APSNet 1 September 2008
- Top-Level Shake-Up to Bolster National Security
- Diggers Repel Taliban Attacks while Building Bridges in Record Time
- Soldiers Cleared of Beating Claim
- ADF Capability Review: C4ISR (EW)
- Afghanistan: On the Cliff-Edge
1. Top-Level Shake-Up to Bolster National Security, Patrick Walters, Australian, 2008-09-01
Cabinet’s national security committee is expected to endorse today the key findings of the review of domestic security arrangements conducted by ex-Defence Department chief Ric Smith. Duncan Lewis, a former Special Forces commander and currently the deputy secretary who leads the PM&C’s national security office, is tipped to become the Rudd Government’s first national security adviser.
- Rudd’s National Security Alert, Clive Williams, Canberra Times, 2008-09-01
2. Diggers Repel Taliban Attacks while Building Bridges in Record Time, Patrick Walters, Australian 2008-08-29
Australian combat engineers fended off Taliban attacks as part of an unprecedented mission in Afghanistan to help repair the Kabul-to-Kandahar highway. The special Australian contingent, from the Reconstruction Task Force, was attacked by Taliban fighters using rocket-propelled grenades and small arms in their initial move out of their home base.
3. Soldiers Cleared of Beating Claim, Max Blenkin, Age, 2008-08-30
A defence inquiry has found no evidence that Australian troops beat and humiliated four Afghan detainees. The inquiry was initiated after an Afghan government soldier complained Australian troops had repeatedly pushed one man against a blast barrier, hit him with a stick and pulled down his trousers.
- Inquiry Officer’s Report into the Detention of Local Nationals on 29-30 April 2008 in Uruzgan Province, Afghanistan, Department of Defence, released August 2008 [1.08 MB, PDF]
4. ADF Capability Review: C4ISR (EW), Douglas Abdiel and Andrew Davies, ASPI, 2008-08-28
Not surprisingly, the ADF’s vision of the future is quite different from current capabilities. While it has made progress in networking, it has done so unevenly and still faces immense challenges before it can realise a fully-fledged network centric warfare (NCW) capability.
5. Afghanistan: On the Cliff-Edge, Paul Rogers, Open Democracy, 2008-08-31
The Taliban’s new tactics are taking them nearer to Kabul. Washington’s response: redouble failure. The bottom-line is that there is only one answer to the Taliban revival, the revitalisation of al-Qaida, and even the jihadist presence in western Pakistan: the application of intense military force. There is simply no other way.
6. Austral Policy Forum 08-09A: Satellites, Citizens and Secrets: R v Law & Others – Russell Goldflam
Russell Goldflam of the Northern Territory Legal Aid Commission writes on the overturning on appeal of convictions of four Australian peace activists following their December 2005 incursion into the top secret Pine Gap electronic intelligence facility near Alice Springs in Central Australia in protest against the role of the base in the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. “Civil disobedience”, Goldflam writes, “exposes those who engage in it to the risk of vigorous litigation, substantial penalties, and public opprobrium. It also exposes the state to risk: police and prosecution agencies may be embarrassed, confidence in the legal system can be impaired, and public support for important government decisions can be undermined.” “The accused”, Goldflam concludes, “had always said they wanted to put Pine Gap on trial. In the end it was effectively held that they were entitled to do just that in the unique context of their particular prosecution.”
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