Since the current prime minister Prayut Chan-o-Cha seized power during a coup last year, relations between Thailand and China have been sweet to say the least. Foreign Minister General Tanasak Patimapragorn, an advisor of the Thai PM, is particularly fond of China, declaring that their love affair goes back 1,000 years.
He confessed his admiration while standing next to Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi as they were in Malaysia for a regional security meeting hosted by the Association of Southeast Asian Nations.
“At this moment we believe this is the best time for our relationship. Especially for my personal contact with minister Wang Yi who is a very nice and polite person,” General Tanasak told reporters when questioned about Thailand’s relationship with China.
“If I were a woman I will fall in love with his excellency,” he added.
Beijing has been quick to nudge up with Bangkok through the Chinese foreign minister since the May 2014 coup. At the same time, American diplomats remain close with the Royal Thai Government, which has been a constitutional monarchy since 1932. There have been 19 military coups in Thailand since 1932, and the CCP seems to be taking this opportunity to further rub shoulders with its new military leaders. During the Cold War, Thailand was one of America’s strongest allies against the Red Scare, which somewhat problematized its 1,000 years of guanxi.
Furthermore, Thailand is one of the only nations in Asia not to have been colonized because, as we all know, it’s a great tourist spot.
“Let’s say we are so close, we are more than friends, just say we are cousins with a long history together…” General Tanasak said.
By Dan Cunningham