Independent Strategic Analysis of Australia’s Global Interests


The United States Needs to Revisit Newton’s Third Law

Washington and its allies must realise that open-ended wars on terrorism are futile and that a successful counterterrorism policy must address the legitimate political grievances that al-Qaeda claims to champion.

Where Did the US Go So Wrong in Afghanistan?

26 August 2021 | Associate Papers, Indian Ocean

President Biden’s decision to finally withdraw US forces from Afghanistan was the correct decision and certainly overdue. The lack of preparation to do so orderly and safely, however, was yet another terrible mistake in a string of mistakes that have plagued the US from day one.

What Path Taliban Diplomacy in the Post-US Afghanistan?

It remains to be seen whether the Taliban will depend only on China and Pakistan or if it will cultivate ties with other important actors in the region, such as Qatar, Iran, Russia and India.

Are We Out of Options on Myanmar?

Given the enduring and violent nature of the Tatmadaw’s crimes, it is left to international bodies like the International Court of Justice and the United Nations General Assembly to challenge and prosecute them.

The Fall of Afghanistan: Can the US Be Trusted Any More?

President Biden has blamed, in turn, the Afghan Government, its security forces, his predecessor, and the US intelligence community for the fall of Afghanistan, but closer examination of his accusations shows, however, that they are misplaced. Having dismissed all advice that the Afghan Government could fall, the country was then abandoned to the Taliban. As a geopolitical issue, the fall of Afghanistan has ramifications for the US, China, Pakistan and India.

Mauritius Offers Possible Template for Return of International Tourism

As vaccination numbers increase in both Mauritius and Australia, the case could be made for the introduction in 2022 of a travel bubble and the resumption of Air Mauritius’s non-stop flights to Perth.

Prospects for the JCPOA and Iran-US Relations under President Raisi

Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi needs to exhibit flexibility and realise that prolonging negotiations will not benefit anyone, especially the Iranian people who have suffered on account of US sanctions and Covid-19.

Mohammed bin Salman – The Great Reformer?

Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman appears to have a definite agenda to revamp the Kingdom’s economic and social systems. In order to accomplish those goals, he has ensured that he will not face political or other distractions. While that has led to some very dramatic and unpleasant situations, MbS could yet be the reformer that Saudi Arabia needs.

India’s Hopes for a Renewed US-Iran Relationship

While Iran stands to gain much from the removal of US sanctions placed on it, so does India, which will watch the Iran-US negotiations closely.

Beijing Should Worry About the Spreading – and Hardening – Anti-China Sentiment

As anti-China feelings grow across Asia and further afield, Beijing would be right to be worried about – and should develop a strategy to mitigate – it.

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.

Donate Now and Support Independent Research

Donate now to help us provide independent research and advice on global issues facing Australia