Tag Archives: South China Sea

MARK BEESON. ANZUS: Too obliging for our own good?

Malcolm Turnbull is dropping everything and travelling to America to meet a man that only recently subjected him to a very public humiliation. Although members of the Trump administration have tried to make amends for this initial snub to a … Continue reading

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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.

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MACK WILLIAMS. Canberra wrong-footed in our region?

For Ms Bishop to be talking in Singapore about China and democracies, the Japanese “big ship” and rallying the claimants while pleading with the US to remain staunchly committed in the region certainly is risky. We could be exposed as … Continue reading

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MACK WILLIAMS. Joint patrols with Indonesia in the South China Sea?

Has Foreign Minister Bishop finally been able to kill off the proposed joint Australia: Indonesia patrols in the South China Sea ?  

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JAMES O’NEILL. Australia and the Iraq War: some new revelations.

“It is difficult not to conclude that Howard’s statement to Parliament on 18 March 2003 following his telephone conversation with Bush was a political statement designed to bolster what was an untenable decision to commit Australia to yet another foreign … Continue reading

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TIM LINDSEY. Jokowi Lite: The Indonesian president’s non-visit

The relationship between our two countries is now back on a more normal diplomatic footing for the moment but we need to do better than that if we are to make the most of our proximity to this gigantic nation … Continue reading

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MICHAEL McKINLEY. Trump, Australia, Iran, and a Question For Australia

For all of the radical change promised by Donald Trump when he was campaigning, at least one area of continuity is abundantly clear: the preoccupation with, and a distorted understanding of Islam in general and Iran in particular. His appointment … Continue reading

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RICHARD WOOLCOTT. A foreign policy for Australia.

Our Prime Minister and Foreign Minister often refer to the “rules based world order.” This “order”, of course, was established primarily by the United States after the end of World War 2.   The “rules” have been disregarded by the US itself when it … Continue reading

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JAMES O’NEILL. ‘One belt one road’ (OBOR) – a new geopolitical paradigm.

The scale of the projects (OBOR) is astonishing. As of July 2016 China had more than 900 contracts in place or under negotiation with a propose investment value of over $900 billion dollars. This was in addition to a separate … Continue reading

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MACK WILLIAMS. South China Sea: China taps in the last nail!

It is now clear for all to see that the only potential US “ally” for any US confrontation in the region could be Australia. China has successfully wedged the ASEAN’s in through their common concern that it would be them … Continue reading

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GEOFF MILLER. Foreign policy in our own interests.

We need to take decisions based on our own national interests.  But we should take those decisions based on a knowledge of what regional countries think.  

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JAMES O’NEILL. More alarm bells ring for Australia in the South China Sea.

President-elect Trump’s nominee for Secretary of state had his confirmation hearings in Washington last week. A number of his reported statements should have raised alarm among Australian politicians and foreign affairs bureaucrats. With the exception of former Prime Minister Paul … Continue reading

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WALTER HAMILTON. Rex Tillerson and Australia’s national interest

President-elect Donald Trump’s Cabinet picks are being cross-examined in public for the first time. Here begins the real business of assessing how a Trump administration might behave––in more than 140 characters. The indications so far suggest the need for an … Continue reading

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TONY KEVIN. The Rex Tillerson confirmation hearings, and wider issues

Rex Tillerson, Donald Trump’s nominee for Secretary of State and Trump’s best Cabinet choice so far, will probably survive his gruelling full day of confirmation hearings by the US Senate Foreign Affairs Committee last Wednesday 11 January (Washington time).  

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MUNGO MacCALLUM. Malcolm Turnbull on his knees.

The recalcitrant right is, if anything, more antagonistic than ever as the season of peace and goodwill drags on. 

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MICHAELSAINSBURY. Xi who must be obeyed

Already China is prodding at the U.S. at this delicate time when it is shifting administrations, testing the waters, as it were with its capture of an underwater drone not far from the Philippines this week. Internally, he faces the … Continue reading

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JAMES O’NEILL. Dangerous delusions in Australian foreign policy.

 Our media just does not get it. It is not disputed that there are significant US military bases in Japan (Okinawa), the Philippines, Guam, South Korea, Afghanistan and Australia, among other places. … Strategic planners are unable to point to … Continue reading

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JOHN MENADUE. White Man’s Media – missing in action on our future submarines (FSM)

For eight months in Pearls & Irritations, Jon Stanford, Michael Keating, myself and others, have drawn attention to major problems with the proposed build of the Shortfin Barracuda submarine in Adelaide by the French company, DCNS.  With the exception of Brian Toohey … Continue reading

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PAUL BARRATT. A transformational foreign policy

Some of Australia’s most experienced former foreign policy and defence bureaucrats have issued an open submission to the Foreign Minister calling on her to rethink the Australian-US alliance now that president-elect Donald Trump is set to lead the US.

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JOSEPH CAMILLERI. New series. We can say ‘no’ to the Americans.

 Australia at the crossroads of time and imagination  Can Australia rise to the challenge of a rapidly transforming world or is it bound to the myths of a bygone age?

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ALISON BROINOWSKI. Trump – Seize the moment. Quo vadis series.

Quo vadis – Australian foreign policy and ANZUS. Summary. We have a unique moment to do something Australia has never done – make a rational distinction between our national interests and our enduring regard for the US.

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GARRY WOODARD. Trump and ANZUS. Quo vadis series.

Quo vadis – Australian foreign policy and ANZUS. Summary. Will Australia allow itself to be drawn into Sino-American tensions in the incorrect belief that it has no choice under ANZUS or ‘five eyes’.

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RICHARD WOOLCOTT. The Trump Presidency and Australia. Quo vadis series.

  Quo vadis – Australian foreign policy and ANZUS  Summary. Our relationship with the US is of course very important and substantial. This does not mean that we should be seen as not responding quickly to the greatly changed world of … Continue reading

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MACK WILLIAMS. Trump : Getting our priorities right

  Is China going to fill the void? The media-hyped flurry to try to establish the likely policy guidelines of the Trump administration is timely and natural but should be approached very cautiously. Not only is it virtually impossible at … Continue reading

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GEOFF MILLER. Trump, Australia and the South China Sea.

  The Trump victory has led to justified concern in Australia, as elsewhere, and few would carp at what seems to have been a successful and cordial talk between him and our Prime Minister. It’s a good thing that Trump … Continue reading

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MACK WILLIAMS. The real shipping choke point for Australia – Sibutu Channel

Neither the Australian government nor the Australian media have informed us about the critical nature of the Sibutu Channel. As mentioned in this blog some time ago. the active political and media discussion in Australia about the South China Sea … Continue reading

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MACK WILLIAMS. President Duterte and high stakes poker.

Following President Duterte’s recent trips to China and Japan he has continued to play his hand in what has become a high stakes poker game with the US and China attracting a growing number of interested onlookers. Despite the twists … Continue reading

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China and the South China Sea

Last weekend Geraldine Doogue interviewed Richard Woolcott and Geoff Raby on the recent controversies about Chinese influence in Australia. Richard Woolcott was formerly Head of the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, and President of the UN Security Council. Geoff … Continue reading

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NICK DEANE. Reflecting on Troubled Waters. South China Sea

  The dispute in the South China Sea should not, legitimately, involve Australia. We are only involved because we have such close military ties with the United States. War between the US and China is not inevitable, but dangerous, military … Continue reading

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RICHARD WOOLCOTT. The South China Sea, China, Philippines, Australia and the US.

I was surprised the Opposition did not differentiate itself from the Australian Coalition Government’s strong  support for the US and the Philippine position on the South China Sea issue. It can be argued that it was misleading to state in … Continue reading

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