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Australian National Security in Southeast Asia

             In terms of geopolitics Australia represents quite unique phenomenon. It is to only state in the world which covers the whole area of one continent. The other reason is its position where Australia lies between two geostrategic regions – Oceania and Southeast Asia. But what are the other aspects and threats that affect national security of Australia? The origins of Australia as an independent country dates back to the beginning of the 20th century – on 1st January 1901 the first six colonies formed the Commonwealth of Australia. Since that moment Australia participated in the large number of conflicts across the world. Australian soldiers took part in WWI, WWII, Korean War, Vietnam, etc. The gained experience out of these conflicts led to the reform of military forces in Australia which allowed the creation of ADF (Australian Defence Force), the change of military doctrine and the new approach of the continental defence strategy to be adopted.1This approach was much affected by then ongoing Cold War and due to the change of security environment it the region of Southeast Asia it gradually became outdated. After the East Timorese crisis in 1999 Australia shifted its aim to the expeditionary military force with the ability to act outside of its own territory, this approach is still valid in current doctrine.
             The national security of Australia nowadays must consider several aspects of the Southeast Asia region. According to Michael Evans there are two opinions about the defence strategy of Australia. The first group, which is called defender-regionalist, stresses the standard geopolitical determinants and the growing role of China in the region. The aim of this group is the standard "Balance of Powers" in the Asian-Pacific region. The other that Evans mentions is called reformer-globalists and they view the national security from much broader perspective when they emphasize the importance of globalization and the interconnection between the countries by mutual military agreements and business relationships.

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