Chargé d’Affaires Peter Haymond spoke September 1 at a commemoration event hosted by the National Institute of Development Administration honoring the remarkable history of the Seri Thai movement. “The Seri Thai story is one of incredible heroism, and it is a powerful reminder of the strong bonds of friendship, as well as the deep-seated interest in freedom our two countries share,” said Peter Haymond. “When the fate, not just of Thailand, but the entire world, hung in the balance during World War II, the Seri Thai chose to join with the United States. We honor them today because of their sacrifices then, but also because they were the foundation stone of the deep, abiding relationship between the United States and Thailand today.”
Thai students studying in the United States at such prestigious universities as Cornell, Caltech, and MIT volunteered to receive military training and return home to Thailand to fight for its freedom. These were the first members of what would become the Seri Thai force. The Seri Thai volunteers played an invaluable role in preparing the ground for the restoration of Thailand’s sovereignty.