In theory, a democratic nation is governed by three branches: the executive, judicial and the parliamentary or legislative. In Thailand's reality, the country is governed formally by those three institutions, but also informally by two other institutions, the military and what we shall term as the "old establishment".
That's five institutions, two too many.
The partnership between the military and the old establishment saved Thailand from fragmentation and from being ripped apart by civil war as was the fate of neighboring countries during the tumultuous Cold War era. This should be recognised.
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