Australian Security in the 21st Century
Its European ties and Western culture operates in the shadow of China's economic influence and the US hegemonic military might. Asia needs the defence force of the US, but has numerous internal and external tensions that make multilateral security agreements temporary and tenuous at best. As we move into the 21st century, the US will continue to provide a significant security presence in Asia, while Australia, faced with a rapidly changing political and economic landscape, will need to rely on an ever-changing series of ad-hoc multilateral security arrangements.
The end of the Cold War finalized the polarized concept of two super powers with strict allegiances across the globe, and ushered in a new wave of security concerns that demand multilateralism. While the US is currently perceived as a hegemonic power, the nature of a global national security has diluted the resources of the US with their wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. The new threats to Asian security are terrorism, nuclear proliferation and the Korean issue, drug smuggling, piracy on the seas, illegal movement of immigrants and populations, and the looming threats of the ambitions of India and China.
No nation in the region can afford to create hostilities with China, and the concerns of North Korea and Taiwan must be handed with diplomatic care and steadfast commitment. Australia, led by the US military, will continue to court China as it is drawn into the Asian Community. ...