‘The Merkel moment: wherever that works‘, Pearls and Irritations, 30 May 2017
Chancellor Merkel’s remark that the United States is no longer reliable, and that Europe should look after itself, should also be a wake-up call for Australia.
Until now, we have been able to avoid the Merkel moment. But we now have a threat and an opportunity. The threat is that we are already so committed and embedded with the US military that if there were a war in the south or east China Sea, or against North Korea, Australia could not act in our own interests and stay out of it. The opportunity is for Australia to recognise that the US “pivot to Asia” is worthless and that our security relies upon the long-delayed engagement with our neighbours, not upon gearing ourselves up to fight whichever of them the Pentagon decides is the enemy du jour.
On ‘shared values’ as an unsteady foundation for foreign policy, see also this from Honest History’s David Stephens (and this from Senator McCain visiting). For more on the foreign policy significance of Trump, use the Search function on the Honest History website with search term ‘Trump’. Alison Broinowski is Honest History’s vice president and the co-editor of The Honest History Book, which includes her chapter titled ‘Australia’s tug of war: Militarism versus independence’.