Security Challenges
Volume 12, No.1 (2016)

The South Pacific in the 2016 Defence White Paper - Anxiety, Ambivalence and Ambiguity

Australia’s geography does not change; the South Pacific (Papua New Guinea, Timor-Leste and the Pacific Island Countries) will always lie across some of our most important air and sea lines of communication. As identified in the 1986 Review of Australia’s Defence Capabilities (the ‘Dibb-Review’), the South Pacific will always be the “area from or through which a military threat to Australia could most easily be posed”. Reflecting these strategic realities, since the Dibb Review successive Defence White Papers have identified that a secure South Pacific sits only behind a secure Australia in the hierarchy of Australia’s strategic defence interests.

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