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ASPI suggests

Posted By on November 7, 2014 @ 14:30

Spying in China is easier than you might think ...

Why isn’t the Pentagon using supply drones to move medical goods in the fight against Ebola? Over at Defense One, Michael Auerbach argues that US military-grade drones could and should be deployed as part of Operation United Assistance to overcome logistics issues, including the disruption of supply chains by corrupt local warloards. Read his case for drones here.

It’s not as hard as you’d think to operate as a spy in heavily-surveillanced China, writes Adam Brookes. Over at Foreign Policy, Brookes discusses some of the success stories and limitations of foreign, particularly American, espionage on Chinese targets.

Malaysia’s Elina Noor explains why Malaysia can and will maintain good ties with both the United States and China. Rejecting a zero-sum approach to foreign relations, Noor says pragmatism and multilateralism are among the factors shaping Malaysia’s stance. Keep reading her arguments here.

Can ASEAN develop a robust nuclear energy regime? Writing for Singapore’s RSIS, Mely Caballero-Anthony, Alistair D.B. Cook, Julius Cesar Imperial Trajano and Margareth Sembiring look at the implications of Vietnam, Malaysia and Indonesia planning to diversify their respective energy sources, as well as the lessons of Fukushima for Southeast Asia.

For Myanmar/Burma watchers, Trevor Wilson presents a relatively positive assessment of the country’s reform program on the New Mandala blog. In his view, the trajectory and extent of reforms are driven, in large measure, by the level and quality of public discourse as well as greater opposition participation in public policy reviews. Keep reading his assessment and take on the role of external actors here.

Writing under a pseudonym on the UK-based blog Kings of War, a serving British Army officer introduces an American audience to the UK experience of training and war. The post doubles as an insight for Australian observers into British military affairs.

It’s time for India to punch above its weight with Japan, write Keshav Kelkar and Marc McCrum on East Asia Forum. In addition to the bilateral trade potential, the authors argue that the absence of serious historical tensions bode well for expanding ties.

Writing for the Centre for Land Warfare Studies (CLAWS) in India, here’s a piece by Lieutenant General (rtd) Prakash Katoch worth reading for an Indian’s view of US-led military operations against ISIS and the role of social media, but also for his call for the private sector to be involved in counterterrorism in cyberspace.

For the humorous pick for the week, The Economist rounds up some of the best campaign ads from the US mid-term elections.


Over at bloggingheads.tv, Robert Wright and Jonanthan Kay discuss the recent lone-wolf attacks in Canada, asking whether Canadians believe they’re blowback and how we can make ISIS a less effective brand (42mins).


Canberra: SDSC’s Charles Miller delves into what the latest techniques can tell us about how Australians view major foreign policy challenges. His talk is on at the ANU’s Coombs Extension Building on Wednesday 19 November at 5.30pm. Register here.

Meanwhile, SDSC’s Brendan Taylor and John Blaxland are joined by Nick Bisley (La Trobe) and Peter Leahy (University of Canberra) for a talk on defence diplomacy to launch a Centre of Gravity paper on the same topic. The panel discussion is on Thursday 20 November at the Hedley Bull Centre at 5.30pm. Register here.

Hobart: Shadow Minister for Foreign Affairs, Tanya Plibersek, will discuss the Australia–India relationship in a changing world. Hosted by the AIIA Tasmania and University of Tasmania, it’s on Thursday 20 November at 1.45pm. Register here.

Natalie Sambhi is an analyst at ASPI and managing editor of The Strategist. Image courtesy of Flickr user abrinsky.

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[1] Image: http://www.aspistrategist.org.au/wp-content/uploads/2014/11/14035167174_f895800901_z.jpg

[2] Why isn’t the Pentagon using supply drones: http://www.defenseone.com/threats/2014/11/why-isnt-pentagon-using-supply-drones-ebola/98084/?oref=d-river

[3] discusses: http://webcache.googleusercontent.com/search?q=cache:http://www.foreignpolicy.com/articles/2014/11/04/china_espionage_spies_spooks_cyber_xi_jinping

[4] explains: http://www.isis.org.my/attachments/commentaries/2014/EN_CIGI_Blog_04Nov2014.pdf

[5] Can ASEAN develop a robust nuclear energy regime?: http://www.rsis.edu.sg/rsis-publication/nts/co14216-can-asean-develop-a-robust-nuclear-energy-regime/#.VFv9BScaySM

[6] presents a relatively positive assessment: http://asiapacific.anu.edu.au/newmandala/2014/11/03/will-myanmars-reforms-continue-after-2015/

[7] a serving British Army officer: http://kingsofwar.org.uk/2014/10/colonel-panter-downes-introduces-the-us-armed-forces-to-british-adventure/

[8] time for India to punch above its weight with Japan: http://www.eastasiaforum.org/2014/11/05/time-for-india-to-punch-above-its-weight-with-japan/

[9] piece: http://www.claws.in/1281/counter-terrorism-in-cyberspace-prakash-katoch.html

[10] best campaign ads: http://www.economist.com/blogs/democracyinamerica/2014/11/campaign-ads

[11] discuss the recent lone-wolf attacks in Canada: http://bloggingheads.tv/videos/31576

[12] latest techniques can tell us about how Australians view major foreign policy challenges: http://ips.cap.anu.edu.au/cap-events/2014-11-19/fresh-lab-what-latest-techniques-can-tell-us-about-how-australians-view-our#.VFlc2PmUfTo

[13] here: https://www.eventbrite.com.au/e/fresh-from-the-lab-what-the-latest-techniques-can-tell-us-about-how-australians-view-our-major-tickets-13916507649

[14] here: https://www.eventbrite.com.au/e/defence-diplomacy-is-the-game-worth-the-candle-tickets-14158786311

[15] discuss the Australia–India relationship in a changing world: http://www.internationalaffairs.org.au/events/the-australia-india-relationship-in-a-changing-world/

[16] Natalie Sambhi: https://www.aspi.org.au/about-aspi/aspi-staff/analysts/natalie-sambhi

[17] abrinsky: https://www.flickr.com/photos/abrinsky/14035167174/in/photolist-noeUdW-nXCk6P-nDmtCU-c1UTf-4HatKo-882mUL-85MsE7-88ets7-86xoud-87Ybfn-8yy3Fv-3niNc-64VPsc-CBVGZ-sn1eV-arbWP-nhUEGK-nfRXMn-nfS2VT-eigCot-n3qcxK-3PpjG3-4D4bXU