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Australia’s Recognition of the Changing Realities is Long Overdue

16 7 0

Australia is in an historically unusual position. Cultural and social ties with Europe have been the historical benchmark. There was a profound national shock following the fall of Singapore in December 1941.

That saw an immediate reorientation towards the United States. The US has been the focus of Australian security concerns ever since. As recently as in the past week the United States Secretary of State has been in Australia giving instructions for Australia’s involvement in yet another war on behalf of the Americans, this time in an entirely manufactured crisis in Iran.

There was a brief attempt to move away from this counterproductive alliance in the 1970s.

Marshall Green, known in United States circles as the coup master for very good reasons, was sent to Canberra as United States ambassador.

Green had been in South Korea to engineer the overthrow of the South Korean dictator. His next project was in Indonesia where he organized the overthrow of the troublesome (to the United States) independently minded Sukarno Government.

More than half a million people, predominantly ethnic Chinese, died in that coup. That Indonesia was for the next 30 years ruled by a brutal dictatorship was not of the least concern to the Americans.

Green’s next project was in Chile where again a troublesomely independent and left leaning government was in place.

Salvador Allende was too independent and too left wing for US tastes. He therefore had to go. Again, there was a massive death toll.

In a familiar pattern a 30 year long brutal dictatorship took his place.

Mr Green’s next assignment was to Canberra as US ambassador. Again there was a troublesome government in place that showed alarming signs of developing an independent foreign policy.

Australia has been a loyal United States satellite up to that point. It faithfully echoed the anti-communist rhetoric that saw Australia involved in US wars in Korea and Vietnam.

The latter war was instructive in many ways. When it became obvious that Ho Chi Minh was going to win the scheduled election following the defeat of the French at Dien Bien Phu in 1954, the United States used its influence over the South Vietnamese dictatorship to ensure that the scheduled election in the south was not held.

It would of course have been unthinkable for the “wrong man” to win. One of the enduring fantasies about US foreign policy is that it has the least interest in democratic processes where they conflict with US determined self-interest.

That United States interference in Vietnam led inevitably to a civil war, invariably portrayed in the west as communist expansionism. It was a common theme at the time to hear phrases such as “we don’t fight them there, we will soon be fighting them here.”

Australia was an enthusiastic participant in this rhetoric. Then as now there was precious little connection between the rhetoric and the reality.

Gough Whitlam came to power in 1972 in part on a platform of ceasing Australian involvement in the American wars of choice.

That was clearly a threat to the status quo. Whitlam’s fatal error however was to threaten the closure of Pine Gap, the major United States spy centre for the region. It is a role that continues to this day and is a major factor in Australia’s ongoing participation in the US war crimes.

The day before Whitlam was to announce the closure of Pine Gap in the Australian parliament, long time CIA lackey in Canberra, John Kerr, sacked the Whitlam government in what can only be described as a coup d’état.

The historian Jenny Hocking has spent a significant portion of her professional life endeavouring to obtain the papers that would establish the British link to that coup d’état.

It is my respectful opinion that Dr Hocking’s focus is misplaced. The coup was in fact organized by the aforementioned United States spy/ambassador Marshall Green. His role has been made abundantly clear in declassified United States documents.

The unwillingness of Australian academics among others to confront this uncomfortable reality is reflective of a wider problem in Australian academia and foreign policy generally.

There are a number of other consequences of that coup that persist to the present........

© New Eastern Outlook