‘Trump win opportunity to re-assess defence policies’

2357-pine-gap-gates-2-okLETTER TO THE EDITOR

 

Sir – US President-elect, Donald Trump, has served notice of a US withdrawal from a “protective” military role for allies in South East Asia and the Pacific.

 

He has urged these allies to take responsibility for their own defences. He has claimed that he intends to pull American military forces back from its outposts in over 90 countries.

 

Trump’s election has removed a major plank underlying the defence strategies of successive Australian governments, which have consistently relied on the US as our fundamental protector.

 

They have led Australia into US-initiated wars which have caused the unnecessary deaths and suffering of millions of civilians, often in countries which have posed no threat to us.

 

These defence strategies; the structure of the ADF; spending on military infrastructure; acceptance of US military bases on Australian soil, and the integration of Australia’s ADF with the US military forces, have all been driven by a belief that our alliance with the US and the presumed merits of the ANZUS Treaty were the best option for Australia’s security.

 

Mr Trump’s foreign and defence policies pull the rug from under the feet of this belief bur Australia is more than capable of standing on its own feet and defending itself.

 

“A new, independent approach to defence would also provide a chance to establish peaceful and mutually beneficial relationships with our neighbours and an opportunity for Australia to be a stronger, independent voice for peace in the world.

 

We urge the Australian Government to now draw together the best military, defence and foreign policy experts to develop a comprehensive and independent Australian defence policy which includes military, civil and industry involvement.

 

Nick Deane  

Independent and Peaceful Australia Network which organised a recent anti Pine Gap conference in Alice Springs (photo at top).

 

 

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5 Comments (starting with the most recent)

NB: If you want to reply to a previous comment, start your comment with this notation: @n where n is the number of the comment you want to reply to.
  1. James Cleary
    Posted November 23, 2016 at 2:30 pm

    No worry about China ever attacking Australia. The way you are selling it off they will own it all soon.

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  2. John Bell
    Posted November 15, 2016 at 8:52 pm

    I am surprised it has taken this long for a US government to start talking withdrawal from the Pax America role the Yanks have played since WW 2.
    Even though the Left will never admit it, American presence in countless countries over the past 70 years through massive aid programs and an overt protective presence has kept a relative balance of global security and safety that no other superpower could have come close to emulating.
    Australia has benefited enormously from the presence of a western superpower with strong cultural links between two democracies.
    I wonder how the Left are now going to address the replacement of this protective presence with Australia’s next superpower Big Brother – China.
    China – no democracy, no human rights, no qualms about annexing the Land Down Under’s assets by whatever it takes.
    Welcome to our Brave New World.

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  3. Hal Duell
    Posted November 14, 2016 at 3:55 am

    Any wishful thinking that Australia’s foreign / defence policies will change away from our current alignment with those of the US has just been dealt a body blow with the news of the imminent closure of Nauru and Manus Island.
    We have just learned that the refugees who have been kept in limbo in those two offshore detention centres will now be resettled in the US.
    Nothing not to like there, but to think that the US will help us close the running sore of those centres without a quid pro quo is, in my opinion, simply wrong.
    And the quid pro quo? We stay on-song with the current “tilt to Asia” that includes the wish to “contain” China.
    And perhaps a promise to house more US military here, especially if President Duterte in the Philippines carries through on his threat to ask the US forces to leave his country.
    Of course that request to vacate is still in the dialogue phase. Do not be surprised if a colour revolution on the streets of Manila hits our news soon.

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  4. Fred the Philistine
    Posted November 13, 2016 at 9:57 am

    America needs to accept that countries like India, Russia and China are the new superpowers.
    Australia needs to distance themselves from America and stand on its own two feet.
    As for China being a threat, why would they be for the are buying large parts of Australia, realestate, seaports, cattle stations ect.

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  5. Hal Duell
    Posted November 12, 2016 at 10:21 am

    In 2014, the last year of figures I am able to find on DFAT’s website, Australia exported $98,210 million worth of commodities to China, our largest trading partner.
    In the same year, we exported $50,247 million to Japan and $18,510 million to the USA, our next two largest trading partners.
    Any yet in foreign affairs we align ourselves with the US and Japan against China. We partake in naval exercises in the South China Sea and the Malacca Straits whose stated intention is to send a “warning” of possible “containment” to China.
    We repeat the Yankee mantra that China is a threat to world order. And this while our national economy is dependant on export dollars.
    Are we mad? Or simply ill-informed and shortsighted?
    Yes, we need a rethink, and quickly.

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