Category Archives: International Affairs

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 FITZGERALD. Reply to Bob Carr

Writing on this blog on 13 May, Bob Carr took me to task for not saying and not writing a good many things, particularly about Chinese Australians. This debating technique is new to me. As a rule, debaters rebut what … Continue reading

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MACK WILLIAMS . North Korea : Any movement?

North Korea has been squeezed out of the media headlines in the months since the Hanoi Summit between President Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un failed to achieve a breakthrough in February. This has been a factor both of … Continue reading

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RAMESH THAKUR. Sanctions – a follow-up

Several people have written seeking clarification and explanation of some of my arguments in my previous article on sanctions, published here on Friday 10 May. The academic literature on the success and effectiveness of sanctions is in something of a … Continue reading

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RICHARD BUTLER Iran: Another US War by Choice

The character and political needs of President Trump and the obsessions of John Bolton are coalescing towards US action directed at regime change in Iran. The reasons given for the current increase in US military deployments in the Persian Gulf … Continue reading

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THOMAS FRIEDMAN. Has Our Luck Run Out? (New York Times)

Most crucial problems today are global in nature and can be dealt with only by a global coalition.

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BOB CARR. The China panic and John Fitzgerald.

In a contribution to Pearls and Irritations published on April 16 I took up a point made by Gareth Evans who argued in March that “in Australia a new form of Sinophobia is emerging.” He said this was one of … Continue reading

Posted in International Affairs, Politics | 3 Comments

PHILIP GIRALDI. Pompeo Lies, Cheats and Steals (But He’s Still a Good Christian) (American Herald Tribune 4.5.2019)

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo recently recounted to an audience at Texas A&M University that when he was head of the Central Intelligence Agency he was responsible for “lying, cheating and stealing” to benefit the United States. “Like we had … Continue reading

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WANNING SUN. Another Non-Story on China – An Example of Selective Framing

An ABC news story, ‘Chinese media mocks Australia and Prime Minister in WeChat posts’, fails to mention a few key points, and as a result, is potentially misleading, even confusing.  

Posted in International Affairs, Media, Politics | 2 Comments

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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ANDREW EDGECLIFFE-JOHNSON, LINDSAY FORTADO, JAMES FONTANELLA-KHAN. Elite gathering reveals anxiety over growing inequality. Financial Times 2.5.2019)

“Throughout centuries what we’ve seen when the masses think the elites have too much, one of two things happens: legislation to redistribute the wealth . . . or revolution to redistribute poverty. Those are the two choices historically and debating it back and forth, … Continue reading

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STEPHEN M WALT. America Isn’t as Powerful as It Thinks It Is (Foreign Policy)

The era of unilateralism is over—and Washington is the last to realize it.

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VACY VLAZNA. The ABC is USA/Israel’s mouthpiece on Gaza

  The ABC yet again, obediently, is cranking out Israeli propaganda on Sunday’s Israeli assault on the besieged Palestinians in Gaza parroting that Israeli is merely protecting its citizens against Hamas ‘militants’- rather than the truth that Hamas resistance is protecting … Continue reading

Posted in International Affairs, Politics | 9 Comments

CHRIS TURNEY. UK becomes first country to declare a ‘climate emergency’. Why not Australia?

Last Wednesday night a bipartisan UK Parliament passed an extraordinary measure: a national declaration of an Environment and Climate Emergency. The UK is the first national government to declare such an emergency. The decision marks a renewed sense of urgency … Continue reading

Posted in Environment and climate, International Affairs | 2 Comments

JOHN FITZGERALD. In response to Bob Carr on China.

Professor Bob Carr singled me and a few others out for criticism on the Menadue blog. Fair cop. Along the way however he made demonstrably false claims about my stance on China and Chinese Australians which have since been reproduced … Continue reading

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JOHN DUGARD. Why aren’t Europeans calling Israel an apartheid state? (Al Jazeera, 18.04.19)

Israel’s apartheid is not that different from the one South Africa used to have, both in terms of policy and brutality.

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ANTHONY PUN. Australia at the crossroads of economic survival.

Recent articles in the South China Morning Post and Pearls and Irritations are wake-up calls for Australians in the pilot seat for the next five years driving Australian foreign relations and trade.  Some pundits are pessimistic about a quick turn-around … Continue reading

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DAVID WROE AND DANA McCAULEY. Sack ‘nutter’ spy chiefs to fix relations with Beijing, Paul Keating urges (SMH 6.5.2019)

Former prime minister Paul Keating has launched an extraordinary attack on Australia’s spy chiefs, calling them “nutters” and urging Bill Shorten to sack them to improve relations with China if he wins the election.  

Posted in Defence/Security, International Affairs, Politics | 2 Comments

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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MARJORIE COHN. Human rights and global wrongs in Venezuela,Cuba and Nicaragua.

Under the guise of protecting human rights, the Trump administration is illegally meddling in three countries it has dubbed the “troika of tyranny” — Venezuela, Cuba and Nicaragua. National Security Adviser John Bolton claimed, “Miami is home to countless Americans, who fled … Continue reading

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AMY ZEGART AND MICHAEL MORELL. Spies, Lies, and Algorithms. Why U.S. Intelligence Agencies Must Adapt or Fail. (Foreign Affairs 20.4.2019)

For U.S. intelligence agencies, the twenty-first century began with a shock, when 19 al Qaeda operatives hijacked four planes and perpetrated the deadliest attack ever on U.S. soil. In the wake of the attack, the intelligence community mobilized with one … Continue reading

Posted in Defence/Security, International Affairs | 3 Comments

DUNCAN GRAHAM Why didn’t Widodo do better?

Slowly, carefully, nervously, Indonesia is retreating from the threat of a bloody revolution following the 17 April election.

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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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VACY VLAZNA. The Sarafand Massacre and Anzac Cover-up, Part 2

Cover-ups are a reprehensible part and parcel of military history and testimonies collected on Australian Military History of the Early  20th Century: Desert Column siteare tainted with fundamental lies and racist justifications that have become the prototype for subsequent historical … Continue reading

Posted in Defence/Security, International Affairs | 5 Comments

AVI SHLAIM. Benjamin Netanyahu and the death of the Zionist dream.

Israel’s founding fathers are turning in their graves.

Posted in International Affairs | 2 Comments

CAVAN HOGUE. The panda versus the grizzly bear.

Our actions and public statements on Huawei and other Chinese investments clearly identify China as a potential threat which logically makes it an enemy. We do not apply the same standards to other countries which have the same technical capability. … Continue reading

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SOPHIE HARDEFELDT. Political parties’ international trade policies

For the last 20 years the global trade and investment regime has been used to institutionalise neoliberalism, establishing international rules and norms through the World Trade Organisation (WTO) and bilateral trade and investment agreements that increase the power of global … Continue reading

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VACY VLAZNA. The Sarafand Massacre and Anzac Cover-up, Part 1

In the early winter of 1918, the wheat, barley and sesame fields of Sarafand al-Kharab lay fallow. Oranges, figs, almonds and olives had been harvested, the summer honey stored. At night the goats and sheep were  brought into the warmth … Continue reading

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