Australian news, and some related international items

AUKUS – “These are the horrors”

Instead of humiliatingly accepting the smirking American ‘we neither confirm nor deny the presence of nuclear weapons visiting your country’, the Albanese government could reassert a little of our lost sovereignty by stating up front, no nuclear weapons never.

The AUKUS submarines will not be here to defend Australia, but only to attack China in a subordinate role with the American forces.

Pearls and Irritations, By Richard Tanter, Mar 24, 2023

AUKUS. This is a horror for which I now fear for the lives of my children and their children. Every time a Labor member of parliament or senator puts foot outside their office to appear in public, turns up at a public meeting, we need to ask them: why have you betrayed us? Why have you allowed this to happen? What are you going to do?

Transcript of a speech at the Anti-AUKUS Rally, Naarm, State Library of Victoria lawn, 18 March 2023.

These are horrors.

This is a horror for which I now fear for the lives of my children and their children.

This is now changing the direction of Australia for the next forty or fifty years.

We have never seen anything like this in peacetime Australia. At any stage.

This must not stand.

But it’s with the suite of profound horrors that we must start with.

The horrors of AUKUS

Firstly, the automatic involvement in war.

We have already been tied to the United States by the bases – by Pine Gap, by North West Cape, by the Space Surveillance Telescope that take us into space warfare, by the many other Australian bases to which the US has access.

We are already tied in, hard-wired in many cases, to the American war machine.

And the ADF is barely an autonomous force today.

But AUKUS takes us very much further down that road.

We already know what the submarines are there for.

In a rational world I actually think submarines are very important for the defence of Australia – but not in the form of this politically-driven, call-from-Washington-inspired scheme for long-range, long-endurance nuclear-powered submarines whose only rational use is to attack China.

Not on their own – Keating’s right about that calling them toothpicks thrown at a mountain – but in concert with American submarines and carrier task forces.

Maybe not immediately nuclear-armed, but almost certainly capable of nuclear-attack as well.

The AUKUS submarines will not be here to defend Australia, but only to attack China in a subordinate role with the American forces.

The horror of that fiscal black hole.

What does that $368 billion actually amount to? As if we have any idea of what the value of a dollar will be in forty years time – the lifetime cost of AUKUS will be an order of magnitude higher, certainly two or even four trillion dollars.

But what that means in terms of the sacrifice from what’s needed from government for decent health and survival for the Australian people is itself horrific.

This moves us towards what I think is an almost irrevocable position of enmity as far as the Chinese are concerned.

Principally because the only rational strategic role for those submarines is to contribute, potentially, to an American existential threat to China.

Even if we stop tomorrow, is China going to forget that?

Why should they?

We’ve revealed our hand.

We have a Minister for Defence who is effectively the minister for Washington, and this is where we have come to.

The horror of the sacrifice zone that the high-level nuclear waste storage site that is to be somewhere built in Australia.

I have to say that of all things that have shocked me about this scheme, this is one that has shocked me most.

Not just because I made the mistake of thinking that Albanese might be halfway reasonable because in my role as a former president of ICAN I had relations with those people, and he pledged he would support a nuclear ban treaty.

Well, that’s not happening now unless we make it happen.

But the announcement of a nuclear waste dump for high-level toxic nuclear waste, radioactive for thousands of years, is another world all together.

I had foolishly thought that they would follow their own mantra for the past year of saying that ‘this will be a sealed reactor full of highly enriched uranium, and to prevent diversion to nuclear weapons, the US will deliver it sealed, and when the fuel is exhausted it will return to the United States sealed for disposal, somewhere safe, where no-one else can get at it …’

More fool me. More fool me.

They betrayed us again, and that nuclear sacrifice zone of high level waste is going to be a huge problem – and struggle – for decades and decades.

What really troubles me as someone who works on strategic issues and thinks that defence issues are real and important, is that this the largest defence expenditure – if we can use the word ‘defence’ with a straight face in this context – this massive defence expenditure actually disables our genuinely necessary defence capabilities.

There will be very little money left over for anything else in defence.

Worst of all, it disables the possibility of what we have come here today to call for – an independent defence and foreign policy – because there will be nothing left.

I heard one of those defence experts quoted in that authoritative source, Nine Entertainment’s Red Alert on the front pages of The Age – the same report that said yes, we have allies, we have Diego Garcia – all 27 square kilometres of it grabbed by the Brits and rented by the Americans, and we have Guam – the tiny American colony almost wholly taken up by US military bases – it would be funny if it wasn’t so awful and so telling about the government’s grasp of the actual facts – I saw that one of those experts said ‘we have to accept that if there is a war with China ‘that means Pine Gap goes’.

Actually I think that’s quite true, under certain circumstances. But the blitheness, the casualness with which that is said tells us a lot about how these people think.

Because if ‘Pine Gap goes’ in a nuclear missile attack, then Alice Springs and most of its 25,000 citizens ‘go’ too. No need to think about that, is there?

Just the casualness with which this is proposed and debated, apart from the ignorance, is stunning and revealing.

And the last part of the horror for me is the nuclear permissiveness which is now beginning to swell in discussions in Canberra security circles.

The momentum that is going to be built out of this first step of nuclear-powered submarine will mean we’re already going to have naval training for this; we’re going to have expanded nuclear engineering programs at places like the ANU.

We’re going to have military and naval careers built around this.

We’re going to have an industry here which has a deep interest in going the next step from naval nuclear propulsion to a civilian nuclear power industry.

We also know, because this is preceded by the US B-52 bombers at RAAF Tindal near Katherine in the Northern Territory – not nuclear-armed bombers at present, but quite definitely possibly nuclear-armed in the future at the stroke of a presidential pen –that those bombers will be used as part of an attack on China.

And what’s really important to understand now is that the South pacific Nuclear Weapon Free Zone, which Australia signed and says it’s proud of, has a loophole in it sponsored by the Australians to meet US needs, which says there are to be no nuclear weapons in the territories of the member states, like Australia, except in the case of ‘transits’ or ‘visits’.

Transits and visit in these days of American rotational deployments can cover an awful lot of interpretations.

The Albanese government could do one very simple thing to address this fear: it could declare that under no circumstances will any nuclear weapons from any country be allowed into Australia.

Not for a visit, not of layover in transit, just never.

No nuclear-armed aircraft, warships or submarines will ever be allowed to enter Australia.

The USS Asheville nuclear-powered attack submarine in Perth at the moment at Stirling Naval Base, and its successors, will never be allowed to return without a verifiable declaration that they come without nuclear weapons.

Instead of humiliatingly accepting the smirking American ‘we neither confirm nor deny the presence of nuclear weapons visiting your country’, the Albanese government could reassert a little of our lost sovereignty by stating up front, no nuclear weapons never.

The strategy of AUKUS

The strategic part of what’s happening at the American bases in Australia (aka ‘joint facilities’) is part of all this.

You know what is happening at Pine Gap, the giant American-built and American-paid for joint surveillance station outside Alice Springs.

You know about the wonderfully-named Harold E. Holt Naval Communications Station on the tip of North West Cape in Western Australia – a critical submarine communications base for American nuclear submarines and in the future for these AUKUS submarines. It’s immensely important, and probably another priority target, most likely nuclear under certain circumstances.

But just down the road the US has built a giant and highly advanced space telescope.

That doesn’t sound very much, does it.

But what it’s there for is our contribution to American plans for space warfare, to ensure what the US calls ‘space dominance’. And you understand perfectly well how critical space is for all militaries – and indeed our whole society – today.

We are deeply and increasingly plugged into that activity.

All governments have talked for the last thirty years about ‘the joint facilities’ – we don’t have any American bases, of which Australia has full knowledge and concurrence of any activities conducted at these bases.

When you peel that back, and when you talk to ministers – I can tell you I am continually shocked by their ignorance, as well as their deceptions………………………………………………………………………………………………………….. more

March 25, 2023 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, politics international, weapons and war | Leave a comment

Richard Marles’ ill-advised spending on completely inappropriate Tomahawk missiles for Australia’s existing submarines

Marles the drunken sailor: Rex Patrick on Defence Minister’s haste to defence spending waste

by Rex Patrick | Mar 22, 2023

News yesterday that our Collins Class submarines will get fitted with Tomahawks reveals a serious lack of understanding about the tactical use of land attack missiles on submarines. Exposing the blithe war enthusiasts of the Murdoch press, former submariner Rex Patrick explains why Tomahawks on a Collins is a dumb idea.

Richard Marles is behaving like a drunken sailor as he spends your money. Drunken sailors, most of whom are happy souls, buy things like several rounds for everyone in the bar, pink Hawaiian t-shirts for themselves and their families, or tattoos of the name of the girl they met the night before. Upon sobering up they realise that what they had purchased was a hole in their wallets.

And that’s what Mr Marles will discover in time. The Tomahawk missiles he’s purportedly buying for our Collins Class submarines, as reported in The Australian yesterday, are not a good match.

Let me explain why.

Submarines and Tomahawk Missiles

Just after noon on 19 January 1991, during operation “Desert Storm”, USS Louisville became the first submarine to launch a land attack missile in anger, when she fired eight missiles at targets in Iraq. She did this operating from the Red Sea. Shortly afterwards, USS Pittsburgh became the second submarine to launch Tomahawks when she fired four more missiles from the Mediterranean Sea.

Submarines have subsequently fired land attack missiles in a number of other operations.

USS Miami fired some into Iraq In 1998 at the start of “Desert Fox” (the 4 day bombing operation undertaken in response to Iraq’s failure to comply with UN Security Council resolutions). USS Albuquerque, USS Miami and HMS Splendid fired some into Kosovo a year later as part of “Allied Force” during the Balkan war. HMS Trafalgar and HMSTriumph fired them into Afghanistan. In 2001 as part of operation “Enduring Freedom,” and in 2003, 12 US Navy submarines and the Royal Navy submarines HMS Splendid and HMS Turbulent attacked land targets in Iraq as part of “Iraqi Freedom”.

Finally, in March 2011 guided missile submarines USS Florida, and nuclear attack submarines USS Providence, USS Scranton and HMS Triumph fired some into Libya as part of operation “Odyssey Dawn”.

The role of land attack from submarines is clearly established.

Why land-strikes from submarines?

A submarine’s endurance, autonomy and relative impunity to detection allow pre-strike positioning to occur several weeks or months prior to the commencement of hostilities. This can occur without the “presence” of a force that might otherwise negatively influence diplomatic efforts to resolve an issue. The submarine can also conduct intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance until such time as the land strike capability is needed. The submarine can be discreetly withdrawn if offensive action is not required.

The submarine also allows a land strike capability to be deployed into an area of operation where there is a lack of sea or air control, with the aim of attacking enemy defences to make the area safer for other more vulnerable units to enter. This includes ships with larger missile magazines and aircraft who can return the next day to launch more missiles.

Finally, when the strike order is given, having an undetected submarine very close to shore provides an advantage when striking the most sensitive of military targets or executing the most time critical attacks. Launch surprise maximises targeting effectiveness and minimises the chance of the weapons being intercepted. Close-to-shore submarines can also reach targets that are further inland.

Collins submarines’ limitations

Almost all submarines fitted with Tomahawks have nuclear propulsion, The Spanish S-80 submarines are the exception.

That’s because conventional submarines have their limitations………………………………………………………………………………………

Defence of Australia or like a tattoo?

There’s hardly a case to argue that our Collins class submarine’s need land attack cruise missiles to help defend Australia.

They would only be acquired to assist in a conflict with China, where we’re acting as part of a coalition. But even then, the issues associated with conventional submarines armed with Tomahawks are highly challenging and make the choice highly questionable.

So is Richard Marles behaving like a drunken sailor? Yes. But with some difference. Mr Marles seems loose with the money, but can’t really bring himself to look back on his commitment to spend.

March 24, 2023 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, weapons and war | Leave a comment

The cost and unnecessary suffering of military spending

By Brian Toohey, Mar 14, 2023,

The authoritative Peterson Foundation calculates that last year the US spent more on its military than the next nine countries together. This means more than China, India, Russia, the UK, Saudi Arabia, Germany, France, Japan and South Korea combined. In 2023, the US allocated $US 858 billion to military spending compared to China’s $US224 billion. China’s spending is 1.7% of GDP compared to 2% for Australia and 3.5% for the US.

Military spending accounts for nearly half the discretionary spending in the US budget. The President could redirect over two thirds to deprived areas of the budget and still have the most powerful military forces in the world. Until something like this happens, many Americans will suffer unnecessarily and the country experience continuing internal turmoil. The US has been in far more wars that China.

The Costs of War project at Brown University revealed in 2021 that the US was involved in eight wars in the previous 20 years, costing it an estimated $8 trillion and killing more than 900,000 people. Earlier, Australia joined the US in losing a war of aggression in Vietnam that cost lives of 3 million people.

China has not been in a serious conflict since 1979 when it made a brutal incursion into Vietnam before withdrawing. The US and Australia didn’t object strongly because they supported China’s intention to punish Vietnam for overthrowing Pol Pot’s appalling regime in Cambodia.

Unlike the US and Australia, China has not been involved in a war of aggression since the Communist party came to power in 1949, except for of its takeover of Tibet in 1950. Tibet had been under the control of Chinese emperors from 1720 until the early 1900s. The anti-Communist Republic of China then claimed Tibet was part of China, without trying to enforce this. Otherwise, China has not tried to take over any country.

If China were an expansionist power, it would have already taken over bordering Mongolia, a defenceless, democratic state with abundant mineral deposits. Nor would it have made several important concessions to settle land border disputes.

China announced recently that its defence spending will increase by 7.2% in 2023 compared to 7.1 % in the previous year. This minor increase hardly suggests China is building up to attack Taiwan, let alone go to war with Australia which is committed to spending billions more on its military, supposedly to deter China. Contrary to the situation in the US, numerous underwater choke points bottle up China’s naval forces close to its shores.

However, China’s spending is now widely asserted to show it is about to engage in a campaign of aggressive expansion. Instead, it is reacting to the fact that it is surrounded by US military bases and those of its allies, as well being beset by constant military patrols along its borders. US has more than 700 overseas military bases, including many on Pacific Islands countries and on others such as Japan, South Korea, Australia, and the Philippines. China doesn’t have the capability to patrol off the American coastline which is over 15,000 km away as the crow flies. Nor does it have any bases close enough to operate from. China’s sole overseas base is at Djibouti on the Horn of Africa.

A recent three-part series in the Sydney Morning Herald and The Age claimed China would attack Australia within the next three years, well before any nuclear submarines are delivered well over $200 billion. The series said the government would have to reintroduce compulsory conscription and invite the US to base nuclear armed missiles on Australian territory. Anthony Albanese has not rejected these proposals.

The series made the bizarre claim that “recent decades of tranquillity were not the norm in human affairs, but an aberration.” The reality is that tranquillity did not exist for Australian military forces in Iraq and Afghanistan, nor for civilians caught up in these events.

As a result of US-led sanctions before the invasion of Iraq, UN agencies calculated that 500,000 Iraqi children had starved to death. When the then US ambassador to the UN, Madeleine Albright was asked on America’s 60 Minutes program if she thought that the death of half a million Iraqi children was a price worth paying, she said: “This is a very hard choice, but we think the price is worth it.” Most seem to have forgotten that governments killed these children.

In Australia, most also seem to have forgotten that the 2003 invasion of Iraq was based on shonky intelligence, easily exposed as such. Perversely, many Australia journalists, who now rely on anonymous intelligence reports, take it for granted the intelligence is accurate.

They also swallow propaganda claiming that China is “aggressive” and a “threat” to Australia and that Taiwan is independent country, which China now claims. Taiwan is not formally independent. Almost every country on earth, including Australia and the US recognise it as part of China. After the losing the Civil War, the leader of the Kuomintang (KMT) party Chiang Kai-shek, fled to Taiwan, where he not only claimed Taiwan was part of China, but insisted that it ruled the whole of China from its capital Taipei. To its great credit, Taiwan became a healthy democracy in 1996, but its Constitution still states it is part of China.

When he was China’s leader in Beijing in 1947, Chiang Kai-shek announced that country would control its territorial waters within a U-shaped “Eleven dash line”. The subsequent Communist government adopted a “Nine dash line”, while Taiwan has retained eleven. Given it already has de facto independence, the pragmatic position in Taiwan now seems to be that it’s not worth rocking the boat by declaring formal independence.

March 24, 2023 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, weapons and war | Leave a comment

Australian military looks to build crucial space capabilities that will support Aukus nuclear subs

Don’t the military boys love these games? war in space and undersea.

Defence department puts out call for satellites that can talk to each other and to the ground, are ‘scalable, rapidly deployable and reconstitutable’

Tory Shepherd, Thu 23 Mar 2023 

Defence is looking for a mesh of military space satellites that can talk to each other as well as to the ground, and is “scalable, rapidly deployable and reconstitutable”.

The system, in other words, would need to be able to be made bigger, to be quickly put into action and to be repaired in case of attack or accident.

The military network could include the ability to track high-velocity projectiles and the use of infrared, would need to be “resilient to cyber and electronic warfare attacks”, and would need to transmit and receive data from assets “at any global position”…………………..

The Aukus submarines have been dominating defence-related conversations recently, because of the enormous $368bn price tag and concerns that the first Australia-made nuclear submarine will not be ready until the 2040s.

Meanwhile, Guardian Australia has spoken to people in the space industry who feel the other parts of Aukus – the so-called “pillar two” – are being overlooked. Pillar two includes artificial intelligence, drones, cyber capabilities and other technologies, all of which use space-based assets and many of which are likely to be realities years before the submarines.

Satellites, and therefore space, are critical for surveillance, navigation, weapons guidance and communication already, and will become more so in the future.

Defence projects already under way include Def799 for space-based intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance capabilities, and JP9102 for satellite communications systems.

A senior defence strategy and capability analyst at the Australian Strategic Policy Institute, Malcolm Davis, said while space was critical for Aukus’s pillar two, it would also be crucial for pillar one, in terms of communicating with submarines………………………….

March 24, 2023 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, weapons and war | Leave a comment

Ivan Quail’s Submission – a devastating fact-filled critique of the costly, dangerous unhealthy nuclear industry.

One year of operation of a single, large nuclear power plant, generates as much of longpersisting radioactive poisons as one thousand Hiroshima-types atomic bombs. There is no way the electric power can be generated in nuclear plants without generating the radioactive poisons.

France’s troubled nuclear fleet a bigger problem for Europe than Russia gas. France caps its consumer power bills – to maintain the myth of “cheap” nuclear and to protect French pride .

In 100,000 years’ time the planet would still not have recovered from Mayak, Chernobyl, Doenreagh, Hanford, Rocky flats, Marshall Islands, Montebello, Maralinga and Fukushima; to name a few.

Average life expectancy in Ukraine and Belarus has REDUCED 4 yrs to age 68. Each year 6000 babies are born with “Chernobyl Heart” Half of them die! Children born since 1986 are affected by a 200 percent increase in birth defects and a 250 percent increase in congenital birth deformities.• 85 percent of Belarusian children are deemed to be Chernobyl victims. UNICEF found increases in children’s disease rates, including 38 percent increase in malignant tumours, 43 percent in blood circulatory illnesses and 63 percent in disorders of the bone, muscle and connective tissue system.

Environment and Other Legislation Amendment (Removing Nuclear Energy Prohibitions) Bill 2022

Submission No 61 [This submission contains numerous links which are all visible on the original, but not all here]

A few words about myself on this issue. I have been studying the Uranium fuel cycle,
nuclear energy and the biological and genetic effects of radiation for over 40 years. I
have read a dozen or more books and hundreds of scientific and medical papers on
the topics.

Continue reading

March 23, 2023 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, politics | Leave a comment

AUKUS nuclear subs deal should torpedo Kimba radioactive waste plan.

23 Mar 23, A new federal government process to identify a site for the disposal of high-level radioactive waste from future nuclear submarines should signal the end of the push for a national radioactive waste facility at Kimba on SA’s Eyre Peninsula, environmentalists say.

The Australian Conservation Foundation yesterday joined with peak state group Conservation SA to deliver a petition from 10,000 people calling on Resources Minister Madeleine King to ‘stop the double-handling and relocation of radioactive waste to a highly contested facility proposed near Kimba.’

Defence Minister Richard Marles has announced the search for a new site to store high level radioactive waste will commence next year.

“It makes no sense to have multiple federal processes in train seeking to find sites to store and dispose of radioactive waste,” said ACF nuclear policy analyst Dave Sweeney.

“The federal nuclear regulator has stated existing intermediate level waste can be securely managed at the Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organisations (ANSTO) Lucas Heights facility for ‘decades to come’.

“This waste should be kept at ANSTO and moved only when a future site has been selected for high-level waste.

“This would avoid unnecessary duplication, cost and risk and would recognise and respect the clear opposition of the Barngarla Traditional Owners to the current waste plan.”

Federal government ministers have repeatedly said AUKUS is a game-changer. ACF is calling for the government to demonstrate this in relation to radioactive waste management by changing the present deficient and divisive waste game around Kimba.

“Against the backdrop of escalating cost and complexity associated with future AUKUS waste it makes no sense to maintain a politicised and piecemeal approach to radioactive waste management in Australia”.

Watch New Barngarla video calling for an end to the Kimba proposal:

March 23, 2023 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, politics | Leave a comment

Some Labor and Independent members of parliament not happy with AUKUS nuclear submarine deal

Above – Labor MP Josh Wilson not happy about the nuclear submarine deal

Labor’s old guard follow Keating into the trenches over $368b submarine deal The Age, 22 Mar 23


  • Kim Carr has called AUKUS a “huge leap into the dark”, joining other high-profile Labor members in criticising the deal.
  • Labor MP Josh Wilson told Parliament that Australia is yet to solve the problem of dealing with radioactive waste.
  • Teal independents have raised concerns over nuclear proliferation and how AUKUS will be funded.

Former federal cabinet minister Kim Carr has joined Labor colleagues in raising deep concerns about the AUKUS pact after federal MPs questioned the deal in parliament and some party members sought to mobilise against the decades-long commitment.

Carr voiced doubts about the $368 billion cost of the agreement on nuclear-powered submarines as well as the strategic risk of a “forward defence” policy that he compared to the approach that drew Australia into the Vietnam War in the 1960s.

The comments intensify the row over the sweeping defence plan after former prime minister Paul Keating, former foreign minister Bob Carr and former foreign minister Gareth Evans challenged it with opinions ranging from ferocious criticism to cautious doubt.

Prime Minister Anthony Albanese backed the defence policy in the regular Labor caucus meeting in Parliament House on Tuesday after three MPs raised questions about its cost, the concerns from voters about Australian sovereignty and the need for 20,000 workers to complete the task.

But Kim Carr, who held portfolios such as industry and defence materiel during the Rudd and Gillard governments and left parliament at the last election, said AUKUS was a “huge leap into the dark” that depended heavily on the United States.

“The fundamental question is whether this is the best use of $368 billion of public money in defence of Australia,” he said.

“I don’t believe the question has been answered. And I am deeply concerned about a revival of a forward defence policy, given our performance in Vietnam, so there are several levels on which we should question this plan more closely.

“Given it’s 20 years since Iraq, you can hardly say our security agencies should not be questioned when they provide their assessments.”

The growing public debate highlights the unrest within the party membership and the test for Albanese in shoring up support from Labor voters who may shift support to the Greens after the smaller party came out strongly against AUKUS.

Bob Carr, who was premier of NSW for a decade before serving as foreign minister in the Gillard government, also expressed concern about the way the AUKUS agreement could take Australia into a conflict alongside the United States.

“I want upheld the notion that even under ANZUS, there should be no assumption of Australian engagement,” he said.

Last Friday, former Gillard government environment minister Peter Garrett voiced his own objections to the deal, saying in a social media post that “AUKUS stinks”……..

Western Australian Labor MP Josh Wilson aired his concerns on the floor of Parliament on Monday night by saying Australia was yet to solve the problem of low-level radioactive waste, let alone the waste from a future fleet with nuclear reactors

…………………………….. members of the crossbench expressed concerns about the implications.

“I’m concerned about the cost/benefit analysis of AUKUS and the risk of losing sovereignty over Australian defence resources,” said Zali Steggall, the member for Warringah.

Zoe Daniel, the member for Goldstein, said constituents had been in touch about the major shift in Australia’s strategic approach.

“On their behalf, I will be seeking to understand whether such an unequivocal and long-term alignment with the United States is in Australia’s best interest,” she said.

Kylea Tink, the member for North Sydney, said she was worried about nuclear proliferation and Sophie Scamps, the member for Mackellar, said she wanted more information about funding.

“The Albanese government needs to explain to the Australian people how it intends to pay for this program,” she said. “The vulnerable should not be sacrificed to pay for this additional budgetary spending.”

March 23, 2023 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, politics, weapons and war | Leave a comment

Guardian Essential Poll: AUKUS support collapses, 3-in-4 oppose

The cacophony of media, think tank, and political voices cabal haven’t yet convinced the Australian public of the need to rush into war alongside the US. But if the trend in opinion on our previous disastrous policy of following the Americans is any guide it is very likely that a majority of Australians will rate a war over Taiwan as a big mistake.

Pearls and Irritations, By Noel TurnbullMar 23, 2023

Reflecting the diminishing public support for the AUKUS deal, a new Guardian Essential Poll has found that only one quarter of Australians support paying the $368bn price tag to acquire nuclear submarines.  For decades Australians were gung ho about going to war – almost any war. Today – despite the best efforts of the Nine Media (Peter Hartcher in particular) and other media – they are now far more hesitant.

Indeed, an analysis of community opinion from the start of the Vietnam war to the likelihood of war over Taiwan, shows hesitancy translates into opposition the longer the war lasts…………………………………………………………………………………………………………………..

Now we face another possible war – this time with China – and it is worth examining what both Australians and Taiwanese think of that prospect.

In June 2021 the Lowy Institute’s annual poll showed that, for the first time, more Australians view China as a security threat than an economic partner, despite the country remaining Australia’s biggest trading partner.

In June 2022 the Lowy Institute found that the majority of Australians (56%) said China was ‘more to blame’ for the tensions than Australia while 38% said Australia and China were equally to blame. Just 4% said Australia was more to blame.

A slim majority of the 2022 respondents (52%) viewed a potential military conflict between the US and China as a critical threat to Australia’s interests over the coming decade. But the poll also showed the public wants to avoid being dragged into war. More than half those polled (57%) said that in such a conflict “Australia should remain neutral”. Some 41% said Canberra should support the US and 1% said it should support China.

The Lowy study showed the public also had strong views on our relations with the US and China policy with 77% agreeing with the statement: “Australia’s alliance with the United States makes it more likely Australia will be drawn into a war in Asia that would not be in Australia’s interests” – up eight points since 2019.

As for the US-Australian motivation for the next war, Taiwan, opinion there has been developing in strange ways. According to an Economist special report on Taiwan (11 March 2023) in 1992 only 17.3% the Taiwan population identified as Taiwanese compared with 25.5% as Chinese and 4.4% as both. By 2022 a National Chengchi University study found 61% of respondents identifying as Taiwanese, 2.7% as Chinese and 46.4% as both.

Polls indicate that more than half of Taiwanese support the status quo of de facto independence and don’t have a lot of faith in whether the US would support them against a Chinese invasion with the Taiwan Public Opinion Foundation finding that between 2021 and 2022 confidence in whether America would send troops to defend Taiwan against an invasion fell from 65% to 34.4%. They were actually more confident of Japanese support than American.

Meanwhile we wait to see what the next substantial polls say about the Albanese Government and Taiwan. We know from Vietnam to Iraq Australians start off by opposing the proposed wars; support them when troops are actually fighting; and, then begin to oppose them as the promised victory doesn’t eventuate.

This new potential war is on a scale, though, which makes Vietnam and Iraq seem insignificant.

The cacophony of media, think tank, and political voices cabal haven’t yet convinced the Australian public of the need to rush into war alongside the US. But if the trend in opinion on our previous disastrous policy of following the Americans is any guide it is very likely that a majority of Australians will rate a war over Taiwan as a big mistake.

It may also be an indicator of how attitudes to the Aukus deal might evolve. A Guardian Essential poll in 2021 disclosed Australians’ worries that the project would strain relations with China and Europe……………………..

March 23, 2023 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, politics | Leave a comment

PM flags nuclear prohibition treaty still on agenda despite AUKUS subs deal

Anthony Albanese has signalled Labor still plans to sign an international treaty on nuclear weapons amid concerns about the AUKUS deal.

Catie McLeod, 23 Mar 23

Anthony Albanese has signalled Labor still plans to sign a treaty prohibiting nuclear weapons amid concerns the AUKUS submarine deal will breach Australia’s international obligations on the issue.

Under the trilateral security agreement with the United States and the UK, Australia will become the first non-nuclear weapon state to acquire nuclear-powered submarines by seeking an exemption from the International Atomic Energy Agency.

The government has said the submarines will only use nuclear propulsion and would not have nuclear weapons.

Despite this iron-clad assurance, some countries in the Indo-Pacific have raised concerns the submarine deal is a breach of Australia’s existing nuclear non-proliferation treaty obligations, and that it might stop it from ratifying an additional treaty prohibiting nuclear weapons.

Australia made a binding commitment to never acquire nuclear weapons when it ratified the international treaty on non-proliferation 50 years ago but it is yet to sign or ratify a newer treaty created in 2017 that binds member countries to outlawing nuclear weapons all together.

Labor first committed to signing and ratifying the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons at its National Conference in 2018 and reaffirmed that commitment in 2022.

Speaking in parliament on Wednesday, the Prime Minister said Labor would stick with the commitment and said Australia’s clear position was that a world without nuclear weapons “would be a very good thing”.

“We don’t acquire them ourselves, we wish that they weren’t there,” Mr Albanese said after independent Goldstein MP Zoe Daniel asked him if Labor would sign the nuclear prohibition treaty.

“We will do is we will work systematically and methodically through the issues and in accordance with the commitments that were made in the national platform.”………………….

March 23, 2023 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, politics, weapons and war | Leave a comment

Nuclear safety agency silent on disposal of AUKUS radioactive waste

By Brian TooheyMar 21, 2023

At this stage there is little interest in how to dispose of the high level uranium waste from AUKUS SSNs, let alone put First Nations voices to the fore.

This is unlikely to change while the nation’s most prominent journalists see it as their job to promote the dominant military doctrine and boost the demonisation of China, while rubbishing inconvenient interlopers such as the former prime minister Paul Keating.

I recently asked Australia’s principal nuclear safety organisation, the Australian Radiation Protection and Nuclear Safety Agency (ARPANSA), “What’s required to safely dispose of highly enriched uranium (over 90%) and for how long e.g. in stable underground rock formation?” Not a hard question you might suppose. However, the media officer replied, “ARPANSA is unable to provide a response in this instance”.

I then asked without success, “Why not?” This is a timid answer from an organisation supposed to provide the public and others accurate information on big issues in its field.

My question followed the defence minister Richard Marles’ announcement that Australia will take all the nuclear waste generated by the reactors in its newly acquired nuclear submarines which use highly enriched, weapons grade, uranium. Marles’ statement that the uranium waste would be kept “on” defence land shows he lacks a grip of what’s involved.

He’s not dealing with low-grade radioactive hospital waste that can be stored on the surface. At a minimum, the reactor waste will have to be kept deep underground, probably vitrified, and guarded for centuries. Marles says nothing needs to be done for 50 years. This will not be the case if Australia initially gets three to five second-hand US submarines whose high level waste will need to be dealt with much sooner.

Despite the US and the UK’s long experience with nuclear weapons, neither has a high-level underground nuclear waste repository. In these circumstances, Australia could easily be pressured into securing the waste created by the US and UK submarines’ nuclear reactors.

At this stage, it seems likely the burial site will be on land important to Australia’s indigenous population. Whatever happens, it is essential there is no repeat of the neglect of the indigenous people who were wilfully exposed to radiation during and after the British nuclear tests in the 1950s and 60s in Australia’s south and central desert areas. The case for getting nuclear submarines is already bad. They should be ruled out entirely if the indigenous population rejects the proposed waste burial sites, which need to be identified urgently, rather than at Marles’ leisurely timetable.

At this stage there is little interest in how to dispose of the high level uranium waste, let alone put indigenous inhabitants to the fore. This is unlikely to change while the nation’s most prominent journalists see it as their job to promote the dominant military doctrine and boost the demonisation of China, while rubbishing inconvenient interlopers such as the former prime minister Paul Keating. It doesn’t help either that they some are largely ignorant of the issues.

Many journalists put great faith in intelligence briefings from right wing ideologues and others about the alleged threat from China. They claim Keating can’t say anything of value because he hasn’t received an intelligence briefing in decades. On the contrary, this is a distinct advantage.

Keating’s detractors need to pay a lot more attention to the role intelligence played in the illegal invasion of Iraq. The recent 20th anniversary of the invasion, led by George Bush, Tony Blair and John Howard, received little attention in Australia. This act of aggression was justified by concocted intelligence. Howard falsely claimed that at the time of the invasion his government “knew” Iraq possessed weapons of mass destruction. Thanks largely to the much-disparaged weapons inspectors, Iraq certainly didn’t have any. Yet Howard falsely said they did and were “capable of causing destruction on a mammoth scale”.

Many Australian journalists now rely on purported intelligence and propaganda for their flimsy claims about Chinese acts of aggression, which barely rank alongside the death and destruction wrought by the US aided by Australia. Chinese journalists also rely excessively on government sources, but have almost no influence in Australia.

The White House, for example, engaged in a blatant act of propaganda when unveiling the plan for Australia to get nuclear submarines. It claimed, “For over 60 years, the UK and the US have operated more than 500 naval nuclear reactors . . . without incident or adverse effect on human health or the quality of the environment.” In fact, two US nuclear submarines, the Thresher and the Scorpion, sunk during that period with the loss of all lives on board. Mainstream Australian journalists have not treated this as a staggering falsehood that should be condemned.

Mainstream journalists also have little grasp of other issues involving submarines. One recently claimed that Keating, who opposes Australia buying nuclear submarines, didn’t understand that conventional submarines have to go close to the surface to recharge their diesels by what’s called a “snorting”, a process, where they risk detection. This journalist seemed to have no awareness that modern conventional submarines greatly reduce this risk with Air Independent Propulsion, which uses hydrogen fuel cells to operate extremely quietly for at least three weeks.  Using modern batteries can provide another three weeks, or more, of silent operation before charging the batteries in a safe location. They are also much cheaper than nuclear submarines which are detectable from a range of sources, including heat and the wake they leave on the surface at high speed. By the time Australia’s new nuclear submarines arrive around 2050 there is a high chance that advances in sensor technology and computing power will make them relatively easy to detect and destroy.

Although the public currently likes the idea of getting nuclear submarines, it doesn’t like the cost which Marles puts at $268 billion to $368 billion by 2055. The public may like it even less if they realise that the Virginia Class submarines of which we are still get up to five, have an appalling maintenance record. If we got eight, as originally intended, only two would be operationally available on average. Paying $368 billion to have two operationally available would be a scandalous result. Modern conventional submarines, such as German ones, have an exemplary maintenance record and cost about $15 billion for ten.

March 22, 2023 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, wastes | Leave a comment

Ray Tauss Submission – for health, safety, and future generations’ well-being – Australia’s nuclear bans should NOT be repealed

Submission No 67 to: Committee Secretary, Senate Standing Committees on Environment and
Communications Re: Senate inquiry into nuclear power

Nuclear power begins with uranium mining
Nuclear power generation uses uranium. Mining of uranium produces wastes. Wastes can be used for the
extraction of radioactive material. 300,000 years is how long the wastes must be safeguarded before they can be relatively safe for fauna and people. The wastes need to be safeguarded against emitting radiation to the
atmosphere and environment, and safeguarded against theft and safeguarded against being used for terrorism
and safeguarded against war.

Nuclear power plants
Nuclear power plants are vulnerable to sabotage, bombing, implosion, explosion, fire, loss of coolant, earthquake and asteroid impact.
I submit that neither nuclear power nor other nuclear energy should be produced or used in Australia.

Personnel working or volunteering in the nuclear sector

Workers in the nuclear industry (including mining radioactive ores, mining waste storage, nuclear power plant
products and radioactive wastes) are subject to corruption, dishonesty, bribery, persuasion, blackmail and illegal dealings. Any single one of these attributes compromises the safety of a nuclear plant, and compromises the integrity of protection from misuse of nuclear waste products.

I submit that removal of prohibitions on production of nuclear energy is deleterious to safe and healthy futures for people in Australia in this century and beyond and that prohibitions on production of nuclear energy must be maintained.

Management of wastes from nuclear power production
Nuclear wastes are subject to use in terrorist acts, in war, and in the production of energy and other outputs.
Nuclear wastes impose high storage and safe maintenance costs on the country where the wastes are. Wastes
from nuclear power production need to be guarded for some 300,000 years. Wastes carry the potential for
accidental and deliberate acts that can have catastrophic outcomes on human health, environmental health, and
public and private infrastructure.

I submit that hazards and risks associated with nuclear wastes would be exacerbated by production of nuclear
power in Australia and that those hazards and risks should be avoided by maintaining a total prohibition on
production of nuclear energy in Australia. I also submit that nuclear power should be prohibited in any country,
land area, sea area and terrestrial or non-terrestrial air space controlled or owned by Australia.

Risk to future generations
Radioactive products from mining of radioactive and uranium ores, and products of nuclear power generation
retain radioactivity at levels unsafe for human health as well as for human and animal environments for some
300,000 years. Dealing, storing, and safeguarding those ores, ore products, and the wastes from nuclear power
production will confer risks and costs on future generations of people and those hazards, costs, health and
environmental risks would be an wholly unreasonable imposition of all current and future generations.

I submit that the hazards, risks and safety costs imposed on future generations by any removal of prohibitions on nuclear energy creation and production would be unreasonable and inequitable for all future generations of

I submit that the following Sections of the Australian Radiation Protection and Nuclear Safety Act 1998 should not be repealed:
Section 10
I submit that the following parts or Sections of the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 should not be repealed:
Section 37J
Section 140A
Section 146M
Paragraph 305(2)(d)

March 21, 2023 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, politics | Leave a comment

Greg Chapman Submission – Nuclear power is dirty and its fallout lasts forever.

Submission no 66. To Senate Estimates Committee against Environment and Other Legislation Amendment (Removing Nuclear Energy Prohibitions) Bill 2022

How many times do we have to remind ultra-conservative politicians that Australia doesn’t
need or want nuclear power stations or nuclear powered war machines?

Australia has more than enough sustainable renewable energy without having to resort to
dangerous and world-shattering atomic energy.

I live near Darwin River Dam – the water supply for Darwin. On the other side of the Dam is
Rum Jungle Uranium site. It is still radioactive after hundreds of millions of dollars of
remediation since it closed in 1971. Darwin Dam water is tested daily before it reaches city
taps. My bore water is never tested. Over 17,000 people down here have untested water
bores. I’ve had friends who died from unexplained cancers. This is the legacy of being
colonised by the UK and US for their militaries to make nuclear weapons.

Australia has several nuclear bomb testing sites still giving off high levels of radioactivity
because of our unequal ‘alliances’ with the UK and US.

Why does it seem to be that these ultra-conservatives want to make us part of the nuclear
industry and lobby for ‘clean’ nuclear energy when Australian governments make
arrangements with the UK/US to buy nuclear submarines and house B52s with nuclear
weapon capabilities?

Nuclear power is not clean or sustainable. It’s dirty and its fallout lasts forever.

Let’s say we agree to have nuclear energy. We would need to:
 Consult fairly, openly and accountably with individuals and communities likely to be
 Arrange constantly assessed assurance and insurance agreements locally, nationally
and internationally – including jurisdictional arrangements between the
Commonwealth and states/territories;
 Provide occupational health and safety to a yet to be trained Australian workforce and
educate workers and their families on the dangers of reactor workers taking work
 Australia can’t depend on overseas workers to fill highly sophisticated scientific and
technical officer jobs. After 40 years of educational neglect, we can’t rely on other
countries to supply such employment skills and needs;
 Have highly secure sites for nuclear facilities;
 Allocate huge amounts of water for cooling and preventing meltdown;
 Connect power infrastructure to the grid without jeopardising other energy

Provide extremely safe transport for nuclear materials with warnings and signs
everywhere possible on the transport vehicles and roads used;
 Safely decommission reactors – also requiring a huge, well-trained workforce and a
huge and well-trained public service to oversee this;
 Be able to do what no other nuclear nation has yet done: safely manage and store
nuclear waste for thousands of years, and
 Reassure our non-nuclear neighbours

Australia has colonised and ignored the basic needs and communal responsibilities of our
first nation people – as well as making war on other nations not toeing our white, mainstream
liberal dream of private, individual ownership. Can we really be trusted to use nuclear energy
for the social good of the world? How do we reconcile commissioning volatile reactor
stations in a highly unpredictable atmosphere of climate change? Will another Chenobyl help
us achieve a circular economy and zero waste in the near future – or ever?

Where we even put these monsters? Not in my backyard – that’s for sure!

March 21, 2023 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, politics | Leave a comment

Nuclear power costs prohibitive

Michael Chamley, The Entrance MARCH 21, 2023

It seems any mention of cheap, clean renewables gets the dander up some areas, whether they be advocates for more coal and gas burning or, over the past two Forums, nuclear power plants.

Had Blind Freddy (hereafter “Fred”) been able to see, he could have referred his fellow acolytes to the failure of nuclear power plants at Three Mile Island in the USA, Chernobyl in the Ukraine and Fukushima in Japan, all frightful results.

However, almost as frightening is the misinformation these Forum inputs contained about the general use of nuclear power.

Firstly, generating costs: The UK has nine operational nuclear power plants, and 11,000 offshore wind turbines (not a reliable comparison place for solar).

In 2021 the cost per MW  hour for wind generation was 37 pounds (A$67); the cost to generate a MW hour of electricity using nuclear was 100 pounds (A$181).

Cost to build: The UK’s latest nuclear power plant; Hinkley Point C; remains incomplete having started construction in 2017, with completion expected (after delays) in 2028.

The cost to date has been 32.7 billion pounds (A$67B), with costs having risen from the initial cost of 22 billion pounds (A$40B).

In the UK experts on energy are saying this station will produce the most expensive UK electricity ever.

Further, there is the added necessity for the power plants to be shut down for maintenance for extended periods. sometimes one-two weeks or more, when their generating capacity is offline, much like coal and gas generators now.

Of course the letters did not include this in their analysis of “intermittency”.

Large wind/solar farms are constructed in two-three years and wind farms cost $2-4M per MW hours.

I also refer Fred to the 2021-2022 Gencost report completed by the CSIRO and AEMO.

In it they stated that wind and solar was the cheapest form of electricity generation (as anyone with rooftop PV will attest), even when taking into account costs associated with storage (batteries or pumped hydro) and related transmission upgrade costs.

The cost of nuclear power would be the most expensive form of power at $16,000 per KwH to produce (Small modular reactors SMR’s Gencost report), with wind and solar under $2000 per KwH.

One of the parties at the coming election is advocating SMR’s for a street near you.

Gencost stated of SMR’s: “Following extensive consultation with the Australian electricity industry, report findings do not see any prospect of domestic projects this decade, given the technology’s commercial immaturity and high cost.

“Future cost reductions are possible but depend on its successful commercial deployment overseas.”

By that time, Australia will be powered by renewables by a mixture of wind, solar, pumped hydro/storage, hydro electric and battery storage – all clean, all sustainable and no radioactive byproducts to dispose of.

March 21, 2023 Posted by | business, Queensland | Leave a comment

Judy Schneider Submission – keep Australia’s nuclear bans, use renewables, including tidal energy

Environment and Other Legislation Amendment (Removing Nuclear Energy Prohibitions) Bill 2022
Submission 70

I wish to make a submission re lifting the ban on creating energy from nuclear sources.
Fortunately, we have not had a long history of nuclear production or disasters.
The ban on nuclear energy production was a great step forward in making Australia safe from impacts of another disaster.
Sure, we need more renewable energy resources and speed up our transition to less climate destroying fossil fuels. Some countries use biomass energy, but that creates pollution too.

Why don’t we use water – “our home is girt by sea”.
Tidal energy is a renewable energy powered by the natural rise and fall of ocean tides and currents. Some of these technologies include turbines and paddles. Tidal energy is produced by the surge of ocean waters during the rise and fall of tides. Tidal energy is a renewable source of energy.
Of course, such tidal plants would need to be constructed away from marine migration areas.
Australia has had problems in the past, e.g. Maralinga and where to dispose of

March 21, 2023 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, politics | Leave a comment

$18 million a job? The AUKUS subs plan will cost Australia way more than that

The cost could come in below $300 billion, or easily approach $500 billion.

a large element of old-fashioned pork-barrelling involved.

war with China in the next few years (over Taiwan) isn’t a persuasive argument for submarines that won’t be delivered until the 2030s.

March 17, 2023, John Quiggin, Professor, School of Economics, The University of Queensland

Australian governments have a long and generally dismal history of using defence procurement, and particularly naval procurement, as a form of industry policy.

Examples including the Collins-class submarines, Hobart-class air warfare destroyers and, most recently, the Hunter-class “Future Frigates”.

The stated goal is to build a defence-based manufacturing industry. But there is also a large element of old-fashioned pork-barrelling involved.

In particular, South Australia has nursed grievances over the shutdown of local car making, centred in the state, following the withdrawal of federal government subsidies. The closure of the Osborne Naval Shipyard in north Adelaide would be politically “courageous” for any government.

So the projects roll on, despite technical problems (the six Collins-class subs were plagued by problems with their noise signature, propulsion and combat systems) and cost overruns (the three Hobart destroyers cost $1.4 billion more than the $8 billion budgeted). The $35 billion plan for nine Hunter-class frigates may yet be abandoned given budget constraints.

All these previous ventures are dwarfed by the AUKUS agreement, which involves projected expenditure of up to $368 billion.

As Richard Denniss of The Australia Institute has noted, the precision implied by this number is spurious. The cost could come in below $300 billion, or easily approach $500 billion.

Military case lacking

The case for such a massive investment in submarines has proved hard to make in a simple and convincing way. The “Red Alert” articles published this month by The Sydney Morning Herald and The Age has helped to raise alarm about China. But the warning Australia could find itself at war with China in the next few years (over Taiwan) isn’t a persuasive argument for submarines that won’t be delivered until the 2030s.

Other questions have emerged.

In different ways, former prime ministers Paul Keating and Malcolm Turnbull have questioned the sense of a renewed alliance with the United Kingdom. The UK in a state of obvious decline, and Labour leader Keir Starmer, likely to be Britain’s next prime minister, has been noticeably lukewarm in his support for AUKUS, saying: “Whatever the merits of an Indo-Pacific tilt, maintaining security in Europe must remain our primary objective.”

Then there’s the view, held by many experts, that what has made submarines such potent weapons in the past – stealth – is unlikely to endure. Underwater drones and improved satellite technology could make our subs obsolete even before they are launched.

What about the jobs?

In these circumstances, the easiest political strategy to sell the AUKUS package is to present it as a job-creation program.

This is an appealing path for the federal government, given Prime Minister Anthony Albanese’s yearning for “an Australia that make things”. Albanese’s Twitter account has published tweets extolling the economic benefits of the deal, but none about what the submarines will actually do to make Australians safer.

The obvious response is that the 20,000 jobs the government says the program will directly create over the next 30 years will cost more than $18 million apiece.

But that actually understates how bad the case is.

Where will we find the skilled workers?

Australia already has a shortage of the type of skilled workers required to build the nuclear-powered subs: scientists, technicians and trade workers. Our existing training programs are unlikely to fill the gap. So, the new jobs will mostly be filled either by diverting skilled workers from other industries or by additional immigrants.

The government is grappling with the policies that can meet this existing shortage. Our migration program, for example, allocates extra points for technical skills in short supply, putting skilled workers ahead of people whose motive for migration is to be with their families and friends.

The “Job Ready Graduates” policy introduced by the Morrison government subsidises science, technology, engineering and mathematics degrees, at the expense of humanities and social sciences. This policy is now under review, but may well be maintained in some form.

Such is the scale of the problem that the government’s pre-election commitment to deliver a White Paper on Full Employment (inspired the Chifley government’s 1945 White Paper) has been sidelined by a focus on how to increase the supply of skilled labour, through vocational education, immigration and delayed retirement. Hence the title of the “Jobs and Skills Summit” in September 2022.

There is no indication the shortage of skilled tech workers is going to be resolved any time soon. It is, then, a mistake to boast about the number of technical jobs that will be created by AUKUS.

It would be more accurate to say that, just as the massive financial cost of the submarines will come at the expense of spending on social needs, the workers required to build them will divert skills from addressing needs such as decarbonising the economy.

Perhaps, like previous submarine deals, this plan will be scrapped before consuming the stupendous sums of money now projected. But in the meantime it will divert the Australia’s government from addressing urgent domestic problems.

March 20, 2023 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, business | Leave a comment