The voice on the radio is calm, its message anything but. “Civil war is going to happen,” says the announcer on a station broadcast across the arid plateau around Khon Kaen, where rice paddies, cane fields and fishing-net factories form the geographic heart of the country’s red-shirt movement. It is now preparing to fight back if the government it supports, under caretaker Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra, falls. “All sides, get ready,” the voice says. “We are ready to come together any time in the name of democracy.”

Thailand’s main opposition Democrat Party said Saturday that it would boycott February’s general election, deepening a weeks-long political crisis over protesters’ efforts to oust the government and force political reforms. The party’s leader, former Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva, announced the boycott after a meeting of party executives. He said the decision was made in order to ensure that Thailand’s government will “represent the people once again.”

The year-in-review posts are coming fast and furious from the world's leading technology companies. Instagram is the latest to post their statistics. And it has the best social network factlet of the year: the most-Instagrammed place in the world is a mall in Bangkok. New York makes three appearances, including the one for the High Line. Southern California also appears three times for Disneyland and two sporting venues.

Thailand's prime minister said she cannot comply with demands by the anti-government opposition because they are unconstitutional. In a televised news conference on Monday, Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra confirmed that she met with anti-government protest leader Suthep Thaugsuban late Sunday. She said the meeting was held under the auspices of the military, which has maintained that it is neutral in the conflict.

Since last year in China, people have been retiring faster new workers are entering the workforce. Fourteen percent of the population is now at least 60 years old, and at this pace, China’s total population will start to decline in 2030. And now even some of those retirees are contributing to population loss, increasingly spending their twilight years in Thailand, Malaysia and the Philippines, according to a recent report in China’s state-run Global Times (GT).

In June, Michael T. Sestak, a former cop and naval officer who went on to work for the US Foreign Service in Vietnam, was brought before a judge in Washington, DC on corruption charges. Sestak was allegedly a major part of one of the most lucrative illegal visa scams in history—while he was employed at the US consulate in Ho Chi Minh City, he had a side business rubber-stamping fraudulent visa applications for paying clients fed to him by a Vietnamese-American family, a gig that netted nearly $10 million all together according to the Department of Justice.

While Thailand’s youth are generally accepting of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgendered (LGBT) individuals, older Thais are less open-minded to the idea of same-sex marriage. Kalayasiri’s bill faced strong opposition at its inception, partly due to the fact that most lawmakers in Thailand fall on the other side of the generation gap.

The students are members of the volunteers in the program to promote the use of English among Thais, and students from the Thai - New Zealand cultural exchange program. The premier expressed her admiration in the students' enthusiasm in learning the Thai language and cultures, while thanking all the Thai foster families for welcoming and taking care of their Caucasian guests.