The United States under President-elect Donald Trump will likely pay less attention to human rights and the restoration of democracy in Thailand. This in fact, will result to reducing pressure on its military regime, as per two political scientists.
According to K news, subsequent to the Republican presidential candidate's victory, two prominent political scientists thought what his presidency will mean for Thailand, its people and its military rule. "It can be expected that Trump may not promote values such as freedom and human rights," said Pongkwan Sawasdipak, a lecturer of international relations at Thammasat University. Pongkwan commented that the United States may disregard Gen. Prayuth Chan-ocha in ruling the military.
"They may not care about the Thai government. But that also means less criticism of [the military]," she added. Pongkwan mentioned that Trump will probably pull away Obama's "Asian pivot" to concentrate more on the Middle East, as he vowed during the campaign to eliminate the Islamic State, who he presented as an existential threat to his nation.
Pongkwan also cautioned that Thailand would be left with "fewer cards to play" against China if the United States detach themselves with Thailand and Southeast Asia. The political science professor Siripan Noksuan Sawasdee deemed that change may be little, as per K news. Thailand is not that important to the United States and therefore little change will be experienced under President Trump, the Chulalongkorn University professor said.
Siripan said that the ties between two military nations are doubted to be changed but she agrees that there will be less pressure on Thailand on human rights and civil liberties. Siripan said that the pressure will likely be lessened and she considers that there's a change under a more nationalist Trump. She just have concerns on where can Thailand find new markets under Trump's presidency, as stated in K news.