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Yamato last won the day on December 18 2021

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  1. Yamato

    Chiwit Thai

    Took an early walk to the Tanglin Halt Food Centre for breakfast Coffee stall The vegetarian noodle stall Serving orders Breakfast is vegetarian beehoon
  2. Yamato

    Chiwit Thai

    This trip back to Singapore for some chores was a straight forward one nothing to do really like ATK or PCR. Arriving at the airport Check-in Went to Thai airways lounge for breakfast Breakfast Brunch being served Seafood horfun
  3. Yamato

    Chiwit Thai

    Seven and a half hour was all it took for my two applications this morning for my trip on 3rd May
  4. Yamato

    Chiwit Thai

    It's another festival last week here in Thailand, Songkran the water festival. Grand Seiko Thailand contacted me about a Songkran gift for me, very nice gesture for their customer.
  5. Yamato

    Chiwit Thai

    Sharing an interesting video of street walking in Bangkok for those who missed Bangkok. Thanks to "Bangkok Walk Director" channel.
  6. Toyota’s first electric car will finally launch first in Japan next month. This is an amazing car and I can’t wait for it’s arrival into Thailand perhaps next year.
  7. https://www.timesofisrael.com/suspected-spy-devices-found-in-gifts-given-to-ministers-by-chinese-embassy-reports/ Suspected spy devices found in gifts given to ministers by Chinese embassy – reports Routine security check finds suspicious component in travel mug sent to Israeli science and transportation ministries By TOI staff Today, 10:34 am An alleged bugging device found in a travel mug given as a gift by the Chinese embassy to an Israeli ministry (Courtesy) A travel mug given as a gift by the Chinese embassy in Israel to an Israeli minister was found to contain a component suspected to be a possible spying device, multiple Hebrew media outlets reported on Tuesday morning. Army Radio first reported that a routine security check found that one of several such mugs sent by the Chinese embassy to government offices contained a suspicious part in it. Further examination raised the suspicion that the component was a listening device and the Shin Bet was alerted. All mugs sent by the embassy were collected for further inspection, the reports said. Moreover, all government offices have been told to be extra careful about receiving gifts from foreign entities as “they may contain listening devices or cameras.” The suspicious mug was sent by the Chinese embassy to the Science and Technology Ministry and was most likely intended for Innovation, Science and Technology Minister Orit Farkash Hacohen, according to an unnamed Israeli official cited by the Walla news site. The mug was examined before reaching her office, the official said, adding that a similar mug had been addressed to the office of Transportation Minister Merav Michaeli. A travel mug, illustrative (semenovp; iStock by Getty Images) Both ministries are relevant for Israeli infrastructure projects China is interested in, the report noted. Officials in the Foreign Ministry said it was looking into the incident, Channel 12 reported, noting that the details were still unclear. The publication of such suspicions by multiple news outlets as an examination was still ongoing was notable, however. Amid a US-China trade war that has ebbed and flowed in recent years under both the Trump and Biden administrations, Israel and China have seen warming relations and growing Chinese interest in Israeli innovations, especially in medical tech, robotics, food tech and artificial intelligence. While the Biden administration has yet to make specific demands of Israel regarding its relations with China, the US has publicly brought up the Israeli relationship with China several times recently. Chinese President Xi Jinping and then US Vice President Joe Biden walk down the red carpet on the tarmac during an arrival ceremony in Andrews Air Force Base, Maryland, September 24, 2015. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster) China’s growing economy is forcing Israel to reposition itself politically and economically with the rising superpower. Data published by Israel’s National Bureau of Statistics in January indicated that in 2021 China became Israel’s largest source of imports, surpassing even the United States. That same month, Israel and China held a joint committee on innovation cooperation, led by Foreign Minister Yair Lapid and China’s Vice President Wang Qishan. The committee agreed to a three-year plan to regulate cooperation and government-to-government dialogue between the countries through 2024. While gradually strengthening ties with Beijing, the Israeli government has also notified the Biden administration that it will keep the White House in the loop regarding significant deals it strikes with China and is prepared to reexamine such agreements if the US, Israel’s closest ally, raises opposition.
  8. https://asia.nikkei.com/Editor-s-Picks/China-up-close/Analysis-Xi-risks-stumbling-with-Putin-if-he-plays-his-cards-wrong?utm_campaign=GL_china_up_close&utm_medium=email&utm_source=NA_newsletter&utm_content=article_link&del_type=9&pub_date=20220407213007&seq_num=2&si=44594 Xi risks stumbling with Putin if he plays his cards wrong If Russia fails in Ukraine, questions would arise over long-term authoritarian leadership KATSUJI NAKAZAWA, Nikkei senior staff writerApril 7, 2022 04:00 JST Katsuji Nakazawa is a Tokyo-based senior staff writer and editorial writer at Nikkei. He spent seven years in China as a correspondent and later as China bureau chief. He was the 2014 recipient of the Vaughn-Ueda International Journalist prize. Chinese President Xi Jinping's personal alliance with Russian President Vladimir Putin is hampering China's diplomacy. That is becoming clearer as the war in Ukraine rages on. Both men have laid the groundwork to stay in power until the middle of the 2030s. Both have territorial ambitions: reestablishing the former Soviet Union's sphere of influence for Putin, Taiwan for Xi. But the association comes with significant risk. Mere weeks ago, Chinese foreign and security officials were beaming with confidence. After Xi and Putin met in the Chinese capital on Feb. 4 and promised friendship with no limits, China was aware that the clock was ticking on a Ukraine operation. It had gathered intelligence through its official and behind-the-scenes connections in Russia, established over many years. But China had expected Russia to refrain from any such military action until the Beijing Winter Paralympics had closed on March 13. This judgment was based on Putin's remarks to Xi in a private conversation. Russian President Vladimir Putin attends a meeting with Chinese President Xi Jinping in Beijing on Feb. 4. © Kremlin/Reuters China's expectations proved to be wishful thinking. Putin only went halfway toward being considerate to Olympic host Xi. The Ukraine invasion began after the Winter Olympics closed on Feb. 20 but before the Paralympics began on March 4. Still, Beijing had hoped the attack would be swift and that by the opening of the Paralympics, Russian forces would have established control in Ukraine. Instead, more of the unexpected came, and rather than driving a wedge between the U.S. and Europe, the Russian invasion strengthened Western solidarity. Washington would not become bogged down in Eastern Europe, and there would be no geopolitical windfall for Beijing. In fact, China now finds itself with the weaker hand. When Xi held a virtual meeting with leaders of the European Union on April 1, he asked that they make their own diplomatic decisions on China "independent" of the U.S. But the request fell on deaf ears. The EU, in turn, urged China not to provide military and economic support to Russia. The Europeans showed no sign of moving toward an investment pact with China, which is a pending issue. Chinese President Xi Jinping and European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen speak with European Council President Charles Michel and European Union foreign policy chief Josep Borrell via video conference during an EU China summit at the European Council building in Brussels on April 1. © Reuters A month and a half into the Ukraine war, Xi is now concerned about "the subtle impact it may have on Chinese domestic politics," a Chinese political source said. A nightmare scenario for Xi, who seeks to secure an uncustomary third term as China's top leader this fall, would be for Putin's operation to fail and spread the impression that an authoritarian leader in office for too long tends to make the wrong calls at crucial moments. This would cause immeasurable damage to Xi ahead of the Chinese Communist Party's national congress. Even if Xi wins reelection this time, a Russian failure in Ukraine could all but ensure that he won't stay beyond the next national congress in 2027. In this case, Xi would immediately become a lame duck, all but erasing his yearslong effort to cement his path into the next decade. Xi and Putin are strange bedfellows. Both have no choice but to stay in power after making so many enemies. They need to prevent their respective boats from capsizing until they reach their destinations in the 2030s. Former U.S. President Donald Trump had good intuition about Xi's position when he visited Beijing in November 2017. "You're president for life, and therefore you're king," he told Xi at the Forbidden City, where Chinese emperors once lived. The Forbidden City is one of Beijing's most popular tourist destinations and a UNESCO World Heritage site, but it was closed off for the day as Xi entertained the American president and first lady. Former U.S. President Donald Trump had good intuition about Xi's position when he visited Beijing in November 2017. © Reuters This exchange happened four months before Xi pushed through a surprise revision of the national constitution the following March, scrapping the limit of two five-year terms for a Chinese president. For Xi to stay head of state for life, he needs to be reelected as the party's general secretary every five years. Aiming for a third term this year is the first step toward an ultralong-term reign. The year 2035 has been set as the target for catching up with the U.S. Most of China's current long-term plans and visions of nation-building have 2035 in mind. And indications are that Xi intends to run the government until 2035. A shortcut to Xi's goal is to create a new top post for life. It would be similar to the post of party chairman, which Mao Zedong held until his death. But that may be difficult under the current party ban on stoking personality cults. Further, it would be impossible if Putin fails in Ukraine and the masses begin to question the ultralong rule of any one leader. [img]https://www.ft.com/__origami/service/image/v2/images/raw/https%253A%252F%252Fs3-ap-northeast-1.amazonaws.com%252Fpsh-ex-ftnikkei-3937bb4%252Fimages%252F_aliases%252Farticleimage%252F1%252F8%252F6%252F8%252F39818681-1-eng-GB%252FAP22096041835030re.jpg?source=nar-cms[/img] Soldiers walk amid destroyed Russian tanks in Bucha, on the outskirts of Kyiv, Ukraine on April 3. © AP Meanwhile, in Russia, Putin also pushed through a constitutional revision in 2020, following in Xi's footsteps and paving the way for the Russian president to stay in office until 2036. If Putin lasts that long, he would be 83. If Xi reigns until 2035, he too would be 83, at least in traditional Chinese age. It is also the age when Mao Zedong died, as the incumbent leader of China. Are there any measures Xi can take? When the time is ripe for a Russia-Ukraine cease-fire, China has the option of participating in a security framework to ensure peace. Xi could hold a phone conversation with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy to facilitate such a scenario. Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi's phone call earlier this week with Ukrainian counterpart Dmytro Kuleba, the second since Russia's invasion, was likely a step in that direction. "It is China's historical and cultural tradition as well as our consistent foreign policy to safeguard peace and oppose war," Wang said. Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi speaks during a remote video press conference held on the sidelines of the annual meeting of China's National People's Congress (NPC) in Beijing on March 7. © AP But Wang carefully avoided any remarks that could be taken by Russia as unreasonable pressure from China. Not knowing Putin's entire game plan, it is too dangerous for China to take a clear stance. And bound by the Xi-Putin joint statement of Feb. 4, in which both specified opposition to further NATO expansion, China cannot fully side with Ukraine. Xi needs Putin to survive. There is a risk that if his Russian comrade falls, Xi could fall with him. Putin's survival is crucial for Xi, but not necessarily for China.
  9. https://asia.nikkei.com/Politics/Yakuza-leader-arrested-in-U.S.-for-drugs-for-missiles-plot?utm_campaign=GL_JP_update&utm_medium=email&utm_source=NA_newsletter&utm_content=article_link&del_type=4&pub_date=20220408090000&seq_num=8&si=44594 Yakuza leader arrested in U.S. for drugs for missiles plot Surface-to-air missiles to Myanmar to be paid for with heroin and meth Four men were arrested in New York in a sprawling drugs for weapons scheme. (Photo courtesy of the Department of Justice) JACK STONE TRUITT, Nikkei staff writerApril 8, 2022 07:13 JST NEW YORK -- A yakuza leader and three Thai associates have been arrested in New York for allegedly conspiring to obtain surface-to-air missiles for groups in Myanmar using narcotics as a payment, the U.S. Department of Justice announced Thursday. A Drug Enforcement Administration investigation led to the arrest of Takeshi Ebisawa of Japan, dual U.S.-Thai citizen Suksan Jullanan and Sompak Rukrasaranee of Thailand on April 4. Somphop Singhasiri of Thailand was arrested on April 5. "The drugs were destined for New York streets, and the weapons shipments were meant for factions in unstable nations. Members of this international crime syndicate can no longer put lives in danger and will face justice for their illicit actions," U.S. Attorney Damian Williams said in a news release. The four men all face a maximum of life imprisonment for charges relating to international weapons and narcotics trafficking. Ebisawa, a leader within a Japanese transnational organized crime syndicate known as yakuza, has also been charged with money laundering. The DEA investigation into Ebisawa's connections to narcotics and weapons trafficking had been ongoing since 2019 and spanned the globe. DEA offices across six countries and three continents were all involved, as was law enforcement in Japan, Thailand and Indonesia. Ebisawa with a rocket launcher at a February 2021 meeting with undercover agents in a warehouse in Copenhagen. (Photo courtesy of the Department of Justice) U.S. officials allege that Ebisawa, Jullanan and Rukrasaranee conspired to broker the purchase from an undercover DEA agent of American-made surface-to-air missiles and other weaponry for multiple ethnic armed groups in Myanmar. The arms were said to have been taken from American military bases in Afghanistan. Ebisawa and Singhasiri, for partial payment of the weapons, then allegedly conspired to sell 500 kg of heroin and 500 kg of methamphetamine meant for distribution in New York. "The expansive reach of transnational criminal networks, like the yakuza, presents a serious threat to the safety and health of all communities. Ebisawa and his associates intended to distribute hundreds of kilograms of methamphetamine and heroin to the United States, using deadly weapons to enable their criminal activities," DEA Administrator Anne Milgram said in the news release.
  10. Yamato

    Chiwit Thai

    Arrived Bangkok Collecting luggage Waiting for my ride to PCR hotel On the way to PCR hotel
  11. Yamato

    Chiwit Thai

    Today lunch at a popular Singapore chicken rice stall located in Mei Ling Street market Succulent chicken Lunch
  12. Yamato

    Chiwit Thai

    This is what I was actually back to Singapore this time for, a birthday party which the family celebrated on Saturday 95th Birthday "cake" (pies actually) Pictures of this amazing restaurant mischievously named "Holy Crab" as it specialises in Singaporean's favourite seafood Sri Lankan crabs. Longevity buns, a Chinese tradition (these are from Peach Garden restaurant located in Chinatownpoint mall) We started with this addictive CapriCorn, crispy corn kernels coated with salted egg and fried with herbs and spices Grilled giant octopus - a little charred on the outside and soft on the inside, perfectly executed "BitterSweet" bitter gourd - the mixture of bitterness and sweetness and saltiness (I suspect from salted eggs) simply brings one to the next level of "antagonising" one's taste buds Sweet & Sour Pumbaa (from the Lion King) is not your ordinary Gou-Lou-Yok (sweet & sour pork) the crispiness of the pork surface combined with the special coating of sauce and cooking it with rambutan and pineapple is certainly outstanding The white part is the rambutan Green Assam (tamarind) Soon Hock (marble goby) cooked I think with a Thai flavour this dish is perfect with Thai jasmine rice "Smoking Pot" is claypot rice with large and thick slices of foie gras and chunks of chicken, watch the attached video and you will straight away know this is a must order dish with rice perfectly cooked with a charred crispy layer. Magic Flying Meesua (rice noodle). Coincidently meesua is also known as longevity noodle so suits the occasion. Forget about the presentation which is amazing in the first place but the fact that the deep fried noodle after engulfed with the crap seafood sauce combination is like having burnt seafood noodle, unforgettable and craving for more. (watch the video for better presentation) Traditional favourite and iconic Singapore's Chili Crab which an extra Oomph and I suspect the extra oomph comes from some Thai herbs. The 12 of us had a great time with this very special birthday party for our family matriarch. 95th birthday pies Celebration Map https://goo.gl/maps/RocPnU8Qid8uXJmW6
  13. Yamato

    Chiwit Thai

    Want to share my ThaiPass application timing: 1. Applied at 8.21pm on 02-Apr-2022 2. Approved at 2.57pm on 3rd-Apr-20223. Time taken to get it approved = 18 hours 36 minutes
  14. Yamato

    Chiwit Thai

    Some of the Singapore food I had past few days 1. Having breakfast at Tanglin Halt coffeeshop Roti prata and chai-tow-kway Love 'em roti prata 2. Fishball meepok at ION foodcourt very nice chili sauce and crispy lard Prices 3. Its almost midnight and the market is still alive with customers for food Stalls still opened My favourite wanton noodle shop Midnight supper 4. I had to queue while raining although have overhead shelter still splattered All for this stall Curry rice Check out the gravy on the rice, simply heavenly Sunday breakfast at Tanglin Halt Market Noodle stall Wanton Noodles Lormee
  15. https://asia.nikkei.com/Politics/Ukraine-war/Is-Putin-cracking-Voice-analysis-belies-steely-exterior?utm_campaign=GL_one_time&utm_medium=email&utm_source=NA_newsletter&utm_content=article_link&del_type=3&pub_date=20220403093000&seq_num=5&si=44594 Is Putin cracking? Voice analysis belies steely exterior Russian leader's initial optimism of conflict gave way to high stress, audio indicates An analysis of Russian President Vladimir Putin's speech on the anniversary of the annexation of Crimea indicated lower stress levels but an inward-looking mindset. (Source photo by Getty Images) KOJI KATO, MASAYUKI TERAZAWA and HIROAKI USUI, Nikkei staff writersMarch 31, 2022 02:01 JST TOKYO -- With Russia now more than a month into its invasion of Ukraine and showing little sign of backing down, how has Russian President Vladimir Putin's mindset changed over the course of the conflict? The answer may lie in his voice. Nikkei and Yokohama-based Risk Measurement Technologies looked at 1 hour and 19 minutes of voice samples from Putin from between Feb. 1 and March 18. An analysis of the audio suggests his stress levels were elevated starting in the days before the invasion and climbed sharply in early March, when Moscow responded to the tightening sanctions net around the country. Changes in a person's mental state can affect their vocal cords, altering speech and potentially offering insights into their mentality that might be difficult to glean from their words or facial expressions. Using Putin's comments at the U.N. General Assembly in September 2020 as a baseline, the analysis found a significant shift three days before the invasion, during a Feb. 21 meeting of the Russian Federation Security Council. The president heard from top officials, including the prime minister, foreign minister and the heads of the two chambers of the Federal Assembly, on the question of whether to recognize the independence of the self-proclaimed republics of Donetsk and Luhansk. During the meeting, Putin's voice indicated swings between high and low levels of stress in a short time, a sign of wavering feelings. "We can conjecture that he was in a state of psychological instability," said Risk Measurement chief Kanji Okazaki. Nikkei's analysis also looked at Putin's gestures. Ikuo Daibo, president of Hokusei Gakuen University in Sapporo and an expert on the relationship between body language and mental state, noted that Putin supported himself with his hands on his desk. "He felt determined to carry out something he'd decided on," Daibo said. In a televised speech on Feb. 24, the day of the invasion, Putin used forceful language, emphasizing that "today's Russia remains one of the most powerful nuclear states." Though his stress levels varied here as well, there were times when it trended lower, which Risk Measurement says indicates an optimistic mindset. Here, Putin may have been confident in the Russian military's ability to quickly meet its objective, which was reportedly to seize Kyiv in a lightning strike. The president seemed tense again on March 10, in a meeting with Russian officials in which he indicated that Moscow would retaliate against foreign companies that withdraw from the country. His vocal stress levels were over 40% higher than usual. Combined with his body language, "he seemed to be showing defiance," Daibo said. The stress readings were lower on March 18, when Putin delivered a speech to mark the eighth anniversary of the annexation of Crimea in front of a crowd of 200,000. He claimed that the purpose of the conflict was to relieve residents in the eastern region of Ukraine "of suffering, of this genocide" allegedly being carried out by Kyiv. While his voice indicated stability, analysis of the video footage showed signs of an inward-looking mindset. Research on the relationship between voice and emotional state is ongoing. Reports suggest that vocal analysis can identify people with depression, and there are studies showing that the results of such analyses match closely with people's self-reported mood and stress levels. Correction: An earlier version of this storyincorrectly named Risk Measurement Technologies as Risk Management Technologies.
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