CPD Blog Contributor and MPD Alumnus (2010) Paul Rockower was recently quoted in The Indianapolis Star on Thai gastrodiplomacy.

The Thai government has been educating diners about its country's cuisine for years. In fact, an initiative called Global Thai was launched in 2002 to encourage an appreciation for Thai cuisine around the world.

SBY also has a vision of world peace, with his proposal for a triple-track solution for the future of Iraq as an example. However, the President’s most popular vision was perhaps on Indonesia’s soft power diplomacy, which he presented before a UN forum and USINDO in 2007. He envisaged that many conflicts in the world could not reach peaceful solution as actors pursued solely hard power.

May 11, 2011

It's familiar, unmistakable. The melody echoing through the auditorium at Rangsit University is from Days of Wine and Roses, that Hollywood drama from the early 1960s whose theme music, composed by Henry Mancini, won an Academy Award. The odd thing is that the tune is being played by a group of Asian students who couldn't possibly have been born when that film was released.

Recently, Embassy Bangkok introduced the new U.S. Ambassador to Thailand Kristie Kenney, using social media as the vehicle. With the help of the Bureau of International Information Programs (IIP), Ambassador Kenney filmed two short introductory videos -- the first discussing her excitement about coming to Thailand and the second highlighting her love of Thai food.

China is expanding its military reach by sending, for the first time, a marine unit of the People's Liberation Army (PLA) to train with another country in an upcoming exercise with Thailand's armed forces.

October 17, 2010

After many wars and tears of sorrow and happiness, the capital of Vietnam celebrates its millennial anniversary. This month, the Thai government and the Thai embassy in Hanoi are also celebrating Hanoi's millennium by hosting various activities, including a Thai fruit and vegetable festival, a Thai food festival and concerts in King Ly Thai To Park.

In the mascaraed eyes of Thai teenyboppers, South Korea is ground zero of hip. More than Lady Gaga, more than any local act, Bangkok kids aspire to the saccharine perfection of Korean pop. Thai authorities, however, have proven less welcoming of the “K-Pop” phenomenon. With each new Korean fashion craze comes official warnings that the new fad may blind, disfigure or even kill.