The Head of the Thai Armed Forces (Thai: จอมทัพไทย; RTGS: Chom Thap Thai) is a position vested in the Thai monarch, who as sovereign and head of state is the commander-in-chief of the Royal Thai Armed Forces.
The position is only nominal. The armed forces are actually managed by the Ministry of Defence, headed by the Minister of Defence (a member of the cabinet) and commanded by the Royal Thai Armed Forces Headquarters, which in turn is headed by the Chief of the Defence Forces.
|Head of the Royal Thai Armed Forces|
since 29 November 2016
|Royal Thai Armed Forces|
|Vested in||Monarch of Thailand|
|Constituting instrument||Constitution of Thailand|
Ever since the foundation of the first Thai state, the king has always led his armies into battle. The role of the king as chief warrior was derived from Hindu concepts of kshatriya, and later much influenced by the ideal of a Chakravartin as defender of the realm. This martial responsibility has by tradition been borne by every Thai monarch since, but has never been formally instituted. By the 19th century, with the formal creation of a modern Thai army and navy in 1874 and 1887 respectively, the establishment of a formal chain of command was necessary. The titles of Supreme Head of Army (จอมทัพบก; Chom Thap Bok) and Supreme Head of the Navy (จอมทัพเรือ; Chom Thap Ruea) were created around the latter half of the reign of King Chulalongkorn for himself. After the end of the absolute monarchy in 1932, Siam's first permanent constitution established the ceremonial role of Head of the Siamese Armed Forces (จอมทัพสยาม; Chom Thap Sayam) in Article 1, Section 5. Since then Thailand has had 16 constitutions and the title has been enshrined in every one of them.
Under the constitutional system, the king's post as head of the armed forces is a means for the monarchy to be closely related to the armed forces. The king participates in military activities and functions, including the presentation of ceremonial colours, based on the national flag, to various units of the armed forces and the presentation of ceremonial swords to all graduating officers of the military academies. The armed forces celebrate the king with an annual parade held on his birthday at the Royal Plaza in central Bangkok.
Since 1910, starting with King Vajiravudh, it is customary for representatives of the Armed Forces to present the newly acceded monarch his insignia as Head of the Armed Forces, at a formal ceremony at the Grand Palace. These include a golden marshal's baton (featuring a Garuda), his shoulder boards, a sabre and a golden aiguillette (to be worn on the right shoulder).
|Portrait||Name||Reign from||Presentation of Insignia||Reign until||Death|
|Supreme Head of the Army & Supreme Head of the Navy|
Chom Thap Bok & Chom Thap Ruea
|1 October 1868||16 November 1904||23 October 1910|
|23 October 1910||2 November 1911||25 November 1925|
|Head of the Royal Siamese Armed Forces|
Chom Thap Siam
|25 November 1925||5 December 1925||2 March 1935
|30 May 1941|
|Head of the Royal Thai Armed Forces|
Chom Thap Thai
|King Ananda Mahidol
|2 March 1935||No presentation made||9 June 1946|
|King Bhumibol Adulyadej
|9 June 1946||26 March 1950||13 October 2016|
|13 October 2016||Incumbent|
The 11th Infantry Regiment, King's Close Bodyguard (Thai: กรมทหารราบที่ 11 มหาดเล็กราชวัลลภรักษาพระองค์) (ร.11 ทม.รอ.) is a King's Guard regiment under the 1st Infantry Division, King's Guard of the Royal Thai Army. The regiment is divided into three battalions, all of them based in Bangkok. Formerly having a duty to guard the palace in the reign of King Mongkut to practice military subjects in order to perform effective and set up a Royal Palace Guard Regiment or the army surrounded the palace with the blue uniform is likely to come from the color of Krom Wang (Bureau of the Lord Chamberlain) uniforms. The reign of King Chulalongkorn please King Vajiravudh, when he was the Siamese Crown Prince as a special colonel of the regiment which makes the unit have a bond with King Vajiravudh. Later, when King Vajiravudh ascended the throne he waas accepted as a special commander of the Regiment which His Majesty's color is blue.1st Regiment (Thailand)
The 1st Infantry Regiment, King's Close Bodyguard (Thai: กรมทหารราบที่ 1 มหาดเล็กราชวัลลภรักษาพระองค์) (ร.1 ทม.รอ.) is a King's Guard regiment under the 1st Infantry Division, King's Guard of the Royal Thai Army. The regiment is divided into three battalions, all of them based in Bangkok. The regiment is the only unit of the Royal Thai Armed Forces with the designation Mahat Lek Rajawallop (Thai: มหาดเล็กราชวัลลภ); meaning the king's close bodyguards, translated as the King's Own Bodyguards. The unit was first established by King Chulalongkorn (Rama V) in 1859, whilst he was still a young prince. One of the primary role of the regiment is to provide security and protection to members of the Thai Royal Family as well as the ceremonial escort and guarding of the royal palaces. The unit is the oldest regiment of the Thai army.Field marshal (Thailand)
Chom Phon (Thai: จอมพล, จอมพลทหารบก) or Field Marshal is the most senior rank of the Royal Thai Army, considered the equivalent to a Field Marshal or General of the Army (although 'Field Marshal' is more widely used). Today it is ceremonially held by members of the Thai Royal family and exists only on paper in the actual Thai military (it has not been awarded to regular commissioned officers since 1973). The Royal Thai Navy equivalent is known as Chom Phon Ruea (Admiral of the Fleet) and Chom Phon Akat (Marshal of the Royal Thai Air Force) for the Royal Thai Air Force.
The King of Thailand as Head of the Armed Forces is automatically made a Chom Phon upon accession. The rank was formally created in 1888, together with all other ranks of the military by King Chulalongkorn (Rama V), who wanted to modernize his Armed Forces through western lines. Apart from the monarchs, there have been 13 appointments to this rank.Five-star rank
A five-star rank is a very senior military rank, first established in the United States in 1944, with a five-star general insignia, and corresponding ranks in other countries. The rank is that of the most senior operational military commanders, and within NATO's "standard rank scale" it is designated by the code OF-10.
Not all armed forces have such a rank, and in those that do the actual insignia of the "five-star ranks" may not contain five stars. For example: the insignia for the French OF-10 rank maréchal de France contains 7 stars; the insignia for the Portuguese marechal contains four gold stars; and many of the insignia of the ranks in the Commonwealth of Nations contain no stars at all.
Typically, five-star officers hold the rank of general of the army, admiral of the fleet, field marshal, marshal or general of the air force, and several other similarly named ranks. Five-star ranks are extremely senior—usually the highest ranks. As an active rank, the position exists only in a minority of countries and is usually held by only a very few officers during wartime. In times of peace, it is usually held only as an honorary rank. Traditionally, five-star ranks are granted to distinguished military commanders for notable wartime victories and/or in recognition of a record of achievement during the officer's career, whether in peace or in war. Alternatively, a five-star rank (or even higher ranks) may be assumed by heads of state in their capacities as commanders-in-chief of their nation's armed forces.
Despite the rarity and seniority of five-star officers, even more-senior ranks have been adopted in the United States, namely, admiral of the navy and general of the armies. Other names for highly senior ranks from the twentieth century include généralissime (France), generalisimo (Spain) and generalissimus (USSR).Index of Thailand-related articles 0 to J
This is a list of articles related to Thailand, sorted by alphabetical order. It represents the majority of articles contained within the Thailand category. For a list of key articles arranged by topic, see Outline of Thailand.
Those interested in the subject can monitor changes to the pages listed here by clicking on the related changes link in the sidebar.
Index of Thailand-related articles 0 to J
Index of Thailand-related articles K to N
Index of Thailand-related articles O to S
Index of Thailand-related articles T to ZKing's Guard (Thailand)
The King's Guard (Thai: ทหารรักษาพระองค์; RTGS: Thahan Raksa Phra Ong) is a ceremonial designation given to various regiments within the Royal Thai Armed Forces. This contingent is dedicated to the protection of the Royal Family of Thailand.List of Admirals of the Fleet (Thailand)
Chom Phon Ruea (Thai: จอมพลเรือ) or Admiral of the Fleet is the most senior naval officer rank of the Royal Thai Navy, and is the equivalent to a Admiral of the fleet. Today it is only ceremonially held by members of the Thai Royal family. The Royal Thai Army equivalent is known as just Chom Phon and Chom Phon Akat for the Royal Thai Air Force.
The King of Thailand as Head of the Armed Forces is automatically made a Chom Phon upon accession. The rank was formally created in 1888, together with all other ranks of the military by King Chulalongkorn (Rama V), who wanted to modernize his Armed Forces through western lines.List of Chiefs of Defence Forces (Thailand)
The Chief of Defence Forces, previously known as the Supreme Commander, (Thai: ผู้บัญชาการทหารสูงสุด) is the overall field commander of Royal Thai Armed Forces. He is also in charge of managing the Royal Thai Armed Forces Headquarters (abbreviated as the RTARF HQ). Prior to 1960 the post was an ad hoc creation by Field Marshal Plaek Phibunsongkhram, during World War II. However, under Field Marshal Sarit Thanarat the position became permanent, and in its early life was even combined with the post of Prime Minister of Thailand. In February 2008 the English name of the post was changed from Supreme Commander to Chief of Defence Forces with the reorganization of the Supreme Command Headquarters into the Royal Thai Armed Forces Headquarters (though the Thai term remained the same). It is customary to appoint the chief of defence to four-star rank in all three branches in the Armed Forces. The current commander is General Pornpipat Benyasri since October 2018. Not to be confused with the ceremonial Head of the Royal Thai Armed Forces who is the constitutional Head of State and Monarch of Thailand.List of Marshals of the Royal Thai Air Force
Chom Phon Akat (Thai: จอมพลอากาศ) or Marshal of the Royal Thai Air Force is a 5-star rank and the most senior rank in the Royal Thai Air Force. It is equivalent to a Field Marshal (or Chom Phon) in the Royal Thai Army and an Admiral of the Fleet (or Chom Phon Ruea) in the Royal Thai Navy. The rank of Marshal of the RTAF is also equivalent to the British rank of Marshal of the Royal Air Force.
The King of Thailand as Head of the Armed Forces is automatically made a Chom Phon upon accession. The rank was formally created in 1937, with the formal foundation of the Royal Siamese Air Force. Together with all other ranks of an independent air force.List of flags of the Royal Thai Armed Forces
Flags of the Royal Thai Armed Forces (Thai: ธงของกองทัพไทย). Most of the flags used by the Thai military today were stipulated in the Flag Act of 1979 (พระราชบัญญัติ ธง พ.ศ. ๒๕๒๒).Monarchy of Thailand
The monarchy of Thailand (whose monarch is referred to as the King of Thailand or historically, King of Siam; Thai: พระมหากษัตริย์ไทย) refers to the constitutional monarchy and monarch of the Kingdom of Thailand (formerly Siam). The King of Thailand is the head of state and head of the ruling Royal House of Chakri.
Although the current Chakri Dynasty was created in 1782, the existence of the institution of monarchy in Thailand is traditionally considered to have its roots from the founding of the Sukhothai Kingdom in 1238, with a brief interregnum from the death of Ekkathat to the accession of Taksin in the 18th century. The institution was transformed into a constitutional monarchy in 1932 after the bloodless Siamese Revolution of 1932. The monarchy's official ceremonial residence is the Grand Palace in Bangkok, while the private residence has been at the Dusit Palace.
The King of Thailand's titles include Head of State, Head of the Royal Thai Armed Forces, Adherent of Buddhism and Upholder of religions.Recipients of the Order of the Netherlands Lion
Recipients of the Order of the Netherlands Lion and, until 1830, its counterpart the Order of the Lion Belgium.
The Order of the Netherlands Lion is a high order of chivalry of the Kingdom of the Netherlands. The Order of the Netherlands Lion was until recently awarded upon eminent individuals from all walks of life, including generals, ministers of the crown, mayors of large towns, professors and leading scientists, industrialists, high ranking civil servants, presiding judges and renowned artists. Since 1980 the Order has been primarily used to recognise merit in the arts, science, sport and literature. The following are recipients within the award.Royal Thai Armed Forces Headquarters
The Royal Thai Armed Forces Headquarters (Thai: กองบัญชาการกองทัพไทย) or the RTARF HQ, is the "mostly ornamental" joint headquarters of the Royal Thai Armed Forces, which is composed of the Royal Thai Army, the Royal Thai Navy and Royal Thai Marine Corps, and the Royal Thai Air Force. Formerly the Supreme Command Headquarters (Thai: กองบัญชาการทหารสูงสุด), the name was changed in February 2008. The headquarters is divided into two branches: the "Command Group" and the "Joint Group". The headquarters is headed by the Chief of Defence Forces (Thai: ผู้บัญชาการทหารสูงสุด), currently General Surapong Suwan-ath of the Royal Thai Army. The chief is supported by several departments and directorates, including four deputy chiefs. The headquarters is under the responsibility of the Ministry of Defence of Thailand and the Defence Minister.Royal funeral chariot
A royal funeral chariot is a wheeled vehicle traditionally used to transport the bodies of royalty during funeral processions in some cultures of Mainland Southeast Asia. Today, they remain in use in Thailand and Cambodia.Sirikit
Sirikit (Thai: สิริกิติ์; Thai pronunciation: [sì.rì.kìt]; listen ; born Mom Rajawongse Sirikit Kitiyakara (Thai: สิริกิติ์ กิติยากร; RTGS: Sirikit Kitiyakon) on 12 August 1932) is the Queen mother of Thailand. She was the queen consort of King Bhumibol Adulyadej (or Rama IX) and is the mother of King Vajiralongkorn (or Rama X). She met Bhumibol in Paris, where her father was Thai ambassador. They married in 1950, shortly before Bhumibol's coronation. Sirikit was appointed queen regent in 1956, when the king entered the Buddhist monkhood for a period of time. Sirikit has one son and three daughters with the king. Consort of the monarch who was the world's longest-reigning head of state, she was also the world's longest-serving consort. Sirikit suffered a stroke on 21 July 2012 and has since refrained from public appearances.Thai Royal Guards parade
The Thai Royal Guards parade, also known as Trooping the Colour, occurs every December 2 since 1953, in celebration of the birthday of the King of Thailand, during which the King's Guard of the Royal Thai Armed Forces perform a military parade and pledge loyalty to the monarch. The venue is the Royal Plaza at Bangkok, Thailand, in front of the Dusit Palace and its Ananta Samakhom Throne Hall.
Head of the Armed Forces