RealNews

Battles shake Thai provinces

A deadly conflict between mysterious bands of Islamic militants and Thai authorities has engulfed the once sleepy southern provinces of this Buddhist-dominated kingdom. The violence threatens Thailand’s reputation as an Asian center for tourism and business and raises questions about whether a new front is being opened by the forces of international Muslim extremists such as Al Qaeda. Almost every day there are news reports of attacks on police or military posts, of arrests and detentions or of killings, some under circumstances that look to human-rights activists like government-sanctioned assassinations. Since Jan. 4–when the first group of unknown assailants attacked an army depot, killing four and stealing a cache of weapons–up to 300 people have died in incidents ascribed to an Islamic insurgency or to the government’s aggressive response. Full Story

OODA Analyst

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