Russia’s Invasion of Ukraine – Five Lessons for Taiwan

Beijing is closely watching the West’s response to the 24 February 2022 Russian invasion of Ukraine for its own plans regarding the eventual subjugation of the independent country of Taiwan. The West’s desultory response to the crisis has revealed plain vulnerabilities and false assumptions about what the West would likely do in the event of an amphibious invasion or blockade of Taiwan by mainland China.

Dr. Julian Spencer-Churchill
12min

Military Strategy a Casualty of Successive Restructures

Defence in Australia has no military strategy for applying Australian military power for the achievement of government objectives. Australia’s inability to establish a military strategy tradition may be a consequence of the way the Defence structure and roles have morphed over the past half-century.

Colonel Mick Scott
24min

Indonesia and China: Geostrategic Implications for the ADF

As security tensions heighten in the Indo-Pacific, Australia is well placed to strengthen its relationship with Indonesia by stepping up military cooperation to jointly address China's growing influence in our region.

Dr Daniel Peterson, Professor Greg Barton, Professor Shahram Akbarzadeh, Dr Joshua Roose
37min

Book Review: Dare to Lead, by Brené Brown

Brené Brown has been researching vulnerability, shame and resilience for two decades. Her TED talk on “The power of vulnerability” has 37 million views and is one of the five most watched. Her latest book Dare to Lead draws on her consulting and personal experience, teaching and evaluating the “Brave Leaders” course and interviewing 150 global C-level leaders to unpack the ingredients of brave leadership and courageous organizations. 

Darren Cronshaw
8min

Australia’s Military Strategic Challenges – Close to Home

The 16 September 2021 announcement of an enhanced trilateral security partnership between Australia, the United Kingdom and the United States (AUKUS) confirmed beyond any remaining doubt that the Australian Government considers its strategic environment to have permanently changed. The 2020 Defence Strategic Update presaged the announcement by highlighting a number of developments which had swiftly altered the strategic landscape of the Indo-Pacific region since the publication of Australia’s 2016 Defence White Paper.

Chris Watson
40min

The Art of Pacifism in the Conduct of War

For some, pacifism is a dirty word, shorthand for an unwillingness to fight on behalf of your country. However, pacifism is not just about being anti-war or anti-fighting. It is also about how not to get into a war. It is this latter meaning of pacifism that I draw on in this essay to discuss ethical issues in security strategy, not to undermine the willingness to fight but to consider the pragmatic tools that pacifism provides to prevent the need to fight. I am an amateur boxer, so I understand the inclination to fight and the desire to confront an adversary with force.

Dr Richard Davis
15min

Three words that conjure dangerous oversimplification

The Defence Strategic Update of 2020 provided three words that neatly encapsulate Government’s strategic objectives. The words also capture the raison d'etre of the Australian Defence Force and the tasks it is likely to execute in a period of ‘the most consequential strategic realignment since the Second World War’.[1]

Simon Hunter
8min

Victory in the Age of Cyber-Enabled Warfare

Future conflicts will not be won in cyberspace, but they can most certainly be lost there.

Major Christopher Wardrop
10min

JPME With a Purpose: Breaking Through the Mythology

A personal search for the truth beyond the myths of Canada’s naval success reinforces the merits of Australia’s attitude to cultivating informed leadership through a robust JPME system that encourages the asking of uncomfortable questions.

Darin MacDonald
20min

War-Fighting and the Production of Non-Sense

The 2020 Defence Strategic Update provides a strategic demand signal for Defence to think equally and iteratively across shape, deter and respond. In this context, the notion of warfighting warrants a reconsideration in terms of the dominant position it occupies within the ADF. If this term no longer simply speaks to the activity of fighting a war, what does it actually do, and how does this affect Australia’s current approach to military strategy?

Phil Champion and Matthew Gill
10

The National Security Thinking of Australia and Singapore

Australia and Singapore have benefited from different “means” for the same “ends” in their national security reasoning to date, but China’s potential to overtake US influence in the Indo-Pacific region challenges both ways of thinking.

Fredie Tan
10

Operations in deception: corrupting the sensing grid of the enemy

Fooling the enemy’s intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance (ISR) artificial intelligence system will be as critical as refining our own in a live situation. AI is the future, but it has its vulnerabilities.

Jacob Simpson
10min