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The Royal Thai Armed Forces (RTARF) ( th, กองทัพไทย; ) are the armed forces of the
Kingdom of Thailand Thailand ( th, ประเทศไทย), historically known as Siam, () officially the Kingdom of Thailand, is a country in Southeast Asia. It is located at the centre of the Mainland Southeast Asia, Indochinese Peninsula, spanning , wi ...

Kingdom of Thailand
. The nominal head of the Thai Armed Forces (จอมทัพไทย; ) is the King of Thailand. The armed forces are managed by the Ministry of Defense of Thailand, which is headed by the minister of defence and commanded by the
Royal Thai Armed Forces Headquarters The Royal Thai Armed Forces Headquarters ( th, กองบัญชาการกองทัพไทย) or the RTARF HQ, is the "mostly ornamental" joint headquarters of the Royal Thai Armed Forces The Royal Thai Armed Forces (RTARF) ( ...
, which in turn is headed by the Chief of Defence Forces. The commander in chief of the
Royal Thai Army Royal may refer to: People * Royal (name) Royal can be a surname or a given name. Bearers include: Surname * Billy Joe Royal (1942–2015), American country music and pop singer * Calvin Royal III, American ballet dancer * Darrell Royal (1924 ...
is considered the most powerful position in the Thai Armed Forces. Royal Thai Armed Forces Day is celebrated on 18 January to commemorate the victory of King
Naresuan the Great King Naresuan the Great (( th, สมเด็จพระนเรศวรมหาราช, , ) or Sanphet II ( th, สรรเพชญ์ที่ ๒), ( my , နရဲစွမ် (သို့) ဗြနရာဇ်); 1555/1556 – ...
in battle against the
Crown Prince A crown prince or hereditary prince is the heir apparent An heir apparent is a person who is first in an order of succession An order of succession or right of succession is the line of individuals entitled to hold a high office when i ...
of
Burma Myanmar, ); UK pronunciations: US pronunciations incl. . Note: Wikipedia's IPA conventions require indicating /r/ even in British English although only some British English speakers pronounce r at the end of syllables. As John Wells explai ...
in 1593.


Role

The Royal Thai Armed Forces official role is the protection of the
sovereignty Sovereignty is the supreme authority within a territory. Sovereignty entails hierarchy within the state, as well as external autonomy for states. In any state, sovereignty is assigned to the person, body, or institution that has the ultimate a ...
and
territorial integrity #REDIRECT Territorial integrity Territorial integrity is the principle under international law International law, also known as public international law and law of nations, is the set of rules, norms, and standards generally accepted in relations ...
of the Kingdom of Thailand. The armed forces are also charged with the defence of the
monarchy of Thailand The monarchy of Thailand (whose monarch is referred to as the king of Thailand or historically, king of Siam; th, พระมหากษัตริย์ไทย) refers to the constitutional monarchy A constitutional monarchy, parli ...
against all threats, foreign and domestic. Apart from these roles, the armed forces also responsible for ensuring public order and participating in social development programs by aiding the
civilian government Civil authority or civil government is the practical implementation of a state State may refer to: Arts, entertainment, and media Literature * ''State Magazine'', a monthly magazine published by the U.S. Department of State * The State (newspape ...
. The armed forces are also charged with assisting victims of national disasters and drug control. Some critics have contended that, in reality, the Thai armed forces serve two main functions: a) internal security: to safeguard ruling class hegemony from challenges by mass movements to expand the democratic space, and b) to satisfy the self-enrichment goals of the upper echelons of the Thai military. In recent years the Royal Thai Armed Forces has increased its role on the international stage by providing
peacekeeping Peacekeeping comprises activities intended to create conditions that favour lasting peace. Research generally finds that peacekeeping reduces civilian and battlefield deaths, as well as reduces the risk of renewed war War is an inten ...
forces to the
United Nations The United Nations (UN) is an intergovernmental organization An intergovernmental organization (IGO) is an organization composed primarily of sovereign states (referred to as ''member states''), or of other organizations through formal ...
(UN), in the
International Force for East Timor The International Force East Timor (INTERFET) was a multinational non-United Nations The United Nations (UN) is an intergovernmental organization aiming to maintain international peace and international security, security, develop fri ...
(INTERFET), from 1999 to 2002UNTAET
. Un.org. Retrieved on 18 January 2012.
and participating in the
multinational force in Iraq Multinational may refer to: * Multinational corporation A multinational company (MNC) is a corporate A corporation is an organization—usually a group of people or a company A company, abbreviated as co., is a Legal personality, ...
, contributing 423 personnel from 2003 to 2004.


Personnel

, the Royal Thai Armed Forces number 360,850 active duty and 200,000 reserve personnel, nearly one percent of Thailand's population of 70 million. This percentage is higher than that of the US, but lower than that of nearby Vietnam. The Thai military has more than 1,700 flag officers (generals and admirals), roughly one general for every 212 troops, a bloated number for a military of its size. By comparison, the US military as of 1 November 2018 had 920 active duty general and flag officers (GFOs) for a force of 1,317,325 personnel, or one flag officer for every 1430 troops. On 2 May 2015 1,043 new Thai flag officers of all three services promoted in 2014–2015 took the oath of allegiance. It is not clear how many retired during the same period. According to one observer, each Thai general has three aims: to align himself with politicians of the right political party; to ensure that he receives the best possible postings; and to enrich himself and share his takings with his subordinates thus ensuring their loyalty. In early 2021, the Ministry of Defence announced a program to reduce the number of flag officers by 25% by 2029. , the RTARF has about 1,400 generals and admirals on its payroll: 250 at RTARF headquarters; 400 in the army; 250 in the navy; 190 in the air force; and 300 in the Office of the Permanent Secretary of Defence.


Conscription

Conscription was introduced in Thailand in 1905. According to the Constitution of the Kingdom, serving in the armed forces is a national duty of all Thai citizens. In practice, only males over the age of 21 who have not gone through reserve training are subject to
conscription Conscription, sometimes called the draft in the United States, is the mandatory enlistment of people in a national service National service is a system of either compulsory or voluntary government service, usually military service Mili ...
. The enlistment draft is held in early-April annually. On the draftee selection day, those who are called up for the draft report to their selection center at 07:00. During roll call, eligible draftees can request to volunteer to serve, or they may choose to stay for the lottery. Those who volunteer then undergo physical and mental health examinations including a urine test for drugs. The results of the urine test for drugs are entered into a Narcotics Control Board database. In 2018, of the first 182,910 men entered in the database, 12,209 men, or 6.7 percent, tested positive for drugs: 11,139 for
methamphetamine Methamphetamine (contracted from ) is a potent central nervous system The central nervous system (CNS) is the part of the nervous system In biology Biology is the natural science that studies life and living organisms, inclu ...
, 750 for
marijuana Cannabis, also known as marijuana among other names Other most often refers to: * Other (philosophy), a concept in psychology and philosophy Other or The Other may also refer to: Books * The Other (Tryon novel), ''The Other'' (Tryon novel), ...
, and the remainder for other drugs. Over 3,000 of those who tested positive will serve in the military where they will receive drug rehabilitation treatment. Those who tested positive, but who were not drafted, will undergo a 13-day rehabilitation regimen in their home provinces. Those who do not pass the physical and mental health examinations are promptly released. Enlisting volunteers then choose their service branch (Royal Thai Army, Royal Thai Navy, or Royal Thai Air Force) and the reporting date of their choice, and receive documentation of the year's draft selection, and an enlistment order to report for basic training with notification details of the reporting time and location. The enlistees are then dismissed for the day until the day that they must report for basic training. After the enlisting volunteers are dismissed for the day, the lottery process begins. Each selection center has a set quota, and the number of individuals conscripted through the lottery at each selection center will be the quota subtracted by the number of volunteers. Those who choose to proceed with the lottery then undergo the same physical and mental health exams as the volunteers, with the same procedure for dismissal for those who do not pass the health exams. Each man who stays for the lottery draws a card out of an opaque box. Those who draw a black card are released from their military service requirement and are issued the letter of exemption. Those who draw a red card are required to serve starting from the induction date specified on the card. Those with higher educational qualifications can request a reduction of service obligation. In 2018, the Royal Thai Armed Forces called up more than 500,000 men for selection. The combined quota was approximately 104,000 men: 80,000 men for the
Royal Thai Army Royal may refer to: People * Royal (name) Royal can be a surname or a given name. Bearers include: Surname * Billy Joe Royal (1942–2015), American country music and pop singer * Calvin Royal III, American ballet dancer * Darrell Royal (1924 ...
, 16,000 for the
Royal Thai Navy The Royal Thai Navy ( Abrv: RTN, ทร.; th, กองทัพเรือไทย, ), Thailand Thailand ( th, ประเทศไทย), historically known as Siam, () officially the Kingdom of Thailand, is a country in Southea ...
, and 8,700 for the
Royal Thai Air Force "Royal Thai Air Force March" , mascot = , anniversaries = 9 April 1937 (Royal Thai Air Force Day) , equipment = , equipment_label = , battles = , decorations = , battle_honours = , battle_honours_label = , flying_hours = , we ...
. On selection day, there were 44,800 men who volunteered to serve. After accepting the volunteers and dismissing those who were deemed ineligible, there remained a quota of approximately 60,000 slots for approximately 450,000 men who entered the draft lottery, i.e., the overall probability of drawing a red card in the lottery was approximately 13 percent. In 2017, 103,097 men participated in the draft between 1–12 April. The armed forces needed only 77,000 conscripts per annum. It has not been uncommon for some selection centers to not have to conduct the balloting lottery at all, because quotas were met by the enlisting volunteers. In such instances, those who decided not to volunteer and stay for the lottery were all issued with a certificate of exemption. Length of service varies by whether a person volunteers to enlist and their educational background. Serving a shortened period of time is given to those who enlist voluntarily. Those without a high school diploma are required to serve two years regardless of whether they volunteer. High school graduates who volunteer are required to serve one year, while high school graduates who draw red cards are required to serve two years. Those with an associate degree or higher who volunteer are required to serve for six months. Those with an associate degree or more who draw red cards can request a reduction in time of service of up to one year. University students can request for deferment of conscription until they are awarded their diploma or reach 26 years of age. All conscripts are assigned the rank of Private / Seaman / Aircraftman (OR-1) for their entire length of service, regardless of educational qualification. There are wage increases after completion of basic training and for time-in-grade. Although it is alleged that more than half of conscripts end up as servants to senior officers or clerks in
military cooperative A military cooperative is an organization that provides service members with products at a low profit margin and protects them from profiteering. Such organisations were popular in a number of countries, particularly in the 19th and early 20th c ...
shops, most conscripts regardless of their volunteer status and educational background are placed in an occupational specialty dictated by the needs of their service branch. The most common specialties are
infantryman Infantry is an army An army (from Latin ''arma'' "arms, weapons" via Old French ''armée'', "armed" eminine, ground force or land force is a fighting force that fights primarily on land. In the broadest sense, it is the land-based mili ...
(for Royal Thai Army conscripts),
Royal Marine The Corps of Royal Marines (RM) is an amphibious Amphibious means able to use either land or water. In particular it may refer to: * ''Amphibious'' (film), a 2010 film * Amphibious aircraft An amphibious aircraft or amphibian is an air ...
(for Royal Thai Navy conscripts), and security forces specialist (for Royal Thai Air Force conscripts). Duties may include carrying out military operations, manning security checkpoints, force generation, as well as manual labor and clerical duties, depending on the needs of the unit. At the end of their service, conscripts are given the option of reenlisting to remain in the service. In April 2020, only 5,460 out of 42,000 conscripts scheduled for discharge at the end of the month volunteered to remain in the military. Top government officials insist that conscription is indispensable, but some question the need for conscription in the 21st century Thailand and call for an open debate on its efficacy and value to the nation. Critics claim that external threats to Thailand are negligible in 2019. The Thai government appears to agree: Thailand's new National Security Plan, published in the ''Royal Gazette'' on 22 November 2019, sees external geo-political threats to the country as insignificant in the years ahead. The plan, in effect from 19 November 2019 to 30 September 2022, views domestic issues, especially declining faith in the monarchy and political divisions, as greater concerns. In a report issued in March 2020,
Amnesty International Amnesty International (also referred to as Amnesty or AI) is a non-governmental organization A non-governmental organization, or simply an NGO, is an organization An organization, or organisation (Commonwealth English The use ...
charged that Thai military conscripts face institutionalised abuse systematically hushed up by military authorities. According to Amnesty, the practice has "long been an open secret in Thai society". One of infamous cases was in 2011 which 10 officers torturing Wichian Pueksom to death. Until today there is still no verdict to the offcials


Budget

The defence budget nearly tripled from 78.1 billion baht in 2005 to 207 billion baht for FY2016 (1 October 2015 – 30 September 2016), amounting to roughly 1.5% of GDP. The budget for FY2017 is 214 billion baht (US$6.1 billion)—including funds for a submarine purchase—a nominal increase of three percent. The proposed budget again represents around 1.5% of GDP and eight percent of total government spending for FY2017. The FY2018 defence budget is 220 billion baht, 7.65% of the total budget. According to ''Jane's Defence Budgets'', the Royal Thai Army generally receives 50% of defense expenditures while the air force and navy receive 22% each. The Ministry of Defense budget for FY2021 is 223,464 million
baht The baht (; th, บาท, ; sign A sign is an object Object may refer to: General meanings * Object (philosophy), a thing, being, or concept ** Entity, something that is tangible and within the grasp of the senses ** Object (abstr ...
, down from 231,745M baht in FY2020.


History


Ancient military forces

The Royal Siamese Armed Forces was the military arm of the Siamese monarchy from the 12th to the 19th centuries. It refers to the military forces of the
Sukhothai Kingdom The Sukhothai Kingdom ( th, สุโขทัย, , IAST The International Alphabet of Sanskrit Transliteration (IAST) is a transliteration scheme that allows the lossless romanisation Romanization or romanisation, in linguistics ...
, the Ayutthaya Kingdom, the
Thonburi Kingdom The Thonburi Kingdom ( th, ธนบุรี) was a major Siamese kingdom which existed in Southeast Asia Southeast Asia, also spelled South East Asia and South-East Asia, and also known as Southeastern Asia or SEA, is the geographica ...
and the early Rattanakosin Kingdom in chronological order. The Siamese army was one of the dominant armed forces in Southeast Asia. As Thailand has never been colonized by a European power, the Royal Thai Armed Forces boasts one of the longest and uninterrupted military traditions in Asia. The army was organized into a small standing army of a few thousand, which defended the capital and the palace, and a much larger
conscription Conscription, sometimes called the draft in the United States, is the mandatory enlistment of people in a national service National service is a system of either compulsory or voluntary government service, usually military service Mili ...
-based wartime army. Conscription was based on the "ahmudan" system, which required local chiefs to supply, in times of war, a predetermined quota of men from their jurisdiction on the basis of population. The wartime army also consisted of
elephantry A war elephant was an elephant that was Animal training, trained and guided by humans for combat. The war elephant's main use was to charge (warfare), charge the enemy, break their ranks and instill terror and fear. Elephantry is a term for s ...
,
cavalry Historically, cavalry (from the French word ''cavalerie'', itself derived from "cheval" meaning "horse") are soldier A soldier is a person who is a member of a professional army An army (from Latin ''arma'' "arms, weapons" via O ...
,
artillery Artillery is a class of heavy military ranged weapon A ranged weapon is any weapon A weapon, arm or armament is any implement or device that can be used with the intent to inflict physical damage or harm. Weapons are used to increase t ...
, and
naval A navy, naval force, or maritime force is the branch of a nation's armed forces A military, also known collectively as armed forces, is a heavily armed, highly organized force primarily intended for warfare War is an intense ...
units. In 1852, the Royal Siamese Armed Forces came into existence as permanent force at the behest of King
Mongkut Mongkut ( th, มงกุฏ; 18 October 18041 October 1868) was the fourth monarch A monarch is a head of state A head of state (or chief of state) is the public persona A persona (plural personae or personas), depending on the ...
, who needed a
Europe Europe is a continent A continent is any of several large landmass A landmass, or land mass, is a large region In geography Geography (from Greek: , ''geographia'', literally "earth description") is a field of scienc ...
an trained military force to thwart any Western threat and any attempts at colonialisation. By 1887, during the next reign of King
Chulalongkorn Chulalongkorn ( th, จุฬาลงกรณ์, 20 September 1853 – 23 October 1910) was the fifth monarch A monarch is a head of state A head of state (or chief of state) is the public persona A persona (plural personae or ...
, a permanent military command in the ''Kalahom'' Department was established. The office of ''Kalahom'', as a permanent office of war department, was established by King
Borommatrailokkanat Borommatrailokkanat ( th, บรมไตรโลกนาถ, ) or Trailok (1431–1488) was the king of the Ayutthaya Kingdom from 1448 to 1488. He was one of many monarchs who gained the epithet ''King of White Elephants'' ( th, พระเ ...
(1431–1488) in the mid-15th century during the Ayutthaya Kingdom.
Siam Thailand ( th, ประเทศไทย), historically known as Siam, () officially the Kingdom of Thailand, is a country in Southeast Asia Southeast Asia, also spelled South East Asia and South-East Asia, and also known as Southe ...
's history of organized warfare is thus one of Asia's longest and uninterrupted military traditions. However, since 1932, when the military, with the help of civilians, overthrew the system of
absolute monarchy Absolute monarchy (or absolutism as doctrine) is a form of monarchy A monarchy is a form of government A government is the system or group of people governing an organized community, generally a state State may ref ...
and instead created a
constitutional A constitution is an aggregate of fundamental principles A principle is a proposition or value that is a guide for behavior or evaluation. In law Law is a system A system is a group of Interaction, interacting or interrelated ...
system, the military has dominated and been in control of Thai politics, providing it with many
prime ministers A prime minister or a premier is the head of the cabinet Cabinet or The Cabinet may refer to: Furniture * Cabinetry, a box-shaped piece of furniture with doors and/or drawers * Display cabinet, a piece of furniture with one or more transpa ...
and carrying out many coups d'état, the most recent being in 2014.


Conflicts

The Royal Thai Armed Forces were involved in many conflicts throughout its history, including global, regional and internal conflicts. However, most these were within
Southeast Asia Southeast Asia, also spelled South East Asia and South-East Asia, and also known as Southeastern Asia or SEA, is the geographical southeastern subregion of Asia, consisting of the regions that are south of China, south-east of the Indian su ...
. The only three foreign incursions into Thai territory were the
Franco-Siamese War The Franco-Siamese War of 1893 was a conflict between the French Third Republic The French Third Republic (french: Troisième République, sometimes written as ) was the system of government adopted in History of France, France from 4 Sep ...
, the
Japanese invasion of Thailand The Japanese invasion of Thailand ( th, การบุกครองไทยของญี่ปุ่น, ; ja, 日本軍のタイ進駐 , Nihongun no Tai shinchū) occurred on 8 December 1941. It was briefly fought between the Kingdo ...
in December 1941, and in the 1980s with
Vietnam Vietnam ( vi, Việt Nam, ), officially the Socialist Republic of Vietnam,, group="n" is a country in Southeast Asia Southeast Asia, also spelled South East Asia and South-East Asia, and also known as Southeastern Asia or SEA, is the ...
ese incursions into Thailand that led to several battles with the Thai Army. Operations on foreign territory were either territorial wars (such as the
Laos Civil War The Laotian Civil War (1959–1975) was a civil war in Laos which was waged between the Communist Pathet Lao (including many North Vietnamese of Lao people, Lao ancestry) and the Royal Lao Government from 23 May 1959 to 2 December 1975. It is a ...
) or conflicts mandated by the
United Nations The United Nations (UN) is an intergovernmental organization An intergovernmental organization (IGO) is an organization composed primarily of sovereign states (referred to as ''member states''), or of other organizations through formal ...
.


Franco-Siamese War (1893)

With the rapid expansion of the French
Empire An empire is a "political unit" made up of several territories and peoples, "usually created by conquest, and divided between a dominant center and subordinate peripheries". Narrowly defined, an empire is a sovereign state A sovereign state ...
into
Indochina Mainland Southeast Asia, also known as the Indochinese Peninsula or Indochina, is the continental portion of Southeast Asia Southeast Asia, also spelled South East Asia and South-East Asia, and also known as Southeastern Asia or SEA, is ...
, conflicts necessarily occurred. War became inevitable when a French mission led by
Auguste Pavie Auguste Jean-Marie Pavie (31 May 1847 – 7 June 1925) was a French colonial civil servant, explorer and diplomat who was instrumental in establishing French control over Laos , national_anthem = "Pheng Xat Lao "Pheng Sat Lāo" () is ...
to King
Chulalongkorn Chulalongkorn ( th, จุฬาลงกรณ์, 20 September 1853 – 23 October 1910) was the fifth monarch A monarch is a head of state A head of state (or chief of state) is the public persona A persona (plural personae or ...
to try to bring
Laos , national_anthem = "Pheng Xat Lao "Pheng Sat Lāo" () is the national anthem A national anthem is a song that officially symbolizes a country A country is a distinct territory, territorial body or political entity. It is often r ...
under French rule ended in failure. The French colonialists invaded Siam from the northeast and sent two warships to fight their way past the river forts and train their guns on the Grand Palace in
Bangkok Bangkok is the capital and most populous city of Thailand Thailand ( th, ประเทศไทย), historically known as Siam, () officially the Kingdom of Thailand, is a country in Southeast Asia. It is located at the centre of the ...
(the Paknam Incident). The French also declared a
blockade A blockade is an effort to cut off supplies, war material Materiel or matériel (pronounced , from french: matériel, lit=equipment, hardware) refers to supplies, equipment, and weapons in military supply-chain management, and typically su ...
around Bangkok, which almost brought them into conflict with the
United Kingdom The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, commonly known as the United Kingdom (UK) or Britain,Usage is mixed. The Guardian' and Telegraph' use Britain as a synonym for the United Kingdom. Some prefer to use Britain as shorth ...
. Siam was forced to accept the French
ultimatum An ultimatum (; ) is a demand In economics Economics () is a social science Social science is the branch A branch ( or , ) or tree branch (sometimes referred to in botany Botany, also called , plant biology o ...
and surrendered Laos to France, also allowing French troops to occupy the Thai province of Chantaburi for several decades.


World War I (1917–1918)

King
Vajiravudh Vajiravudh ( th, วชิราวุธ, , 1 January 188126 November 1925), was the sixth monarch A monarch is a head of state A head of state (or chief of state) is the public persona A persona (plural personae or personas), de ...
on 22 July 1917 declared war on the
Central Powers The Central Powers, also known as the Central Empires,german: Mittelmächte; hu, Központi hatalmak; tr, İttifak Devletleri / ; bg, Централни сили, translit=Tsentralni sili was one of the two main coalitions that fought World ...
and joined the
Entente Powers The Triple Entente (from French '' entente'' meaning "friendship, understanding, agreement") describes the informal understanding between the Russian Empire The Russian Empire, . commonly referred to as Imperial Russia, was a historical em ...
on the Western Front. He sent a volunteer corps, the
Siamese Expeditionary Force The Siamese Expeditionary Force ( th, กองทหารอาสาสยาม) (also known as Siamese Volunteer Corps) consisted of the Royal Siamese Army sent to Europe under the command of Major General Phraya Pichai Charnyarit in 1917 to ...
, composed of 1,233 modern-equipped and trained men commanded by Field Marshal Prince
Chakrabongse Bhuvanath Field Marshal Chakrabongse Bhuvanath, the Prince of Phitsanulok Province, Bishnulok ( th, จักรพงษ์ภูวนาถ; ; 3 March 1883 – 13 June 1920), was the 40th child of King Chulalongkorn and the fourth child of Queen Saovab ...
. The force included air and medical personnel, the medical units actually seeing combat. Siam became the only independent
Asia Asia () is Earth Earth is the third planet from the Sun and the only astronomical object known to harbour and support life. 29.2% of Earth's surface is land consisting of continents and islands. The remaining 70.8% is Water distrib ...
n nation with forces in
Europe Europe is a continent A continent is any of several large landmass A landmass, or land mass, is a large region In geography Geography (from Greek: , ''geographia'', literally "earth description") is a field of scienc ...
during the Great War. Although Siam's participation militarily was minimal, it enabled the revision or complete cancellation of so-called "
unequal treaties Unequal treaty is the name given by the Chinese to a series of treaties signed between China (mostly referring to the Qing dynasty The Qing dynasty, officially the Great Qing (), was the last dynasty A dynasty (, ) is a seque ...
" with the
Western powers The Western world, also known as the West, refers to various region In geography Geography (from Ancient Greek, Greek: , ''geographia'', literally "earth description") is a field of science devoted to the study of the lands, fe ...
. The Expeditionary Force was given the honour of marching in the victory parade under the
Arc de Triomphe The Arc de Triomphe de l'Étoile (, , ; ) is one of the most famous monuments in Paris Paris () is the Capital city, capital and List of communes in France with over 20,000 inhabitants, most populous city of France, with an estimated p ...
in
Paris Paris () is the capital Capital most commonly refers to: * Capital letter Letter case (or just case) is the distinction between the letters that are in larger uppercase or capitals (or more formally ''majuscule'') and smaller lowe ...
. Nineteen Siamese soldiers died during the conflict, and their ashes are interred in the World War I monument at the north end of Bangkok's Pramane Grounds.


Franco-Thai War (1940–1941)

The
Franco-Thai War The Franco-Thai War (October 1940 – January 28, 1941, th, กรณีพิพาทอินโดจีน, Krṇī phiphāth xindocīn; french: Guerre franco-thaïlandaise) was fought between History of Thailand (1932–1973), Thailand an ...
began in October 1940, when the country under the rule of Field Marshal
Prime Minister A prime minister or a premier is the head of the cabinet Cabinet or The Cabinet may refer to: Furniture * Cabinetry, a box-shaped piece of furniture with doors and/or drawers * Display cabinet, a piece of furniture with one or more transpa ...
Plaek Phibunsongkhram Field Marshal Plaek Phibunsongkhram ( th, แปลก พิบูลสงคราม ; alternatively transcribed as ''Pibulsongkram'' or ''Pibulsonggram''; 14 July 1897 – 11 June 1964), locally known as Marshal P. ( th, จอมพล ...
followed up border clashes by invading a French Indo-China, under the
Vichy regime Vichy France (french: Régime de Vichy; 10 July 1940 – 9 August 1944) is the common name of the French State (') headed by Marshal Philippe Pétain Henri Philippe Benoni Omer Pétain (24 April 1856 – 23 July 1951), generally known a ...
(after the
Nazi Nazism ( ), officially National Socialism (german: Nationalsozialismus, ), is the ideology An ideology () is a set of belief A belief is an Attitude (psychology), attitude that something is the case, or that some proposition about th ...
occupation of Paris) to regain lost land and settle territorial disputes. The war also bolstered Phibun's program of promoting
Thai nationalism Thai nationalism is a political ideology involving the application of nationalism to the political discourse of Thailand. It was first popularized by King Vajiravudh (Rama VI, reigned 1910–1925), and was subsequently adopted and adapted by various ...
. The war ended indecisively, with Thai victories on land and a naval defeat at sea. However, the disputed territories in French Indochina were ceded to Thailand.


World War II (1942–1945)

To attack
British India The Provinces of India, earlier Presidencies of British India and still earlier, Presidency towns, were the administrative divisions of British governance in the Indian subcontinent. Collectively, they have been called British India. In one ...
,
British Burma British may refer to: Peoples, culture, and language * British people The British people, or Britons, are the citizens of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ir ...
and
British Malaya The term "British Malaya" (; ms, Tanah Melayu British) loosely describes a set of states on the Malay Peninsula The Malay Peninsula (: ''Semenanjung Tanah Melayu'') is a in . The runs approximately north–south and, at its terminus, ...
, the
Empire of Japan The was a historical nation-state A nation state is a political unit where the state State may refer to: Arts, entertainment, and media Literature * ''State Magazine'', a monthly magazine published by the U.S. Department of Sta ...
needed to use bases in Thailand. By playing both nations against one another,
Prime Minister A prime minister or a premier is the head of the cabinet Cabinet or The Cabinet may refer to: Furniture * Cabinetry, a box-shaped piece of furniture with doors and/or drawers * Display cabinet, a piece of furniture with one or more transpa ...
Phibunsongkhram Field Marshal Plaek Phibunsongkhram ( th, แปลก พิบูลสงคราม ; alternatively transcribed as ''Pibulsongkram'' or ''Pibulsonggram''; 14 July 1897 – 11 June 1964), locally known as Marshal P. ( th, จอมพล ...
was able to maintain a degree of neutrality for some time. However, this ended in the early hours of 8 December 1941, when Japan launched a
surprise attack Military deception (MILDEC) is an attempt by a military unit to gain an advantage during warfare War is an intense armed conflict between states State may refer to: Arts, entertainment, and media Literature * ''State Magazine'', a m ...
on Thailand at nine places along the coastline and from French Indo-China. The greatly outnumbered Thai forces put up resistance, but were soon overwhelmed. By 07:30, Phibun ordered an end to hostilities, though resistance continued for at least another day until all units could be notified. Phibun signed an
armistice An armistice is a formal agreement Agreement or concord (list of glossing abbreviations, abbreviated ) happens when a word changes form depending on the other words to which it relates. It is an instance of inflection, and usually involves makin ...
with Japan that allowed the empire to move its troops through Thai territory. Impressed by Japan's easy conquest of British Malaya, Phibun formally made Thailand part of the Axis by declaring war on the United Kingdom and the United States, though the Regent refused to sign it in the young king's name. (The Thai ambassador to Washington refused to deliver the declaration, and the United States continued to consider Thailand an occupied country.) An active and foreign-assisted underground resistance movement, the
Free Thai The Free Thai Movement ( th, เสรีไทย; ) was a Thai Thai or THAI may refer to: * Of or from Thailand, a country in Southeast Asia ** Thai people, the dominant ethnic group of Thailand ** Thai language, a Tai-Kadai language spoken m ...
, was largely successful and helped Thailand to viewed positively in the eyes of the victorious Allies after the war and be treated as an occupied nation rather than a defeated enemy.


Korean War (1950–1953)

During the United Nations-mandated conflict in the
Korean peninsula Korea is a region In geography, regions are areas that are broadly divided by physical characteristics (physical geography), human impact characteristics (human geography), and the interaction of humanity and the environment (environmental ...
, Thailand provided the reinforced 1st Battalion of the 21st Infantry Regiment, Some 65,000 Thais served in Korea during the war. Thai foot soldiers took part in the 1953
Battle of Pork Chop Hill The Battle of Pork Chop Hill comprises a pair of related Korean War The Korean War (see § Names) was a war fought between North Korea North Korea, officially the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK), is a country in ...
. During the war the battalion was attached at various times to U.S. 187th Airborne Regimental Combat Team and the
British 29th Infantry Brigade The 29th Infantry Brigade was an infantry brigade unit of the British Army. It was originally raised in 1914 and saw service during the World War I, First and World War II, Second World Wars and the Korean War. First World War The 29th Brigade wa ...
. The kingdom also provided four naval vessels, the HTMS ''Bangprakong'', ''Bangpako'', ''Tachin'', and ''Prasae'', and an air transport unit to the UN command structure. The Thai contingent was actively engaged and suffered heavy casualties, including 139 dead and more than 300 wounded. They remained in South Korea after the cease fire, returning to Thailand in 1955.


Vietnam War (1955–1975)

Due to its proximity to Thailand,
Vietnam Vietnam ( vi, Việt Nam, ), officially the Socialist Republic of Vietnam,, group="n" is a country in Southeast Asia Southeast Asia, also spelled South East Asia and South-East Asia, and also known as Southeastern Asia or SEA, is the ...
's conflicts were closely monitored by Bangkok. Thai involvement did not become official until the total involvement of the
United States The United States of America (U.S.A. or USA), commonly known as the United States (U.S. or US) or America, is a country primarily located in North America North America is a continent A continent is any of several large ...
in support of South Vietnam in 1963. The Thai government then allowed the
United States Air Force in Thailand The United States Air Force (USAF) deployed combat aircraft to Thailand from 1960 to 1975 during the Vietnam War. Today, US military units train with other Asian militaries in Thailand. Royal Thai Air Force Bases are an important element in the T ...
to use its air and naval bases. At the height of the war, almost 50,000 American military personnel were stationed in Thailand, mainly airmen. In October 1967 a regiment-size Thai unit, the Queen's Cobras, were sent to Camp Bearcat at
Bien Hoa Bien may refer to: * Bien (newspaper) Bien is the only weekly Danish language Danish (; , ) is a North Germanic language The North Germanic languages make up one of the three branches of the Germanic languages—a sub-family of the Indo- ...
, to fight alongside the Americans, Australians, New Zealanders and South Vietnamese. About 40,000 Thai military would serve in South Vietnam, with 351 killed in action and 1,358 wounded. Thai troops earned a reputation for bravery and would serve in Vietnam until 1971, when the men of the
Royal Thai Army Expeditionary Division The Royal Thai Army Volunteer Force ( th, กองพลทหารอาสาสมัคร), or the Black Panthers (กองพลเสือดำ) was a unit of the Royal Thai Army which served in the Vietnam War, replacing the Royal Tha ...
(Black Panthers) returned home. Thailand was also involved in the
Laotian Civil War The Laotian Civil War (1959–1975) was a civil war A civil war, also known as an intrastate war in polemology, is a war between organized groups within the same Sovereign state, state (or country). The aim of one side may be to take c ...
, supporting covert operations against the communist
Pathet Lao The Pathet Lao ( lo, ປະເທດລາວ , national_anthem = "Pheng Xat Lao") , image_map = , map_caption = , capital = Vientiane , coordinates = , largest_city = capital , official_languages = Lao language, Lao , recogn ...
and the North Vietnamese from 1964 to 1972. By 1975 relations between Bangkok and Washington had soured, and the government of
Kukrit Pramoj Mom Rajawongse Kukrit Pramoj ( th, คึกฤทธิ์ ปราโมช, , ; 20 April 1911 – 9 October 1995) was a Thailand, Thai politician, scholar and professor. He was Speaker of the House of Representatives of Thailand 1973–1974. ...
requested the withdrawal of all US military personnel and the closure of all US bases. This was completed by March 1976.


Communist insurgency (1976–1980s)

The
communist Communism (from Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language A classical language is a language A language is a structured system of communication Communication (from Latin ''communicare'', meaning "to share" or "to be ...
victory in Vietnam in 1975 emboldened the communist movement in Thailand, which had been in existence since the 1920s. After the Thammasat University massacre of leftist student demonstrators in 1976 and the repressive policies of right-wing Prime Minister
Tanin Kraivixien Thanin Kraivichien (first name also spelled ''Tanin'', last name ''Kraivixien'' or ''Kraivichian''; th, ธานินทร์ กรัยวิเชียร, , ; born 5 April 1927) is a Thailand, Thai former judge, politician and law prof ...
, sympathies for the movement increased. By the late-1970s, it is estimated that the movement had as many as 12,000 armed insurgents, mostly based in the northeast along the Laotian border and receiving foreign support. By the 1980s, however, all insurgent activities had been defeated. In 1982 Prime Minister
Prem Tinsulanonda Prem Tinsulanonda ( th, เปรม ติณสูลานนท์, , ; 26 August 1920 – 26 May 2019) was a Thailand, Thai military officer, politician, and statesman who served as the List of Prime Ministers of Thailand, Prime Minister ...
issued a general amnesty for all former communist insurgents.


Vietnamese border raids (1979–1988)

With the Vietnamese invasion of Cambodia in 1978, communist Vietnam had a combined force of about 300,000 in Laos and Cambodia. This posed a massive potential threat to the Thais, as they could no longer rely on Cambodia to act as a
buffer state A buffer state is a country A country is a distinct territorial body or political entity A polity is an identifiable political entity—any group of people who have a collective identity, who are organized by some form of Institutionalis ...
. Small encounters occasionally took place when Vietnamese forces crossed into Thailand in pursuit of fleeing
Khmer Rouge The Khmer Rouge (; ; km, ខ្មែរក្រហម, ; "Red Red is the color at the long wavelength end of the visible spectrum of light, next to orange and opposite violet. It has a dominant wavelength Image:dominant wavelength ...
troops. However, a full and official conflict was never declared, as neither country wanted it.


Thai–Laotian Border War (1987–1988)

This was a small conflict over mountainous territory including three disputed villages on the border between Sainyabuli Province in Laos and Phitsanulok Province in Thailand, whose ownership had been left unclear by the map drawn by the French some 80 years earlier. Caused by then-Army commander
Chavalit Yongchaiyudh Chavalit Yongchaiyudh ( th, ชวลิต ยงใจยุทธ, , ; born 15 May 1932), also known as "Big Jiew" (, , ), is a Thailand, Thai politician and retired army officer. From 1986 to 1990 he was the List of Commanders of the Royal T ...
against the wishes of the government, the war ended with a stalemate and return to
status quo ante bellum The term ''status quo ante bellum'' is a Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language belonging to the Italic languages, Italic branch of the Indo-European languages. Latin was originally spoken in the area around Rome, known as Latium. ...
. The two nations suffered combined casualties of about 1,000.


East Timor (1999–2002)

After the
East Timor crisis The 2006 East Timorese crisis began as a conflict between elements of the military of East Timor over discrimination within the military, and expanded to a coup attempt and general violence throughout the country, centred in the capital Dili. The ...
, Thailand, with 28 other nations, provided troops for the International Force for East Timor or INTERFET. Thailand also provided the force commander, Lieutenant General Winai Phattiyakul. The force was based in
Dili Dili (Portuguese Portuguese may refer to: * anything of, from, or related to the country and nation of Portugal ** Portuguese cuisine, traditional foods ** Portuguese language, a Romance language *** Portuguese dialects, variants of the Portug ...
and lasted from 25 October 1999 to 20 May 2002.


Iraq War (2003–2004)

After the successful US invasion of Iraq,
Thai Humanitarian Assistance Task Force 976 Thai-Iraq The Task Force 976 Thai-Iraq ( th, กองกำลังเฉพาะกิจ 976 ไทย-อิรัก) (กกล.ฉก ๙๗๖) was a military unit of the Royal Thai Armed Forces The Royal Thai Armed Forces (RTARF) ( th, ก ...
Thailand contributed 423 non-combat troops in August 2003 to nation building and medical assistance in post-Saddam Iraq. The Thais could not leave their base in
Karbala Karbala or Kerbala ( ar, كَرْبَلَاء, Karbalāʾ , , also ;) is a city in central Iraq Iraq ( ar, الْعِرَاق, translit=al-ʿIrāq; ku, عێراق, translit=Êraq), officially the Republic of Iraq ( ar, جُمْهُو ...
as their rules governing their participation restricted them to humanitarian assistance which could not be accomplished due to the insurgency during the Thai's tenure in Iraq. Troops of the Royal Thai Army were attacked in the 2003 Karbala bombings, which killed two soldiers and wounded five others. However, the Thai mission in Iraq was considered an overall success, and Thailand withdrew its forces in August 2004. The mission is considered the main reason the United States decided to designate Thailand as a major non-NATO ally in 2003.Thailand
centcom.mil


South Thailand insurgency (2001–ongoing)

The ongoing southern insurgency had begun in response to Prime Minister
Plaek Phibunsongkhram Field Marshal Plaek Phibunsongkhram ( th, แปลก พิบูลสงคราม ; alternatively transcribed as ''Pibulsongkram'' or ''Pibulsonggram''; 14 July 1897 – 11 June 1964), locally known as Marshal P. ( th, จอมพล ...
's 1944 National Cultural Act, which replaced the use of Malaya in the region's schools with the Thai language and also abolished the local Islamic courts in the three ethnic
Malay Malay may refer to: Languages * Malay language or Bahasa Melayu, a major Austronesian language spoken in Indonesia, Malaysia, Brunei and Singapore ** History of the Malay language#Old Malay, the Malay language from the 4th to the 14th century * ...
and
Muslim Muslims () are people who follow or practice Islam Islam (; ar, اَلْإِسْلَامُ, al-’Islām, "submission o God Oh God may refer to: * An exclamation; similar to "oh no", "oh yes", "oh my", "aw goodness", "ah gosh", ...
majority border provinces of Yala, Pattani, and
Narathiwat Narathiwat ( th, นราธิวาส, ) is a town (thesaban mueang Thesaban ( th, เทศบาล, , ) are the municipalities of Thailand Thailand ( th, ประเทศไทย), historically known as Siam, () officially t ...
. However, it had always been on a comparatively small scale. The insurgency intensified in 2001, during the government of Prime Minister
Thaksin Shinawatra Thaksin Shinawatra ( th, ทักษิณ ชินวัตร; ; ; Chinese Chinese can refer to: * Something related to China China (), officially the People's Republic of China (PRC; ), is a country in . It is the world's , wit ...
. Terrorist attacks were now extended to the ethnic Thai minority in the provinces. The Royal Thai Armed Forces also went beyond their orders and retaliated with strong armed tactics that only encouraged more violence. By the end of 2012 the conflict had claimed 3,380 lives, including 2,316 civilians, 372 soldiers, 278 police, 250 suspected insurgents, 157 education officials, and seven Buddhist monks. Many of the dead were Muslims themselves, but they had been targeted because of their presumed support of the Thai government.


Cambodian–Thai border stand-off (2008–2011)

Is an event that began in June 2008 over the border dispute with the Temple of Preah Vihear afterwards. There were many clashes between the two sides. Along with the claims of each party over the said dispute territory.


Sudan (2010–2011)

Thai soldiers joined
UNMIS The United Nations Mission in the Sudan (UNMIS) was established by the UN Security Council The United Nations Security Council (UNSC) is one of the six principal organs of the United Nations The United Nations (UN) is an intergov ...
in 2011.


Current developments


Thai military deputized as police

On 29 March 2016, in a move that the ''Bangkok Post'' said will "...will inflict serious and long-term damage...", the
NCPO The National Council for Peace and Order (NCPO; th, คณะรักษาความสงบแห่งชาติ; ; abbreviated ( th, คสช.; )) was the military junta that ruled Thailand between its 2014 Thai coup d'état on 22 Ma ...
, under a Section 44 order (NCPO Order 13/2559) signed by junta chief
Prayut Chan-o-cha Prayut Chan-o-cha (sometimes spelled Prayuth Chan-ocha; th, ประยุทธ์ จันทร์โอชา, ; born 21 March 1954) is a Thai dictator and a former Royal Thai Army Royal may refer to: People * Royal (name)Royal can be ...
, granted to commissioned officers of the Royal Thai Armed Forces broad police powers to suppress and arrest anyone they suspect of criminal activity without a warrant and detain them secretly at almost any location without charge for up to seven days. Bank accounts can be frozen, and documents and property can be seized. Travel can be banned. Automatic immunity for military personnel has been built into the order, and there is no independent oversight or recourse in the event of abuse. The order came into immediate effect. The net result is that the military will have more power than the police and less oversight. The government has stated that the purpose of this order is to enable military officers to render their assistance in an effort to "...suppress organized crimes such as extortion, human trafficking, child and labor abuses, gambling, prostitution, illegal tour guide services, price collusion, and firearms. It neither aims to stifle nor intimidate dissenting voices. Defendants in such cases will go through normal judicial process, with police as the main investigator...trial will be conducted in civilian courts, not military ones. Moreover, this order does not deprive the right of the defendants to file complaints against military officers who have abused their power." The NCPO said that the reason for its latest order is that there are simply not enough police, in spite of the fact that there are about 230,000 officers in the
Royal Thai Police The Royal Thai Police (RTP) ( th, ตำรวจแห่งชาติ; ) is the national police The police are a Law enforcement organization, constituted body of Law enforcement officer, persons empowered by a State (polity), state, w ...
force. They make up about 17 percent of all non-military public servants. This amounts to 344 police officers for every for every 100,000 persons in Thailand, more than twice the ratio in Myanmar and the Philippines, one and a half times that of Japan and Indonesia and roughly the same proportion as the United States. In a joint statement released on 5 April 2016, six groups, including
Human Rights Watch Human Rights Watch (HRW) is an international non-governmental organization A non-governmental organization, or simply an NGO, is an that is, generally, formed independent from . They are typically s, and many of them are active in or t ...
(HRW),
Amnesty International Amnesty International (also referred to as Amnesty or AI) is a non-governmental organization A non-governmental organization, or simply an NGO, is an organization An organization, or organisation (Commonwealth English The use ...
, and the
International Commission of Jurists The International Commission of Jurists (ICJ) is an international human rights Human rights are moral A moral (from Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language belonging to the Italic languages, Italic branch of the Indo-Europea ...
(ICJ), condemned the move.


Corruption

The ''
Asia Sentinel ''Asia Sentinel'' is a web-based Asian regional publication focused on news, business, arts and culture. The site was launched in August 2006. "Asia Sentinel was created to provide a platform for news, analysis and opinion on national and regio ...
'' in 2014 called the Thai military one of the most deeply corrupt militaries in Asia. The Thai armed forces have a history of procurement scandals and dodgy dealings dating back to at least the 1980s. *In the 1980s, the army bought hundreds of substandard armored personnel carriers (APC) from the Chinese that were so shoddy that light was visible through the welds securing the armor plate. *The Thai air force bought Chinese jets with short-lived engines so delicate that the planes were towed to the flight line for takeoff and towed back on landing in order to minimize engine hours. *In 1997, the HTMS ''Chakri Naruebet'' aircraft carrier was commissioned. Due to its lackluster operational history, the Thai media have nicknamed the ship "Thai-tanic", and consider her to be a
white elephant A white elephant is a possession which its owner cannot dispose of and whose cost, particularly that of maintenance, is out of proportion to its usefulness. In modern usage, it is a metaphor used to describe an object, construction project, sch ...
. *The Aeros 40D S/N 21 airship, nicknamed "Sky Dragon", was purchased for 350 million baht in 2009. It cost 2.8 million baht to inflate and 280,000 baht a month to keep inflated. It served for eight years, mostly in storage, and crashed once. The present leadership of the NCPO was instrumental in approving its purchase. *In 2010 the army bought 1,576
GT200 The GT200 is a fraudulent "Long range locator, remote substance detector" that was claimed by its manufacturer, UK-based Global Technical Ltd, to be able to detect, from a distance, various substances including explosives and drugs. The GT200 w ...
"bomb detectors" from a UK firm for US$30 million. They continued to be used for years even after field tests proved that their bomb detection rate was lower than that of sheer chance. *The army's management of the bidding and procurement processes in the creation of
Rajabhakti Park Rajabhakti Park ( th, อุทยานราชภักดิ์, ) is a historically themed park honouring past Thai kings from the Sukhothai period to the current royal house of Chakri Dynasty, Chakri. It is in Hua Hin, Prachuap Khiri Khan Pr ...
raised concerns as to its competence and propriety.


Weapons and equipment

Thailand's defense spending has soared since 2006. Since then the military has seized control from civilian governments on two occasions. Defense spending has increased by US$1 billion since the latest coup in 2014.


Uniforms, ranks, insignia

To build institutional solidarity and esprit de corps, each Thai service component has developed its own distinctive uniforms, ranking system, and insignia.Thailand
. Lcweb2.loc.gov. Retrieved on 18 January 2012.
Many Thai military uniforms reflect historical foreign influences. For example, most of the distinctive service uniforms were patterned on those of the US, but lower ranking enlisted navy personnel wear uniforms resembling those of their French counterparts. The early influence of British advisers to the Thai royal court and the historical role of the military in royal pomp and ceremony contributed to the splendor of formal dress uniforms worn by high-ranking officers and guards of honour on ceremonial occasions. The rank structures of the three armed services are similar to those of the respective branches of the US Armed Forces, although the Thai system has fewer NCO and warrant officer designations. The king, as head of state and constitutional head of the armed forces, commissions all officers. Appointments to NCO ranks are authorised by the minister of defence. In theory, the authority and responsibilities of officers of various ranks correspond to those of their US counterparts. However, because of a perennial surplus of senior officers—in 1987 there were some 600 generals and admirals in a total force of about 273,000—Thai staff positions are often held by officers of higher rank than would be the case in the US or other Western military establishments. Thai military personnel are highly conscious of rank distinctions and of the duties, obligations, and benefits they entail. Relationships among officers of different grades and among officers, NCOs, and the enlisted ranks are governed by military tradition in a society where observance of differences in status are highly formalised. The social distance between officers and NCOs is widened by the fact that officers usually are college or military academy graduates, while most NCOs have not gone beyond secondary school. There is a wider gap between officers and conscripts, most of whom have even less formal education, service experience, or specialised training. Formal honours and symbols of merit occupy an important place in Thai military tradition. The government grants numerous awards, and outstanding acts of heroism, courage, and meritorious service receive prompt recognition.


Officer and enlisted rank insignia


Gallery

File:Thai soldiers and Type 85 APCs during 2010 Thai political protests.jpg, RTA troops take cover next to a
Type 85 AFV The Type 85 is a tracked armoured fighting vehicle An armoured fighting vehicle (AFV) is an armed combat vehicle A combat vehicle, also known as a ground combat vehicle, is a self-propelled, weaponized military vehicle A military ve ...
near the Red Shirt barricade at
Chulalongkorn Hospital King Chulalongkorn Memorial Hospital (KCMH, th, โรงพยาบาลจุฬาลงกรณ์; ) is a public general hospital, general and tertiary referral hospital in Bangkok, Thailand. It is operated by the Thai Red Cross Society, ...
File:2010 0513 silom 11.JPG, Soldiers with riot shields at a barricade on
Silom Road Si Lom Road (also written as Silom, th, สีลม, ) is a major street in the Thailand, Thai capital Bangkok, best known for its commercial neighbourhood, which, along with the nearby and roughly parallel Sathon Road, forms one of the city's ...
and Soi Convent File:2010 0513 saladaeng station 02.JPG, Soldiers beneath Saladaeng BTS station, Silom Road File:2010 0513 silom 07.JPG, Soldiers and a helmeted journalist buy water and food, Silom Road File:2014 0526 Thailand coup Chang Phueak Gate Chiang Mai 02.jpg, Troops at Chang Phueak Gate,
Chiang Mai Chiang Mai (, from th, เชียงใหม่ , nod, ), sometimes written as Chiengmai or Chiangmai, is the largest city in northern Thailand Northern Thailand ) , royal_anthem = '' Sansoen Phra Barami''( en, "Glorify ...
, days after the
2014 Thai coup d'état On 22 May 2014, the Royal Thai Armed Forces The Royal Thai Armed Forces (RTARF) ( th, กองทัพไทย; ) are the armed forces of the Kingdom of Thailand Thailand ( th, ประเทศไทย), historically known as ...
File:2014 0526 Thailand coup Chang Phueak Gate Chiang Mai 01.jpg, Troops at Chang Phueak Gate, Chiang Mai File:Defense.gov News Photo 110211-M-VX252-046 - Royal Thai and U.S. Marines discuss how to eliminate hostile forces firing on them from a building during a mock mechanized raid on Feb. 11 2011.jpg, Royal Thai and
US Marines The United States Marine Corps (USMC), also referred to as the United States Marines, is the maritime land force service branch Military branch (also service branch or armed service) is according to common standard the subdivision of the na ...
eliminating hostile forces during a mock raid, 11 February 2011 File:USMC-110213-M-GT770-027.jpg, Royal Thai Special Forces service member clears a building during a mock raid,
Cobra Gold Cobra Gold refers to multi-national Indo-Pacific military exercises held in Thailand. They are among the largest annual exercises of their kind. Overview Cobra Gold was first held in 1982 and has improved coordination between the armed forces o ...
, 2011 File:USMC-110213-M-GT770-017.jpg, Royal Thai Special Forces clear a building during a mock raid, Cobra Gold, 2011 File:Thai service members participate in a rivierine subject matter expert exchange with U.S. Sailors in the Nakhon Nayok River as part of Cooperation Afloat Readiness and Training (CARAT) 2013 in Thailand June 8 130608-N-RG360-224.jpg, Thai troops in a riverine exercise with US sailors on the Nakhon Nayok River,
Cooperation Afloat Readiness and Training The Cooperation Afloat Readiness and Training (Exercise CARAT) is a series of annual bilateral military exercises conducted by the United States Pacific Fleet with several member nations of ASEAN in Southeast Asia. Currently, the navy, navies of B ...
(CARAT), 8 June 2013 File:Rtaf All FlighterJet.jpg, RTAF fighters:
JAS 39 Gripen The Saab JAS 39 Gripen (; English: ''griffin The griffin, griffon, or gryphon (Ancient Greek Ancient Greek includes the forms of the Greek language Greek ( el, label=Modern Greek Modern Greek (, , or , ''Kiní Neoel ...
, F-16 ADF, F-5, Alpha jet, L-39 and SAAB-340 File:HTMS Naresuan in Hong Kong.JPG, RTN frigate
HTMS Naresuan HTMS (His Thai Majesty's Ship) ''Naresuan'' (FFG 421) ( th, นเรศวร), commissioned in 1995, is a modified version of the Chinese-made Type 053 frigate, corporate designed between Royal Thai Navy and China but built by the China State S ...
FFG-421 moored in
Victoria Harbour Victoria Harbour is a natural landform harbour A harbor (American English American English (AmE, AE, AmEng, USEng, en-US), sometimes called United States English or U.S. English, is the set of variety (linguistics), varieties ...
, Hong Kong


See also

*
Border Patrol Police The Border Patrol Police ( th, ตำรวจตระเวนชายแดน); (BPP) is a Thailand, Thai paramilitary police under the jurisdiction of the Royal Thai Police, responsible for Border guard, border security and counter-insurgen ...
*
King's Guard (Thailand) The King's Guard ( th, ทหารรักษาพระองค์; ) is a ceremonial designation given by the Monarchy of Thailand The monarchy of Thailand (whose monarch is referred to as the king of Thailand or historically, king of S ...
* List of flags of the Royal Thai Armed Forces * Military ranks of the Thai armed forces *
Royal Thai Air Force "Royal Thai Air Force March" , mascot = , anniversaries = 9 April 1937 (Royal Thai Air Force Day) , equipment = , equipment_label = , battles = , decorations = , battle_honours = , battle_honours_label = , flying_hours = , we ...
*
Royal Thai Police The Royal Thai Police (RTP) ( th, ตำรวจแห่งชาติ; ) is the national police The police are a Law enforcement organization, constituted body of Law enforcement officer, persons empowered by a State (polity), state, w ...
*
Territorial Defence Student Territorial defense students ( th, นักศึกษาวิชาทหาร; ) are a military youth organization in Thailand under control of the Royal Thai Army, and recently the Royal Thai Navy and Royal Thai Air Force. History Prior ...
* Thahan Phran * Underwater Demolition Assault Unit *
Volunteer Defense Corps (Thailand) The Volunteer Defense Corps ( th, กองอาสารักษาดินแดน; abbreviated An abbreviation (from Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language belonging to the Italic languages, Italic branch of the Indo-Eu ...


References


Further reading

* Osornprasop, Sutayut. "Thailand and the Secret War in Laos", 1960–1974 (in) Albert Lau (ed.), ''Southeast Asia and the Cold War''. Milton Park, Abingdon, Oxon; New York: Routledge, 2012. (hardback). * *


External links


Official website of Royal Thai Armed Forces Headquarters

Official website of Royal Thai Army

Official website of Royal Thai Navy

Official website of Royal Thai Air Forces
*

– (2 September 2009) article in ''
Asia Times Online ''Asia Times'' (), formerly known as ''Asia Times Online'', is a Hong Kong Hong Kong (; , ), officially the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region of the People's Republic of China (HKSAR), is a city A city is a large human settleme ...
'' giving an overview of the Thai army's use of paramilitary forces. {{Military of Asia ! Military units and formations established in 1852 1852 establishments in Siam Ministry of Defence (Thailand) bn:থাইল্যান্ডের সামরিক বাহিনী