Targeting Thailand

To hear the soldiers tell it, they didn't stand a chance. Their attackers—roughly 100 in number—slipped into the army camp through a thicket of bamboo and fruit trees, armed with machine guns. The barracks were hopelessly vulnerable: almost 300 soldiers were asleep, while the rest of the battalion was either temporarily stationed elsewhere or on leave. And the sleeping soldiers were not even a fighting force but engineers building roads and canals in the province of Narathiwat in Thailand's deep south. When the shooting began, at about 1 a.m. on Jan. 4, the soldiers awoke with a start and dived to...

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