Support to the Global War on Terror
Three months after USA was attacked on September the 11th, 2001, Prime Minister Thaksin of Thailand came to America and offered Thailand's help in the war on terror. Since then, Thailand has committed military forces outside Southeast Asia for the first time in more than 50 years. Thai engineers rebuilt Afghanistan's national air field and helped restore much of that country's infrastructure. The Thai task force is a vital part of the multinational division, once again helping the shattered country rebuild after years of oppression. Royal Thai Armed forces also deployed to Karbala in Iraq with a mandate to provide engineer support, CIMIC and humanitarian assistance to MND-CS stabilization operations in the sector, with the aim of creating a secure and stable environment for transition to post hostility and civic administration. In Thailand itself, we are pursuing dangerous terrorists and finding them. Thailand pledged to fight the war on terror, and that pledge is being honored in full. Thailand is also a force of good throughout Southeast Asia. When East Timor was torn by violence, Thai forces joined with Americans and Australians to bring stability, and they helped establish the world's newest nation. This important work has brought dignity to the people of East Timor and greater security to this region. Together, Thailand and US are fighting the drug trade by sharing intelligence that helps Thai law enforcement officials interdict shipments and catch drug traffickers. Finally, US President, Mr.George W. Bush, has acted to designate Thailand a major non-NATO.
Support to Operation Enduring Freedom
After the conflict between the U.S. - U.K. led alliance and the Taliban ended in late 2001, Thailand was invited by the U.S.A to pledge support to the mission in Afghanistan through the Donor Conference in Japan in January 2002 whether it be under the auspices of the United Nations or the Alliance. An Engineering Battalion was made ready to support both ISAF and the Alliance at the planning stage in July 2002. When it was clear that airfield reconstruction in Bagram was vital to the maintenance of security for peace operations in the country, Thailand provided a construction Engineering Unit of 130 personnel to the Coalition Headquarters in Bagram to join the reconstruction efforts. This operation was the first mission that the Government had funded from its own budget. The Japanese Self Defense Naval Forces provided Thailand with strategic sea lift for the engineering equipment to Afghanistan. The Royal Thai Armed Forces (RTARF) has also run routine monthly supply flights from Thailand to Afghanistan. The Thai Engineering Unit has provided excellent construction and engineering services as part of the joint efforts in Bagram. In concert with this military assistance in Bagram, the Government also assisted in humanitarian projects elsewhere in Kabul and around the country.
Support to Operation Iraqi Freedom
On August 5, 2003, Thailand committed to "Operation Iraqi Freedom", for a one-year term with 6-month rotations. The Thai-Iraq Humanitarian Task Force, with its strength of 443 personnel, was tailored to conduct reconstruction tasks, Civil Military Operations (CMO) and humanitarian assistance. It consists of an Engineer Battalion, six level-one medical teams, one CMO team and one self-protection platoon. It deployed to Kabala in September 2003 under the Multinational Division Central South (MND-CS) with a mandate to provide engineer support, CIMIC and humanitarian assistance to MND-CS stabilization operations in the sector, with the aim of creating a secure and stable environment for transition to post hostility and civic administration. In addition to tasks assigned by MND-CS, the Thai Task Force also launched its own CIMIC and HA projects. Widely cooperating with Thai Non-Governmental Organizations, the Task Force has been in charge of transferring donations monthly from Thai citizens to Iraqis using a Thai C-130 Hercules. Other Humanitarian projects include: the donation of medical equipment and medicine to a local hospital in Kabala; the building of several road in the AOR, allowing increased aid to be brought into the area; the renovation and reopening of schools; the construction of community sport grounds; the establishment of a medical treatment clinic; and the establishment of rural health care teams.