APSNet Semi-Weekly Bulletin, June 30, 2008

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"APSNet Semi-Weekly Bulletin, June 30, 2008", APSNet Semi-Weekly Bulletin, June 30, 2008, https://nautilus.org/apsnet/apsnet-30-june-2008/

APSNet 30 June 2008

  1. Why War in Asia Remains Thinkable
  2. Nuclear Power Bombs in Rudd’s Climate Change Options
  3. Questioning Australia’s Beowulf Option
  4. RDTL Doubles Budget in Mid-Year
  5. Not Diplomatic: Did Ramos Horta Botch His Bid for UN Job?
  6. Australia, US and Japan to Forge Disaster Taskforce
  7. Afghan Situation Worsening, UN Relief Chief Says, Urging New Approach
  8. Curtin Call an Excellent Debut

1. Why War in Asia Remains Thinkable, Hugh White, Asia’s Strategic Challenges Conference, International Institute of Strategic Studies, 2-4 June 2008

To make war unthinkable in the new Asia, we need to build a new order to replace the Post-Vietnam Order. This is not just a question for the US and China, but for everyone, and especially Japan. We all have huge incentives to make the new order as peaceful and stable as the old one, because we have all benefited from the old order so handsomely. But we lack a shared vision of what that new order might look like, and it is high time we started trying to build such a vision.

2. Nuclear Power Bombs in Rudd’s Climate Change Options, John Kerin, AFR*, 2008-06-28

Prime Minister Kevin Rudd has ruled out adopting nuclear energy as a response to climate change. Mr Rudd said, “On the question of nuclear, we believe that there [is] a huge range of energy options available to Australia beyond nuclear and with which we can respond to climate change.”
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  • Tackling that Target (Part One), Peter Mares with Andrew Blakers, Adrian Williams, Dominique La Fontaine and Graeme Pearman, ABC, 2008-06-15 [Transcript]
  • Tackling that Target (Part Two), Peter Mares with Louis Wibberley, Peter Cook, Graeme Pearman, Ziggy Switkowski and Dominique La Fontaine, ABC, 2008-06-22 [Audio]

3. Questioning Australia’s Beowulf Option, Rory Medcalf, Security Challenges, vol. 4, no. 2, Lowy Institute, Winter 2008 [88 Kb, PDF]

I am not for one moment advocating an independent nuclear arsenal for Australia, but any thorough discussion of Australia’s options for single-handedly fighting or deterring a nuclear-armed power needs to account for the nuclear dimension, and not solely by proposing the acquisition of (limited) ballistic missile defences.

4. RDTL Doubles Budget in Mid-Year, Lao Hamutuk, 2008-06-28

The Timor-Leste Council of Ministers has passed a 122% increase in the State Budget for 2008 and sent it to Parliament for approval. This massive increase goes against the process of managing petroleum revenues sustainably which was enacted into law in 2005. The Government held no public discussion or consultation on this budget; it was a closely guarded secret until Parliament received it on 23 June 2008.

  • Budget Review, Ministry of Finance, National Directorate of the Budget, TimorLeste, July 2008.

5. Not Diplomatic: Did Ramos Horta Botch His Bid for UN Job? Tom Hyland, Age, 2008-06-29

There were two assumptions in his indecision: he had the credentials for the job, and it was his for the taking. And there’s the rub. The first assumption was contentious. The second was false. And in publicly revealing his dilemma, he may have fumbled the diplomatic game he’d once played like a virtuoso.

6. Australia, US and Japan to Forge Disaster Taskforce, AAP, Australian, 2008-06-30

Foreign Minister Stephen Smith, US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and Japanese Foreign Minister Masahiko Komura held talks on the sidelines of a Group of Eight meeting in the Japanese city of Kyoto. The three countries called for greater military co-operation and joint emergency response exercises.

7. Afghan Situation Worsening, UN Relief Chief Says, Urging New Approach, News Centre, UN, 2008-06-29

Figures released by the UN Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA) indicate that there have been 698 civilian casualties so far this year, compared to 430 for the same period in 2007. Nearly two-thirds of the killings this year have been the result of insurgents and other anti-Government groups, with the rest attributable to either the military or international forces.

8. Curtin Call an Excellent Debut, Peter Hartcher,  SMH, 2008-06-27

When Julia Gillard rose to speak in the US State Department in Washington she was smart enough to pay generous tribute to the previous Australian custodians of the alliance. And she was wise enough to make a broad statement of political transcendence: “Our alliance is bigger than any person, bigger than any party, bigger than any government, bigger than any period in our history together.”

9. Nautilus Institute Briefing Books – Updates and new pages

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