Thailand: Peace Festival

Success against an insurgency

Each August the residents of the hamlet of Baan Nabua, 30 miles south of the Mekong River center of Nakhon Phanom, stop all work and open their stilted houses to visitors for a celebration. Government officials gather for a feast and an all-night spectacle that features classical Thai dancing and Kung Fu movies. The holiday is called the Stop the Gunfire Festival: it commemorates the government's success in quelling a Communist insurgency that once infested most of Thailand's 16 northeastern provinces. This year the eight-man band that played popular tunes at Baan Nabua was composed entirely of...

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