Iraq and the PM’s profound prerogative

The way Australia goes to war hasn’t changed in a century. The Prime Minister declares the deployment or announces the conflict and the troops march and the ships sail. This is the leader’s most profound …

Obama’s mindset

What lies ahead for US policies affecting Australia? Paradoxically, the greatest doubt about America’s strength in the world comes from within the US itself. Obama’s second term foreign policy will probably resemble his 2008 campaign …

The Iraq war decision ten years on

Graeme Dobell’s contributions are always entertaining and frequently insightful, which makes it forgivable if now and again his arguments are well wide of the mark. We had one such moment with his piece reflecting on …

Who’s afraid of China?

Recent media coverage of the Senkaku/Diaoyu stand-off has painted the picture of a powder-keg so dangerous it could force Australia to make stark Cold War-style choices; either helping to stare down or else bending over …

Information warfare on the Korean peninsula

Over the last decade, security dilemmas on the Korean peninsula have become progressively more ‘hybrid’ and multi-faceted. Traditional conventional threats, scenarios and contingencies linked to high intensity conventional wars, have been converging with a range …

Equipment acquisition: surprise from the skies

Media reporting indicates that we’ll soon see an announcement about the acquisition of twelve extra F/A-18F Super Hornet fighter aircraft at a cost of US$3.6 billion. This will be a classic example of a ministerially …

Let’s not succumb to nuclear defeatism

North Korea’s most recent nuclear test has provoked some extraordinary reactions from media commentators in the past few weeks, some of which suggest a somewhat one-dimensional view of the nature of nuclear decision-making and the …

Reader response: maritime incidents at sea

Sam Bateman recently reminded us that both in the South China Sea and East China Sea incidents involving patrol vessels, warships, military aircraft, fishing and research vessels of the littoral countries are now occurring more …

ASPI suggests

Today’s a public holiday in Canberra so we’re taking a short break from regular blogging, but here’s our weekly round-up of news, reports and events in the defence, NatSec and strategy world. First up, Dewi …

The audacity of Jokowi

It’s March 2013, and looking ahead to September 2014—when Indonesia’s new president should be elected—it’s too early to speculate on the result. In fact, we’re not even sure who’ll line up for the race. But …