Thursday, June 14, 2012

Australia Hedging Its Bets

A couple weeks ago, I had posted about China telling Australia to choose between the U.S. and China as its "Godfather." Looks like Australia is trying to hedge its bets. From Walter Russell Mead's blog at the American Interest:
The Obama Administration’s “pivot” to Asia has so far met with a warm welcome from China’s neighbors, who have been unnerved by Beijing’s more assertive posture in recent years. Still, Washington should be mindful of shifting public opinion among its allies in the Asia-Pacific region. In Australia, for instance, former Prime Minister Malcolm Fraser made waves last week when he voiced concern that Australia was becoming too close to an America that he sees (erroneously) as responding to the rise of China with a Cold War, containment-first mentality. And Fraser is not the only Australian to think his country is singing just a little too loudly from the American hymn book. Eminent defense analyst Hugh White, while adopting a much more nuanced approach than Fraser to the nature of Canberra’s position within the Sino-US dynamic, is nevertheless convinced that America must cede at least some power in the region in order to maintain stability and avoid a devastating strategic rivalry
Read the whole thing.

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