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Posts Tagged ‘Thailand’

Must-Reads from Around the World: March 20, 2012

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on March 20, 2012

Syrian President Bashar Assad speaking during a Ramadan Iftar banquet in honor of Muslim clergymen, in Damascus, Syria, 24 August 2011. (Photo: SANA / EPA)


More Syria Leaks – Al Jazeera reveals details from confidential Syrian intelligence and security documents handed over by one of the government’s most trusted officials who recently fled to Turkey. The trove shows President Bashar Assad’s strategy to suppress anti-government protests, including orders to stop protesters from getting into Damascus and detailed security plans for crushing protests in the cities of Aleppo and Idlib, as well as warnings about countries trying to influence Syrian diplomats to defect and indications the government spied on last year’s Arab League monitoring mission in Syria. Read the rest of this entry »

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Taxi Driver Saksi Ketsikaew Returns Gold Worth $450,000

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on March 17, 2012

BANGKOK — A Thai taxi driver has returned gold worth $450,000 to a customer who left the jewelry behind three days earlier.

Police Col. Naradet Tiprak said driver Saksi Ketsikaew turned in 8.2 kilograms (289 ounces) of jewelry in cardboard boxes Friday.

He said gold seller Ekarat Kanokwannakorn bought the gold Tuesday in Bangkok but forgot it in the taxi while he was helping his sick wife. Read the rest of this entry »

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Facebook: Thai Government Warns Against Pressing ‘Like’ On Social Network

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on November 25, 2011

Thai authorities have warned the country’s Facebook users that “liking” certain groups, specifically ones that expound anti-monarchy sentiments, is a prosecutable offence.

On Wednesday, 61-year-old Amphon Tangnoppaku was given a 20-year sentence for sending a text message that the court deemed offensive to the Thai Queen.

Tangnoppaku was sentenced under Thailand’s lèse-majesté laws, strict legislation that makes it a criminal act to insult the ruling family.

Now the country’s information technology minister, Anudith Nakornthap, has told citizens that anyone who uses Facebook to break the lèse-majesté laws should delete their comments or face prosecution. Read the rest of this entry »

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The World’s Most Earthquake-Vulnerable Cities

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on September 20, 2011

Tiffany M. Luck

In Pictures: The 20 Most Earthquake-Vulnerable Cities
Earthquake Reaction And Overreaction
The World’s Most Earthquake-Vulnerable Cities
China’s Mandate Of Heaven
A Tale of Two Disasters
Quake Could Rock China Life
Economic Impact Of China’s Great Quake

The earthquake in China’s Sichuan province killed perhaps 15,000 people and left thousands of people buried under heaps of rubble.

And while a massive quake like this one–magnitude 7.9–would undoubtedly do damage to any world city, the death toll and degree of destruction has more to do with investment in well-designed infrastructure capable of handling a massive earthquake than the quake itself. Unlike the Beijing Olympic venues, built to withstand a magnitude 8.0 earthquake, the majority of China’s infrastructure in the area proved ill-prepared for a shock like Monday’s–felt as far away as Hanoi, Vietnam, and Bangkok, Thailand.

Blame the mortality spread on exponential population growth, increasing poverty and lax or nonexistent building codes. In short: Poor nations–like China–run far greater risk of earthquake fatalities than rich ones.

In Pictures: The World’s Most Earthquake-Vulnerable Cities

GeoHazards International, a nonprofit research group aiming to reduce suffering due to natural disasters, measured the lethal potential of seismic disasters facing small and large cities in Asia and the Americas–areas most at risk for seismic calamity. The sample cities spanned both developed and developing countries. Variables measured: building frailty, potential for landslides and fires, and the rescue, firefighting and life-saving medical abilities of local authorities.

Kathmandu, Nepal, ranked first in the 2001 study, followed by Istanbul, Turkey; Delhi, India; Quito, Ecuador; Manila, Philippines; and Islambad/Rawalpindi, Pakistan–all of which could expect fatalities in the tens of thousands if disaster struck. The only first-world cities on the list were in Japan: Tokyo, Nagoya and Kobe. Fatalities in these cities were estimated in the hundreds, not thousands.

Events since then show the estimates to be fairly accurate, if not low. The magnitude 7.6 quake that struck the Kashmir region of Pakistan in October 2005 killed more than 73,000 people, many in remote parts of the country, not dense urban centers like Islamabad. Geohazard’s study predicted a 6.0 hit on Pakistan’s capitol would kill 12,500 people.

In a 2004 paper, Brian E. Tucker of GeoHazards warned the problem would become worse, citing a study of estimated earthquake fatalities based on population growth and construction changes in northern India. One scary finding: A magnitude 8.3 earthquake striking Shillong might kill 60 times as many people as were killed during a similar size quake that hit in 1897, even though the population of the region has increased by only a factor of about eight since then. Reason: The replacement of single-story bamboo homes with multistory, poorly constructed concrete-frame structures, often on steep slopes, has made the population much more vulnerable. Read the rest of this entry »

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Sister Act

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on September 12, 2011


Is she the boss? Yingluck has to figure out how to heal a politically divided country — and whether to allow Thaksin to return home Photograph by Agnes Dherbeys for TIME

She delivers the line with a breathy purr: “The microwave is my lover.” Thailand may be famous for its incendiary curries and the tireless women who prepare them, but Yingluck Shinawatra is used to quick results — and not just in the kitchen. Last month the 44-year-old business executive was sworn in as the politically fractious country’s first female Prime Minister. It was her first-ever political race.

In the West, political discourse strives toward the gender-blind; many women in power, with their pantsuits and sensible hairstyles, project themselves as successful politicians who just happen to be female. Yingluck, who has a common-law husband and a 9-year-old son, accentuates her femininity — even if she doesn’t spend hours pounding chilies with a mortar and pestle. On the campaign trail, the willowy beauty smiled with the luminosity of a pageant queen, dished out noodles for adoring crowds and, as she puts it, “gave them my heart.” While sticking to her Pheu Thai party’s populist script, she avoided slinging mud at opponents in the Democrat Party. “Physically, as a woman, maybe I cannot do strong things,” she told TIME, after having survived a parliamentary grilling on her policy plans. “But Thailand needs reconciliation, and as a female I represent nonviolence, so I will turn this weak point into a strong point.”(See the top 12 female leaders around the world.)

Is the feminine touch enough? Once one of Asia’s most promising and stable democracies, Thailand has degenerated into a political shambles in which antigovernment rallies and new Prime Ministers (six in as many years, plus one military chief) seem as predestined as the monsoons. The turmoil has, in its broadest strokes, pitted the poor rural supporters of Pheu Thai (and its previous incarnations) against the urban establishment of the Democrats. Last year political violence erupted on the streets of the capital, Bangkok. Around 90 people were killed; some were security forces, but most were so-called Red Shirt protesters who supported a political faction now led by Yingluck. Though an uneasy peace now prevails, the previous Democrat government prosecuted no one for the deaths. The July 3 election that swept Yingluck to victory may represent the will of the masses, but it has yet to bridge Thailand’s great political divide. Read the rest of this entry »

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Yingluck Shinawatra Voted In As Thailand’s First Female Prime Minister (VIDEO)

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on August 5, 2011

Congratula­tion another young lady for increasing the number of countries headed by female.
Read the Article at HuffingtonPost

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Thailand, Sinking: Parts of Bangkok Could Be Underwater in 2030

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on July 21, 2011

By Bruno Philip / Le Monde / Worldcrunch

This post is in partnership with Worldcrunch, a new global-news site that translates stories of note in foreign

Rain clouds fill the sky over Bangkok, Thailand, 01 July 2011. Narong Sangnak/ EPA

languages into English. The article below was originally published in Le Monde

BANGKOK — Day after day, Bangkok sinks. Inexorably. The most pessimistic experts are afraid part of Thailand’s capital will be submerged by 2030. Specialists complain about the absence of any policy in place to prevent a disaster that seems bound to occur.

This looming natural disaster risk will be a central challenge for the new government arriving after the July 3 elections. Climate change, rising sea level, coastal erosion: a variety of converging factors could lead to the end of the biggest city of the Chao Praya river delta, originally built up after a commitment on April 21, 1782 by the first sovereign of the Chakri dynasty. The family still reigns today.(Special: Top 10 Historic U.S. Floods)

The city continues to multiply demographically: some 10 million people now live in the center or in the suburbs of this megalopolis. Even the weight of the skyscrapers contributes to the progressive engulfing of Bangkok. The soils descend from 1.5 to 5.3 cm each year, and a big part of the megalopolis is already under sea level.

Sooner or later, the rising sea level will threaten more that 1 million buildings, 90% of which are residential. In the Samunt Prakan harbor, about 15 kilometers away from Bangkok, the suburban houses along the river are already flooded certain months of the year. In a report published by the World Bank, the Asian Development Bank and the Japan International Cooperation Agency, Bangkok appears on the list of the cities threatened by climate change. Read the rest of this entry »

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Yingluck Shinawatra, Thailand’s First Female Prime Minister? Party Win Paves Path

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on July 4, 2011

Ok, this year lots of female leaders coming to rule. They have to prove that they can change the world. Don’t miss to grab the opportunit­y.
Read the Article at HuffingtonPost

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Another Chinese foundation plans to raise $ 3b to make Lumbini ‘magnet for Buddhists’

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on June 20, 2011

Months after plans of a Chinese private sector company to invest Rs 8 billion to develop Lumbini as an International

Buddha Center hogged media headlines there comes news that a Chinese-backed foundation is planning to raise $ 3 billion to help Nepal develop Buddha’s birthplace.

According to Reuters, the Asia Pacific Exchange and Cooperation Foundation plans to raise the aforesaid amount at home and abroad “to build temples, an airport, a highway, hotels, convention centres and a Buddhist university in the town of Lumbini.”

Interestingly, UCPN (Maoist) chairman Pushpa Kamal Dahal is the vice-chairman of the foundation which aims to transform Lord Buddha’s birthplace in southern Nepal “into a magnet for Buddhists in the same way as Mecca is to Muslims and the Vatican for Catholics”, the report adds.

The foundation signed a memorandum of understanding with Nepal government last month to jointly develop and operate Lumbini.

According to the report, the foundation also pledged to bring communications, water and electricity to Lumbini.

“Lumbini will transcend religion, ideology and race. We hope to rejuvenate the spirit of Lord Buddha,” Xiao Wunan, a devout Buddhist who is executive vice president of the foundation, told the news agency.

The development of Lumbini will also help boost government revenues, create jobs and improve infrastructure in the impoverished corner of Nepal, the report cited the memorandum as stating. Read the rest of this entry »

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Lerpong Wichaikhammat, U.S. Citizen, Arrested For Insulting Thailand’s King Bhumibiol Adulyadej

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on May 27, 2011

In general king is king and citizen is citizen. Only after special circumstan­ces those places could be changed like in Nepal. In that case when a citizen forgets that s/he was citizen that could create the most dangerous situation like in Nepal.
Read the Article at HuffingtonPost

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Buddhist Teachings

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on May 16, 2011

Buddhism is a philosophy of life expounded by Gautama Buddha (“Buddha” means “enlightened one”), who born in Lumbini, Nepal in the 6th Century B.C. The Buddha was not a god and the philosophy of Buddhism does not entail any theistic world-view. The teachings of the Buddha are aimed solely to liberate sentient beings from suffering.

The Basic Teachings of Buddha which are core of Buddhism are-

The Three Universal Truth
The Four Noble Truth
The Noble Eightfold Path

In Buddhism, the law of karma, says “for every event that occurs, there will follow another event whose existence was caused by the first, and this second event will be pleasant or unpleasant according as its cause was skillful or unskillful.” Therefore, the law of Karma teaches that responsibility for unskillful actions is born by the person who commits them.

After his enlightenment, he went to the Deer Park near the holy city of Benares and shared his new understanding with five holy men. They understood immediately and became his disciples. This marked the beginning of the Buddhist community. For the next forty-five years, the Buddha and his disciples went from place to place in India spreading the Dharma, his teachings. Their compassion knew no bounds, they helped everyone along the way, beggars, kings and slave girls. At night, they would sleep where they were; when hungry they would ask for a little food.  Read the rest of this entry »

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Japan Earthquake 2011: 5 Strongest Earthquakes Of The Last Century (PHOTOS)

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on March 11, 2011

I wish these be just history and never repeat again in the future.
Read the Article at HuffingtonPost

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Images and sacred texts Buddhism across Asia

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on February 26, 2011

14 October 2010 –

Figure of the Buddha Amida seated on a lotus pedestal, made of lacquered and gilded wood. From Dairenji Temple, Osaka, Japan, mid 18th century.

3 April 2011

Room 91

Through sacred texts, painted scrolls and sculptures from Sri Lanka to Japan, discover the shared traditions of Buddhism – the ‘three gems’.

The exhibition features depictions of the ‘three gems’ from across Asia. The ‘three gems’ consist of the Buddha himself, his teachings (dharma), and the Buddhist community (sangha). Despite regional variations, the ‘three gems’ show remarkable similarities, sometimes across hundreds of years.

Objects featured in the exhibition include exquisite gold sculptures and paintings of the Buddha, beautiful Buddhist texts on palm leaf and paper, and a selection of images of Buddhist monks.

The objects come from across the whole of Asia, including India, China, Mongolia, Tibet, Thailand, Cambodia, Korea and Japan. The earliest objects are from the 1st–2nd century AD, and the latest date to the 20th century.

Many of these objects have never been on display before, making this is a unique opportunity to view rarely-seen items from the British Museum’s collection. Due to the fragility of the paintings and texts, some items in the display will be changed after three months, halfway through the exhibition run.

This exhibition provides an insight into the key elements which hold the Buddhist world together in Asia and, now that Buddhism is a worldwide faith, across the world as a whole. Read the rest of this entry »

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Thai King Bhumibol Adulyadej, World’s Longest-Reigning Monarch, Celebrates 83rd Birthday (PHOTOS)

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on December 7, 2010

But he seems young. Anyway congratula­tion!
Read the Article at HuffingtonPost

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Bangkok Burns After Thai Army Launches Deadly Assault On Protesters

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on May 19, 2010

This is not the right way for long term solution of the problem. Any time the problem could be appeared in another form and that could be more dangerous than this. Why to be miser to compromise to sort out the problem in deed. This could be the seed to create another movement there. This is really sad.
Read the Article at HuffingtonPost

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