It’s ‘Indochina’, not ‘ASEAN’ or ‘SE Asia’

What’s old is always new.

Hey, if you don’t study the classics, you’re basically shooting yourself in the foot.

I’m mentioning this because there’s a lot of press noise about Indochina as of late.

Of course, who can overlook the region — after all, a good third (and I might be off on this but I am not going to google it) of the world’s shipping passes through the Strait of Malacca.

‘ASEAN’ and ‘Southeast Asia’ are modern terms that really don’t pan out in the test of time.


Because ‘Indochina’ is the most descriptive.

‘SE Asia’ is geographically descriptive, more than ‘ASEAN’, but ‘Indochina’ is more sociologically and culturally descriptive than either of the other options.

Indochina is a melting pot more than America is, in some ways, and America’s melting pot status is one of its strongest features.

Indochina is where two of the world’s oldest standing civilizations (personally I don’t count Iran or Egypt because they were overrun by barbarians) meet.

Talk to most Thais about this and they are clueless.

They don’t know or think about or care to take the time to observe that their written script is based on Sanskrit, while their spoken tonal language is more akin to Mandarin Chinese.

Visually, walking around Indochinese cities, the psychogeographer is faced with endless signs that China has already overwhelmed the region.

Dig deeper though, and one will see that India is a very strong influence on the socio-political climate.

See, most of the world has been paying attention to China’s rise more than India’s, because most of the world is obsessed with stuff.

Sure, China cornered the manufacturing game and brought it to a higher level, but how much respect should we be demanded to pay to an entire empire based on inanimate objects?

No, India is on the rise, not China.

Indians are less materialistic, and they speak English much better not only than Chinese but also better than Americans and many British even.

If you got out of the house and took a walkabout around this beautiful planet, you’d probably agree with me.

Otherwise, the allure of the domesticity a castle offers is intoxicating, the safety — more so than the finest opium from the Golden Triangle.

Gabriel is a writer, actor, and musician from Los Angeles. Currently, he is based out of Bangkok, Thailand.