APSNet Semi-Weekly Bulletin, September 10, 2009

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"APSNet Semi-Weekly Bulletin, September 10, 2009", APSNet Semi-Weekly Bulletin, September 10, 2009, https://nautilus.org/apsnet/apsnet-10-september-2009/

APSNet 10 September 2009

  1. China in power play for uranium
  2. Afghanistan: Heron on the wing to guide Diggers
  3. Reserve warned on arms broker
  4. PNG: Carbon trading scandal linked to Government
  5. Balibo probe puts ties at risk: Indonesia
  6. Tokyo changes mean new opportunities for Australia
  7. NZ agents join secret war in Afghanistan
  8. Afghanistan by the numbers

1. China in power play for uranium, Barry Fitzgerald and Mathew Murphy, Businessday, 2009-09-09

A Beijing directive to its mushrooming nuclear power industry to step up the acquisition of strategic uranium supplies has led to an agreed $85 million takeover bid for Energy Metals, the main partner in the Northern Territory Bigrlyi uranium deposit. The move is the biggest yet by China into the local uranium industry and follows the agreement that allows uranium exports from Australia to China for the first time. It is expected to be the first of many as China sets about securing uranium supplies for the planned growth of its nuclear power industry.

2. Heron on the wing to guide Diggers, Patrick Walters, Australian, 2009-09-08

Australian aircraft troops in Afghanistan have gained a major new platform to assist in the fight against Taliban insurgents with the RAAF acquiring Israeli-made Heron unmanned aerial vehicles. The Rudd government has rushed through the multi-million-dollar lease of the one-tonne to provide troops on the ground with far greater situational awareness thanks to its superior infra-red cameras and other high-tech sensors.

  • Skylark UAV, Australian Forces Aborad, Nautilus Institute
  • HERTI UAV, Australian Forces Aborad, Nautilus Institute

3. Reserve warned on arms broker, Richard Baker and Nick Mckenzie, Age, 2009-09-10

The Federal Government’s trade agency warned the Reserve Bank of Australia about using a Kuala Lumpur arms broker to help win currency printing deals in Malaysia. Malaysian businessman Abdul Kayum Syed Ahmad has been a broker for a Pakistani weapons operation suspected of playing a key role in that country’s nuclear arms program. He is the second arms trader to be used as an agent by one or both of the RBA’s currency firms, Securency and Note Printing Australia.

4. Carbon trading scandal linked to Government, Ben Cubby and Marian Wilkinson, SMH, 2009-09-09

The Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade assisted an Australian company caught up in Papua New Guinea’s carbon trading scandal as it closed deals in Bangladesh and Jordan this year, even giving it funding. A spokesman for the department confirmed that Carbon Planet had received Federal Government support but details were commercial-in-confidence.

5. Balibo probe puts ties at risk: Indonesia, Tom Allard, 2009-09-10

The Australian Federal Police’s war crimes investigation into the slaying of five Australian-based journalists in East Timor in 1975 risked undermining the relationship between Indonesia and Australia, the Indonesian foreign ministry said. The sharp official response to the new investigation into the death of the Balibo Five came with a warning that Indonesia would not co-operate.

6. Tokyo changes mean new opportunities for Australia, Greg Earl, AFR*, 2009-09-10

Whatever happens will have big implications for Australia, which relies on Japan as a diplomatic and security partner almost as much as it relies on it as an export market and source of capital. Hatoyama’s sweeping election victory has given the federal government an opportunity to draw a line under its earlier difficulties with Japan’s then inward-looking government.
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7. NZ agents join secret war in Afghanistan, Patrick Gower, NZ Herald, 2009-09-09

The Government has secretly been sending intelligence operatives to take part in the war in Afghanistan. New Zealand’s contribution to the war against the Taleban has included an “intelligence” component, separate from the military commitment. It is not known whose command the intelligence operatives are under, or what role they have been playing in the war.

8. Afghanistan by the numbers, Tom Engelhardt, Asia Times, 2009-09-10

This month, the Barack Obama administration will deliver a set of “metrics” to the US Congress for measuring “success” in Afghanistan. It’s not known what metrics Obama will choose, but there is one list – from “war-fighting” to “contractors” to “the presidential election” – that makes for fascinating, and tragic, reading. The administration is evidently now “tweaking” its metrics. But let’s admit it: metrics in war almost invariably turn out to occupy treacherous terrain.

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