Less than six months ago, a military coup toppled the government of Thailand's democratically elected Prime Minister Thaksin Shinowatra. There was nary a whimper from the international community and many Thais welcomed the move, too, believing it would end months of political uncertainty that had spooked investors and Thais alike.
But nearly five months on, the bloom is off the rose. The interim government chosen by the military has stumbled badly politically and economically.
And a series of New Year's Eve bomb blasts in the capital, Bangkok, embarrassed them even more. Some wonder whether the deposed and exiled former prime minister is eying a comeback.