Julia Gillard’s Address to the Joint Meeting of the US Congress

Prime Minister Julia Gillard has delivered a 35 minute speech to a joint meeting of the United States Congress. [Read more…]


U.S.-Australian Relations In A New Era: Nicholas Burns

The US-Australian Alliance has “a foundation deeper than the policies or political parties of the day”, according to the United States Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs, Ambassador R. Nicholas Burns.

Addressing the Lowy Institute in Sydney, Burns said he was “impressed by the new Australian cabinet”. He said “Australia is as good a friend to the US as any country in the world” and there is “no reason for that to change”. [Read more…]


UN, USA, Asia: Three Pillars Of Labor’s Foreign Policy, Says Smith

The incoming Minister for Foreign Affairs, Stephen Smith, has outlined the three pillars underpinning Federal Labor’s foreign policy approach.

In a statement issued today, Smith said those pillars were:

  • Our membership of the United Nations;
  • Our Alliance with the United States; and
  • Our policy of comprehensive engagement with Asia.

Smith said: “Federal Labor has consistently emphasised the need to focus our foreign policy and diplomatic efforts on Australia’s national interests within our own Asia-Pacific region. [Read more…]


U.S. Ambassador Hasn’t Read ANZUS Treaty

The United States Ambassador to Australia, Robert McCallum, has admitted he has not read the ANZUS Treaty.

Robert McCallumIn a wide-ranging address to the National Press Club in Canberra, McCallum was asked about Article 4 of the treaty which states that “each Party recognizes that an armed attack in the Pacific Area on any of the Parties would be dangerous to its own peace and safety and declares that it would act to meet the common danger in accordance with its constitutional processes.”

Asked what the US constitutional process would be to invoke the ANZUS Treaty, particularly if there were a conflict between the President and the Congress, McCallum reminded his audience that he was a lawyer with 30 years experience and said: [Read more…]


Labor And The World: Mark Latham Outlines Opposition Foreign Policy

Opposition Leader Mark Latham has addressed the Lowy Institute, outlining the ALP’s foreign policy.

Latham said “the world which the next Labor Government will confront is very different from the world the last Labor Government faced”. With the Cold War over, “we have entered this new century with a single strategic and political superpower, the United States.”

Economic globalisation is “another equally important force..transforming the world”, Latham said. “It is blurring the traditional distinctioms between domestic and foreign policy.” [Read more…]


Greens Say Schieffer Should Butt Out

This is the text of a statement from the Australian Greens Senator, Bob Brown.

It follows statements on the American alliance from the Leader of the Opposition, Mark Latham, and responses from the US Ambassador to Australia, Tom Schieffer. [Read more…]


Howard Defends Free Trade Agreement With U.S.

The Prime Minister, John Howard, has strongly defended the proposed Free Trade Agreement with the United States.

Speaking at a press conference in Canberra, Howard fielded questions on sugar, local content rules in television, and the possibility of a flood of American imports.

  • Listen to Howard’s press conference (26m)

Transcript of John Howard’s press conference.

PRIME MINISTER:

Everybody, welcome back. I haven’t seen you, or most of you for ages. Well ladies and gentlemen, I’ve called this news conference to announce that Cabinet has given broad approval, in principle – which is all one can do at this stage – at the negotiated Free Trade Agreement concluded yesterday in Washington between Australia and the United States.

Let me start by congratulating Mark Vaile and all the other members of the negotiating team who did such an outstanding job. And in particular, I want to add to my thanks to Mark, Steve Deady the head negotiator, Ashton Calvert the head of the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade. And also Michael Thawley the Australian Ambassador in Washington who’s been an indefatigable champion of this agreement now the whole time that he’s been our representative in the United States. [Read more…]