29 September. The day’s issue of Ta Kung Pao, a major newspaper based in Chungking, carries an editorial demanding that Thailand officially surrender and that the Thai government arrest wartime collaborators and place them on trial as war criminals. Despite ongoing Sino–Thai tensions, the Seni Pramoj government eventually signs a Treaty of Amity with the Republic of China in January 1946.
3 October. After a long voyage, the main body of SEAC forces docks at Saigon’s harbour. Included are the first contingents of the French Expeditionary Corps, about 1,000 men in total. Two days later, General Philippe Leclerc, the ‘liberator of Paris’, arrives at Tan Son Nhut airbase to command all French forces in the region. He is vested with full military and civilian powers to act on behalf of incoming French high commissioner, Admiral Thierry d’Argenlieu. Leclerc’s stance is that France can only negotiate with the Viet Minh from a position of strength.
9 October. Peace negotiations between Thailand and Great Britain hit another snag when British negotiator M. E. Dening demands in Kandy, Ceylon, that Thailand accept his proposals, a course resolutely opposed by Thai Prime Minister Seni Pramoj. The talks break off as Dening is called away to deal with matters in the Netherlands Indies.
31 October. On the same day that more French reinforcements disembark in Saigon, Admiral Thierry d’Argenlieu arrives in the city and assumes formal leadership of the French administration. En route to Indochina, he has stopped over at SEAC headquarters in Kandy, lobbying for inclusion of Cambodia’s lost province of Battambang within General Gracey’s southern Indochina command area. He is unsuccessful; Battambang will remain part of the separate British remit in Thailand.
4 November. By order of Regent Pridi Phanomyong, the abundant supply of Allied weaponry held by the now-disbanded Seri Thai movement is to be siphoned off to help Indochinese nationalist groups in their struggle to end French colonial rule. Support is not just for the Lao Issara but also the Viet Minh.
6 November. With some of their states newly liberated from Thai rule, the Shan sawbwas (princes) send a message to London reminding the British of their past loyalty and material support and calling for self-government (dominion status) for the 43 Shan States in the same way as being discussed for Burma, India, Ceylon and Malaya. They also propose amalgamating the 43 states into 12 and having one sawbwa lead them all.
On 13 November 1945, 100 tumultuous days had passed since the dropping of the atomic bomb at Hiroshima. One thousand days later, on 9 August 1948, the forces that had been set in train by Japan’s defeat and surrender continued to shape the face of Asia.
Thai support for the anti-communist Khmer Issarak reflected the return to power in April 1948 of Thailand’s wartime leader, Phibun Songkhram. Compromised by his wartime collaboration with Japan, Phibun had been displaced by leaders more sympathetic to the West. In January 1946 the conservative Khuang Aphaiwong won national elections to become the country’s first elected prime minister. Within weeks, however, … (to continue reading Cribb and Li’s short aftermath, click the link below)
30 September. During the ongoing Thai– British negotiations in Kandy, French representative Pierre Clarac presents Prince Wiwatthanachai with a note for the Thai Regent. This demands that the Thai government accept a return to the pre-June 1940 state of relations (including reversion to prewar frontiers) and restoration of the Emerald Buddha to its earlier home in Vientiane.
4 October. In a memorandum to Chinese occupation authorities, Prince Phetsarath rejects the French protectorate. His aim is to broaden support from neighbouring states. Contacts are also made with Thailand through the Seri Thai, Cambodia through the Khmer Issarak, and Vietnam through the Viet Minh.
15 October. Thai authorities arrest former Thai premier Field Marshal Phibun Songkhram and key aides, including former foreign minister Wichit Wichitwatankan, on allegations of war crimes. The move, clearly aimed to impress the victorious Allies, targets those deemed responsible for the wartime alliance with Japan and the declaration of war on Great Britain and the United States.