Paragraphs Why was siam successful in meeting the challenge of western colonial powers in the nineteen century?

      Thailand had been a kingdom under absolute monarchy for over centuries.
Thailand was believed to be a surviving state. It was ruled by a series of military governments interspersed with brief periods of democracy. Following the revolution that imposed constitutional limits on the monarchy, Thai politics was dominated for a half-century by a military and bureaucratic elite. Changes of government were effected primarily by means of a long series of mostly bloodless coups. A Thai kingdom was established after the Ayutthaya period was destroyed. The two main ruler during this time was King Mongkut and his son King Chulalongkorn who established firm rapprochement with the westen powers.

King Mongkut ruled Thailand during 1851 to 1868. He was a Buddhist monk for 27 years and he wanted his country to succeed. At the time King became increasingly concerned with the threat of European colonialism after British victories in neighboring Burma. The first Thai recognition of Western power in the region was the Treaty of Amity and Commerce with the United Kingdom . Later in the period, the United States began diplomatic exchanges with Siam. Therefore in King Mongkut learned everything he could about the west and gained insight to the lives of commoners. King Mongkut had the opportunity to travel which gave him a good idea of geography. He even send his sons to English schools so they can learn the ways of the west. King Mongkut’s exposure to the western world through his meetings with his missionary friends and numerous other westerners made him realize that reform was essential for the prosperity and survival of his kingdom. However, he faced opposition from conservative people fearing a loss of power through modernization, clung to the established order. The average Siamese citizen, after two kings whose reigns were marked by isolation from the West, had...