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Old 26-01-2011, 11:13 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Jan 25, 1942 : Thailand declares war on the United States and England

Jan 25, 1942:

Thailand declares war on the United States and England


On this day, Thailand, a Japanese puppet state, declares war on the Allies.

When war broke out in Europe in September 1939, Thailand declared its neutrality, much to the distress of France and England. Both European nations had colonies surrounding Thailand and hoped Thailand would support the Allied effort and prevent Japanese encroachment on their Pacific territory. But Thailand began moving in the opposite direction, creating a "friendship" with Japan and adding to its school textbooks a futuristic map of Thailand with a "Greater Thailand" encroaching on Chinese territory.

Thailand's first real conflict with the Allies came after the fall of France to the Germans and the creation of the puppet government at Vichy. Thailand saw this as an opportunity to redraw the borders of French Indochina. The Vichy government refused to accommodate the Thais, so Thai troops crossed into French Indochina and battled French troops. Japan interceded in the conflict on the side of the Thais, and used its political alliance with Germany to force Vichy France to cede 21,000 square miles to Thailand.

On December 8, 1941, the Japanese made an amphibious landing on the coast of Thailand, part of the comprehensive sweep of South Pacific islands that followed the bombing raid at Pearl Harbor, Hawaii. The Japanese had assistance, though: Thailand's prime minister, Lang Pipul, collaborated with the Japanese, embracing the Axis power's war goal of usurping territory in China and ruling over the South Pacific. Pipul wanted to partake in the spoils; toward that end, he declared war on the United States and England. In October, he took dictatorial control of Thailand and became a loyal puppet of the Japanese.

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Old 26-01-2011, 11:15 AM   #2 (permalink)
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^ I was thinking of posting this too, but wasn't sure...

It is interesting though. Revealing in fact.
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Old 26-01-2011, 11:18 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Thailand has never been colonized......blah, blah, blah, blah, blah....Conquered...
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Old 26-01-2011, 11:20 AM   #4 (permalink)
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^Yeah. How many times have you heard that BS? Surrendered and collaborated faster than the French!
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Old 26-01-2011, 11:54 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Well I suppose it looked a fair bet to those in power at the time. Either get with the programme or have your people and yourselves perhaps suffer the same fate as China (remember the Japanese had almost half of China), and that was at a terrible result for the Chinese, or, take the odds on offer which weren't too bad IMHO. What would you say? 6/4 on in favour of the Nips?

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Old 26-01-2011, 11:57 AM   #6 (permalink)
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^Agree. Thai will always go for the option which favors Thailand. There are no other considerations - moral or otherwise.
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Old 26-01-2011, 11:58 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Quote:
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Well I suppose it looked a fair bet to those in power at the time
pity they have chosen to deny it .
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Old 26-01-2011, 12:14 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chitown
Thailand has never been colonized......blah, blah, blah, blah, blah....Conquered...
Ah, well, strictly speaking they weren't. They were full partners in the Greater east-Asian co-prosperity sphere. The thousands of jap troops were just err, military advisors, yes, that's it, military advisors. I do admire the masterful way the Thais managed to get the Allies to declare them to be on the winning side at the end of the war though, that took some chutzpah. Severely pissed Churchill off.
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Old 26-01-2011, 12:16 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Thailand - World War II
Thailand responded pragmatically to the military and political pressures of World War II. When sporadic fighting broke out between Thai and French forces along Thailand's eastern frontier in late 1940 and early 1941, Japan used its influence with the Vichy regime in France to obtain concessions for Thailand. As a result, France agreed in March 1941 to cede 54,000 square kilometers of Laotian territory west of the Mekong and most of the Cambodian province of Battambang to Thailand. The recovery of this lost territory and the regime's apparent victory over a European colonial power greatly enhanced Phibun's reputation.

Then, on December 8, 1941, after several hours of fighting between Thai and Japanese troops at Chumphon, Thailand had to accede to Japanese demands for access through the country for Japanese forces invading Burma and Malaya. Phibun assured the country that the Japanese action was prearranged with a sympathetic Thai government. Later in the month Phibun signed a mutual defense pact with Japan. Pridi resigned from the cabinet in protest but subsequently accepted the nonpolitical position of regent for the absent Ananda Mahidol.

Under pressure from Japan, the Phibun regime declared war on Britain and the United States in January 1942, but the Thai ambassador in Washington, Seni Pramoj, refused to deliver the declaration to the United States government. Accordingly, the United States refrained from declaring war on Thailand. With American assistance Seni, a conservative aristocrat whose antiJapanese credentials were well established, organized the Free Thai Movement, recruiting Thai students in the United States to work with the United States Office of Strategic Services (OSS). The OSS trained Thai personnel for underground activities, and units were readied to infiltrate Thailand. From the office of the regent in Thailand, Pridi ran a clandestine movement that by the end of the war had with Allied aid armed more than 50,000 Thai to resist the Japanese.

Thailand was rewarded for Phibun's close cooperation with Japan during the early years of war with the return of further territory that had once been under Bangkok's control, including portions of the Shan states in Burma and the four northernmost Malay states. Japan meanwhile had stationed 150,000 troops on Thai soil and built the infamous "death railway" through Thailand using Allied prisoners of war. As the war dragged on, however, the Japanese presence grew more irksome. Trade came to a halt, and Japanese military personnel requisitioning supplies increasingly dealt with Thailand as a conquered territory rather than as an ally. Allied bombing raids damaged Bangkok and other targets and caused several thousand casualties. Public opinion and, even more important, the sympathies of the civilian political elite, moved perceptibly against the Phibun regime and the military. In June 1944, Phibun was forced from office and replaced by the first predominantly civilian government since the 1932 coup.

Barbara Leitch LePoer, ed. Thailand: A Country Study. Washington: GPO for the Library of Congress, 1987.
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Old 26-01-2011, 12:16 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Davis Knowlton
Thai will always go for the option which favors Thailand. There are no other considerations - moral or otherwise.
Do you think that the US is any different in that respect? The US will always go for the option which favors the US. There are no other considerations - moral or otherwise.
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Old 26-01-2011, 12:20 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Davis Knowlton
Thai will always go for the option which favors Thailand. There are no other considerations - moral or otherwise.
Do you think that the US is any different in that respect? The US will always go for the option which favors the US. There are no other considerations - moral or otherwise.
Are you infatuated with the US you Poly Parrot? US, US, US, US, US, US....break that record fool...
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Old 26-01-2011, 12:26 PM   #12 (permalink)
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But Thailand began moving in the opposite direction, creating a "friendship" with Japan and adding to its school textbooks a futuristic map of Thailand with a "Greater Thailand" encroaching on Chinese territory.
Japanese War Propaganda Maps for Kids



Unlike Germany which called itself the Greater German Empire in World War II, the Japanese were much more media savvy in their endeavor. Calling itself the innocent sounding Greater East Asian Co-Prosperity Sphere, the Japanese never the less sought an empire run by ethnic Japanese and manned by national collaborates.

In the children's propaganda booklet Manifesto for Greater East Asian Co-operation maps and pictures were used to make the Japanese Empire look like an international effort of decolonization. The booklet say the Japanese are merely aligning themselves with Thailand [deleted] to liberate the Philippines, Indonesia, China (from itself?), Burma, and India.

To accomplish this Japan set up an independent puppet state in Manchuria called Manchukuo, had several Chinese puppet states, established a Filipino republic, an Indian government, and a Burmese state. Later on Axis-on-Axis violence occurred in Vichy French Indochina and a Vietnamese puppet state was formed.

The maps are below showing a before and after look at what the Japanese wanted their children to think. Notice how there is no mentioning of China in the before map. Having Japanese fighting Chinese would defeat the desired narrative.



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Old 26-01-2011, 12:27 PM   #13 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chitown
Are you infatuated with the US you Poly Parrot? US, US, US, US, US, US....break that record fool...
Why would you ask if I'm infatuated with the US after mentioning them for the first time on here. Are you infatuated with parrots?
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Old 26-01-2011, 12:29 PM   #14 (permalink)
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For those interested, there's an excellent book* that covers Thailand's diplomatic, military and economic history 1938-48. First hand account by Direk Jayanama who was variously Deputy Prime Minister, Foreign Minister, Ambassador to Japan (1942), then heavily involved with the Free Thai movement until war's end - and then instrumental in the immediate post-war dealings with the US/UN and with the returning British/French colonial administrations.

Very well documented - and eye-opening stuff.

* "Thailand and World War II" - Direk Jayanama
(Silkworm Books ISBN 978-974-9511-33-6)
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Old 26-01-2011, 12:47 PM   #15 (permalink)
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^

thanxs Steve ,

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Old 27-01-2011, 11:33 AM   #16 (permalink)
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^^ Yes thanks Steve. Better to know the facts than the fiction the world was sold, particularly after the surrender by Japan.
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Old 27-01-2011, 12:29 PM   #17 (permalink)
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True...BUT...

I'm not disagreeing with the facts...but you need to consider what the real situation was at the time.
1. The British forces in Malaya were the stongest military force in Southeast Asia at that time. (The French were effectively an ally of the Nazis, and were out of the game by that time.)
2. Singapore, the "undefeatable" bastion of European power in Southeast Asia (being a British colony) was either out of the game or well on it's way to being defeated by Japanese troops; So were the Dutch in Indonesia. There was no other military power other than British forces in Burma. The Japanese needed to go through Thailand, they said that to the Thais. They were coming through Thailand one way or the other.
3. For that reason, with no real hope of being able to stop the Japanese troops, the military leader of Thailand at the time ordered all Thai forces to stop resisting the advance of japanese forces through Thailand. (A naval battle...where much of the then Thai navy was destroyed by the Japanese Air Force made it clear that the Thais had no chance of stopping the Japanese coming through Thailand to get to Burma)
4. The Thai ambassador to Britan complied with the order to deliver the declaration of War to the the British government. The ambassador to the U.S. never did, he resigned instead...so although the Thai government at the time did declare war against the U.S. the declaration was never delivered.
5. For political reasons (the Free French forces were an ally of Britan and wanted their colonies back in Southeast Asia after the war) the British government was forced to declare war against Thailand.
6. The U.S. founded and trained a Thai anti-Japanese resistance group known as the Thai Seri with some Thai diplomats living in the U.S. and Europe as their leaders. They provided much intelligence and information on what the Japanese troops were up to in Southeast Asia. They also did what they could to harrass the japenese forces in Thailand and in Burma from Thailand. They also helped allied prisoners to escape if they could.
7. The Japanese troops had a standing policy of killing any Thai who they found to be helping any escaped British or allied prisoners. Not only did they kill the person who helped an allied prisoner, but also HIS OR HER ENTIRE FAMILY was to be exucuted. For that reason many Thais would not help an escaping prisoner.
8. The Japanese military had the practice of disarming and taking away all the weapons from the police in whenever they took control of a city in Thailand. For a Thai to have a firearm then was punishable by death. The only "weapons" the Thai police were allowed to carry was a stick or club.

And on a personal note: my Thai girlfriend's father was a Thai Border policeman during WWII (he has now since passed away). She told me of how her father and some other Border police hid and helped to escape a British airman whose plane had been shot down on a bombing raid against the Japanese in Burma. My Thai girlfriend's father was working with the Thai Seri at the time. If he had been caught he would have been executed.

I'm not disputing what you say...just realise that it was a bad and dangerous time. Not all Thais were collaborators or helped the Japanese. Some resisted, as best as they could. Everyone needs to realise that.

Last edited by BigBaBoo : 27-01-2011 at 12:37 PM.
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Old 27-01-2011, 12:57 PM   #18 (permalink)
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European empires have died?

I drive a toyota! Best vehicle I've ever owned.
I voted for Peace in Ireland, giving up the claim to the north.
Ask the Boers who invented concentration camps.
10 years after the fall of Vietnam, the USA was its biggest trading partner.
So us white guys are always honest, don't lie, change history and our greed never destroyed the world financial system.

Bollocks guys, 65 years ago the Thai's did what they did for their benefit. So did every other nation at that time. Before and since.
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