The implications of Raisi’s death

The deaths of President Ebrahim Raisi and his foreign minister, Hossein Amir-Abdollahian, create a noticeable hole in the governing apparatus of the Islamic Republic of Iran. But the deaths are unlikely to bring substantial change …

France, New Caledonia and the Indo-Pacific

How France manages the first outbreak of serious violence in New Caledonia in 40 years will affect not only its future role there but its acceptance as a resident Pacific, and Indo-Pacific, power. The violence …

Defining success in Ukraine

Three months ago, I wrote a column titled ‘Will Ukraine Survive?’ The answer (thankfully) for the next year is ‘yes,’ owing to Ukraine’s willingness to fight and sacrifice and the resumption of substantial US military …

Budget: a vision of a fraught and fragile world

Beneath the deeply domestic dimensions of any annual budget lies Canberra’s view of the world. The fiscal flashlight of spending and saving (and now subsidising) naturally catches the eye of every Australian taxpayer. Those taxpayers …

Defence industry and the illusion of control

A well-worn yarn in defence industry circles is the tale of the apocalyptic Last Supper of 1993. Then-US defense secretary Les Aspin called chief executives from the major prime contractors to a secret dinner at …