coup d’état

Militaries Hold the Key to Power in a Dictator’s Endgame

Which factors shape the armed forces’ decision to boost or bust the rule of an incumbent autocrat in times of political turmoil? Political scientists at Heidelberg University analyzed non-violent mass mobilizations since 1946 and developed a game theory model that aims to explain the different military responses. Autocrats live dangerously. Although their average tenure is […]

A royal Thai army soldier © Null0 via Flickr (CC BY 2.0)

A Coup, the Crown, and Two Middle Classes

The man behind Thailand’s twelfth successful coup since 1932 made no mention of the Crown. By declaring martial law, he had already seized a royal prerogative, revealing both, the sorrow state of Thai democracy and the erosion of the monarchy. “I have decided to seize power,” Thailand’s army chief said on May 22, slamming his […]