2012 marks Missouri Southern State University's 16th annual themed semester, but its first to focus on Southeast Asia − a vibrant region of over 600 million people. Thailand, meaning "land of the free," is the only Southeast Asian nation to have escaped European colonization. Previously it was known as Siam. READ MORE
Merriam, Allen H. "Why Thailand" Web. 7/23/2012 <http://www.mssu.edu/themed-semester/thailand/why-thailand.php>.
Thailand Fast Facts
Tropical monsoon dry, cool
1 baht (B$) = 100 satang
|Holiday:||Songkran is April 13-15, Queen's Birthday is 12 August|
Thailand Showcase Gallery
flikr photo group showcasing high quality images taken in the Kingdom of Thailand
Thailand Overview via CountryWatch Database
A unified Thai kingdom was established in the mid-14th century. Known as Siam until 1939, Thailand is the only Southeast Asian country never to have been taken over by a European power. In 1932 a bloodless coup transformed the government of Thailand from an absolute to a constitutional monarchy.
Thailand was occupied by the Japanese during World War II until Japan's defeat in 1945. Since after the war, the country has seen turbulent times. The military governed, on and off, between 1947 and 1992 - a period characterized by coups, coup attempts and popular protests. In September 2006, the military once again stepped into politics, carrying out a bloodless coup against Prime Minister Thaksin while he was at the United Nations General Assembly. An interim prime minister was appointed a month later. Multi-party elections held in December 2007 subsequently restored democratic governance.
Traditionally an agrarian nation, Thailand today boasts a complex, multifaceted economy embracing industries that employ the latest and most sophisticated technology. Its principal comparative advantage has been the abundance and diversity of its natural resources. With the government providing infrastructure support and exerting relatively limited control over private industry, a free-enterprise system has emerged, allowing rapid development to take place.