TEHRAN – Australian scholar says Canberra funds US ambitions with the fancy of undermining China
“They are taking advantage of Australia’s limited democracy to subsidize Washington’s failed global ambitions in a pipe-dreaming attempt to subdue China, a country that was, until recently, Australia’s main trading partner,” he said. Professor Tim Anderson told The Tehran Times.
On Wednesday September 15, Australia, the United Kingdom and the United States signed a trilateral partnership entitled AUKUS. It was intended to provide Canberra with nuclear propulsion technology for submarines.
“The Canberra regime led by Scott Morrison is engaged in a massive and treacherous embezzlement of Australian public money which will certainly endanger the Australian people,” notes Anderson.
The AUKUS Pact has created enormous controversy around the world, from China to the European Union.
The pact angered Paris because, in 2016, France and Australia signed an agreement obliging France to supply Canberra with submarines.
EU foreign ministers expressed solidarity with France on Monday, EU foreign policy chief Josep Borrell said.
“The ministers clearly expressed their solidarity with France. This announcement went against calls for greater cooperation with the European Union in the Indo-Pacific region,” Borrell told reporters after the ministers’ meeting. the EU on the sidelines of the annual United Nations conference.
In addition, political criticism raises questions about the views of the Australian people on such huge military spending.
“If we asked the Australian people, are you okay with Canberra spending $ 100 billion in public money on nuclear-powered submarines to help Washington compete with its rival China? I have no doubt that they would strongly reject the idea, ”says Anderson.
Here is the text of the interview:
Q: Why did the Australian government sign a deal with America to produce nuclear powered submarines when the fallout is clear: the loss of the Chinese market? What are the main reasons?
A: The Canberra regime led by Scott Morrison is engaged in a massive and treacherous embezzlement of Australian public money that will certainly endanger the people of Australia. They are taking advantage of Australia’s limited democracy to subsidize Washington’s failing global ambitions, in a pipe-dreaming attempt to subdue China, a country that was, until recently, Australia’s main trading partner.
If the Australian people were asked: Are you okay with Canberra spending $ 100 billion in public money on nuclear-powered submarines to help Washington compete with its rival China? I have no doubt that they would strongly reject the idea. But there is no such mechanism for consultation and approval in Australia’s limited democracy.
Canberra’s support for US South Sea schemes aimed at threatening China has already cost the country billions of dollars in export contracts. It is said that a large part of this sum was recovered through alternative markets. Nonetheless, there is a huge loss in trade with China.
Canberra’s message to China seems to be this: We have chosen the traditional losing side in the agony of US imperialism. The risk of an unnecessary and preventable war, which Australia would certainly lose, underscores the depth of the Morrison regime’s betrayal.
While much of the Western corporate media tries to blame China for the heightened tensions, any honest analyst knows that the declining United States is pathologically jealous of China’s rise.
Q: The United States is trying to curb Iran’s peaceful nuclear program as it shares technology with Australia for building nuclear powered submarines. Add to that Israel’s arsenal of nuclear weapons. What do you think of these double standards?
A: First of all, double standards are the norm for imperial and colonial powers. They never accepted post-colonial international law. To cover up their obvious illegality, they speak of “exceptionalism” and invent deceptive doctrines such as “humanitarian intervention”, “preventive defense” and a “responsibility to protect”. In the eyes of imperialism, international law is a tool to be used against others.
The attempt to deploy extensive IAEA protocols against Iran has always been a pretext to subdue the country. A few years ago, Washington managed to gather broad international support for this project, today there is much less.
Ignoring Israel’s nuclear weapons while raising the alarm on Iran’s nuclear power is not just a double standard, it is a transparent and shameless ruse. It comes from the only country in the world to have used nuclear weapons in war, twice against civilian cities in Japan.
Q: Why is France angry with the US and UK nuclear submarine deal with Australia and called it a betrayal? Are European states not worried about China’s rise to power?
A: The French reaction is simply a dispute over contracts and money. Australia had the beginnings of an agreement to buy French submarines; they recently canceled that and switched to the US offer. It looks like Australia will pay France a few billion dollars for the termination of this contract.
Washington is what matters to Canberra. Since 1942, when Canberra’s allegiance shifted from Britain to the United States, every new Australian administration (Conservative or Labor) has attached itself to Washington in order to obtain some sort of financial market security and guarantees. . Each new regime in Canberra was able to exercise only limited autonomy in strategic and international matters. They may be influenced by Europeans, but France and Britain, since WWII, have been seen as secondary imperial actors.
Europeans are less concerned with the rise of China than the United States because they do not share Washington’s obsessive jealousy. The same could be said of their relations with Russia. At the popular level, there is even stronger support for normal relations with Russia and China.
However, some of the European elites are deeply rooted in the “Atlanticist” ideology which is committed to remaining an appendage of Washington, particularly through NATO.
Second, and especially since the buyouts and mergers of the 1990s, many large European companies have deep roots in the US economy. This means that when European states try to act differently towards independent countries like Cuba and Iran, Washington can blackmail them into accepting Washington’s unilateral coercive measures (UCM, wrongly called “sanctions”). , by threatening to harm their American business interests. Indeed, the Obama administration has taken the initiative to arrogantly “amend” Europe’s multibillion-dollar banks for aiding transactions with Cuba and Iran.
All of this helps explain why the INSTEX mechanism (designed to bypass US UCMs) has been mostly ineffective, and why Europeans were unable to properly comply with the JCPOA after Trump gave it up. Simply put, they didn’t have the capacity or the political will to stand up to Washington, even when they disagreed.
Q: Do you predict that the EU would follow a separate path independent of the US?
A: The problem here is that key European states like Germany and France are deeply rooted in Washington’s project, especially through NATO. The EU has also become deeply committed to “Atlanticism” and to the politico-economic norms driven by Washington, on behalf of its voracious giant corporations, such as the privatization of health and social services. We talked about a European army, to replace NATO, but this idea did not go far.
In my opinion, the most likely change could be a further divide in the EU – after Britain left – for example through a financial crisis and subsequent discipline that alienated Italy. In the event of a larger split in the EU, there might be a greater chance for the emergence of an independent foreign policy. This does not necessarily imply a big ideological change. For pragmatic reasons, some European states, if they are cut off from the common EU policy, could see to their advantage developing better relations with Russia and China.
Q: What do you think China’s response would be to this provocation? Do you think that accepting Iran as a full member of the Shanghai Cooperation (SCO) is part of China’s reaction?
A: China has already reacted to the US-UK-AUS decision, which is really nothing new except in the sense that little Canberra has bolstered its loyalty to Washington and reaffirmed its status as before. neocolonial post in Asia-Pacific. The once-booming China-Australia trade relationship is already seriously damaged by China’s response.
But Iran’s membership in the SCO is not directly linked to the US-UK-AUS movement. On the contrary, both represent a deeper and growing polarization of strategic blocs in the world. On the one hand, there is the growth of the East Asian and Eurasian network and on the other is an old guard trying to maintain waning American supremacy. Washington (an American power) fears losing its role in Asia and Europe. He launched half a dozen bloody wars in West Asia to impede the rise of new power blocs in West and Central Asia, but that project steadily failed.
In the meantime, it should be noted that the new Latin American regional blocks, in particular CELAC, are forging relations with Europe and China. The world changes.