The reinforcement of strategic partnerships enforcing the freedom of the seas and the peaceful resolution of territorial and maritime disputes by international law sets the foundation for success in the South Pacific.
Antarctica currently remains demilitarised. Should a nation with a satellite capability in Antarctica use their system for weapon guidance, counter space or signal intelligence resulting in a direct military effect, the region would subsequently become militarised. Despite the best intentions, the current status quo within Antarctica does not necessarily translate to continued demilitarisation in the region.
The rise of China and the challenge that China poses to the United States is the defining trend around which American strategists orient their thinking about Asia. In Canberra, Delhi, and Tokyo, national security policymakers view China as the foremost national security threat facing their nation. This shared focus on China underpins the idea of the “quad,” a proposed security partnership between Australia, India, Japan, and the United States, which would represent a democratic bloc against Chinese hegemony in Asia.
Australia is faced with many strategic challenges. On one hand there is the rise of non-state actors, such as Islamist extremists, who aim to overhaul the Westphalian international system. Without the rule book of western nations, they combine conventional and unconventional military tactics ignoring the distinction of soldier and civilian. These non-state actors, enabled by the networked age, combine propaganda, conventional military tactics and guerrilla asymmetry, along with financial and governance structures. Whether it is Hezbollah, the Taleban, or Daesh, they utilise the entire spectrum of warfare and multiple methods to achieve their desired political ends.