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Fist 666

US Marines to be Stationed in Australia

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The Navy and Marine Corps has been deploying FA-18C squadrons to Darwin for about the last decade, not that big of a deal seeing as the Aussies already fly their own FA-18As out of there. We would go down for 6 months so the pilots could play "Maverick & Ice Man" with the Aussie pilots. One of the better deployments I went on really. No flight deck and no Durkas swamping me with the standard sales pitch "my friend, my friend, you want fuck-fuck? Come, come I take you to girls!" every time I set foot on land.

 

Now if they are talking about MEU's (Marine Expeditionary Units) that's a different story.

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i WAS a soldier, not a marine.

 

I know we've had a naval presence there for some time, but the increase to a full time--not just docking-- 2500 is upsetting.

 

that would be a sweet deployment though.

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Shit almost makes doing push ups and making your bed neat for a dickhead yelling at you seem worth it.

 

This is a alot more important then I think alot of people understand.

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my friend told me this is happening so that the US can deploy from australia to attack china when world war 3 breaks out. is my friend an idiot?

 

 

is there going to be notice before world war 3 so i have time to move to the most neutral country available?

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Im wondering why the world police (USA! FUCK YEAH!) haven’t gone into North Korea yet. Surely the good people of North Korea deserve democracy… Just like the people of Afghanistan and Iraq! North Korea is in bed with China.

What a tangled web of intrigue.

Why does the West keep kissing the USA’s ass? I don’t get it? Their dollar is worth shit and they don’t export anything important.

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^ totes..

I also think Obama has asked (demanded) we start selling uranium to India. PM Juila Gillard made the announcement we would begin selling uranium to India the day before Obama arrived.

I doubt this decision was made by our government alone.

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^^^Hahaha!

 

Why are you against this Fist666?

 

 

Yes it's about China, no it's not about a base to launch war from.

 

Since 2009 China has become much more aggressive as the nation's economy expands and energy demands rise in order to keep the economy growing. China imports massive amounts of energy with most of it coming from the Middle East. Grab out a map and you'll see that from the Persian Gul it has to go South of India though the Indian Ocean crossing between Indonesia and Malaysia in the Malacca Strait, then up through the South China Sea past Vietnam and Philippines. That is a long way for ships to travel and the maritime Choke point of the Malacca Straits is a major vulnerability where 3 frigates could sit blocking Chinese energy imports (simplistic explanation but you get the drift). That then means that China's economy is very vulnerable to outside factors and no nation could ever accept that (Japan pre-WWII is the case study for this situation).

 

Now, you look at ROK, Taiwan and Japan and you'd suggest that they are in the same predicament. However it is China's economy that is growing at around 9% currently and that have a massive population that if the economy supports will be the largest market and financial power in the world (which of course then translates in to military power). That is a threat to the current world order, an order that the US dominates. That is threatening to the US and as history shows major shifts in power like this more often than not conflict is the outcome (Germany WW1 is the classic case study here).

 

Another reason why Japan, ROK, etc., haven't had the same fears as China of their sea lanes being cut is that they are US client states as a result of the Cold War. They were either given direct market access to the US allowing their economies to grow massively (Japan) or they were protected against hostile neighbours by the US military (ROK, Taiwan) both in return for surrendering their foreign policy to the US. The US has mostly supported a climate of economic activity in the world and that requires open sea lanes. The US is the only country in history that has largely had control of the world's oceans. As said before, given that China stands the possibility of challenging US dominance of the world with its massive potential Beijing cannot rely on US benevolence as Japan, etc. have been able to.

 

China has been acting in ways that indicates it is choosing to challenge US control of at least the Western Pacific, the South China Seas and possibly even the Indian Ocean. This has been by increasing capabilities through the floating of its first air craft carrier a few months back (will take decades, training vessels, etc.), creating anti-ship ballistic missiles, rapid growth of its submarine fleet, converting naval vessels in to Fisheries and Oceanic Administration vessels and having them patrol disputed waters aggressively. China has also indicated through intent by aggressively pushing sovereignty claims in the South China Sea and also the East China Sea (where significant resources are also thought to be) and attempting to exclude any foreign activity within its Exclusive Economic Zones.

 

Outside of the region China has been involved in the building of sea ports in Gwadar, Pakistan, Chittagong, Bangladesh, Kyaukpyu, Myanmar and Sri Lanka (the port name escapes me right now). This has been named 'the string of pearls' strategy meant to contain India, which may or may not be the case. Either way the capability is being built and that is what states have to plan for (intentions may be benign today but they may change tomorrow, so base plans on capacity and worst case scenario and anything better than that outcome will be a bonus).

 

So as the US lowers its commitment on the Mid East increasing bandwidth in manpower, kit, economy and attention Washington is able to redeploy the military and adjust its posture to reflect future challenges. That's what the shared facilities agreement with Australia is about, a change in posture. Now this does not mean that the US is maneuvering for war, if war does come it is way off yet. The US would still mop the floor with China if there was an air-sea battle between the two forces (as well as nuclear warfare). This plan is about shaping Chinese policy making and behaviour.

 

The US has to first signal its commitment to China that it intends on remaining in the region and promoting its values of freedom of transit (code for not allowing China to claim sovereignty of the South China Sea). Secondly the US needs to show the other regional nations that they can have confidence that the US will remain active in the region supporting their interests regarding issues of sovereignty, freedom of transit, political and economic alternatives. etc. The idea is that if China believes that the US will work to contain Chinese expansionist behaviour and other regional players will side with the US further constraining Chinese opportunities to act unilaterally in the region that Beijing will have to create more accommodating policies and work within the current US dominated system.

 

Readjusting the force structure to communicate a commitment to the current status can be argued to be a way to reduce the chance of conflict by outmaneuvering the opponent rather than waiting until only offense is available to support the national interest.

 

 

Polls in Australia seem to indicate that the majority support this policy.

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When will Australia realise that it is a part of Asia and not America.

 

Tell you what, you go live in China for 6 months and the US for 6 months and tell us all which country you would prefer to be the dominant power in the region.

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As an american its an economic issue. We see the annual military budget go up 200billion every year for the last ten years and we dont want to pay for another expansion. I dont see how a couple thousand marines will stabilize the area. I want someone to break down the loss of us profits caused by china hogging the waterways, and how much the marines being there will help. If theres not enough of a return on investment it doesnt make sense to waste tax dollars on a lost cause.

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That's an impossible task, you can't break down possible contingencies in to real dollar amounts. You can't game out what every ASEAN country will do, what an arms race in North East Asia might do, what the loss of US arms sales to Japan, ROK, Taiwan, Philippines, Indonesia, Australia, Thailand, etc. would do to the US economy should these countries move over to the Chinese sphere given American isolationism or even a refusal to protect their ability to make any decision. I'm not saying that this will all definitely happen but your asking that these things be gamed out in order for you to make a clear cost an benefit analysis on whether a shared facilities agreement is worth the dollar cost.

 

As for whether it will make any difference to the regional balance you may not be seeing it in the full context. It's not just 2500 marines, it's actually more so a shared facilities agreement for troops, aircraft and naval vessels. So it's more so the submarines, aircraft carriers, air refueling capabilities, surveillance aircraft, etc. that are the main parts of the deal that create the shaping effect. And that agreement hasn't been made in a vacuum either. The US has been holding exercises and port visits with Vietnam, for example. Hilary is about to go to Myanmar to continue the push of political reform, has been in Philippines giving diplomatic support to Manila, the TPP program is being pushed in the Pacific, the US is sponsoring the Lower Mekong Initiative, etc. etc.

 

Just a note to add, it's not all bombs and threats either. The US regularly sends medical support vessels to places like Vietnam, Philippines, etc. for port calls where they open up shop as a free medical practice. The lower Mekong Initiative is about expanding environmental programs, education support, infrastructure development, etc.

 

Personally I don't have an opinion on the agreement, I'm only looking at the reasoning and strategy being employed.

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hah, yeah, fucking Obama Marx, forcing socialism on those poor Asians, going to ruin their economy and turn them in to Russians....

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I'm just curious why America's bases in Japan, Guam, South Korea, and Hawaii aren't good enough to contain China. What do they need to be in Australia for.

 

Is China even that big of a military threat right now?

 

China just built their FIRST aircraft carrier. They didn't build it, but just bought it from the Russians.

 

America has dozens of aircraft carriers.

 

They're even afraid to do anything to Taiwan/Republic of China, even though they keep harping about how Taiwan is part of the People's Republic of China...

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I'm just curious why America's bases in Japan, Guam, South Korea, and Hawaii aren't good enough to contain China. What do they need to be in Australia for.

Basically, no. Also as above part of the focus is China's shipping routes to the Persian Gulf that go through the South China Sea and the Indian Ocean, making Australia key geography. Lastly the US needs bases out if Chinese missile and current naval/air range.

 

Is China even that big of a military threat right now?

No, this is planning for the future, not that distant in the scheme of things, though.

 

China just built their FIRST aircraft carrier. They didn't build it, but just bought it from the Russians.

Yeah, Ukranian vessel, the Varyag. It's more so a training vessel. China will want to build its own and then also assemble a carrier battle group, formulate doctrine and train. That means you're looking at at least another decade before they will field it with any confidence.

 

America has dozens of aircraft carriers.

Carrier battle groups, even better. China is building submarines faster than anyone else, they are making an anti-ship ballistic missile that has been dubbed the "air craft carrier killer".

 

They're even afraid to do anything to Taiwan/Republic of China, even though they keep harping about how Taiwan is part of the People's Republic of China...

It is only the US that stops them from taking Taiwan (Japanese and ROK interests also play in to this).

 

 

You have to understand that defence posture realignments like this are made in view of decades. The shared facilities agreement isn't planned to be fully functional until 2016. China is not an immediate threat (if it was you'd see a totally different response), but trend lines over the last 20-30 years very clearly show that China is moving to establish itself as the regional power. It is painfully obvious (basically overtly stated) that Japan, ROK, Vietnam, Philippines, Thailand. Singapore, Australia, Taiwan, India and a number of other nations in the region would much prefer to keep things as they are.

 

Most nations see China's claims of the Senkaku Islands, the South China See, Arunchal Paradesh, Taiwan, etc. as illegitimate and the recent moves to send military forces to these areas as pure aggression.

 

Below is a map of what China seas as its sovereign territory in the South China Sea

 

 

_48951920_south_china-sea_1_466.gif

 

Below is a basic map of the relevant shipping routes in South East Asia

 

Spratly%2BIslands.....gif

 

 

As you can see China's territorial claim takes in almost all of the South China Sea and brings Chinese territory within a few kilometers of other nation's coast lines. If that territorial claim was realised that would mean that nations such as Vietnam and Philippines could barely sail their own navy out of their ports, let alone have a chance at coastal denial whilst Chinese vessels could freely sail the area. That would also mean that should China choose to any nation utilising these shipping routes (Japan, ROK, Taiwan, RP, Vn., USA, Australia, Canada, etc.) could only rely on Chinese good will for passage.

 

For most States this reliance is considered unacceptable. Keep in mind that neighbouring countries have seen the PLA move in to Tibet and Xinjiang, place thousands of missiles, troops aircraft, etc. on the coast across from Taiwan, allow DPRK to arm itself and attack ROK on multiple occasions, attack Vietnam and India on multiple occasions, etc. etc. It's very difficult to argue that China is a completely benign entity and it could be argued that any state counting on Chinese good intentions is acting irresponsibly toward its own national security.

 

 

Lastly, and is always the case, there is oil/gas involved. There are thought to be massive energy resources along with minerals, etc., below the sea bed in the region and that is more than likely China's main motivation to claim sovereignty over the area. This would not only mean that there is lots energy accessible to the most energy hungry nation in the world but it would also decrease Chinese reliance to Mid East energy to a degree.

 

 

 

 

To Shape Chinese behaviour when it has solidified its power projection capabilities to that of an accommodating regional power rather than an aggressive and dominating regional hegemon planning and placement has to take place over years and even decades. I mean this basically started with the Korean war in 1951 when Mao convinced Kim Il Sung to take the south. Then with Vietnam (of course that was more about communism and Russia than just China), Nixon's visit to China, support for Taiwan,

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I just dont think America has the money to go to war. The pentagon's about to take a 500b cut, followed by another 500b next year, and the pentagon isn't good with budget cuts. The question has to be asked, is this america's battle? And if it is, is this america's battle now? What about chinese businesses pushing back against the state?

 

 

I was thinking china's economy was more reliant on US treasury bonds. Check this out.

http://www.npr.org/2011/06/10/136930746/explore-chinas-global-reach

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Yeah, I'm thinking of opening a shop up there selling booze, international dial phone cards and porn.

 

Maybe morning after pills too.

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