James ONeill

Time to Invite Russian Diplomats Back with an...

1187688On 4th of March 2018 former Russian double agent Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia were discovered on a park bench in Salisbury England in a distressed state. They were treated by passers-by, including a doctor, before being taken to Salisbury General Hospital. The hospital…

UK Torture Report Raises Serious Questions

PRBA7866333A recently released report of the UK Intelligence and Security Committee of Parliament under the chairmanship of conservative MP Dominic Grieve QC has received remarkably little media coverage in Australia.  There are a number of reasons to be concerned about the information contained…

South China Sea a Touchstone for the New Real...

USSCS464523423At the recent Australia-China Business Council meeting in Canberra, China’s ambassador to Australia Cheng Jingye accused Australia of harbouring a cold war mentality, and said that “less bias and bigotry” was needed if the currently strained relationship between the two countries…

The SCO and G7 Meetings Point to Different Wo...

7012Two meetings of considerable geopolitical significance took place last weekend. They could not have been more different in tone and outcome. Each in their way were representative of the fundamental realignment that is taking place in the world order, and each points to a very…

Washington’s Old Habits and New Geopoli...

1033558446To absolutely no one’s surprise, US president Donald Trump has announced the cancellation of the summit meeting with North Korea’s Kim Jong-un scheduled to have been held in Singapore on 12 June 2018. In announcing his decision Trump referred to what was described in the letter he…

Trump’s Withdrawal From the JCPOA the Death K...

7821уThe decision by Trump will have ramifications far wider than the fact of US withdrawal alone. First, it will reinforce the image of the United States as a country that will sign up to an agreement as the Obama administration did, agreed to its ratification in the United Nations Security Council as the…

The Korean Agreement: A New Beginning or Will...

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The joint declaration by the leaders of North and South Korea on 27 April 2018 has rightly been applauded as a significant breakthrough in the relationship between the two parts of the Korean peninsula that have been in varying states of tension since the armistice that marked the cessation…

Another False Gas Attack Risks Wider Repercus...

1052398989It is difficult to overstate the dangers posed by the latest escalation of tensions in Syria over the alleged gas attack in the Syrian town of Douma. The tensions are not eased by the inflammatory rhetoric emanating from the White House, with the usual echoes of support from American…

Australia and the Rules Based Internal Order

56234123111One of the most frequently heard phrases from Prime Minister Turnbull and Foreign Minister Bishop is their reiteration of a belief in the “rules based international order.” This phrase is usually invoked in the context of a criticism…

US Attacks Syria: Disregards Evidence and Int...

SY45324234On 13 April 2018 the United States, the United Kingdom and France carried out military strikes against Syrian government positions. This was claimed by the United States Government and its allies, including Australia, to be in response to the use of chemical weapons by Syrian…

Australia Confirms its Colonial Status With E...

AU5634222Both the prime minister and the Foreign Minister are trained lawyers. As part of the training they would have been imbued with some of the most profound and enduring concepts of the common law. These include such fundamental points as the presumption of innocence; the onus of proof…

Does Australia Believe in International Law: ...

JB452341111One of the most common phrases heard from senior Australian government officials including the Prime Minister and the Foreign Minister is Australia’s belief in what it is pleased to call the “rules based international order.” This phrase…


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