Location, Population, and Australian Defense Policy
Student research paper
ARMY WAR COLL CARLISLE BARRACKS PA
Pagination or Media Count:
As a small or middle power with limited resources and geographically isolated, Australia has relied upon external assistance to protect herself against attack. Traditionally, this assistance came from the British. Traditionally, too, political and strategic decisions affecting security were made in London rather than Canberra. This remained true until World War II. The unhappy events following the entry of Japan into World War II shattered the old concept that the strategic defense of Australia could be left to the British and the Royal Navy. By the end of the war, Australians had formed an appreciation of the immense strength that the United States was able to exert in Australias area of primary strategic interest. The experience of World War II caused the Australian Government to make a series of decisions which, while political in themselves, constituted the basis for the evolution of her defense policy. Australia placed her national survival above the previously acknowledged duty to sustain the military decisions taken by and in London. She openly sought the closest relations with the United States as the Pacific nation which possessed the power to insure her survival. Australias postwar search for regional security arrangements was, in reality, generated by her determination to legalize and formalize a claim to United States military power as a substitute for that with which she had lived for a century. ANZUS and Australian membership in SEATO are two of the results.
- Military Operations, Strategy and Tactics