Alison Szalwinski
Vice President of Research
[email protected]

U.S.-Thailand Alliance: Reinvigorating the Partnership

For some time leaders in the United States and Thailand have characterized their alliance as being in a state of drift. Thailand has been preoccupied with a domestic political crisis for the past five years and has been more inward-looking as a result. At the same time, the security environment in Southeast Asia has changed dramatically from the Cold War era, and some analysts on both sides maintain that the United States and Thailand no longer face a common security threat. This new environment has enabled Thailand to rebalance its foreign relations, and relations with China in particular have expanded significantly in recent years. Although the United States remains an important external partner to Thailand, the exclusivity that marked the alliance in the Cold War era is gone. This project assessed the current state of the U.S.-Thailand alliance, addressed critical issues in the broader bilateral relationship, and assessed how changing regional dynamics are influencing the alliance’s future orientation.

The project’s principal investigator was Catharin Dalpino, Joan M. Warburg Professor of International Relations at Simmons College and Visiting Scholar in Southeast Asian Studies at the Paul H. Nitze School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS) at Johns Hopkins University.