ASPI suggests
14 Jun 2013|

President Barack Obama and Prime Minister Manmohan Singh of India in the White House Colonnade.Welcome back for another round of new reports, developments in regional and international security and upcoming events.

First for today is a new report by the Center for a New American Security that studies the growing bilateral network of security ties between six Asia-Pacific countries: Australia, India, Japan, Singapore, South Korea and Vietnam. In the report, they authors systematically identify increased security cooperation activities and provide policy recommendations for the US.

In other news, the US is now signalling both Iran and Israel that all options are still on the table with the successful testing of missiles capable of destroying Iran’s underground nuclear facilities. For background material on the program, including predecessors going back to WWII’s Grand Slam weapon (video), see here.

The Advancing Australia as a Digital Economy: Update to the National Digital Economy Strategy was released on Wednesday. According to the website, the ‘update outlines the progress the Government has made since 2011 against the eight digital economy goals – and lays out the next steps to realise the benefits of the NBN and position Australia as a leading digital economy by 2020’. Peter Jennings will share his thoughts on the strategy with Strategist readers next week.

If proof was required that submarine construction projects are fraught activities, The Times of India reports that the Indian Navy’s underwater fleet won’t be getting new boats any time soon.

In other international developments, the New York Times features an article on increased calls for China to make a claim for the Japanese island of … Okinawa. Apart from its strategic value, the island also is home to 1.3 million Japanese citizens and 27,000 US troops.

The Australian Army’s Directorate of Army Research and Analysis has released The Future Land Warfare Report, an annually reviewed document that, in the words of Army Chief Lieutenant General David Morrison, will ‘describe the characteristics of the evolving environment in which the future land force (within a joint construct) will fight’ out to 2035.

Lastly, entries are now open for the Security Challenges Future Strategic Writers Competition for young scholars or professionals writing on security challenges facing Australia and the region. Supported by Australian Defence Business Review, a generous prize of $A2500 will be awarded for the best submission by an author under 35 years of age. Get writing now as submissions close Friday, 4 October 2013.


Canberra readers, Dr John Blaxland will be speaking at a RUSI event about Australia’s expanded amphibious capability on Wednesday 19 June, R1 Theatrette Russell Offices at 5pm.

There’s also a presentation by Dr Christopher Ward on the numerous and overlapping disputes in the South China Sea, and the international legal framework within which they sit, Thursday 20 June, Sparke Helmore Theatre 2, ANU at 5.30pm.

Also on Thursday 20 June, the Kokoda Foundation is holding another Future Strategic Leaders’ Program Networking Event at the Waldorf Hotel at 5.30pm, register here.

If you’re in Melbourne, Brigadier (ret.) Gary Hogan AM CSC, former Australian Defence Attaché to Indonesia and Strategist contributor will be discussing Indonesia–Australia defence relations on Wednesday 19 June, Dyason House (AIIA) at 6pm.

Natalie Sambhi is an analyst at ASPI and editor of The Strategist. Image courtesy of Wikimedia Commons.