Australia is neither a nuclear armed state, nor a state using nuclear power. We have chosen to retain that status established in 1945.
The ANZUS Treaty between Australia, New Zealand and The United States of America, recently referred to by the Prime Minister, was established in 1951. It requires the signatories to the treaty to come to the assistance if either of the other two nations if they are subject to hostile attack.
New Zealand’s participation was suspended in 1986 when their Prime Minister David Lange claimed waters surrounding NZ were nuclear free. He thereby restricted entry to nuclear powered, and/or nuclear armed American vessels. America refuses to declare the nuclear status of naval vessels entering the waters of another nation.
The Australian governments have not maintained the same position as New Zealand in relation to nuclear powered, or armed, vessels entering our waters.
As the President of the USA has recently engaged in an increasingly bellicose discussion with North Korea, both nuclear armed states, Australia as a non-nuclear armed state is claiming total commitment to support the United States of America should this dispute deteriorate further. This offer is in compliance with the ANZUS treaty in that we are obliged to join America should it, or any American territory, is attacked.
This serious commitment, in which our Prime Minister claimed Australia was joined at the hip with USA, should that country be attacked, is placing Australia, and our troops, in a dangerous and disadvantageous position. It is unclear if firing a missile into the waters of a country constitutes an attack, or does the missile have to explode on actual land of the country.
Furthermore, this commitment is being made to the President of America, is the same person who only a few months ago mocked the American commitment to Australia to take refugees that the Australian government has kept imprisoned on the distant Pacific island of Manus. It rather places in doubt the reliability of America’s commitment to agreements,
There have been many changes since 1951. It is an appropriate time for our Governments to have the courage to define an independent national identity of which Australians can be proud, not one that draws on a simplistic similarity to a tragic genetic misalignment. Our treaties are not created at some stage before the ‘birth’ of the current nation of Australia, they are all flexible.
Cooperative support does not necessarily require slavish following.
I just heard on the radio an announcement from the Minister for Defence Senator the Honourable Marise Payne. She was announcing we are spending a further sum of over $3 bn on boats for the border force. No doubt this will add to the existing force.
I find it hard to understand how the people smugglers will be able to outwit the forces we are employ to block them directing refugees to Australia.
Which leads me to the fact that either these boats, and the people operating them are a total waste of resources or on the other hand this is an effective expenditure and we don’t have to utterly destroy the lives of the 600 or so people who are being held in prison conditions on a NewGuinea Island.
We seem to be in a lose lose situation – massive expenditure and spreading a most uncomfortable sense of responsibility for outright torturous cruelty to a number of homeless people. We are not only destroying the lives of these refugees, but floating the oceans with Australian taxpayers funds.
If the people smugglers try to get people to Australia in leaky boats they will be stopped by the extensive and expensive border force.
It would be good to have a plausible explanation.