The Guardian • Issue #2005


Preparing for war does not preserve peace

  • The Guardian
  • Issue #2005

Everyday in our news cycle the drums of of war become louder. Last month, however, that messaging received a massive boost when Defence Minister Peter Dutton spoke on the “necessity” to prepare for war:

“the only way you can preserve peace”, said Dutton, “is to prepare for war.”

Dutton’s reasoning behind his claim is that the “sobering reality” is that the current state of geopolitics mirrors the grim state of affairs before World War II:

“We’re in a period very similar to the 1930s now”.

The bluntness of Dutton’s comments reveals the Coalition’s strategy and interpretation of foreign affairs. In regards to its interpretation of foreign affairs, it highlights that the Coalition (and by extension its partners) believes that any move from non-Western forces will be viewed as an aggression, such as the China-Solomon Islands pact. So much so it seems that it is comparing such moves with those that laid the ground for WW2.

However, what is scarier – although no surprise at all – is the logic behind the Coalition’s strategy for international diplomacy. Instead of reassessing its approach, which has seen Australia become a bully in the Asia-Pacific, the Coalition is doubling down on its war rhetoric with increases in military spending because this is the only way it states that it can “preserve peace”.

If you prepare for war you get war. War preparations are not a pathway to peace, security, or easing tensions. This should be a major concern to every voter, that our government can only think to respond to developments in aggressive terms. Additionally, with this strategy, Australia is showing that it is only concerned with ensuring Western hegemony dominates. When non-Western countries, such as the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, develop their military capabilities, it is seen as an affront to democracy. However, this is meant to be viewed as preserving peace when Australia does it.

If we have not reached a pre-World War period yet, we are on the cusp, but it is not because Russia and China are planning world domination (as Western media would have you believe). Instead, it is because the West is losing its hegemonic grasp on the world as it becomes increasingly multi-polar as nations like China continue to make economic strides. Threatened and seeing a potential loss in their financial interests, the West is barking loudly, trying to halt progress. As a result, because it cannot outmaneuver China economically, the West is preparing to set the stage for a fight. Ultimately, those who will pay the price for this fight will be the working people of the world, not the capitalist class, who will profit from such a war. We must vote out the Coalition on the 21st May and attempt to restore peace through diplomatic means.

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