APSNet 08 February 2010
- Dutch cuts hit Australia
- China pushes for closer military ties
- Japan open to nuclear arms limits
- [Myanmar] Nuke body baffled by junta move
- Logging violence and corruption flare in PNG’s Ramu forests
- US, Nato plan big offensive in Helmand
- [Singapore] S’pore to consider nuclear, coal for energy
1. Dutch cuts hit Australia, John Kerin, AFR*, 2010-02-08
The Dutch government may extend its mission in Afghanistan beyond August but leave a smaller force in strife-torn Oruzgan province, raising concern Dutch forces may no longer be able to provide vital artillery and air support to Australian troops.
2. China pushes for closer military ties, Cameron Stewart, Australian, 2010-02-08
China has pushed for “deeper” military ties between the People’s Liberation Army and the Australian army, including sending young PLA officers here for exchange programs.
3. Japan open to nuclear arms limits, Daniel Flitton, SMH, 2010-02-08
Japan has boosted calls to restrict the use of nuclear weapons in war – and ultimately eliminate the atomic threat – by finally easing its once-rigid demands to preserve a broad-based nuclear deterrent. The move follows a major international report commissioned by Prime Minister Kevin Rudd that urged countries to adopt a ”sole purpose” nuclear posture.
- International Commission on Nuclear Non-proliferation and Disarmament
- Unofficial translation of the letter of Japanese Foreign Minister Katsuya Okada to the US State Secretary Hillary Clinton dated 2009-12-24, translated by Philip White, Citizens’ Nuclear Information Center
- Translating the Okada letter, Jeffrey Lewis, Arms Control Wonk, 2010-01-27
4. Nuke body baffled by junta move, Tom Hyland, Age, 2010-02-07
Burma’s secretive military rulers – suspected of pursuing a nuclear weapons program – want to join an Australian-led nuclear safety body. The move comes amid calls for greater scrutiny of Burma’s nuclear activities and its links with equally secretive and nuclear-armed North Korea.
- Myanmar, Nuclear power in ASEAN, Nautilus Institute
5. Logging violence and corruption flare in PNG’s Ramu forests, Pacific Scoop, 2010-02-08
The PNG Forest Authority’s review of the granting of the right to log to the Malaysian-owned Rimbunan Hijau company in Ramu River valley is expected soon. Massive cash payments and brutal violence – to intimidate communities resisting logging – is rife, claim rainforest campaigners. Yet local protests against logging continues to intensify in Madang, as calls grow to end all industrial primary rainforest logging in PNG.
- Rimbunan Hijau Watch
- Rimbunan Hijau Group: Thirty Years of Forest Plunder, Greenpeace, 2006-05-30, [PDF, 5MB]
6. US, Nato plan big offensive in Helmand, Anwar Iqbal, Dawn, 2010-02-08
A strike force of 15,000 US, British and Afghan troops will participate in this offensive in the Helmand province, aided by the biggest air assault since the first Gulf War of 1991. US officials acknowledge that it would be the largest offensive in the eight-year Afghan war.
- Planned offensive in Southern Afghanistan, Editors, Small Wars Journal, 2010-02-06
- Thousands of civilians flee Afghan region as Nato plans onslaught, Jon Boone, Guardian, 2010-02-05
7. S’pore to consider nuclear, coal for energy, Jessica Cheam, eco-business.com, 2010-02-05
Singapore’s energy future has been charted out by a high-level committee which envisions diversifying the city-state’s energy sources with coal and electricity imports in the medium-term, and nuclear energy in the long run.
- A smart energy economy: resilient, sustainable and innovative, ensuring energy resilience and sustainable growth, Economic Strategies Committee (ESC) Subcommittee, Government of Singapore, [PDF, 474 KB]
- Singapore, Nuclear power in ASEAN, Nautilus Institute