Thomas Wilkins and Daisuke Akimoto write for The Strategist: Japan’s new defence white paper, Defense of Japan 2021, affirms Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga’s continuation of his predecessor Shinzo Abe’s proactive contribution to regional peace and security.
Graeme Dunk and James Kruger write: In a recent ASPI report, Robert Clark and Peter Jennings argued for the establishment of an Australian version of the US Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA). Conceptually, it’s a very good suggestion. However, we need to think deeper about how to take advantage of Australia’s pools of private capital, which are among the largest in the world due to compulsory superannuation. The problem isn’t just about overcoming current budget allocation issues in universities. We need to industrialise innovation and marry it to our strategic purposes.
Michael Shoebridge writes: Changing Defence only matters if you care about Australia’s security and understand what’s happening in the world. Organisational reform and cultural change in the Defence Department and the Australian Defence Force have a long, painful history. The most recent iterations are the ‘Pathway to Change’ reform program, the first principles review and the new transformation strategy. There’s the Brereton inquiry report and its broader consequences and resulting actions—both internally for Defence and the ADF, and at a whole-of-government level through the prime minister’s establishment of the Office of the Special Investigator to address the potential criminal matters the inquiry raised.
Paul Dibb writes for The Strategist: In the face of an increasing torrent of abuse from Beijing, Canberra should seek a much clearer commitment from Washington that its United States ally will retaliate if China launches a missile attack against Australia.
go to The Strategist: China threatens Australia with missile attack | The Strategist (aspistrategist.org.au)
The Strategist writes: In this ASPI explainer, Robert Glasser, head of ASPI’s Climate and Security Policy Centre, and Anastasia Kapetas, The Strategist’s national security editor, outline the risks of sea-rise level in the Indonesian archipelago and the consequences for Indonesia, and Australia, of climate inaction now and into the future. They detail the impacts of rising water temperatures on fisheries and the cascading effects from climate change we can expect to see in our region.
go to The Strategist: ASPI explains: Climate security in Indonesia | The Strategist (aspistrategist.org.au)
Graeme Dobell for The Strategist: Australian industry is showing the appetite for ‘eating the elephant’, the big task of producing new defence equipment. A lot more of the defence elephant is going on to the plates of Australian companies.
Anastasia Kapetas writes for The Strategist: Encrypted messaging has become a very difficult business. Despite their reach, it’s hard to make money from messaging apps. And their key service—encryption—is under constant attack from actors across the political spectrum. Authoritarian governments are furious because citizens are using encrypted messaging to organise dissent. In democratic countries, law enforcement agencies hate the way it facilitates criminal behavior of all kinds.
go to The Interpreter: WhatsApp and the right to encrypt | The Strategist (aspistrategist.org.au)
Connor Dilleen writes for The Strategist: Since Washington’s February 2020 agreement with the Taliban to withdraw from Afghanistan, some commentators have suggested that China may step into the vacuum. Beijing may be watching recent events with some apprehension, but it will also see the US withdrawal as presenting opportunities.
go to The Strategist website: Can Beijing avoid being drawn into the Afghan quagmire? | The Strategist (aspistrategist.org.au)
John McCarthy writes for The Strategist: The current debate in Australia about visas for Afghans who worked with Australian forces poses questions about the sort of people we are. Australia has historically veered between kindness to strangers and insularity tinged with meanness of spirit.
go to The Strategist website: Granting visas to Australia’s Afghan allies would speak volumes about us | The Strategist (aspistrategist.org.au)