Category Archives: Uncategorized

Joko Widodo’s visit to Australia

In discussion with the ANU’s Ass.Prof Greg Fealy and the ABC’s Tom Switzer, on Indonesian President Joko Widodo’s visit to Australia:                                                                     […]

Australia’s diminishing aid budget

Australia’s aid budget is the lowest it has been, as a proportion of GDP, since aid began. From its mid-1960s peak of 0.48 per cent of GDP, the aid budget is now less than half that, at 0.21 per cent. The simple reason for aid cuts has been to save money to balance budgets. The […]

Social democracy is sick; is it dying?

There was little surprise in the Conservative’ victory in the UK’s recent elections. What was surprising, however, was the loss of traditional Labour seats.This can be explained by a number of obvious factors, but perhaps the critical factor has not yet been discussed. Jeremy Corbyn was a Labour leader who struggled to sell a compelling […]

West Papua’s limited hopes for the future

After a half a century of incorporation as part of Indonesia and following a period of broadly declining violence in the half island of West Papua, the past year has seen a marked upsurge in Papuan-initiated violence. This increased violence appears to demonstrate that, even after so much time, anti-Indonesian sentiment is as strong as […]

Q+A in East Timor’s future

My answers to some questions by an Agence-France Presse journalist ahead of Timor-Leste’s celebration of the 20th anniversary of its vote for independence: · What are the key developments politically, economically and socially in East Timor since 1999? A: The development of the Timor Sea fields has allowed Timor-Leste to get on its feet and […]

Malaysia’s fundamental political shift

Malaysia’s extraordinary election outcome, in which the six decade old government has been defeated, marks a profound and likely permanent shift for the future of politics in the country. The ruling National Front (Barisan Nasional – BN) government had retained power, particularly in the last decade or so, primarily through a system of rigged electoral […]

Trump’s ‘dumb luck’ decision making may not last

Just a couple of short weeks ago, President Donald Trump’s nay-sayers were having to re-think on his Korea strategy and, potentially, his wider unorthodox political style. Perhaps, they were being forced to ask themselves, his brinksmanship really was responsible for what is looking like a rapprochement between North and South Korea and potentially the denuclearization […]