This blogger has over the last 4-10 years pointed out over and over that the doubt of our allies, not JUST over the DIRECTION of our national security policy, but the RESOLVE behind it was eroding our (eventually commercially successful) position in the world.
PRIMARY among the objective proofs regarding Australia’s position in this has been THIS KIND OF EVIDENCE:
Overall, the US – a strategic ally and an important economic and trading partner – and China – our largest trading partner and source of demand for key Australian sectors – are now deadlocked in Australians’ eyes in terms of the importance of the relationship.
The demographics are striking, too, with more than half of those surveyed under 45 years believing China is more important and more than half of those over 45 years leaning towards the US as more important.
Part of the story is a more receptive opinion of China, and the other part is a cooling of views towards the US.
Australia must choose between United States and China: U.S. Army official
A senior U.S. soldier said on Thursday Australia must choose between a stronger U.S. alliance or closer ties with China, and urged Canberra to take a tougher stance against Chinese claims in the South China Sea.
The Pentagon, however, disputed the statement by U.S. Army Assistant Chief of Staff Colonel Tom Hanson, saying it did not represent the position of the U.S. government.
“I think the Australians need to make a choice … it’s very difficult to walk this fine line between balancing the alliance with the United States and the economic engagement with China,” Hanson said on Australian Broadcasting Corp. Radio.
“There’s going to have to be a decision as to which one is more of a vital national interest for Australia,” he said. Hanson said the comments reflected his personal view and were not necessarily that of the U.S. government.
A Tilt Toward China? Australia Reconsiders Its American Ties
In August 2012, Australian professor Hugh White released The China Choice: Why America Should Share Power. White argues that America—unchallenged as the preeminent power in Asia since the Second World War—now has three basic options in the face of growing Chinese power: contest leadership in Asia, voluntarily cede primacy, or establish a regional concert of great powers. Historically, the foundations of American primacy have been built on unparalleled economic size and strength. For White, these foundations are crumbling, and future peace and stability depend on Washington being prepared to step back and accept China as its strategic equal in Asia.
The Australian Strategic Policy Institute
Hartcher describes the anger vented by the Chinese side during the forum as initially directed towards the Australian statements criticising
the PRC’s unilateral announcement of an air-defence identification zone (ADIZ) over the East China Sea. However, the pique was then extended to the apparent cause of this ‘unwarranted intrusion’ into China’s affairs—Australia’s close alliance with the United States. According to Hartcher, reporting under Chatham House rules, the Chinese side called into question the robustness of the Australia-US relationship, suggesting that this relationship was simply ‘a product of the Cold War’, and that today this entente negatively affects China’s ‘core interests, its sovereignty and its territorial interests’. Australia should therefore, by implication, recognise on which side its bread is buttered and act responsibly.
When Australian foreign minister Julie Bishop arrived in Beijing in early December for the first China-Australia diplomatic and strategic dialogue, while the language was not quite as strong, she still copped more of the ‘disloyal vassal’ rhetoric. Unsmiling PRC foreign minister Wang Yi expressed China’s hope
that ‘the Australian side can properly handle sensitive issues from a strategic and long-term perspective,’ so as to ‘increase mutual trust and expand substantial cooperation’ in order to ‘ensure the right direction of the China-Australia strategic partnership’. And it wasn’t just the Communist Party of China which thought that Australia had jeopardised trust—it was the ‘entire Chinese society and the general public
’. Xinhua even flew a balloon
claiming that Julie Bishop had said that ‘China is the most important economic and strategic partner of Australia’.
Marrickville Group White Paper
Questioning the value of the Australia/US alliance-Submission to the 2015 Defence White Paper
- The US alliance is at the core of Australia’s defence strategy.
- It has led Australia into multiple wars of questionable benefit.
- The invasion of Iraq in 2003 is an example.
- An enlightened strategic policy would keep us out of unnecessary conflicts.
- The US alliance compromises Australia’s independence
- It raises regional tensions
- It is not in Australia’s best interests.
These are just a few items, found in a minute, but comprising the gist of the FACTS of our relationship with Australia as it has evolved since 9/11/2001. This kind of discussion has grown among Australians, PUBLICLY. WaPo is either incompetent, ignorant of these facts (same thing) or willfully ‘forgetting’ them for … name your reason.
This is not 1942, and the FACT is they are not a staunch ally. They wonder aloud, in their Parliament, in their executive, where the future lies because WE have shown lack of resolve.
They wonder aloud, in their Parliament, in their executive, where the future lies because China is their largest import export partner (what do we do with them?)
They wonder aloud, in their Parliament, in their executive, where the future lies because China’s aggressive military ventures now put relentless pressure on a population which is a tiny fraction of China’s.
President Trump, was, in fact, addressing a potentially very wobbly situation.
The entire framework for the rest of WaPo article is based on an assumption not factually true.
This was not a political column, this was not an editorial, it was delivered as objective fact.
It is not.