Category Archives: Asia

MICHAEL McKINLEY. The unsettling reality if Five Eyes is the guardian against Huawei, Part 2: A survey audit concerning prudence, integrity, law and ethics.

In the frequent denunciations of Huawei and ZTE the inference is that these Chinese corporations are existing, or potential espionage agents of the Beijing Government and a threat to all who have been foolish enough to acquire their products.  These … Continue reading

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MICHAEL McKINLEY. The unsettling reality if Five Eyes is the guardian against Huawei, Part 1: Questions of Honesty and Loyalty.

According to a recent assessment Australia is the world’s 11th most vulnerable country in terms of its exposure to internet security threat.  This is the general case.  The particular case, articulated by the Five Eyes signals intelligence agencies, is that China is to … Continue reading

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HUGH WHITE. The Costs of Containing China (East Asia Forum)

Washington’s policymakers at last understand that China is a serious strategic rival. For the first time since the Soviet collapse, they recognise that a major country is trying to expand its power and influence at the expense of US global … Continue reading

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CLIVE KESSLER. Mahathir’s deep dilemma for 2019 (ASIAN NIKKEI REVIEW).

Can he win over the dominant ethnic Malays and halt the growth of Islamist forces?

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CLIVE KESSLER. New hopes or old fears for Malaysia?

Against the odds, and against most informed predictions, Malaysia’s 14th general elections in May 2018 produced a change of government. The Barisan Nasional (BN) coalition under Najib Razak, which had been in power since 1957, was ousted by the opposition … Continue reading

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GEOFF RABY. Xi Jinping’s Year of Living Dangerously.

2018 may well go down as a defining year for President Xi Jinping’s leadership – one that marks the beginning of the end for the “President for Life”.   President Xi began the year in full command of the country, seemingly … Continue reading

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ANDREW FARRAN. Brexit – Putting off the inevitable

The British Government is in total disarray, thrashing about for a way to minimise public outrage when the country crashes out of the EU without a deal on 29 March, which now appears inevitable. Its energies are now being devoted … Continue reading

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Hugh White: The New East Asian Jigsaw (The Straits Times (Singapore), Caixin Global (Beijing), 18.12.2018)

 If 2018 was the year of unscrambling, the next year will offer a clearer picture of how the U.S.-China power struggle has reshaped the region, with Taiwan being a potential flashpoint In 2018 all the big pieces in the East … Continue reading

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DUNCAN GRAHAM. ASEAN: Wethers, not rams.

Half a century ago five neighbouring nations got together with a set of fine ideals.  These included boosting economic growth, promoting peace and lifting living standards.  That was the excuse. The real purpose was to block the spread of Communism, … Continue reading

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SAM BATEMAN. Favourable currents for ASEAN–China relations in the South China Sea (East Asia Forum, 12 December 2018)

Despite increased friction between the United States and China, on balance, positive developments in the South China Sea outweighed negative ones this year.

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JEFFREY D. SACHS. The War on Huawei (Project Syndicate, 11.12.18)

The Trump administration’s conflict with China has little to do with US external imbalances, closed Chinese markets, or even China’s alleged theft of intellectual property. It has everything to do with containing China by limiting its access to foreign markets, … Continue reading

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JACOB GREBER. Why Former Australian Leader Believes China is About to Outflank Trump on Trade (CAIXIN GLOBAL/AUSTRALIAN FINANCIAL REVIEW)

(AFR) — China could be preparing to spring a global compact to drive tariffs to zero, and approach Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) members including Australia for access to the grouping, positioning Beijing as a champion for free trade. That’s the view … Continue reading

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ANTHONY PUN. A winter of China panic followed by a spring thawing of Australia-China relations – a view from the Chinese Australian community.

A chronological sequence of the post-winter China panic with the spring thawing of Australia-China relations is presented.  Media reports showed a definite attempt to improve Australia-China relations with commitments by PM Morrison, Foreign Minister Marise Payne and former PM Howard.  … Continue reading

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HAMISH MCDONALD. Christian Missionaries and Their Mistaken Message from God (AsianSentinel, 05.12.18)

As fans of the old The Phantom comic strip will recall, an island in the Bay of Bengal is the location of the Skull Cave, home base of The Ghost Who Walks, established by an ancestor washed ashore in a … Continue reading

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CHRIS BURGESS. Genuine immigration reform still alien to Japan.

On 14 October 2018, a number of marches were held across Japan to mark what the organiser — the Japan First Party — labelled ‘anti-migrant day’. The target of the protestors’ wrath was the government’s proposal to revise the Immigration … Continue reading

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KIM WINGEREI. The Italy of Asia.

Assuming that come May next year Australia will have had its 7th Prime Minister in ten years, it puts us on par with Italy – the erstwhile lead exponent of revolving door politics. Despite being the fourth most populous country … Continue reading

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MARK BEESON. China’s Rise and the rules-based liberal order: Implications for Australia

The prosperity of millions of Australians has become dependent on the People’s Republic of China (PRC). This unambiguous material reality explains why Australian policymakers and commentators spend so much time fretting about how to manage the relationship. The sheer material … Continue reading

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EAST ASIA FORUM-Preparing for the Next US Recession

One thing was clear from this weekend’s G20 summit. Asia and the world face many risks, and most of them emanate from the United States of America.

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JOCELYN CHEY. Xi Jinping V. Allah

Protests are growing around the world over the forced detention and “re-education” of the Muslim Uighurs in China’s far west Xinjiang Province. It is important to frame our response in terms of our commitment to the protection of civil and … Continue reading

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MACK WILLIAMS. North Korea: second fiddle?

Not surprisingly North Korea was relegated by the US:China “tariff war” in the recent G20 summit in Buenos Aires but some progress may have been made in preparing for the next phases of US:DPRK and ROK:DPRK dialogues. China also made … Continue reading

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RICHARD BUTLER. Ethics Etherised

Based on the facts of his conduct of his office, and there is clearly much more to emerge, the end of Trump should be in sight. But, this is not certain to be achieved. To an unprecedented degree, the President … Continue reading

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RICHARD WOOLCOTT. The emergence of China can not be denied.

 The recent  APEC  meeting in Port Moresby underlined the deepening competition between China and the United States in the Asia Pacific region. China has been expanding its influence in the South China Sea and beyond and with the United States,Japan,and … Continue reading

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IAN BURNET. ‘Friends in Australia’ – a message from Sutan Sjahir, the Prime Minister of the newly declared Republic of Indonesia, November 1945.

On 17 August 1945 and two days after the Japanese surrender, Soekarno and Hatta unilaterally declared Indonesia’s Independence and became the first President and Vice President of the Republic of Indonesia.

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RAMESH THAKUR. Sino-U.S. clash is a great power competition, not ‘Cold War II’ (The Japan Times)

CHINA – In the Trump administration’s most substantial foreign policy speech thus far, delivered at the Hudson Institute on Oct. 4, Vice President Mike Pence accused China of a “whole-of-government” attack on U.S. interests and vowed the United States will … Continue reading

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TRAVERS MCLEOD. Australia will rue its decision on global migration compact

“Step up or step aside.” This was former Indonesian foreign minister Hassan Wirajuda’s warning to Australia and Indonesia, as Co-Chairs of the Bali Process on People Smuggling, Trafficking in Persons, and Related Transnational Crime, in January 2016.

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JEREMY SALT. Yes, What About Yemen? (American Herald Tribune, 13.11.18)

After the murder of Jamal Khashoggi, many are asking ‘But what about Yemen?’ Yes, indeed, what about Yemen, but what about Syria, Lebanon, Iraq, Libya, Afghanistan, and Somalia? What about Egypt in 1956, what about Iran in 1953 and what … Continue reading

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PETER VARGHESE. Australia and India: Navigating From Potential to Delivery.

In July I submitted to then PM Turnbull a report he had commissioned on an India Economic Strategy out to 2035.

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GEOFF RABY. Australia has normalised relations with a China-led future (Australian Financial Review, 21.11.18)

The Australia-China relationship is almost back to normal.  The speed at which it has recovered has surprised.  It has taken two statesman-like speeches by the former Prime Minister and his successor, and the appointment of a new Foreign Minister as … Continue reading

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ADAM WAKELING. Tokyo Trial: how an Australian judge sentenced a Japanese leader to death (ABC NEWS).

“Accused Hideki Tojo, on the counts of the indictment of which you have been convicted, the International Military Tribunal for the Far East sentences you to death by hanging.”

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ROHAN FOX, MATTHEW DORNAN. China in the Pacific: Is China engaged in “debt-trap diplomacy”? A repost from November 12 2018

Recent media coverage has touted the rise of Chinese aid and lending as a threat to Pacific nations’ sovereignty and to the West’s influence in the Pacific. China, so the narrative goes, is aggressively lending to smaller nations who do not have … Continue reading

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