Thailand until 1700.
Many of other Thai States coexisted with Sukhothai, in particular the kingdom of Lannathai or Lanna in north. This State emerged at the same period that Sukhothai, but survived longer. Its independent history it is finished in 1558, when it fell to the hands from the Burmese , it was dominated by Burma and Ayutthaya alternatively before falling to the hands from the army from Siamese King Taksin in 1775.
The kingdom of Ayutthaya (1350 - 1767)
See also: the Kingdom of Ayutthaya
The first sovereign of Ayutthaya, the king Ramathibodi I, contributes two important shares to the history of Thailand: establishment and the promotion of the Buddhism theravāda like official religion, to differentiate its kingdom from the Hindu kingdom close to Angkor, and the compilation of the Dharmashastra , a legal code based on Hindu sources and traditional habits thaïes. Dharmashastra is remained an instrument of the law thaïe until the end of the 19th century.
Ayutthaya has contacts with the Occident, to start with the Portuguese at the 16th century. But until in the years 1800, they are its relationships to the close nations like the India and the China which are paramount. Ayutthaya controls a considerable territory, energy of the kingdoms of the north of the Malayan Péninsule in the States of the north of Thailand. Nevertheless, the Burmese , which control the kingdom of Lanna and also unified their kingdom under a powerful dynasty, launch several attempts at invasion in the years 1750 and 1760. Finally, in 1767, the Burmeses attack the town of Ayutthaya and conquer it. The royal family flees the city where the king dies of hunger ten days later, marking the end of the royal line of Ayutthaya.
The period of Bangkok, Thonburi (1768-1932)
After more than 400 years of power, in 1767, the kingdom of Ayutthaya is conquered by the Burmese armies , its burnt capital and its dismembered territory. The Taksin general manages to reunify the kingdom of Siam starting from his new capital of Thonburi and is made proclaim king in 1769.
However, the king Taksin is declared allegedly insane, dispossessed of its title, fact captive and carried out in 1782. The Chakri general succeeds to him in 1782 with the title of king Rama I, first king of the dynasty Chakri. The same year, it bases the new capital of Bangkok, on other bank of the river Chao Phraya vis-a-vis Thonburi.
In the years 1790, the Burmeses are demolished and driven out of Siam. The kingdom of Lannathai, also called kingdom of Lanna, being also removed from the Burmese occupation, a king of a new dynasty is installed there in the years 1790. This king is actually only one puppet of king Chakri.
Relations with Europeans at the 19th centuryAfter the victory of the English over the Burmese kingdom of Ava in 1826, the heirs to Rowed I worry about the threat of European colonialism. The first recognition thaïe of a colonial power in the area is formalized by the signature of a treaty of friendship and trade with the the United Kingdom in 1826, the Traité Burney .
In 1833, the the United States inaugurate diplomatic exchanges with the Siam, name which the kingdom carried until 1939, and again between 1945 and 1949. However, it is during the reigns of the king Chulalongkorn, and its father the king Mongkut that Thailand established a firm bringing together with western powers. The Thais consider that diplomatic qualities of these monarchs, added to the modern reforms of the Siamese government, made of Siam the only country in Southeast Asia avoid colonization.
Gradually, at the 19th century, Siam moves back vis-a-vis two European powers: the the United Kingdom and the France. These two powers nibble Siam, at the same time territorialement on its margins, and its sovereignty.
France, in 1873 and 1883, intervenes twice to put an end to the hacking black Pavillons in the Tonkin, theoretically under Protectorat Siamese. In reaction, Siam occupies Luang Prabang in 1883, but the installation of a vice-consulship French in this city in 1886 (Auguste Pavia cannot prevent), nor the annexation in 1888 of 72 cantons by France.
In 1893, several incidents oppose Siam and France: either this one causes them, or it exaggerates their importance, thus making assemble the pressure, until the illegal sending of two Canonnière S with the mouth of the river Chao Phraya, whose captains announce their intention to go up until Bangkok. Siam puts itself in wrong by opening fire: the casus belli is seized by the French resident in Bangkok, Pavia. This one requires the abandonment of Eastern bank of the Mekong; a Blocus is set up at the mouth of Chao Phraya. Siam yields, and France adds to its requirements a 25 km broad demilitarized zone along Western bank of Mekong, plus the provinces of Battambang and Siam Reap. The town of Chanthaburi is occupied by a French garrison (treaty signed on October 3rd, 1893).
February 13rd, 1904, France annexes Luang Prabang and Champassak.
English side, provinces are joined together with the Burma. The Railroad towards Singapore is conceded of exclusiveness at a British company. The United Kingdom obtains moreover the insurance that no channel will be bored in the Isthme of Kra.
The anglo-Siamese Traité of 1909 establishes the modern border between Siam and the British Malaysia. Siam must yield to England the Malayan states of Kedah, Kelantan, Perlis and Terengganu, until there its vassal and which becomes British protectorates. Suzerainty thaïe is maintained on the Royaume of Patani (divided since to give the provinces of Pattani, Yala, Narathiwat) and the district of Setul, detached from Kedah (and become since the province of Satun).
A series of treaties with the France fixed the Eastern border present of the country with the Laos and the Kampuchea, Siam earlier had made complaints and to a certain extent controlled these two territories.
On the whole, Siam lost 456.000 km ² during the reign of Chulalongkorn.
Military dictatorship and the Second world warThe Coup d'etat of June 24th, 1932 in Siam is a transition without bloodshed from a Absolute monarchy to a Constitutional monarchy. Among the conspirators is the Lieutenant-colonel Plaek Phibunsongkhram, more known under the name of Phibun.
In 1938 Phibun, which has now the rank of Major-general, becomes Prime Minister. It is an admiror of Mussolini. It makes stop 40 political opponents in 1939, monarchists as well as democratic. After a parody of lawsuit, 18 of them are carried out. Phibun changes the name of the country, which of Siam becomes Thai Prathet , " country of the Thai " or Thailand. This name implied a unit of all the people of language Thai, which included the Lao Laos and the Shan of Burma, but excluded the Chinese. The Slogan of the mode is the " besides; Thailand in Thais". Another argument is etymological, the Thai word also meaning " libre". The name of Thai Prathet initially is employed not officially between 1939 and 1945 then declared official on May 11th, 1949.
In 1940, benefitting from the weakening of France after the defeat of June in front of the Germans, Thailand attacks the French Indo-China. The Guerre free-inhabitant of Thailand lasts a few months, and is concluded by a victory inhabitant of Thailand, and the annexation of some provinces.
December 8th 1941, i.e. the shortly after the attack of Pearl Harbor, the 25th Japanese army invades the south of the Malaysia, then under British Protectorat, and the north of Thailand by an amphibious attack. The Japanese troops sign a " treaty of amitié" with the government inhabitant of Thailand and force it to leave them the use of its military bases for the invasion of the other countries of Southeast Asia. January 22nd, 1942, 55ème Japanese division launches since Rahaeng to Thailand (Province of Pathum Thani) an attack on the Burma through the collar of Kawkareik in country Karen. The 17th Indian division of the British Armed, which kept the sector, formed with haste and badly trained, must beat a retreat towards the west.
In agreement with military alliance between Thailand and Japan signed the 21 décember 1941. January 25th, 1942, Thailand declares the war in the United States and the United Kingdom. Elements of the army inhabitant of Thailand cross the border and penetrates in the state Shan (of which the inhabitants are of language of the same family as the Thai ) in Burma on May 10th, 1942. Three divisions of infantry and a division of cavalry, preceded by groups of recognition and supported by aviation, come into contact with the 93ème Chinese division, which must beat a retreat. Kengtung is taken on May 27th. New offensives push back the Chinese troops with the Yunnan in the south of China.
In August 1943, the Alliés create the South East Asia Command (SEAC) with an aim of coordinating their various troops present on the theater of Southeast Asia. The first zone of operation for the terrestrial forces of the SEAC is consisted the India, Burma, Ceylon, the Malaysia, Sumatra (in current the Indonesia) and Thailand.
With the successive reverses of Japan, Phibun is constrained to resign. At the end of the war, the Allies judge it for collaboration and war crimes with the enemy. But a public opinion which is favorable pleasing for him to the stop of the continuations.
After the Second world warIn November 1947, of the units of the army controlled by Phibun force the government to resign. Phibun becomes again Prime Minister in April 1948. This time, its mode adopts a democratic frontage. It receives from the assistance of the United States when Thailand takes part in the multinational force of the the United Nations at the time of the Guerre of Korea.
Phibun joins again with its anti-Chinese policy of the years 1930. Its government stops Chinese immigration and takes various measurements to restrict the economic domination of the Chinese in Thailand. The Chinese schools and associations are again prohibited.
In 1951, whereas it witnesses a ceremony on board US Manhattan of the American Marine, Phibun is taken as an hostage by a group of officers of the Marine inhabitant of Thailand. Engagements burst in the streets of Bangkok between the navy and the Army, the latter being supported by the air force. Phibun succeeds in escaping. The sailors deposit the weapons.
Thailand becomes an official ally of the United States with the signature of the Organization of the treaty of the Southeast Asia (SEATO in its English initials) in 1954. During the War of Indo-China, it remains nevertheless with the variation.
In 1957, the marshal Sarit Dhanaraj (=Thanarat) seizes the power and forces Phibun to be exiled in Japan. This last will remain there until its death in 1964.
Thailand makes a secret agreement with the United States in 1961. It sends troops to the Vietnam and the Laos and authorizes the United States to install air bases in the east of the country, from where the bombers B-52 take off which ram Vietnam North.
1973 and afterwards: a beginning of democracy
The history of Thailand since 1973 was a succession of difficult and sometimes bloody transitions between the military and civil capacity. The revolution of 1973 was followed of a short and unstable democracy followed by the return to a military regime carried to the capacity by a coup d'etat in 1976. This military regime was very unstable with the multiple coups d'etat. During most of the Eighties, the general Prem Tinsulanonda reigned on Thailand with the head of the military regime, and this, with a democratic mandate as from 1983. Thereafter, the country is remained a democracy put aside a short period under a military regime of 1991 to 1992. The Thai party Thai Rak (Thai loves the Thais) carried out by the Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra controlled as from 2001, until a new coup d'etat bursts in 2006.
In October 1973 of the mass demonstrations were held in Bangkok, requiring the end of the military regime. The general Thanom Kittikachorn answered with force, and to 70 demonstrators were killed in the streets, of ever seen in Thailand. This violent intervention of the military regime encouraged the king Rama IX to make his first intervention in the policy inhabitant of Thailand by withdrawing her support with the military regime, and on October 14th, 1973, the general Thanom Kittikachorn resigned and left the country.
The events of October 1973 were raised to be a revolution in the policy thaïe. For the first time, the urban middle-class, carried out by the students, had demolishes the combined forces of the old reigning class and the army and gained the apparent blessing of the King for a transition to the full democracy, symbolized by a new constitution which envisages an entirely elected legislature.
Unfortunately, Thailand had not produced a political community able yet to make function this new democracy without jolt. The elections of January 1975 did not produce a stable majority, and a new election in April 1976 gave the same results. The politician-veteran Seni Pramoj and his brother Kukrit Pramoj alternated themselves with the capacity, but were not able to create a coherent reform of the political system. The big rise of the oil prices in 1974 led to a recession and inflation, weakening the position of the government. The political gesture most popular of the democratic government was to fix the withdrawal of the American forces of Thailand.
The wisdom of this gesture was called soon into question, when the victorious Communists seized the power with the Vietnam, to the Laos and the Kampuchea in April then May 1975. The arrival of the Communist regimes at the borders of Thailand, the 600 years abolition of Laotian monarchy and the arrival of a plethora of refugees of the Laos and Kampuchea, turned the public opinion of Thailand again towards the line and the conservatives made well better with the elections of 1976 qu ' they had made in 1975. The left wing of the student movement did not accept this victory and continued to express for radical changes.
At the end of 1976, the opinion of the moderate middle-class turned the back on radicalism more and more militant of the students based to the Université Thammasat. The army and the parts of right-hand side fought against the radical lefts with paramilitary groups such as the “Scouts Village” and “Red Gaurs”. The example arised in October when Thanom returned to Thailand to enter to the monastery. Violent demonstrations of students ran up against counter-demonstrators in violence. October 6th, 1976, the army released the paramilitaries on the demonstrators, and used this orgy of violence, in which hundreds of students were tortured and killed, to suspend the constitution and to take again the capacity. From this date, many gauchists take the maquis to join the PCT (Communist party inhabitant of Thailand) of obedience Maoist.
Elections and coups d'etatThe September 19th 2006, benefitting from the presence in New York of the Prime Minister, part of the armed forces organizes a coup d'etat and seizes the power ( to see the detailed article ). The chief of the army, the general Sonthi Boonyaratglin, 59 years, first Moslem to occupy this station in the Buddhist kingdom, took the head of the Council for the democratic reform formed of the commanders of the three weapons and the police force, which repealed the Constitution, issued a law martial with badly definite, dissolved contours the government and taken all the capacities. The future elections are for the end of 2007.
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