Democracy

Expert Voices

Thailand's least democratic actors gaining power ahead of elections

Thai Prime Minister, Royal Thai Army Commander in Chief and others salute a portrait of King Maha Vajiralongkorn
Thai Prime Minister, Royal Thai Army Commander in Chief and others salute in front of a portrait of King Maha Vajiralongkorn in Thailand. Photo: Jewel Samad/AFP via Getty Images

Thailand's forthcoming elections in March, the first since the country was taken over by a military junta in May 2014, are unlikely to bring much peace or stability to the kingdom, which has been in turmoil for more than a decade.

The big picture: Instead, undemocratic actors are likely to become only more powerful. While the junta is not popular — recent polling shows that the main pro-junta party is likely to get only a tiny fraction of the vote — the army will likely take tough actions if the anti-junta parties win.

Expert Voices

Autocrats meet growing resistance with harsher crackdowns

Autocratic-leaning populists — politicians who win at least relatively free and fair elections but undermine democracy upon taking office — have proliferated globally, from Hungary to the Philippines to Brazil. Several years into their tenures, some of these leaders now face increasing domestic resistance.

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