Tuesday, 26 April 2016

Seeker of truth comment post UK Daily Mail 26 April 2016

seeker of truth said...

From a 2014 UK Daily Mail article -
A new book has branded Thailand one of the world’s most dangerous tourist destinations.
Australian author John Stapleton suggests that widespread police corruption, violence and crime are all blighting a country once commonly referred to as the ‘Land of Smiles’.
In his book Thailand: Deadly Destination, Mr Stapleton attempts to expose the reputation of Thailand as a welcoming country, claiming a boom in tourism since the 1960s has created a hatred of foreigners and a ‘murderous indifference’ to the millions of tourists who flock to the country’s white-sand beaches, picturesque countryside and thriving nightlife each year.
He also says that the death rate among tourists, which he claims often goes unrecorded, is ‘the worst scandal in the annals of modern tourism’.
‘Thailand’s carefully manufactured reputation for hospitality, as a land of palm trees and sun-drenched beaches, happy-hour bars, world class hotels and welcoming people, as paradise on Earth, is very different to the reality many tourists encounter,’ Mr Stapleton says in the book, which is being published next week.
‘The rapid growth in Thai tourism has been a triumph of advertising and image creation; building the perception, firmly entrenched in the West, that Thais embrace strangers.
‘In reality, the relations between ethnic Thais and foreigners are often difficult; and there has been growing friction and disengagement, a drift from curiosity to contempt, as visitor numbers have increased.
While many foreigners leave the country happy, there are equally thousands of travellers from Europe, America, Australia, India and the Middle East, both short-time tourists and long-term residents, leaving the country impoverished, distressed, frightened and unlikely to ever return.
‘If, with the murder or accidental deaths of tourists a common event, they leave at all.
‘Life in Thailand is cheap. And the deaths of foreigners often go unlamented; even unrecorded. Tourists are still given few warnings of the reality of the situation they are entering.’
Mr Stapleton previously worked as a news reporter for The Sydney Morning Herald from 1986 to 1994 and for The Australian between 1994 to 2009.
He has been visiting Thailand since the 1970s before moving there in 2010.
After being repeatedly robbed and attacked, he began looking into news reports on the welfare of tourists, which he describes as ‘scandalous’, suggesting that the police have little interest in helping foreigners who report crimes.....
Mr Stapleton might have been right on the money with his book "Thailand: Deadly Destination"
A big no no in these Asian tourist spots is to argue with the locals.

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