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Thailand's Secret War
OSS, SOE and the Free Thai Underground during World War II


Part of Cambridge Military Histories

  • Date Published: June 2010
  • availability: Available
  • format: Paperback
  • isbn: 9780521143370

£ 36.99

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About the Authors
  • This book is an absorbing account of secret operations and political intrigue in wartime Thailand. During World War II Free Thai organisations co-operated with Allied intelligence agencies in an effort to rescue their nation from the consequences of its 1941 alliance with Japan. They largely succeeded despite internal differences and the conflicting interests and policies of their would-be-allies, China, Great Britain and the United States. London's determination to punish Thailand placed the British Special Operations Executive (SOE) at a serious disadvantage in its rivalry with the American Office of Strategic Services (OSS). The US State Department, in contrast, strongly supported OSS operations in Thailand, viewing them as a vehicle for promoting American political and economic influence in mainland Southeast Asia. Declassification of the records of the OSS and the SOE permits full revelation of this complex story of heroic action and political intrigue.

    • An accessible history of the clandestine activities and rivalry of the Office of Strategic Services and the Special Operations Executive in Thailand during the Second World War
    • A major contribution to the history of wartime diplomacy in the Asian theatre
    • Makes extensive use of declassified American and British documents to reveal formerly secret intelligence operations
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    Reviews & endorsements

    Review of the hardback: '… the tangled history of the covert operations in Thailand carried out by the SOE, the American Office of Strategic Services (OSS) and the Free Thai Underground, which is meticulously unravelled by E. Bruce Reynolds in Thailand's Secret War.' Tribune

    Review of the hardback: 'Is an enjoyable account of the differing agendas of the British and American agents who jockeyed for post-war advantage in the country.' Kansai Time Out

    Review of the hardback: 'The book is an exemplar of close-knit historical investigation … the author is to be congratulated on a fine intellectual effort.' Asian Affairs

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    Product details

    • Date Published: June 2010
    • format: Paperback
    • isbn: 9780521143370
    • length: 484 pages
    • dimensions: 229 x 152 x 30 mm
    • weight: 0.73kg
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    List of illustrations
    List of maps
    Notes on names and transliteration
    1. The origins of the Free Thai Movement
    2. The China tangle
    3. Chamkat and the Allies
    4. Showdown in Friendship Valley
    5. Frustrated hopes
    6. Contact at last
    7. The OSS commits to Pridi
    8. Pridi's bid for national redemption
    9. Arming and training the underground
    10. The end game

  • Author

    E. Bruce Reynolds, San José State University, California

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