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Making sense of Jokowi's second term bid - Kavi Chongkittavorn 
Do not let the state-of-the-art Soekarno-Hatta International Airport Terminal 3 and the slogan "Energy of Asia" for this month's Asian Games fool you about Indonesia's place in the world. It is just the beginning. 
Myanmar needs new generation to lead it - Thitinan Pongsudhirak 
Southeast Asia suffers from a crisis of leadership whereby the old guard are unwilling to make way for new and younger leaders to emerge through compromise and accommodation to usher in change and reform while maintaining a measure of continuity. 
Thailand’s new politics and old uncertainty - Thitinan Pongsudhirak 
While Cambodia’s poll on July 29 has yielded an elected dictatorship, Thailand has a dictatorship with no clear election date.

More than four years after it seized power in a May 2014 coup, Thailand’s military government, led by General Prayut Chan-o-cha, appears intent on holding power indefinitely. It has repeatedly delayed election pledges. 
US-China rivalry shifts to mainland SEA - Kavi Chongkittavorn 
The sense of deja vu at last week's annual Asean foreign ministers meeting in Singapore regarding progress on the code of conduct in the South China Sea -- an agreement with China on a single draft for future negotiations -- is an ominous sign that the regional grouping is already at the centre of US-China rivalry. 
Hun Sen plays global politics with election - Kavi Chongkittavorn 
The international community, through the United Nations, helped Cambodia to organise its first and only "free and fair" elections in 1993. It was a wonderful moment for a country emerging from civil war, which has confidently moved forward ever since. Cambodia has been very much on its own, with up and down political contours. This past Sunday, Cambodia held its sixth election, with the Cambodian People's Party winning the majority of seats. 
Prospects after Cambodia's fabricated poll - Thitinan Pongsudhirak 
While Thailand has a seemingly indefinite military government with no clear poll date, Cambodia is holding an election on July 29 with a foregone conclusion. After methodically taken apart oppositional forces, the incumbent government of Prime Minister Hun Sen, under the Cambodian People's Party (CPP), is set to win a landslide. At issue now will be what happens after the election. At least three dynamics are in play. How they intersect and enmesh will determine Cambodia's political future. 
Putting hearts and minds in Thai-US ties - Kavi Chongkittavorn 
The international rescue of 12 boys and their football coach in Chiang Rai earlier this month quickly permeated into the conference room of the Thai-US dialogue in Washington DC last week. The feel-good atmosphere jump-started the much-needed dialogue between the region's oldest allies. 
Hun Sen is tempting fate in Cambodia's election - Thitinan Pongsudhirak 
Fair is foul and foul is fair in Cambodia ahead of its fifth general election since a United Nations-brokered peace agreement and a poll in 1993. 
Maintaining what's left of rules-based order - Thitinan Pongsudhirak 
For anyone who is alive today, the world as we know it has never been so stirred and shaken. The international order based on a common set of institutions, rules and norms that used to be widely cherished and universally beneficial is unravelling before our collective and helpless eyes. From an emerging United States-China trade war and Beijing's militarised occupation of the South China Sea to Russia's revanchist annexation of Crimea, world order over the past several years has been breaking down. Those who once set the rules, principally the US, are breaking them, while aspiring new rule-setters, mainly China, have not found sufficient international reception. Rule-takers, such as the smaller states in Asean, suffer the most when set rules lose cohesion, lustre and abidance. 
South Korea is wooing Asean and India - Kavi Chongkittavorn 
For the first time since the end of the 1950-53 Korean War, South Korea, under the helm of President Moon Jae-in, has effectively been embedded in the regional scheme of things --political/security, economic and social/cultural. The country's previous four presidents -- Kim Dae-jung, Roh Moo-hyun, Lee Myung-bak and Park Geun-hye -- tried to do the same but sadly they repeatedly failed. Every time these leaders wanted to focus on Southeast Asia and South Asia, something happened in the Northeast, the Korean Peninsula in particular, that immediately distracted them. They became mesmerised and forgot the region. There was no consistency whatsoever.