Category Archives: Foreign Affairs and Trade

TIM LINDSEY. Jakarta elections a very bad look for Indonesia

The decisive defeat of Basuki Tjahaja Purnama (known as ‘Ahok’) in Jakarta’s litmus-test gubernatorial election is a triumph for hardline Islamist mob agitators. It comes after years of pressure from the Muslim right and may flag a shift in Indonesian … Continue reading

Posted in Australia and Asia, Foreign Affairs and Trade | Tagged , , , , , , | 2 Comments

RICHARD BUTLER. DPRK: The “New Cuban missile crisis”?

The DPRK nuclear weapons programme does not constitute a new Cuban missile crisis. Any military attack upon DPRK would be disastrous. A new political negotiation must be constructed. This is not a problem to be solved by the US alone. … Continue reading

Posted in Defence/Security, Foreign Affairs and Trade | Tagged , , , , , , | Comments Off on RICHARD BUTLER. DPRK: The “New Cuban missile crisis”?

Our misguided wars of choice.

In this article in the Boston Globe of April 16, JEFFREY D SACHS speaks of the risks that the US and the world are running.  He speaks of the US ‘wanton addiction to war’.  John Menadue. “There is one foreign … Continue reading

Posted in Defence/Security, Foreign Affairs and Trade | Tagged , , , , , | 2 Comments

MUNGO McCALLUM. Turnbull’s Passage to India.

He may not have landed any concrete results, but he continues to give the myths and legends a good workout.  

Posted in Climate change, Foreign Affairs and Trade, Politics | Tagged , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

JAMES O’NEILL. Scientific evidence exposes the falsity of US government claims about Syrian gas attack.

The irresistible conclusion is that those same senior politicians know that the White House claims are false and misleading and therefore highly dangerous to Australia’s national security. That they should maintain their silence on this while continuing to perpetuate a … Continue reading

Posted in Defence/Security, Foreign Affairs and Trade, Media, Politics | Tagged , , , , , | 9 Comments

RAMESH THAKUR. Donald Trump is more believable and moral than Putin – Seriously?

Instead of cheering US resort to increasingly robust use of military firepower as the first response to international crises, Western leaders should be ring-fencing Trump’s instinct to reckless behaviour in order to avoid a catastrophe.  

Posted in Defence/Security, Foreign Affairs and Trade | Tagged , , , , , , | 7 Comments

Trump is Ignorant of History and So is His Chump Sean Spicer

This article by Middle East expert, ROBERT FISK, was first published in The Independent on 12 April 2017. Fisk comments ‘Gas, cruise missiles, barrel bombs, Hitler and the American media. Mix them all up and I suppose you get Trump’s … Continue reading

Posted in Defence/Security, Foreign Affairs and Trade, Media, Politics | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

RICHARD BUTLER. US Missile Attack on Syria

The US missile strike on Syria was an act of aggression the consequences of which could be immense. The facts of what happened at Khan Sheikhun must be established. 

Posted in Defence/Security, Foreign Affairs and Trade, Media, Politics | Tagged , , , , , | 7 Comments

JOHN TULLOH. Turkey – Erdogan’s day of judgment.

   Turkey’s voters face a momentous choice: whether they want their president to have the dictatorial power of a potential tyrant or one whose authority remains curbed by parliamentary government. 

Posted in Foreign Affairs and Trade | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , | Comments Off on JOHN TULLOH. Turkey – Erdogan’s day of judgment.

RICHARD WOOLCOTT. The importance of better security and trade policies.

The relationship between the United States and China is now the most decisive bilateral relationship in the world.  It works on two levels, one public and one private.

Posted in Foreign Affairs and Trade, Politics | Tagged , , , , , | Comments Off on RICHARD WOOLCOTT. The importance of better security and trade policies.

MICHAEL McKINLEY. The Foreign Policy White Paper: A Plea To See Things As They Are

“We have now sunk to a depth at which restatement of the obvious is the first duty of intelligent men.”  George Orwell.

Posted in Defence/Security, Foreign Affairs and Trade | Tagged , , , , | 4 Comments

JAMES O’NEILL. American missile strikes in Syria raise fresh questions.

Not for the first time, unilateral and illegal actions by the Americans pose a grave threat to the safety of the planet and its inhabitants. 

Posted in Defence/Security, Foreign Affairs and Trade, Media | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 5 Comments

MASSIMO FAGGIOLI. Are US Catholics too American to stand up to Trump?

It also reveals a much more complex issue – the deep-seated fear of the state within American Catholicism and of the gap between US Catholicism and the global Catholic Church’s view on the state and of political authority. This creates a … Continue reading

Posted in Foreign Affairs and Trade, Politics, Religion and Faith | Tagged , , , | 2 Comments

ALLAN PATIENCE. Is globalization ending?

It is the fashion to declare that globalization is coming to an end. Evidence for this includes: nationalism being on the rise; protectionist policies making a come-back; borders being slammed shut; populist politicians multiplying at rabbit-like rates. Trump and Brexit, … Continue reading

Posted in Defence/Security, Foreign Affairs and Trade, Politics | Tagged , , , , , | 4 Comments

ROSS BURNS. After Khan Sheikhun

The 4 April attack on Khan Sheikhun using CW (chemical warfare) weapons was almost certainly the work of Bashar al-Assad’s regime. This is the only explanation which ticks off all the boxes—means, motive and opportunity. The hastily assembled US retaliatory … Continue reading

Posted in Defence/Security, Foreign Affairs and Trade | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 6 Comments

RAMESH THAKUR. Decoding the Trump strikes on Syria

The use of chemical weapons in Syria and the US air strikes in punishment are part of the continuing descent into lawlessness by various actors with unforeseeable consequences in an already inflamed region. 

Posted in Defence/Security, Foreign Affairs and Trade | Tagged , , , , , , | 2 Comments

JAMES O’NEILL. Verdict First, Evidence Later: How the Australian Media Misrepresent Geopolitical Events

The reporting of the tragedy from Syria is but the latest illustration of an all too common phenomenon: a pre-determined verdict on little or no evidence.  

Posted in Defence/Security, Foreign Affairs and Trade, Media | Tagged , , , , , , | 4 Comments

NICK BISLEY. Learning to live with a nuclear North Korea?

North Korea perceives it is isolated in a world that is hostile to its existence. However loathsome the regime may be and however badly it misallocates resources to bolster the ruling elite, the reason for acquiring nuclear weapons is entirely … Continue reading

Posted in Defence/Security, Foreign Affairs and Trade | Tagged , , | Comments Off on NICK BISLEY. Learning to live with a nuclear North Korea?

ANNETTE BROWNLIE. Keeping Australia out of US wars

It is time we, the people, asserted our sovereignty, took control of our foreign policies and reviewed the presence of U.S. bases and troops in Australia. It is time we started promoting genuine peace and security, human rights, a sustainable … Continue reading

Posted in Defence/Security, Foreign Affairs and Trade | Tagged , , , | 3 Comments

EDITORS, EAST ASIA FORUM. The consequences of the Trump-Xi meeting in Florida.

ANU East Asia Forum has posted a new item, ‘The consequences of the Trump–Xi meeting in Florida‘ All eyes will be on Florida this week, where US President Donald Trump will ANU host an inaugural summit with Chinese President Xi … Continue reading

Posted in Defence/Security, Foreign Affairs and Trade | Tagged , , | Comments Off on EDITORS, EAST ASIA FORUM. The consequences of the Trump-Xi meeting in Florida.

Building a regional refugee framework.

The Asia Dialogue on Forced Migration (ADFM) expanded its membership, deepened its policy contributions to the Bali Process on People Smuggling, Trafficking in Persons and Related Transnational Crime (Bali Process) and developed its connection to the Association of Southeast Asian … Continue reading

Posted in Australia and Asia, Refugees and asylum seekers | Tagged , , , , , | 1 Comment

RICHARD BUTLER. Fake news?

Trump’s threats against DPRK and May’s against Gibraltar, as reported, are fake news. The US’ stance on nuclear non-proliferation of nuclear weapons is a fake.   

Posted in Defence/Security, Foreign Affairs and Trade | Tagged , , , , , , , | Comments Off on RICHARD BUTLER. Fake news?

JOHN MENADUE. Alexey Navalny has roused a democratic Russia. Turnbull and Bishop are too busy sleeping to care.

In Australia we conjure Russia through the basest of filters: take your pick of Pauline Hanson expressing her admiration for Russia’s autocrat Vladimir Putin, or of the sometime boxer-sometime- Prime Minister Tony Abbott’s vows to ‘shirtfront’ said autocrat.  

Posted in Democratic Renewal, Foreign Affairs and Trade, Politics | Tagged , , , , , , , | 7 Comments

DUNCAN MacLAREN. Article 50 triggered: the farce heats up

Are you ready for another dose of Brexititis? This past week, PM May triggered Article 50, meaning negotiations can begin, after due examination by the 27 remaining states, between the exiting UK (or, at least, the parts that survive) and … Continue reading

Posted in Economy, Foreign Affairs and Trade, Politics | Tagged , , , , , , | Comments Off on DUNCAN MacLAREN. Article 50 triggered: the farce heats up

RICHARD BUTLER. The Myths of Australian Foreign Policy.

The review of Australian foreign policy needs to be freed from the myths of our dependency and take serious account of the current and likely state of US foreign and military policy.  

Posted in Defence/Security, Foreign Affairs and Trade | Tagged , , , , , | 3 Comments

RAMESH THAKUR. Nuclear powers and umbrella states must engage with, not obstruct, the international community.

It is time for the so-called realists to get real about the existential dangers of a world brimming with nuclear weapons. 

Posted in Defence/Security, Foreign Affairs and Trade | Tagged , , , | Comments Off on RAMESH THAKUR. Nuclear powers and umbrella states must engage with, not obstruct, the international community.

JAMES O’NEILL. The London Attack: What We Fail to Acknowledge

“The idea”, …  “that you can set fire to countries in the Middle East, collapse their societies, and traumatize entire populations sowing carnage on a biblical scale, and not expect any reaction in the form of blowback is utterly insane.”  

Posted in Defence/Security, Foreign Affairs and Trade, Politics | Tagged , , , , , , , | 8 Comments

PAT POWER. Nuclear disarmament.

I find it incredible that Australia is refusing to be part of the UN negotiations on a new treaty to outlaw nuclear weapons. 

Posted in Defence/Security, Foreign Affairs and Trade | Tagged , , , | 2 Comments

ANDREW FARRAN. Stirring a Witch’s Brew – Selling military equipment to Saudi Arabia.

Australia is busily involved in selling military equipment to Saudi Arabia which is engaged in the civil war in the Yemen whose features exceed in brutality and crimes against humanity those in Syria. Has the government clearly thought through where … Continue reading

Posted in Defence/Security, Foreign Affairs and Trade | Tagged , , , , , , | 5 Comments

RICHARD BUTLER. The many risks we run – Trump and the US. (Part 2 of 2)

The deep-seated argument taking place within the US polity, partly but not only because of the mess being presided over by President Trump, makes even more urgent the need for a thorough-going review of Australia’s foreign policy, including how we … Continue reading

Posted in Defence/Security, Foreign Affairs and Trade, Politics | Tagged , , , , , | 4 Comments