Remember how “the Left” constantly attacked the Howard Government for appearing to be America’s lap dog?
I wonder how “the Left” will respond to the increasingly obvious reality, that the Gillard Government is no different.
From The Australian (emphasis added):
US spy drones may fly from Australian atolls
AUSTRALIA’S Cocos Islands territory could be used as a staging point for spy flights by United States military drones over the South China Sea, according to an US newspaper report.
Citing US and Australian sources, The Washington Post said the Pentagon was eyeing the Indian Ocean territory’s coral atolls as an ideal site to launch Global Hawk surveillance drones, as well as manned surveillance flights.
Defence Minister Stephen Smith has previously revealed Australia’s Cocos Islands territory could be used “down the track” for a jointly-operated Australian-US air base.
But it is the first time the territory has been suggested as a base for unmanned spy flights.
“Aircraft based in the Cocos would be well-positioned to launch spy flights over the South China Sea,” The Washington Post notes.
According to the newspaper, US officals are also “intrigued” by the potential offered by Australia’s HMAS Stirling naval base, at Perth, and a possible new fleet base at Brisbane.
It says HMAS Stirling “could service US aircraft carriers, other large surface warships and attack submarines”.
The US is anxious to expand its reach in the Indian Ocean amid a strategic pivot towards South-East Asia.
The apparently well-sourced report will further arouse the suspicions of China, where military planners are already concerned about the growing US military presence on Australian soil.
The report comes as Australia prepares for the arrival of the first of 2500 US Marines for deployment in Darwin.
Under the plan announced by US President Barack Obama and Julia Gillard, the troops from the Hawaii-based Third Marine Regiment are expected to be based at Darwin’s Robertson Barracks.
They will spend months training at the Australian Defence Force’s Bradshaw and Mount Bundy training areas in the Northern Territory.
A US Marines air-ground taskforce is designed to fight at short notice as a powerful, self-contained force with its own protective air power, able to land on a hostile shore or carry out non-combat operations such as disaster relief.
It will give Washington the ability to intervene in the region quickly in the event of a crisis.
The Marines will eventually bring considerable equipment with them, including amphibious assault ships similar to the two giant landing helicopter docks being built for the Royal Australian Navy, along with Harrier Jump Jets and troop-carrying helicopters.
As I said back in November, when the permanent US Marines base on Australian sovereign territory was announced by Gillard … this will end well.
The Chinese made their views clear back then:
China reproaches Australia over strengthened US defence ties
CHINA has strongly reproached Canberra over strengthened US defence ties, warning Australia may be “caught in the crossfire” if the United States uses new Australian-based military forces to threaten its interests
A strongly-worded editorial in the state-owned People’s Daily said the new Australian-US defence pact posed a security threat to Australia.
“Australia surely cannot play China for a fool. It is impossible for China to remain detached, no matter what Australia does to undermine its security,” it said.
“If Australia uses its military bases to help the US harm Chinese interests, then Australia itself will be caught in the crossfire.”
The editorial admonished Australia for relying on China for its economic interests while turning to the United States for political and security purposes.
“Gillard may be ignoring something – their economic co-operation with China does not pose any threat to the US, whereas the Australia-US military alliance serves to counter China,” it said.
One can only imagine how the Chinese Government will view this latest development.
The word “escalation” springs to mind.
As I said back in November… more brilliant strategy from our government.
Still, look on the bright side.
Things could be worse.
Tony Abbott says he would “go even further” in bending Australia over for “the most benign, the least self-interested superpower the world has seen”.
Oh, wait … about all those Newspolls showing a comprehensive win for the Abbott Coalition at the next election.
This will end well.
Apparently Gillard has been secretly negotiating an increased military “presence” in Australia for over a year:
THE expanded US military presence in Australia is likely to include giant unmanned patrol planes using the remote Cocos Islands and aircraft carriers, and nuclear-powered attack submarines based in Perth as part of efforts to refocus American defence resources in the region.
Top US defence officials are considering Australia’s major naval base, HMAS Stirling, south of Perth, as a “sorely needed” place for the US navy to refuel, re-equip and repair its surface warships and submarines in the Indian Ocean.
The US Secretary of the Navy, Ray Mabus, is due to visit the base and facilities in Darwin shortly, and reports suggest Australia might have been encouraging the US to increase its military presence. Mr Mabus told The Washington Post: “It’s fair to say that we will always take an interest in what the Australians are doing and want to do.”
US and Australian officials quoted in the article say these arrangements are being considered as part of the major expansion of military ties between the two nations discussed in confidential talks over the past year.
Oh, it is what “Australians” want to do, is it?
The plot thickens.
US “informers” in the very heart of the ALP. A popularly-elected PM who had disobeyed the US, knifed by his deputy at the behest of ALP powerbrokers, including the long time US “informer”. A new PM who attacks a citizen who had embarrassed the US by releasing thousands of US diplomatic cables, and who invites the US to establish permanent military bases on our soil, while at the same time, deliberately weakening our own Defence Force by starving it of funding.
The stench of treason grows stronger by the day.
Senator-to-be Julian Assange is right:
Mr Assange was sharply critical of the federal government and the opposition, saying there was “very little difference between Liberal and Labor, especially once they get into government. Labor suffers more from cronyism, while the Liberals care more for big business”.
On international issues, Mr Assange said Australian diplomacy must take into account the likelihood that the US faced “serious decline” during the next 15 to 20 years – indeed “collapse of its superpower status”.
In these circumstances he supported much more regional engagement and an increased defence and intelligence budget “to reduce our reliance on the US”.
“Look look Mr President! We can bend Aussies over even farther than the ALP!!”:
A COALITION government would be “very positive” about any proposal to lease Australia’s Cocos Islands territory in the Indian Ocean to the US for use as a military base, Opposition Defence spokesman David Johnston says.