James ONeill

Australia Confirms its Colonial Status With Expulsion of Russian Diplomats

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Both the prime minister and the Foreign Minister are trained lawyers. As part of the training they would have been imbued with some of the most profound and enduring concepts of the common law. These include such fundamental points as the presumption of innocence; the onus of proof…

Does Australia Believe in International Law: The Case of Syria

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One of the most common phrases heard from senior Australian government officials including the Prime Minister and the Foreign Minister is Australia’s belief in what it is pleased to call the “rules based international order.” This phrase…

Australia’s Dilemma: The Quad or its National Interest

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In 2005 Japan raised the possibility of a separate grouping of four nations, Australia, India, Japan and the United States, as a potential counterweight to the growing power of China. It was an ill-considered notion then, and nothing has happened since then to make it a better idea…

Are Russia and China Natural Allies and Does it Matter

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At a recent meeting of the Australian Institute for International Affairs (AIIA) a prominent Australian analyst and commentator suggested that Russia and China were “not natural allies”. There was therefore a risk, he suggested, of geopolitical instability in the Eurasian…

Why an Iraq War Inquiry is More Necessary Than Ever

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There has been a flurry of activity caused by the comments made by Green’s parliamentarians Adam Bandt and Richard di Natale over recently installed Liberal Senator Jim Molan. The facts relate to the Australian situation, but the issue has wider ramifications. The ostensible…

Reaction to Recent Iranian Protests Reveals Western Blind Spots More than it Does Reality

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The recent social unrest in Iran exposed a number of elements of western foreign policy that the mainstream media either failed to appreciate or, more likely, deliberately chose not to report. Iran has been a target of western intervention for…

Trump’s Jerusalem Statement Opens a Pandora’s Box

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US President Donald Trump’s decision to recognise Jerusalem is the capital of Israel has been predictably condemned by the governments of all states, except Israel itself. Trump’s own statement on the issue what’s more carefully worded than the reaction to the decision would…

Australia’s Foreign Affairs White Paper Looks to the Past

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The latest Australian White Paper on foreign affairs published in November 2017 was the first such attempt to define Australia’s place in the modern geopolitical world and how it might appropriately respond to regional and global challenges since 2003. The world…

Demise Of The Petrodollar Has The Potential To Reshape The Geopolitical World

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In the early 1970s President Richard Nixon instigated two changes that had profound effects. The first of these was taking United States off the gold standard; i.e. henceforth US dollars would no longer be convertible to Gold. Ordinarily this might have…

DFAT’s White Paper and Modern Reality

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In 2018 the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) will release a new White Paper, setting out possible scenarios for the future conduct of Australia’s foreign policy. It would be unwise to expect any substantial, let alone radical, departure from the foreign policy…

New Revelations in the Syrian War

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The recent revelations by Edward Snowden the former national security agency whistle-blower about the role of Saudi Arabia in the ongoing war in Syria has raised fresh questions about role of Saudi Arabia and others in arming the various terrorist factions in Syria. According to…

Trump’s Rejection of the JCPOA Poses a Major Threat

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President Trump has announced that he is no longer willing to certify Iran’s compliance with the terms of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) agreed to by the five permanent members of the UN Security Council, plus…


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