CITIZENS FOR DEFENCE
Robert Bond Director Citizens for Defence
Australia Free Rides on US war machine
Sam Roggeveen in his post in the Lowy Interpreter blog “Free-riding may be selfish, but it works” seems to approve of the Australian nation milking the US Alliance for all it is worth in order that we can obtain US military protection for nothing.
If Former US Deputy Secretary of State Richard Armitage in his plea for more Australian support for the Alliance evokes such sarcastic self interest by the Australian masses, then the Alliance has little future.
Sam, we hope is talking tongue in cheek when he says it works for Australia and he is right.
The US should realize that leading by example does not work with selfish Australians and saving us from the ravages of a marauding Asian nation in WW2 is of little relevance to the present generation.
Ideally, the US should reduce its defence budget to 1.48% of GDP to match Australia in the 13-14 financial year and mothball its fleet and missile systems saving a few old frigates and torpedo boats to match Australia’s contribution to the Alliance.
I can hear the howls of protest against the US from the “selfish” Australians denigrating the US for ratting on an Alliance partner.
The time has probably arrived when the US will have to segregate its military forces into homeland security forces and ally support forces. The US just cannot afford to carry the rest of the world on its shoulders in the interests of peace. Sequestration is biting deeply with stress on ship maintenance, aircraft numbers and in all areas of the US defence force.
The US has to put in place a set of incentives which values its military machine and the cost of maintaining it by the US taxpayers.
They should deal with Australia by,
- · Under Aus 2% GDP for defence: no US Alliance support
- · Under Aus 3% GDP for defence: US matches Aus defence effectiveness
- · Under Aus 4% GDP for defence: US doubles Aus defence effectiveness.
- · Over Aus 4% GDP for defence: US acts as a full Alliance partner
Even this arrangement would be incredible security value for Australia. We would know where we stand and would probably feel less like parasites feeding off the loins of the US war machine.