Flunkey Aussies to wean from US, says China scholar

Flunkey Aussies to wean from US, says China scholar, by Rowan Callick.

The election of Donald Trump should accelerate Australia’s ­“process of weaning” from the US, according to an Australian ­Chinese scholar.

Xue Er — the pen name of Jiang Wensheng, a former Chin­ese ­public servant and real estate agent working in Australia for the Pangoal Institution, a Beijing-based think tank — said this would form “part of (Australia’s) long ­history toward independence”. …

He said that in both diplomacy and defence, Australia has always been practising “flunkeyism”, which he defines as a small country relying on a large country for survival. …

Mr Jiang said that during the period of secret diplomatic contact between the US and China in the early 1970s, America had provided no prior information to Australia, but left it to continue to pursue “an anti-China campaign … using ­Australia as a chess piece in the nego­tiations with China, then disposing of it”. …

Australia has supported the US “pivot” back to Asia, while also “in practice maintaining a delicate and low-key inde­pendent stance”. For instance, Australia’s navy still avoided joint patro­ls with the US in the South China Sea.

hat-tip Stephen Neil