MUST READ: Tony Abbott has rejected the thesis of ANU’s Prof Hugh White and others that Australia may have to choose between its principal trading partner, China, and its global strategic partner, the United States.
In his first major foreign policy speech the Coalition leader also says the United States should not take Australian support for granted.
“Australia’s national interest might not always be identical with America’s. Our values, though, invariably coincide and Australia’s foreign policy should be driven as much by our values as by our interests” Mr Abbott said in a wide-ranging speech to the Heritage Foundation in Washington.
The speech was wide-ranging, and distinctive. Among other points:
* The Asian century will be an Indian century and a Japanese century as well as a Chinese one.
* It will be an American century because the United States is an Asia-Pacific power as well as an Atlantic one.
* A China that was freer as well as richer would be the best guarantee of peace and stability in the Asia Pacific region.