Charting Thailand’s Maritime Security Policies from 1932 to 2012: A Liberal International Relations Perspective
Developing a deeper understanding of Thailand’s maritime security policies necessitates an analytical exploration that will go beyond the conventional. While governmental budgetary, geopolitical and internal security factors will certainly feature heavily in this chapter, we would contend that the dynamics involved in this matter are likewise significantly influenced by other, somewhat latent factors—in particular, the strong domestic undercurrents involving the Thai Armed Forces—that may not be apparent at first glance. Thus, the ensuing analysis, through the use of a liberal international relations lens, will attempt to show that the ebb and flow of Thailand’s maritime security policies are actually intimately linked to the role, challenges and ultimately, the destiny of the Royal Thai Navy. The latter’s existential fight to remain relevant vis-à-vis the Royal Thai Army’s dominance of Thai politics is ultimately played out in the maritime security policies of the nation.