Skip to Content
Manchester Metropolitan University Library
The Malay-Muslim insurgency in southern Thailand: understanding the conflict's evolving dynamic

The Malay-Muslim insurgency in southern Thailand: understanding the conflict's evolving dynamic

Chalk, Peter

Current unrest in the Malay-Muslim provinces of southern Thailand has captured growing national, regional, and international attention due to the heightened tempo and scale of rebel attacks, the increasingly jihadist undertone that has come to characterize insurgent actions, and the central government's often brutal handling of the situation on the ground. Of particular note are growing concerns that the conflict is no longer purely local in nature but has been systematically hijacked by outside extremists to avail wider transnational Islamist designs in southeast Asia. No concrete evidence suggests that the region has been decisively transformed into a new beachhead for pan-regional jihadism. Although many of the attacks currently being perpetrated in the three Malay provinces have a definite religious element, it is not apparent that this has altered the essential localized and nationalistic aspect of the conflict. While the scale and sophistication of violence have increased, nothing links this change in tempo to the input of punitive, absolutist external jihadist imperatives. Perhaps the clearest reason to believe that the southern Thai conflict has not metastasized into a broader jihadist struggle, however, is the fact that there has been neither a migration of violence north nor directed attacks against foreigners, tourist resorts, or overt symbols of U.S. cultural capitalism

eBook, Paperback, Electronic resource, Book. English. Electronic books.
Published Santa Monica, CA : RAND National Defense Research Institute 2008

This resource is available electronically from the following locations


Statement of responsibility: Peter Chalk
ISBN: 0833045342, 9780833045348
Note: Print version record.
Note: Includes bibliographical references (pages 23-27).
Physical Description: 1 online resource (ix, 27 pages).
System: Master and use copy. Digital master created according to Benchmark for Faithful Digital Reproductions of Monographs and Serials, Version 1. Digital Library Federation, December 2002.
Series: Occasional paper ; OP-198-OSD; Rand counterinsurgency study. Paper ; 5
Subject: Muslims Political activity.; Muslims Political activity Thailand, Southern.; Islam and politics Thailand, Southern.; Insurgency.; Insurgency Thailand, Southern.; POLITICAL SCIENCE International Relations General.; Thailand, Southern Politics and government 1988-; Thailand, Southern.; Politics and government; POLITICAL SCIENCE Political Freedom & Security Terrorism.; Islam and politics.
Restrictions: Use copy Restrictions unspecified
Reproduction: Electronic reproduction. [S.l.]: HathiTrust Digital Library, 2010.
Series Title: Rand counterinsurgency study. Paper ; 5.; Occasional paper (Rand Corporation) ; OP-198-OSD.
Local note: JSTOR Books at JSTOR Open Access


  1. Introduction
  2. Background
  3. The insurgency
  4. 1960-1998
  5. Barisan Revolusi Nasional
  6. Patani United Liberation Organization
  7. New PULO
  8. Bersatu
  9. 1998-2004
  10. 2004-2006
  11. A new front in the global jihad?
  12. Government response : the Thaksin administration
  13. Assessment
  14. Conclusion : future prospects.