Scott Morrison has quickly put flesh on his Pacific step-up strategy. With the US, Japan, New Zealand and now France supportive, the Prime Minister has assembled an impressive coalition of democracies that may soon include Britain. Morrison knows that effective co-operation between Australia and the other Pacific powers will make it more difficult for China to entrench itself in our backyard and exploit the economic vulnerabilities of small Pacific island states. Read more
Cold War 2.0 is heating up as Washington continues to push back against predatory Chinese behaviour widely perceived in the US as an existential threat to the country’s technological pre-eminence and national security.
In a devastating blow to Huawei likened to a digital missile salvo, the Trump administration last month effectively barred the Chinese leviathan from access to the US telecommunications system and difficult-to-replace technology. Read more
One of the smartest moves Bill Shorten made when he became Opposition Leader was to make Labor a small target on national security by endorsing most of the Coalition’s national security initiatives. This small-target approach neutralised a traditional Coalition strength while shoring up Labor’s security credentials, which had been weakened by the Rudd-Gillard government’s policy disarray on asylum-seekers and perceived softness on border protection.
Will they or won’t they? The gyrations of Theresa May’s discombobulated government have dominated the headlines as British parliamentarians agonise over whether to leave the EU or remain. But the same question also is being asked of trade negotiations between the US and China as the two countries inch their way towards a deal that many believe will determine the trajectory of the most important relationship in the world.
Alan Dupont debating Bob Carr on China at the Sydney Institute on 6 February. Read more
Donald Trump’s apparent belief that his intelligence community is conspiring against him is one of the most worrying aspects of his mercurial presidency. In last week’s Twitter storm against the Worldwide Threat Assessment presented by his intelligence chiefs to a congressional committee, the US President took issue with several of their key judgments, Read more
The West is slowly losing the contest for pre-eminence in the emerging international order. Brexit is just one manifestation of the crisis of confidence enveloping liberal democracies beset by a rising tide of dissent, self-doubt, identity politics and a loss of trust in the foundational institutions of the post-World War II order. Read more
A Foreign Affair discussion focusses on the British and Brexit, Putin’s alliances and his visit to Serbia, China’s space race and what this means to globally and recent attacks by the Taliban in Afghanistan and what this means for peace talks as well as ISIS attacks in Syria against US marines. Read more
Welcome to the tech wars. Despite her release on bail, the arrest of senior Huawei executive Meng Wanzhou has ratcheted up simmering tensions between China and the US in a global contest for technological supremacy between the leaders of competing and increasingly incompatible systems of governance. This quest for information dominance is a driver of global cyber conflict, a shadowy undeclared war that is intensifying and becoming a serious security concern for Australia. Read more