Expat Thais turn to alcohol
Thais who work in foreign countries often turn to alcohol as the result of alienation and difficulties of working in a different culture. For more, see here.
American drug war, Thailand and Burma (dissertation)
Daniel Weimer, “Seeing Drugs: The American Drug War, Thailand, and Burma, 1970-1975” (Ph.D. dissertation, Kent State University, 2005).
Mekong rice whiskey (with cobra blood)
Thailand's popular working class rice whiskey, called Mekong, supposedly is sometimes mixed with cobra blood. For more, see here.
As Myanmar drugs turn Thai youth gangs to violence, Thai woman struggles to reform them
For many years in Chiang Mai, Thailand, over 50 youth gangs, inflamed by drugs from nearby Myanmar, have engaged in violent turf wars. In the last decade-plus a woman named Laddawan Chaininpun, nicknamed Grandmother Aew, has worked with the gangs. By now, she has persuaded about half of them to meet together peacefully. Recently she has received support from the Swedish branch of a temperance organization, the Good Templars. For more, see here.
Khun Sa dies at 74, onetime Golden Triangle drug lord
Khun Sa, son of a Chinese father and a Shan mother, once was the leading drug lord in the so-called Golden Triangle where Myanmar, Laos, and Thailand meet. At that time the USA offered a multi-million dollar award for his capture. Khun Sa claimed to be leading a liberation army on behalf of the oppressed ethnic Shan minority. When he died recently at age 74, he was living peacefully at Yangon, the Myanmar capital, as part of some sort of a deal with the military junta that ruled there.
Opium: from the golden triangle to the golden crescent
Three decades ago 70% of the world's opium was grown in the so-called golden triangle, upland districts of Laos, Myanmar, and Thailand. Now, partly because of pressure from China where recently much of the heroin has been sold, the golden triangle is responsible for no more than 5%. Today opium is mostly (92% of the world's production) grown in the golden crescent, southern Afghanistan, with the total world production perhaps doubled. For more, see here.
'These are beers to match Asian lifestyle and Asian food'
What drink goes well with Malaysian beef rendang, mini octopus and Thai vermicelli salad? How about an ice-cold Traveller's Wheat beer, spiced with tamarind, ginger and a pinch of lemongrass and Chinese orange peel? The surprisingly refreshing brew is the star of a trio of craft beers recently introduced by Archipelago Brewing Co. and brewed specifically to complement the unique flavors of Southeast Asian cuisine. Read more.
Thai history of beer (book)
Sapphaibun, Thanawat, and Rak Mananya. Sing mai chai kho bia. Phim ruam lem khrang rok. Krung Thep: Samnakphim Dokya, 1998.[In Thai; history of beer and brewing in Thailand.]
90 years old, smuggling drugs
The Mail & Guardian online reports on the capture of a 90-year-old Taiwanese man working as a "drug mule." Thailand's improved policing of drug trafficking has increased the flow of methamphetamines and heroin out of Cambodia. Story here.
Sea of pink and white
The mountains of northern Laos have changed colour. In the past five years, the opium poppy fields that for the last two centuries lent splashes of colour to the pervading green of the jungle have become a thing of the past.
In their stead, small plantations of tea, peach trees and even asparagus are springing up in the heart of the “Golden Triangle”, the lawless opium-producing region at the junction of Laos, Thailand and Myanmar.
The Khaleej Times reports.