Category Archives: International Affairs

FLAVIA BELLIENI ZIMMERMANN. Lula’s Interview in the Light of the Amazon Fires (Australian Outlook, 3 Sep 2019)

Brazil’s far-right president Jair Bolsonaro made international headlines for all the wrong reasons. He publicly denied reports released by Brazil’s Space Agency (INPE), which indicated a steady rise in the Amazon’s deforestation, and then subsequently sacked the institute’s director Professor … Continue reading

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RYAN MANUEL. The Hong Kong Government is as Leaderless as the Protesters (Foreign Policy, 5 September 2019)

A distant Beijing and a shifting protest movement make it hard to sit down at the bargaining table. Bruce Lee didn’t like conventional fighting styles, finding them too rigid. Instead, like jazz musicians with their scales, he took his many … Continue reading

Posted in Asia, International Affairs | 4 Comments

BEN EHRENREICH. The End of the Frontier Myth. – America can no longer run from its past (The Guardian 31-7-19)

The idea of the frontier in US history has been one of endless promise, but the reality has involved violence, even genocide. As this powerful study argues, its latest incarnation is Trump’s wall.

Posted in International Affairs | 4 Comments

RICHARD BUTLER. The Termination of a Terminator: John Bolton

The departure of John Bolton from the post of national security advisor to Trump removes from a crucial position a person whose belief in the US waging war on what he identified as its enemies was boundless. His recommendation for … Continue reading

Posted in International Affairs, Politics | 3 Comments

COLIN BROWN. The Indonesia-Australia Closer Economic Partnership Agreement (IA-CEPA): A Game Changer? (Australian Outlook, 5 Sep 2019)

Despite their geographical proximity, Australia and Indonesia are minor trading partners. In 2018, Australian merchandise exports to Indonesia were valued at just $6,823 million, and imports from Indonesia $4,996 million. Trade in services was smaller still, as the exports to … Continue reading

Posted in Asia, Economy, International Affairs | Leave a comment

RAGHURAM G. RAJAN. The True Toll of the Trade War (Project Syndicate, 5 Sep 2019)

Another day, another attack on trade. Why is it that every dispute – whether over intellectual property (IP), immigration, environmental damage, or war reparations – now produces new threats to trade? 

Posted in Economy, International Affairs | 1 Comment

YVES TIBERGHIEN. Belt and Road Summit in Hong Kong: Toward a BRI 2.0? (Australian Outlook, 5 Sep 2019)

From 11 to 12 September 2019, the fourth Edition of the Hong Kong Belt and Road Summit is due to take place at the Wanchai Convention Center. The Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) is now in its sixth year since … Continue reading

Posted in Asia, Infrastructure | Leave a comment

HAIQING YU. Chinese students in Australia and our responsibility

The discourse on China’s influence in Australia has recently shifted its focus to Chinese students on Australian university campuses. They are seen as pro-Chinese Communist Party nationalists who sing the Chinese national anthem and shout profane abuse at pro-Hong Kong-protest … Continue reading

Posted in Asia, Education | 3 Comments

ANDREW FARRAN. Brexit – a reconfiguration of British politics

It is not new news that British politics are fragmenting. What we can’t be sure about is how the political lines may permanently be redrawn. How might the two main drivers, Brexit and the next General Election (if and when … Continue reading

Posted in International Affairs, Politics | 1 Comment

PEPE ESCOBAR. Welcome to the Indo-Russia maritime Silk Road (Asia Times, 5 Sep 2019)

There’s no way to follow the complex inner workings of the Eurasia integration process without considering what takes place annually at the Eastern Economic Forumin Vladivostok.

Posted in Asia, International Affairs | 2 Comments

GEOFF RABY. The end of Hong Kong as we know it (AFR 6 Sep 2019)

Tragically, the turmoil in Hong Kong can only end badly.  No good outcomes are available to the participants.  Whatever happens, Hong Kong will never be the same again.  2046, the last year of the 50-year transition, will begin once the … Continue reading

Posted in Asia, International Affairs | 3 Comments

ROBERT FISK. The Crazed, Rogue Leader is in Washington Not Tehran (Counterpunch 2.9.2019)

History in the Middle East is unkind to us westerners. Just when we thought we were the good guys and the Iranians were the bad guys, here comes the ghostly, hopeless possibility of a Trump-Rouhani summit to remind us that … Continue reading

Posted in International Affairs | 2 Comments

IVAN LEVINGSTON, DAVID WAINER. The Most Undiplomatic of Diplomats Is Trump’s Man in Middle East (Bloomberg 30-8-19)

David Friedman has upended American policy in the unstable region.

Posted in International Affairs, Religion and Faith | 1 Comment

RAMESH THAKUR. Congress’s choice: Does it want to go for a Gandhi-mukt Congress or a Congress-mukt Bharat? (Times of India 31.8.2019)

Posted in Asia | 1 Comment

ANDREW SHENG, XIAO GENG. Hong Kong’s Real Problem Is Inequality (Project Syndicate 29-8-19)

A powerful, but oft-ignored factor underlying the frustrations of Hong Kong’s people is inequality. And, contrary to the prevailing pro-democracy narrative, the failure of Hong Kong’s autonomous government to address the problem stems from the electoral politics to which the … Continue reading

Posted in Asia, International Affairs | 5 Comments

TESS NEWTON CAIN. Australia shows up in Tuvalu and trips over (East Asia Forum 30-8-19)

On 13-16 August 2019 the leaders of the Pacific Islands Forum held their 50th meeting. The theme, as chosen by their host and current chair Tuvaluan Prime Minister Enele Sopoaga, was ‘Securing our Future in the Pacific’. The leaders’ meeting … Continue reading

Posted in International Affairs | 1 Comment

SCOTT BURCHILL. Resuscitating Sinophobia in Australia.

Sinophobia has a long history in the West, especially in Washington. It has always contained xenophobia, racism and Cold War animus in roughly equal parts. In Washington’s China, James Peck documents how since the 1950s, the national security establishment in … Continue reading

Posted in Asia, International Affairs | 1 Comment

MINXIN PEI – An interview on China and Hong Kong (Project Syndicate 26-8-2019)

Many Chinese are deeply conflicted:they may not like the CPC, but they are proud of their country and resent outside criticisms.

Posted in Asia, International Affairs | 2 Comments

RAMESH THAKUR. Urgent appeal to save nuclear agreements (Japan Times 25-8-19)

HIROSHIMA – The Hiroshima Round Table held its seventh annual meeting last Wednesday and Thursday. For the first time, in recognition of the uniquely dangerous international security environment since the dawn of the atomic age in this beautiful city, the … Continue reading

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QUENTIN DEMPSTER. New nuclear arms race brings higher risk of global catastrophe

The world is at its highest risk of a global catastrophe in decades, thanks to an unpredictable resumption in the nuclear arms race. Veteran defence and security analyst Brian Toohey has warned that talk of war between the West, and … Continue reading

Posted in Defence/Security, International Affairs | 2 Comments

HÉCTOR ABAD FACIOLINCE. Gifts of Quebradona

The Colombian wilderness has been protected from mining by the 50 years civil war with the FARC guerrillas. No investor was prepared to take the risk of its infostructure being blown up and its personnel assassinated. Now that the civil … Continue reading

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ANDREW FARRAN. Brexit – Put not thy trust in constitutional convention

Had the English Settlement of 1688 been followed with a written Constitution Britain might not be in the pickle it is today. Then the tussle between King and Parliament had resulted in civil war. While the Royal Prerogative Powers have … Continue reading

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ARTYOM LUKIN. China and Russia’s sky-high strategy (East Asia Forum 29-8-19)

On 23 July 2019, Russian and Chinese warplanes — long-range nuclear-capable bombers accompanied by fighter jets and surveillance aircraft — conducted a ‘joint patrol’ over the East China Sea and the Sea of Japan. This marked the first ever joint … Continue reading

Posted in Asia, International Affairs | 3 Comments

CATHY WILCOX. Standing by our trusted ally. (SMH 23.8.2019)

  In the face of destabilising provocation.

Posted in International Affairs | 3 Comments

TOM EMBURY-DENNIS. Trump promotes claim Jewish Israelis love him like he is ‘King of Israel and second coming of God’ (Independent 22-8-19)

Outburst comes less than 24 hours after president used antisemitic trope about Jewish ‘loyalty’

Posted in International Affairs | Comments Off on TOM EMBURY-DENNIS. Trump promotes claim Jewish Israelis love him like he is ‘King of Israel and second coming of God’ (Independent 22-8-19)

GEORGE MICKHAIL. There is no freedom in a society, if there is no public order!

The French Police’s brutal force against the Gilets Jaunes (Yellow Vests) protesters since November 2018 did not attract the same ‘international’ media outrage as that directed at the Hong Kong SAR police force despite being a lot less violent than … Continue reading

Posted in International Affairs | 7 Comments

DENNIS ARGALL. Australia’s strategic folly: lessons from Barbara Tuchman.

We arein a situation where decisions that seem simple can commit Australia to fundamental errors of strategic judgement. The decision to send a ship and a plane and headquarters staff to a new venture with the United States in the … Continue reading

Posted in Defence/Security, International Affairs | 3 Comments

ALI KAZAK. On the Middle East, Tim Fischer was a man of courage and integrity.

Tim Fischer belongs to a unique generation of politicians we are farewelling fast; a generation such as Gough Whitlam, Malcolm Fraser and Bob Hawke. A generation which whether you agreed with their ideology or not you could not but respect.

Posted in International Affairs, Tributes | 3 Comments

ILAN PAPPE. Israel’s latest attempt to erase Palestine (The Electronic Intifada 25-7-19)

The attempt to suppress official documentation of the ethnic cleansing of Palestinians in 1948 is not new.

Posted in Defence/Security, International Affairs | 1 Comment

NATASHA STOTT DESPOJA. Celebrating Women Humanitarians

On 19th  August, World Humanitarian Day, events around the world paid tribute to the women who serve on the frontline of humanitarian responses to disasters. They are often the first to respond and the last to leave, and yet their … Continue reading

Posted in Human Rights, International Affairs | 1 Comment