by Stephen Darley
With the Morrison’s government’s decision to choose American nuclear submarines for the navy Australia has just confirmed that its allegiance to the United States exceeds its own interests.
There is a very serious and worrying consequence of choosing a nuclear submarine from either the United States or the United Kingdom. The British and United States versions of the submarines that Australia had agreed to purchase used a nuclear reactor that runs on highly enriched uranium (HEU 60%). Australia does not have the means to produce uranium at this level of enrichment. It means that in order to operate the submarines, Australia will be dependent upon the United States and the United Kingdom for that fuel.
To further add to Australia’s dependence upon the Americans it was also announced that the submarines will be equipped with the United States manufactured Tomahawk missiles, which are old technology and vastly inferior to their Russian counterparts.
The purchase of the submarines is clearly part of the United States strategy against China which only adds to the absurdity of the purchase.
China is far and away Australia’s largest trading partner, yet the submarines are professed to include the role of protecting Australia’s trading interests. This merely highlights the absurdity of the Australian position.
The real reasons for Australia’s conflicting role with China lie in the demands of the United States security partnership.
We should take heed of the adage: “to be an enemy of the United States can be dangerous, but to be a friend is fatal.”
This is a truism that successive political leaders in Australia have taken to heart. It helps to explain Australia’s eager participation in the United States wars of choice, from Vietnam in the 1960s and nineteen seventies to Afghanistan 2001-2020 and participating in the wholly illegal invasion and occupation of Iraq, 2003-to the present.
It is a subservience reflected in both major political parties. Labor Prime Minister Gough Whitlam withdrew Australian troops from their participation in the Vietnam war in 1972. The Americans never forgave him for that and together with their lackey the Governor-General John Kerr, engineered the overthrow of the Whitlam government in 1975. It was an experience that has influenced Australian politics ever since. It helps to explain the extraordinary subservience of the Labor Party to United States foreign policy misadventures.
Up until recently, there used to be no grudges between China and Australia, but the Morrison government’s slavishly lining up with the United States war machine “Australia has turned itself into an adversary of China.”
If we become involved in the disputes in the Taiwan Strait and the South China Sea, then “military bases in Australia will become targets of Chinese missiles.” Australia should “prepare for the worst” as a consequence of becoming an anti-China spearhead. Australia cannot claim that it has not been warned. Unfortunately, those warnings are likely to fall on deaf ears. Australia effectively sold its soul to the United States more than a generation ago, and there is absolutely no sign in the political leadership of any party except the Greens, that the dangers of continuing along this path are recognised.
The latest decision by the Morrison government even more firmly entrenches Australia within the American view of the world. In a little-noticed additional comment made at the same time as the submarine decision was announced, the government said that there would be an increase in the United States’ use of naval facilities in the country.
There has been no public debate about this decision and indeed most Australians are not aware of the extent to which the Americans already use Australian facilities. United States satellite spying facility at Pine Gap in the Northern Territory is already a “no go” zone for Australians.
The submarine decision really confirms that to all practical intents and purposes Australia has no independent foreign policy, but is simply a lackey of the United States. Finally, I’ll end with this thought: Don’t let America fight China to the last Australian! Thank you.