Question Is it time to review our alliances?

willedoo

Well-Known Member
#21
You make some good points there Jerry. I don't think the non aligned path is viable for us. So that leaves two choices - the Russia China alliance or what we have, the U.S. alliance. It's not going to happen that Australia will drop the U.S. and fully embrace their opposition.

The best we can hope for is that we can break out of our lap dog status and reach an agreement with the U.S. that we can disagree in our own interests at times. It's not a matter of whether the U.S. respects our weaknesses or strengths. They don't respect anyone. Other nations are just convenient to them. All this talk about a great bond and friendship since WW2 is just a lot of waffle for the gullible punters and the press. If it suited them, they'd screw us just as quickly as anyone else.

They're our friends because strategically and politically, we're very handy to them, and we need them to help ensure our security. Personally, I think it would be good if we could strike a deal that we would only help them make war if it was U.N. approved - no more unilateral abuses of other countries sovereignty, no more breaches of international law and no more killing civilians just because they want us to give them a hand so they can claim some legitimacy by having a couple of mates help them. Over the years, Australia's support and involvement in non U.N. sanctioned unilateral attacks and warfare on other countries is a national shame and disgrace. If we limited our involvement in Uncle Sam's war adventures to those actions only sanctioned by the international community via the U.N., we could once again have some pride in what we do. We don't have the balls to tell them to f**k off, so it's the next best alternative.
 

old man emu

Well-Known Member
#22
willedoo, you are so in my camp.

However, I'm a bit wary of even going along the road of being involved in UN-sanctioned military intervention. As you say, the USA doesn't respect anyone. They no doubt would bully lesser members on the UN Security Council to start action against countries that are not allies of Russia and China.

The alliance should be very clear: We'll help you if someone attacks your home soil, and you'll do the same for us. But we won't go attacking any regime operating within its own borders.

Jerry raises an important point: Beef, other non-beef meats, aircraft spares and parts and pharmaceuticals are the biggest exports. Mind you, it does not give a breakdown of ownership of those resources we export. That's the thing. Are Australian-owned businesses exporting, or are we only supplying the workforce for US businesses?
 
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Marty_d

Well-Known Member
#23
The Kiwis seem much more sensible than us. Not only do they tell the US to take a flying leap, they have a good economy with 63% of GDP from the service sector. They have 70%+ renewable energy. And they still have their humanity - offering to take refugees from Australia's concentration camps.
 

nomadpete

Well-Known Member
#24
Note that media generally, as part of their 'dumbing down' policy, seem to avoid giving air to the benefits of Australian Owned businesses. Sometimes they spruik 'Made In Australia', but if the business happens to be Foreign owned (USA is foreign, too), then most of the profits are spirited away with little if any benefit to our economy. It doesn't take much research to find that a lot of brands that we all assumed to be Aussie are in fact foreign owned. That kind of globalisation doesn't benefit us at all. For instance, I always thought John Holland was Aussie, but it's apparently owned by China Communication Corp (is that government owned?) And they, along with a USA Halliburton mob, own most of the Ghan Railway. Is there a connection with Chinese wanting to buy Darwin harbour?
 
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Bruce

Well-Known Member
#25
I liked the way the New Zealanders said "no" to nuclear ships in their main harbors. This was a dreadful thing to do, we were told at the time, but I since found out that nuclear ships are not allowed into New York and San Francisco harbors.
We have just had 2 nuclear reactors in Melbourne harbor and I am disgusted with the greens and their mates in the labor party.
Why were they not protesting? They have stopped us having a much safer in design and much safer in siting reactor to supply electricity to Victoria.
 

old man emu

Well-Known Member
#26
Yeah, but the pollies control the issue of mining leases, which they do after their wives have bought sheaves of shares in the mining company. There are more coal mining leases than there are uranium mining leases.

It would be interesting to hear the stories from the indigenous people who have lived on and around uranium ore deposits for a year or two. What taboos do these areas carry?
 
#27
"But how far can we trust the USA as a back-up if anyone tried out military action against us"
but , Can you Trust any politicians AT all.
spacesailor
 

willedoo

Well-Known Member
#28
However, I'm a bit wary of even going along the road of being involved in UN-sanctioned military intervention. As you say, the USA doesn't respect anyone. They no doubt would bully lesser members on the UN Security Council to start action against countries that are not allies of Russia and China.
A good point, old man emu. The U.N. doesn't have a real good track record on a lot of things.

I think it's only the five permanent members that have the power of veto on the security council. They tend to use the security council proposed resolutions as a political football. The U.S. does it quite regularly. A lot of resolutions they put up are worded in such a way that they know the Russians will veto it and then the U.S. can portray them as wreckers who don't want peace. They throw in a lot of side conditions that they know will make it fail. Our press only reports that the Russians objected to the resolution and are therefore bad. They don't report the whole story that they agreed to the bulk of the proposal but objected to some critical wording. Wording resolutions to purposely fail gives the perpetrator a propaganda free kick. Having said that, the Russians play the game a bit as well.

The question is, is the U.N. a toothless tiger? We see unilateral actions that are legal under international law and those that aren't. We also see NATO over the years morph from a European defence alliance to an attacking force on nations outside their borders, nations that have not threatened them. When NATO decrees that they can unilaterally attack any nation in the world on 'humanitarian' reasons, it makes the U.N. look ineffective.
 
#29
While you have one country that is militarily the strongest in the world that funds almost a quarter of the UN budget and it houses the UN on its soil, there is no dount it will leverage back-door politics to serve its own end. Funding is proportional to GNP, which seems fair enough, however, it does give stronger economies more leverage. I think the UN shoudl be housed on neutral soil to at least give it the veil of objectivity.
 

Bruce

Well-Known Member
#32
They sure need to do some auditing of the UN. The waste and lack of accountability are horrific. Apparently there is hardly any oversight going on.
The most extravagant party I ever went to was put on by the UN FAO (food and agriculture organization ) in Cairo. Hollow-backed swans made from ice and filled with prawns was a dish I had only seen before in movies.
There were and are genuinely hungry people not far from the Cairo Hilton and I was shocked that they spent thousands like they did. And the main topic of conversation? Anger at the US for quibbling over UN funding.
 

Yenn

Well-Known Member
#33
Just look at the UN track record, if you want to see how good it is. My opinion is that it is a self serving body, bent on increasing beaurocracy and waist, with absolutely no benefit to anyone except the fat cats it employs. Rather like our banks or the AMP society.
The USA is only doing one thing and that is looking after the USA. Just recently I heard that they considered Trump should get a Nobel peace prize. It did even look as if he may be doing some good about bringing the Korean war to an end, but after 70 years of having massive military forces pointing at N Korea Trump could not resist war games to further threaten N. Korea, so now it looks as if we will be back to square one.
Our wonderful pollies cannoit think for themselves and only do what they see the USA wants. We hear a lot about bullying nowadays and the international scene is just like the schoolyard. We have the school bully, USA and his henchmen of which Australia is one, then we have the underdogs, Cuba, Viet Nam, Iraq. Iran, Syria and of course China, but the bully hasn't managed to beat up China yet, although it bullies all the friends of China.
Then there is the USA, Israel connection. We have Israel, a state founded on terrorism, who so scared Britain that they walked away and let the people who lived in Palestine get thrown out of their homes and forever be vilified by Israel. No matter what Israel does the USA is there to back it up and lately even provoke more disgusting behaviour. USA has just declared Jerusalem the capital of Israel. Funny that even the Israelis have their government in a different place.
 

Marty_d

Well-Known Member
#35
I see when Israeli forces fired on the Palestinian protesters a few days ago, they killed over 60 and wounded thousands.

Among the dead were several children, including an 8-month old baby.

How many Israeli soldiers were killed? None.

If killing civilians and their children is not an act of terrorism, what is?
 
#36
Just think about the wars in our history and there was not one where it was a good idea to be involved.
What was there in it for Australia to be part of the Boer War? And WW1 was worse. In WW2 it was we who declared war on Japan, not the other way around.
If Turnbull etc make us part of some anti-chinese thing, they are worse than stupid.
Who thinks badly of Sweden or Switzerland for being neutral in WW2 against the nazis? Well I do just a bit, but my opinion isn't taken much notice of in Canberra.
"In WW2 it was we who declared war on Japan, not the other way around"? Would you like to expand on this and validate - taking in to account historical Japanese aggression against Koreans, Manchurian, Chinese and Taiwanese people.
 
#37
Note that media generally, as part of their 'dumbing down' policy, seem to avoid giving air to the benefits of Australian Owned businesses. Sometimes they spruik 'Made In Australia', but if the business happens to be Foreign owned (USA is foreign, too), then most of the profits are spirited away with little if any benefit to our economy. It doesn't take much research to find that a lot of brands that we all assumed to be Aussie are in fact foreign owned. That kind of globalisation doesn't benefit us at all. For instance, I always thought John Holland was Aussie, but it's apparently owned by China Communication Corp (is that government owned?) And they, along with a USA Halliburton mob, own most of the Ghan Railway. Is there a connection with Chinese wanting to buy Darwin harbour?
The owner of the business might get to pocket some profit (unless they do some trick accounting, like borrowing money from themselves at eyewatering, but tax deductible interest rates) but for Australian companies quite a lot of the income from sales is retained in Australia as wages, accountants and lawyers fees and various taxes, charges, licence fees etc. Where Australia loses is if the owner shuts up shop moving manufacturing offshore and just running an import market, a bit like GMH and Ford. Offshoring is most attractive if you can push your sales through a tax haven so they don't even pay tax anywhere.
 
#38
I see when Israeli forces fired on the Palestinian protesters a few days ago, they killed over 60 and wounded thousands.

Among the dead were several children, including an 8-month old baby.

How many Israeli soldiers were killed? None.

If killing civilians and their children is not an act of terrorism, what is?

Marty, you should know by now, if they're on our side, it's not terrorism. All the way with LBJ.
 
#40
Getting back to the original topic I was immensely proud when as a NZer we told the Yanks to piss off with their Nuclear ships, and again when we sent a frigate into the French Nuclear testing drop zone. It made Kiwis feel truly independent. The ANZUS alliance didn't change. It just made the US realise that it could no longer bully the Kiwis and demand they toe the line just because they supplied most of the military equipment. The frosty NZ/US relationship lasted a few years but it had no effect on the economy. Alliance or not the US will do what it likes if it feels its control is being eroded. NZ used to have a modern military largely financed by the US. Now it is focused more on civil and fisheries defence. Anything else is not going to be effective against any aggressor. NZs physical isolation is it's best defence.

If NZ got attacked by Russia does anyone really think that the US (even if there was no alliance) would just say Oh that is just too bad. No the US would feel that their security in the Pacific is under attack & would use all of its might to restore the original order with the US at the top. The US is pretty peeved about the way China is providing lots of money to small Pacific nations including PNG to build this and that and in theory not demanding anything in return.

Australia should IMHO begin to pull away from the US ring fence and develop closer relationships with Asian nations and especially Indonesia the 4th most populous nation on earth. Our huge trade deficit with the US is largely because we spend so much on US military hardware. 1 F35 costs $200 million for goodness sake, they can't do everything they say and the rivets are corroding before they are even put into service. Trump keeps prattling on about how the US is spending more than it's share on almost everything & now he wants everyone else to pay. Well that's how the US maintained its influence and control. They bought it. If Trump gets his way the isolationist policy will eventually backfire. Splendid Isolation worked for Britain when the Empire was at its zenith in the 19th century but resulted in declining British influence and was abandoned in 1905. The US is on a downward path. Like all its predecessors (Roman, Ottoman, British, Soviet etc) it will fade into an also ran. China is growing and its expansion and influence increasing almost daily now. They have all the money & got it all from the west by ripping off technology, improving it, producing everything & selling it back. All the whinging about annexing disputed atolls in the South China Sea & building military bases there won't change anything. Lets just say it has nothing to do with us & let the US stew over it. It's not much but it would be a good start to a policy of not sucking up to the US on every single issue.