Author Archives: Alison Broinowski

Alison Broinowski

About Alison Broinowski

Dr Alison Broinowski AM is Vice-President of Australians for War Powers Reform. She joined the Australian Foreign Service in 1963, lived in Japan for a total of six years, and for shorter periods in Burma, Iran, the Philippines, Jordan, South Korea, the United States of America and Mexico, working alternately as an author and Australian diplomat. Since leaving the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, she has received a PhD in Asian Studies from ANU, and has continued to lecture, write, and broadcast in Australia and abroad on Asian affairs and cultural and political issues.

Right outcome, wrong reasons on Julian Assange

British justice has been done, but it is hard to fathom. Assange’s crime is different from the usual. He embarrassed the US by revealing activities recorded by Americans themselves, and the lawlessness of the US military that continues every day, all … Continue reading

Posted in Politics, Top 5 | 14 Comments

Can it get worse after Trump?

When Joe Biden is in the White House and Donald Trump is back in his tower or at his resort, some things about the Trump years will be missed.

Posted in World Affairs | Tagged | 10 Comments

Darylgate: a Federal matter as well

A week is a short time in politics. In less than that time, an affair emerged that had lasted five years if you believe Gladys, or seven if you believe Daryl.

Posted in Politics | 4 Comments

Julian Assange and failure of mainstream media

On 18 September, a little over a year since Amal Clooney was appointed as the UK’s special envoy for media freedom, she resigned. Among Clooney’s barrister colleagues are Geoffrey Robertson, Jennifer Robinson, and Gareth Pierce, all of whom, at their … Continue reading

Posted in Media, Politics | 1 Comment

It is time for a political solution to the Julian Assange persecution.

A travesty that passes for British justice has now run its course at the Old Bailey.

Posted in Politics | 7 Comments

The National Insecurity State

When the ‘war on terror’ was only seven years old, an Australian former Ambassador to Beijing pointed to its risks and costs for Australia. Garry Woodard warned that rather than protecting ‘national security’, such an open-ended war could widen our … Continue reading

Posted in Defence and Security | 1 Comment

The military-industrial-intelligence-security complex

In 1961 President Eisenhower warned that a vast and permanent ‘military-industrial complex’ could produce ‘the disastrous rise of misplaced power’. Earlier, US Senators Robert La Follette and J. William Fulbright also foresaw the dangers of militarisation. Now we have a … Continue reading

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What else have the Archives got?

Jenny Hocking’s persistence has revealed the ‘Palace Letters’ between Canberra and London which the National Archives didn’t want Australians to see. If there were other exchanges with Washington and Langley they may be even more reluctant.

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Australia-‘The most oppressive of the Western Democracies’

When there’s a concerted attack on the interests of the Australian mainstream media they will rise in joint defence of journalists’ freedom. But they are slow to support five other Australians who have already lost their freedom.

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ALISON BROINOWSKI. The crisis is political too.

In his almost daily televised updates, Scott Morrison’s successive rescue packages turn conservative orthodoxy on its head, and without resorting to Trumpian monologues. Yet his response to the international questions shows no new thinking.

Posted in Politics | 4 Comments

ALISON BROINOWSKI. Outstaying our welcome in Iraq.

As US installations in Iraq come under increasing attack, the message that they are no longer needed is clear. Camp Taji near Baghdad, where a few hundred Australians are still based, has been hit by missiles in recent days. How … Continue reading

Posted in Defence and Security, World Affairs | 3 Comments

ALISON BROINOWSKI. Organised violence: the US and China compared

The world has seen the rise and fall of some 150 empires. That number doesn’t even include the United States, whose unacknowledged empire includes more than 800 military bases in some 70 countries.

Posted in World Affairs | 8 Comments

ALISON BROINOWSKI. Quiet Australians wait for the truth

Forty-four Australian servicemen have been killed in action or have died in accidents since our forces went to Afghanistan in 2001, and since the deployments to Iraq and Syria. But in that period, at least ten times that number of … Continue reading

Posted in Politics, World Affairs | 7 Comments

ALISON BROINOWSKI. Friends of Assange, at last.

Influential Australians are suddenly stirring in support of Julian Assange, who will face extradition to the US and several life sentences unless political intervention heads it off. Is it too late?

Posted in Politics | 10 Comments

ALISON BROINOWSKI. October and a discontented world

This is the October of our discontent. Suddenly, its manifestations are everywhere. Unless the few in power heed the shouts, slogans, and strikes of the many demanding change, worse may occur.

Posted in Politics | 5 Comments

ALISON BROINOWSKI Iran: Maximum Falsification

Step by predictable step, President Trump has been tempting Iran to come out and fight. Most of the mainstream Western media have obliged him by suggesting that every recent hostile event in the Gulf is Iran’s doing, and have dismissed … Continue reading

Posted in World Affairs | 3 Comments

ALISON BROINOWSKI. Julian Assange – ‘Find Justice and Make It Quick’ (American Herald Tribune 28-9-19)

With the US on the warpath and Australia sending military, air, and naval support for American activities in the Gulf, three Australian and British nationals are being made an example of in Iran, where they are in solitary confinement on charges of … Continue reading

Posted in Human Rights, Media, Politics | 2 Comments

ALISON BROINOWSKI. Julian Assange One case dismissed: one to go.

From the Australian mainstream media most readers won’t know it, but on 29 July a Federal Court in New York dismissed the Democratic National Committee’s case against Julian Assange for publishing leaked internal emails in 2016.

Posted in Politics | 6 Comments

ALISON BROINOWSKI. ‘Australia agrees to everything’

Australia and the United States see the world through the same eyes, Scott Morrison told sailors on USS Ronald Reagan during the Talisman Sabre war games on 12 July.But after hearing what Mike Pompeo and John Joseph Mearsheimer had to … Continue reading

Posted in Politics | 4 Comments

ALISON BROINOWSKI. Who are the terrorists, Iran or the US?

In April 2014 John Howard surprised an audience in Sydney by saying that war with Iran would be next. He didn’t know then about Syria but his alarming prediction about Iran looks like coming true.

Posted in Politics | 3 Comments

ALISON BROINOWSKI. How long to extradition for Assange?

WikiLeaks watchers had been expecting it for weeks, but when news came on 11 April that Ecuador had revoked Julian Assange’s asylum, a collective shudder went around the extended community. Next day the pictures appeared, and they made it worse. … Continue reading

Posted in World Affairs | 3 Comments

ALISON BROINOWSKI Integrity ,initiative and imposed ignorance

  The US and UK are still fighting the cold war in new ways about which Australians know little.

Posted in Politics | 7 Comments

ALISON BROINOWSKI Beware the Ides of March in Christchurch

  It is better when a terrorist is not shot dead but arrested. So we eventually learn what is his – usually male – motivation, and governments and the courts are then able to respond rationally. But Brenton Tarrant made … Continue reading

Posted in Politics | 1 Comment

ALISON BROINOWSKI. Australian values in free fall.

What Australians value and what they fear are not, apparently, clear to the latest Prime Minister. Scott Morrison’s election campaign, which began at the National Press Club on 11 February, failed to assure voters that his government understands either what … Continue reading

Posted in Politics | 5 Comments

ALISON BROINOWSKI. Most favoured notions just take time.

There are said to be no votes in defence or foreign affairs in Australia. Years of bipartisanship on both, and an Alliance that is unquestionable, have disempowered debate. The time for change may be in 2019.  

Posted in World Affairs | 5 Comments

ALISON BROINOWSKI. The latest hobgoblins.

On the eve of an APEC meeting, with impeccable timing, Australia’s lack of foreign policy independence was once again on display for our Asian neighbours: mimicry of US decisions, militarism abroad, securitised borders, containment of China, and fear of Islam. … Continue reading

Posted in Politics, World Affairs | 2 Comments

ALISON BROINOWSKI. Whose rules? What order?

As baby diplomats we learned always to vote in good company. Countries, we understood, were judged by the company they kept. Not any more. The countries Australia rubs shoulders with now, and the hips we are joined at, make people … Continue reading

Posted in Defence and Security, World Affairs | 6 Comments

ALISON BROINOWSKI. Afghanistan: Set And Forget.

If you know the enemy and know yourself, you need not fear the result of a hundred battles. If you know yourself but not the enemy, for every victory gained you will also suffer a defeat. If you know neither … Continue reading

Posted in World Affairs | 1 Comment

ALISON BROINOWSKI. ‘Truth isn’t truth’

While Australia was transfixed by the events of 21-24 August, troubles for another leader were mounting in Washington. Turnbull lost the Lodge, and Trump has not yet lost the White House, but a common actor in both dramas remains the … Continue reading

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ALISON BROINOWSKI. Many happy returns of al-Qaeda.

On 11 August 2018 the members of what became al-Qaeda met in Peshawar, Pakistan to form the movement which is now 30 years old. With Osama bin Laden’s money, political vision, religious fervour, and capacity as a modern communicator, it … Continue reading

Posted in Defence and Security, World Affairs | 3 Comments