Category Archives: Asia

NATHAN GARDELS. “Huawei to Hell” recalls Toshiba threat. (The World Post 11.5.2019)

The US was able to coerce Japan on trade, but China will be much harder to coerce.   

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CLIVE KESSLER. A Malay game of thrones (East Asia Forum)

As in earlier constitutional struggles in 1983 and 1993, Malaysia’s federal government under Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad is confronting the royal power and claimed prerogatives of the traditional rulers of the federation’s nine sultanate states.

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DUNCAN GRAHAM Hungry for a result in the Indonesian election?

The differences are stark. When Labor lost Bill Shorten quit and said: ‘Now that the contest is over, all of us have a responsibility to respect the result, respect the wishes of the Australian people and to bring our nation … Continue reading

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JOHN McCARTHY. Time to Focus on Foreign Policy for the Sake of Australia’s Future (Asialink).

Australians face a set of decisions in foreign policy arguably more important to us than any national decisions since the Second World War, writes John McCarthy, former ambassador to Washington, Tokyo, Jakarta and New Delhi.  How we navigate them could even … Continue reading

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DAUD BATCHELOR. Sacrificing national interest in Australian Embassy move

In today’s geopolitics, Australia must balance relations with its largest trading partner China and key defence ally, the United States, at a time of spirited jousting. Maintaining good relations with the Association of Southeast Asian Nations also becomes essential with … Continue reading

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JEFF KINGSTON. Filling the post-Heisei void (East Asia Forum)

Emperor Akihito is a tough act to follow. He is known as the people’s emperor because he brought the monarchy closer to the people by sharing the pain of those displaced by disaster and advocating on behalf of the vulnerable … Continue reading

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BOB CARR. Australia could be the big loser in a US-China trade deal, not that Donald Trump seems to care (South China Morning Post)

Australia sticking its neck out for the US on the issue of Chinese telecoms giant Huawei will not stop America from striking a trade deal with China that could result in Australian exports suffering

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ANDREW CHUBB. China’s assertive maritime policy is older than Xi (East Asia Forum)

The toughening of China’s policies in the South and East China Seas is widely regarded as a defining characteristic of Xi Jinping’s foreign policy. But while it is true that the PRC has become more assertive in its maritime disputes … Continue reading

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ANTHONY PUN. A response from the Chinese Community Council of Australia (CCCA)

The Chinese Australian community warmly thanks Prof Bob Carr for speaking out for the Chinese Australians and giving a detailed analysis of China panic over a period of more than 2 years.  Prof Carr’s suggestion of  a community response based … Continue reading

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TIM LINDSEY. Indonesia goes to the polls: rematch or replay? (University of Melbourne, 15 April 2019)

Indonesia goes to the polls on 17 April, with the same presidential candidates as five years ago: the incumbent, Joko Widodo (known as Jokowi), a self-made former furniture exporter and former governor of Jakarta, and Prabowo Subianto, a former general … Continue reading

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DUNCAN GRAHAM. Indonesia – after the count – chaos?

The alphabet of election campaign hyperbole runs from Absurd through Fatuous and Stupid to Zero (as in logic).  Most statements are ephemeral for the nonsense spruikers know little is taken seriously once the losers are trampled by the triumphant. But in Indonesia pledges … Continue reading

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ELAINE PEARSON. China’s Efforts to Curb Australia’s Academic Freedom: What Universities Can Do.

There’s been a vigorous debate of late in Australia about the extent of Chinese government interference in domestic politics. Less has been said about what occurs on our university campuses. Pressure from the Chinese government comes in numerous ways, including … Continue reading

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GEOFF RABY. Wresting China diplomacy back from the securicrats.

In the fading days of the Morrison Government, two important decisions are likely to be overlooked. Both came last week.  One was to establish the National Foundation for Australia-China Relations and the other the appointment of a new Ambassador to … Continue reading

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BOB CARR. Real diplomacy could have avoided China’s coal revenge (Australian Financial Review, 3 April 2019)

The ban on Huawei itself isn’t the problem, but the way that some arms of the government rubbed China’s face in it.

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JOHN MENADUE. The anti- China ‘think tank’ receives farewell largesse from the Coalition

 In this week’s budget the Australian Strategic Policy Institute received an enormous increase in government funding from $3.528m in 2017/18 to $20m in 2018/19.( Budget Papers -3.1.2 Grants ,Tables 39 and 40) .If the grant is for more than one … Continue reading

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ANTHONY PUN. The battle for the Chinese Australian vote.

Important lessons learned in the last state elections in Victoria and NSW point to the ubiquitous use of social media “WeChat” in influencing voters in the Chinese Australian community and the realisation that their votes could be pivotal in changing … Continue reading

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CAMERON DOUGLAS. Thailand’s elections – horse-trading, according to plan

The results of Thailand’s first post-coup elections went well for the military junta, following their script for keeping control of  government in the name, and name only, of democracy.

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MAX HAYTON. Jacinda Ardern leads a nation in grief.

Under a remarkable young woman New Zealand is discovering deep resources of kindness and compassion. In the aftermath of the Christchurch massacre people touched by the tragedy built mountains of flowers and in their thousands attended rallies in support of … Continue reading

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MACK WILLIAMS : The Hanoi Summit and aftermath – a South Korean perspective

Special Advisor to President Moon assesses the Hanoi Summit as not a failure but a setback. China and the ROK continue to agree the need for a US:DPRK agreed roadmap to move past the present stalemate towards the longer term … Continue reading

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GWYNNE DYER. New Zealand vs. Australia: Terrorism and the difference (Japan Times 19.03.19)

LONDON – Extreme right-wing terrorism, mostly of the “white nationalist” variety, is becoming as big a problem as Islamist terrorism in many places. That’s certainly the case in the United States, where the U.S. Government Accounting Office calculated last year … Continue reading

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RAMESH THAKUR.  New Zealand’s Loss of Innocence (Project Syndicate, 17 March 2019)

Like the assassination of Olof Palme in Sweden in 1986, the 9/11 attacks in the US, and the murderous rampage of Anders Breivik in Norway in 2011, March 15 will mark the day New Zealand lost its innocence and entered … Continue reading

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GARETH EVANS. Asian Australians: Breaking the Bamboo Ceiling (2019 Asialink Sir Edward ‘Weary’ Dunlop Lecture, Sydney, 13 March 2019)

The award of this year’s Weary Dunlop Asialink medal to one of our most distinguished Asian-Australians seems to me an opportune moment to revisit the question of whether we as a nation are making the most – in terms of … Continue reading

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JOCELYN CHEY. Cyber-security need not tear countries apart

Telecommunications company Huawei legal action against the US Government’s ban on their involvement in 5G roll-out is a counter attack on claims that their involvement would impact national security.  Exaggerated fears about cyber threat are part of a US campaign … Continue reading

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CAVAN HOGUE. What does Kim Jong Un really want?

There has been much speculation about what Kim wants and what happened at the summit. When dealing with characters like Trump and Bolton anything is possible but Kim is much more focussed and any consideration of current events should never … Continue reading

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JOHN MENADUE. Some Coalition legacies that a new government must confront

There are several major issues that dominate public life today and require resolution. Those issues are –the growing existential  threat of climate change, the dire consequences following the Iraq invasion, tax cuts during the mining boom that result in continuing … Continue reading

Posted in Asia, Defence/Security, Economy, Environment and climate, International Affairs, NBN, Refugees, Immigration | 7 Comments

EMANUEL PASTREICH. Fractured governance fractures the Hanoi summit (Korean Times, 3 March 2019)

The sudden cancellation of the joint statement on February 28 at the end of the Trump-Kim Summit in Hanoi, Vietnam, was one of the most complex and contradictory historical events in my memory. Of course the adlib briefing by Donald … Continue reading

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JAMES LAURENCESON. Australia’s China debate.

Australia’s China debate is frequently cast in terms of ‘doves’ versus ‘hawks’, with the former also receiving the tag of being ‘pro-China’ and the latter designated ‘anti-China’. In fact, the common ground between these two groups is expansive.

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RICHARD BROINOWSKI. Ambiguity in Hanoi

The Trump-Kim summit began and  ended in Hanoi on 28 February with Donald Trump peremptorily terminating his discussions with Kim Jong-un. According to media reports, Trump claims Kim demanded the lifting of all US-imposed sanctions in exchange for closing the … Continue reading

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RAMESH THAKUR. Trump-Kim summitry a work in progress (Japan Times, 1 March 2019)

CANBERRA – The cameras are gone, the lights have dimmed, the scribes have filed their reports and returned home and Hanoi has faded from host of a potentially life-and-death summit to being merely the capital of a booming Southeast Asian … Continue reading

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RAMESH THAKUR-What’s next in India and Pakistan flareup ( Interview on NPR)

NPR’s Steve Inskeep speaks with Ramesh Thakur of the Centre for Nuclear Non-Proliferation and Disarmament at the Australian National University about the latest conflict between India and Pakistan.

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