The Thai military regime, isolated by the West, finds that China is more than willing to fill the void.
With King Bhumibol Adulyadej in the twilight of his reign, Thailand's politically potent monarchy is in for a time of upheaval.
ASEAN members are failing to adequately address the humanitarian crisis involving the Rohingya Muslim boat people.
The renewed friendly relations between Thailand and Russia must be analyzed in the context of the turbulence in Thai domestic politics.
It is difficult to estimate how many Thais who oppose the current military government in Bangkok reside in Japan, but clearly some of them have become more politically active than their counterparts living in Western countries.
Thailand's self-appointed prime minister will pay an official visit to Tokyo on Sunday to sign a deal involving on a high-speed train project and to seek Japan's endorsement of his country's military government.
As Malaysia takes over the ASEAN chairmanship for 2015, it faces the challenges of intractable territorial disputes in the South China Sea and the 'democratic recession' in the region.
The military regime in Thailand appears to be trying to silence political critics of the monarchy by charging them with lese-majeste offenses.
Beneath the celebration of the Thai king's birthday lies unease among the elites over the eventual royal transition of the Crown Prince, now said to be in the first stage of divorcing his third wife.
Thaksin and Yingluck Shinawatras' recent trip to China and Japan should remind the Thai junta that no country will put all its eggs in one basket.