September 03, 2014

Send the U.S. Navy to Australia

Australian cooperation with America's ongoing military and humanitarian operations in Iraq is just the latest example of a deep alliance that has flourished for over six decades. In recent weeks, Canberra joined Washington in authorizing humanitarian airdrops to the stranded Yazidi population, while officials from both sides met to further long-term defense cooperation. With a rising Indo-Pacific region, America's pivot to Asia and new pressure on the rules-based international order, now is the time to elevate the U.S.-Australia alliance. Basing U.S. Navy vessels in Western Australia would be a good start.

Close ties with Australia have long served as a pillar of American strategy, and for good reason. Well before the two nations signed an alliance in 1951, they fought alongside one another in World War I and together turned back aggression in World War II. U.S. Secretary of State Dean Acheson once opined that a formal compact seemed unnecessary, so plain was America's commitment to Australia's defense. The United States and Australia have fought together in every significant conflict of the past century, and this record is likely to continue.

It was no accident that in 2011 President Obama chose Canberra to highlight his administration's policy of rebalancing to Asia, including by enhancing the U.S. Marine and Air Force presence rotating through the Northern Territory. By 2020, up to 2,500 Marines will be exercising and training in Australia, a presence that builds on decades of close intelligence cooperation.

Read the full piece at The Wall Street Journal

  • Reports
    • June 20, 2024
    Swarms over the Strait

    Executive Summary Drones have transformed battlefields in Libya, Nagorno-Karabakh, and Ukraine, but in a companion report, Evolution Not Revolution: Drone Warfare in Russia’s ...

    By Stacie Pettyjohn, Hannah Dennis & Molly Campbell

  • Commentary
    • The Washington Post
    • June 10, 2024
    Obama tried to pivot to Asia in 2011. We must succeed this time.

    This article, originally published in The Washington Post, is an excerpt from Lost Decade: The US Pivot to Asia and the Rise of Chinese Power. In 2011, President Barack Obama ...

    By Richard Fontaine & Robert Blackwill

  • Commentary
    • Just Security
    • June 10, 2024
    Next UN Afghanistan Talks in Doha Must Hold Taliban to Account on Human Rights

    The United Nations is preparing to host its third meeting of international envoys to Afghanistan in Doha later this month. This is a promising initiative aimed at developing a...

    By Lisa Curtis

  • Commentary
    • Breaking Defense
    • May 29, 2024
    Differentiating Innovation: From Performance Art to Production Scale

    The Department of Defense has an innovation problem, and it’s not the one you are probably thinking about. Certainly, the Department needs to improve its ability to move with ...

    By Andrew Metrick

View All Reports View All Articles & Multimedia