Australia

Economic diplomacy: No free lunches for national security
Economic diplomacy: No free lunches for national security
Phones or thrones Here’s an interesting context for considering whether the Australian government struck the right balance in development aid last year by spending more money…
There must be a better way: Australia’s diplomatic appointments
There must be a better way: Australia’s diplomatic appointments
It’s strange that it takes controversy around a sub-national trade envoy to drive public scrutiny of Australia’s diplomatic appointments. While former politicians and advisers…
PNG’s troubled election should be a wake-up call for Australia
PNG’s troubled election should be a wake-up call for Australia
It has been a difficult election period for Papua New Guinea. Outbreaks of violence in the nation’s capital Port Moresby and other parts of the country have disrupted voting and…
US abortion bans unleash state-sanctioned violence against women
US abortion bans unleash state-sanctioned violence against women
The US Supreme Court’s decision to overturn Roe vs Wade has unleashed a frenzy of misogynistic lawmaking, with abortion bans now enacted or soon to be enacted in more than half US…
Can we please have a real debate on nuclear submarines?
Can we please have a real debate on nuclear submarines?
So it’s to be full speed ahead with nuclear-propelled submarines then? This is a momentous policy decision, but it looks like it will be taken with no real debate, despite the…
If you had 30 minutes with the PM, what would you ask?
If you had 30 minutes with the PM, what would you ask?
“Right. So I’m going to pretend that you are the recently voted upon Prime Minister?” Exactly, I reply, smiling across the screen to Dorcas Makgato, High Commissioner for…
Economic diplomacy: The Pacific reset needs real commercial investment
Economic diplomacy: The Pacific reset needs real commercial investment
Betting on bula Pacific relations may have been an expected conflict zone at the last federal election but once in office the new Albanese government has doubled down on a big…
Australia-China relations: Understanding how we arrived at this point
Australia-China relations: Understanding how we arrived at this point
Australia’s China debate clearly cannot live with history alone, yet it also cannot live without it. This is one of the conclusions reached in my forthcoming book, Australia’s…
Semut: Australia’s secret war against the Japanese in Borneo
Semut: Australia’s secret war against the Japanese in Borneo
Book review: Christine Helliwell, Semut: The Untold Story of a Secret Australian Operation in WWII Borneo (Michael Joseph: Penguin Random House, 2021) Few in Australia…
Economic diplomacy: The Pacific beats ASEAN for nervous investors
Economic diplomacy: The Pacific beats ASEAN for nervous investors
Sticky money As the new Labor government oscillates between promoting investment in Southeast Asia to deepen security ties and trying to keep the Pacific family together in the…