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Politics

Thitinan Pongsudhirak: Thailand needs to escape its political cul-de-sac

The ruling elites' quest for legitimacy may be a trap of their own making

Thailand's recent political history has centered on whether the country's rulers, without having a voter mandate, are doing well enough to stay in power.   © Reuters

Thailand has come full circle again. The kingdom's 12-year pattern of a political juggernaut being elected to office and later abusing power before being ousted by his or her opponents still holds. This time, the outcome is a five-year jail term for former Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra on charges of negligence over her government's flawed rice subsidy scheme that ran from Thailand's last poll in July 2011 until the latest military coup in May 2014.

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