defence April 30, 2022

Everything is going up, except Morrison’s chances

With three weeks to go, one thing is crystal clear: this is not a re-run of the 2019 election campaign for Scott Morrison. The prime minister is at best treading water; a more apt description might be that he is taking it. What we have seen in the...

immigration August 21, 2021

Scott Morrison is stuck

Scott Morrison has an answer for everything and a solution for nothing. Like the neoliberalism of which his party was once so proud, he is all promise and no delivery. His press conferences have long been a masterclass in dictating the terms of...

defence July 3, 2021

Investigative reporting and defamation

The Ben Roberts-Smith case may be the greatest show in town, yet the consequences for the media defendants cannot be overstated. The future of investigative reporting is held in the balance. It may not yet have sunk in how significant the case is to...

defence November 21, 2020

The politics of deploying the SAS

The decision to use the SAS on high-tempo deployments was political: it made Australia a useful ally to the US. It may have also contributed to a culture of abuse.

defence June 8, 2019

Morrison goes from royals to rate cuts to raids

As it was for his many predecessors, Scott Morrison and his wife, Jenny, were ushered into the Buckingham Palace parlour the Queen reserves for meeting her prime ministers. The antique two-bar electric heater was not turned on in the fireplace but...

immigration July 22, 2017

Security and Malcolm Turnbull’s bluff

A bloke named Craig Morgan got his 15 minutes of fame this week. Barnaby Joyce identified him as the man who once knocked out his front teeth. “You remember his name?” the journalist at GQ magazine asked. “When someone removes your front teeth, you...

defence February 18, 2017

Recalibrating Australia’s Defence focus and budget

Rather than comprehending that the alliance aims for Australia to be independent, commentary assumes we are inescapably reliant upon the US for our security.

defence October 1, 2016

What really happens at Pine Gap

It’s one of two sacred sites to which you can drive from Alice Springs. The other is the red stone monolith of Uluru, said by the Pitjantjara to bring down a curse on anyone who removes a rock. This one, though, is the huddle of gleaming white...

defence April 30, 2016

Coalition attempts to win votes with submarine politics

The extreme political folly of the Abbott government’s approach to industry policy was dramatically highlighted at Adelaide’s Osborne shipbuilding facility on Tuesday. Owned and operated by ASC, formerly the Australian Submarine Corporation, an...

defence March 5, 2016

Defence white paper seeks to address shortfalls

The figure is $450 billion. It’s a sum so colossal it almost defies understanding: nearly a third of Australia’s annual gross domestic product. It’s also how much the government plans to spend on defence in the next decade. The current defence...

defence November 28, 2015

Heat on for Malcolm Turnbull ahead of Paris conference

As he heads to Paris for the 21st conference of the parties (COP 21), Malcolm Turnbull doesn’t have the survival of the species top of mind. The United Nations-sponsored climate talks have the ambition to lay the framework for an international...