Saturday 22 Sep 2018 | 11:43 | SYDNEY
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Australia in the World

Plibersek's (and Labor's) journey to the centre

It is not so long ago that the idea of a left-wing Labor woman as the Foreign Minister of Australia would have caused deep consternation, if not panic, in the foreign policy establishment and in the halls of power of key allies. But if, against the odds, the Labor Party wins the 2 July Federal

How the world sees Australia's election (part 2)

A couple weeks have passed since my last update on how overseas media is covering the Australian election. No real big surprises so far, but bellow are some excellent reflections on how the election relates to Brexit, the US election, China's economic rise and analysis of some battleground seats.

Foreign policy fault lines

It’s trite but true to say that all politics is local. Foreign policy rarely gets a look in at election time in Australia. Moreover, the conventional view is that the divisions between the two major parties on foreign policy questions are narrow enough to make little difference at the ballot box

Leaders' debate: Why the world did not intrude

Admittedly, it is crashingly boring for policy analysts to complain that their pet issue gets too little attention from our political leaders. But last night's leaders' debate was notable for the fact that the outside world barely intruded into the discussion. Apart from a brief segue on border

Is Trump sparking an election debate about the alliance?

Fairfax's Daniel Flitton today identifies four important areas of foreign policy difference between Labor and the Coalition: the East Timor boundary dispute, nuclear abolition, freedom-of-navigation exercises in the South China Sea, and Israel-Palestine. I  wonder if we saw a fifth factor open

Greens call for foreign policy debate

The leader of the Australian Greens Senator Richard Di Natale argues it's time to review the Australian US alliance and believes climate change is the biggest threat to national security. As the second week of the Federal election campaign rolls on,  Di Natale sought to trigger debate on the merits

Why we won't hear much about trade in this campaign

In the United States, international trade is a hot-button political issue. Australia, on the other hand, is likely to get through the long election campaign with hardly a mention of tariffs and industry protection. Why the difference? Donald Trump’s policy positions may be a kaleidoscope of

How the world sees Australia's election (part 1)

Well, it seems the initial foreign media coverage of the Australian election has picked up on the country's general feeling: the campaign is going to be long, big on rhetoric and so far has contained nothing really new. First, The Wall Street Journal put the election announcement in the context of

Let's hope the next PM stays the distance

In the midst of this crowded political season, dominated naturally by the US presidential election and Brexit referendum in Britain, the international bandwidth left available for the Australian election will surely be taken up with one simple question: will this vote end the 'Here Today, Gone

In 100 words: The most important issue of this campaign

We kick off our election coverage with short contributions from Lowy Institute experts on what they regard as the most important international policy issue of this campaign. Lowy Institute Deputy Director Anthony Bubalo: Let me indulge a conceit and say that Australia’s policy in the Middle

Australian aid tumbled in 2015

With the first Turnbull Government budget this week, it is important to take stock of the impact the Coalition government has had to date on Australia's aid program.  Perhaps the largest foreign policy legacy of the Abbott Government has been the impact it had upon Australian aid.

Malcolm Turnbull's foreign policy: The first six months

By Melissa Conley Tyler, national executive director at the Australian Institute of International Affairs and Genevieve Lai, an intern at the AIIA's national office. Right now one of the country's favourite parlour games is to bemoan Malcolm Turnbull's freakish similarity to Tony Abbott.

Embassies can shape policy

In conjunction with this week's launch of the Lowy Institute's Global Diplomacy Index, we present a series of pieces on the role and continued relevance of embassies. Embassies — and their derivatives, high commissions and consulates — are significant instruments of government, and as for

It's time we talked about war with China

    Whether Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull intended it or not, his new Defence White Paper has been widely interpreted as sending a clear message that Australia is willing to join our allies in using armed force if necessary to defend the 'rules based global order' from China's

Syria: The gift that keeps on giving

The official announcement today that the government would refuse a US request for additional assets to be deployed in the Middle East against Islamic State came as little surprise. These types of requests rarely come out of the blue, and it is likely that Washington was aware of what Canberra’s