Independent Strategic Analysis of Australia’s Global Interests

Topic

Australia’s Role in the Nuclear Renaissance

Background The announcements, made in late May, by the Swiss and German Governments that they will phase out nuclear power, are premature. Australia has the ability to be the voice of reason in the international nuclear debate and to advocate the merits of atomic energy for developing nations.   Comment Civil nuclear power has, until recently,...

Instability Continues in Yemen

Background Clashes between forces supporting Yemeni President Ali Abdullah Saleh and tribesmen loyal to Sheikh Sadeq al-Ahman continue as Saleh refuses for the third time to accept a GCC-sponsored request to step down. Comment A decisive outcome appears unlikely in the short term. Neither side has the military means nor the authority to defeat the...

Saudi Arabia Proposes anti-Iran Alliance

Background Saudi Arabia has asked Pakistan, Malaysia, Indonesia and the Central Asian republics to join it and its Gulf allies in an alliance, aimed at containing the influence of Iran and supporting the Saudi-led intervention in Bahrain. While these countries are yet to openly come out in favour of such a grouping, the United States...

China Refutes Gwadar Naval Base Conjecture

Background The Pakistani Defence Minister Ahmed Mukhtar has affirmed that Pakistan is appreciative of China’s willingness to operate Gwadar port, and is also keen to see that ‘a naval base is constructed at the site of Gwadar for Pakistan.’ Predictably, the remarks attracted international attention. They reinforced existing views among foreign commentators, who believe that...

Sudan Violence Returns; Energy Interests Threatened

Background Northern Sudanese armed forces recently took over the disputed region of Abyei, which lies on the border between northern and, soon-to-be-independent, southern Sudan. While the recent clashes have so far mainly been confined to Abyei, the potential for an escalation of violence still exists. Should that occur, it would not only negatively affect a...

Pilbara Prospects 2020: Challenges and Threats to Regional Security

Download PDF Analysis The economic and social profile of the Pilbara will continue to increase in complexity over the coming decade[1]. Bolstered by vast infrastructure projects, a growing population and a highly efficient, interdependent and maturing economic profile the region’s future seems ostensibly secure. Existing and future vulnerabilities, however, have the potential to destabilise the region,...

Northern Australia Welcomes End of La Niña

Background The end of the capricious La Niña weather pattern will provide ecological stability for Northern Australia. Comment According to climate models surveyed by the Bureau of Meteorology, La Niña, or “the girl” in Spanish, the weather phenomenon responsible for flooding and increased cyclonic activity over Northern Australia, has begun to dissipate. Since the beginning...

Chinese Admit Three Gorges Dam Failures

Background                                            The Chinese Government has issued a statement admitting that the $23 billion Three Gorges hydro electric dam project is leading to deterioration in the ecology of the region and is vulnerable to geological disasters. The managers of the dam are confronted with conflicting demands for the water, while trying to return profits to their...

A Step Towards An Eco-Friendly Lifestyle In Tanzania

Background Tanzania is currently looking at developing a group of eco-villages with the financial support of the European Commission. Eco-villages are communities designed with the aim of promoting ecological, social and economic sustainability. To support the country’s efforts, the Commission launched the Global Climate Change Alliance in Tanzania on 26 October 2010. Tom Vens, the...

Democratic Alliance Consolidates Position as South African Opposition

Background In South African local government elections held on 18 May, the Democratic Alliance (DA) consolidated its support in Cape Town, Western Cape Province and the Midvaal municipality, to cement its place as the country’s chief opposition party. DA officials see it as confirmation that the tide is very slowly but surely beginning to turn...

Publication Guide

  • Associate papers are primary source assessments written by FDI associates. The assessment topics range from regional bilateral relationships and opportunities and challenges in our neighbouring countries.

  • Feature interviews are interviews conducted by an FDI Research Manager. Interview topics range from the sustainability of our planet to the improved provision of emergency food aid.

  • Normally issued in hardcopy, these represent a comprehensive study of one of FDI’s four research areas.

  • Strategic alerts are priority current intelligence items. We provide these alerts when events such as military deployments or foreign election results occur.

  • A 1500 to 3000 word, single topic assessment.

  • A number of short articles addressing current intelligence topics, issued each week.

  • A record of discussions resulting from a single, or series of, roundtable conferences.

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