Brisbane River naval plans – August 2013

Media Release – IPAN opposes plan to relocate Sydney’s Garden Island Naval base to Brisbane River.

Tuesday 27/8/2013

The Independent and Peaceful Australia Network (IPAN) opposes plan to relocate Sydney’s Garden Island Naval base to Brisbane River.

PM Rudd this morning made the case for spending many billions of dollars to relocate Australia’s Garden Island naval base to the Brisbane River.

His rationale for this is to boost Australia’s force posture capability to the north.

“What does this mean for Australia? Mr Rudd went on to explain how vital for our economy the nations to our north, Indonesia and China principally are and at the same time made the case for our well known ‘Deputy Sherriff’ status in the Asia Pacific region.

Since the 2007 Defence White Paper commissioned by Kevin Rudd, we have seen an increasing encroachment by the United States military into Australia, most notably in the Northern Territory with the stationing of a permanent rotational force of US Marines. We were told this does not constitute a ‘base’.

Last year President Obama and Prime Minister Gillard agreed to enable a force of 2500 US marines to be stationed in Darwin. In the past weeks it has become apparent there will be a far greater use of our territory by the US Military than has been revealed by the Government.  Chief of USAF Operations in the Pacific, Four-star General Herbert ‘Hawk’ Carlisle has said that US fighters, tankers and, at some point in the future, maybe bombers will be stationed at Tindall Base in the NT on a rotational basis.    Last week US Naval Operations chief Jon Greenert said the US navy plans to “provide amphibious lift for US marines operating out of Australia by establishing a fifth amphibious readiness group in the Pacific by financial year 2018″.

Today’s announcement of a major deep water naval base on the Brisbane River, capable of accepting nuclear powered naval vessels is further evidence of Australia allowing our country to be not just a lily pad for US force posture but in fact an extension of US territory.

“The Australian Navy does not have any nuclear powered vessels” Said IPAN Spokesperson Dr Ross Gwyther “This can only mean the decision allows for the US Navy use of the facility”

In the past 24 hours Dr Gwyther delivered a talk on Australia, the US & China- Peace in the Pacific

He explained ”we are at a crossroads- our sovereignty is under threat, we can choose to have a more aggressive posture and closer alignment with US interests or a more independent policy based on building friendly relations in our region”

“The position Kevin Rudd is taking doesn’t add up to us in IPAN or to our regional neighbours – we can’t extend the olive branch of trade, tourism and cultural ties to other countries in the Asia Pacific region, and at the same time clearly offer our territory to the United States to pursue their economic political and military objectives designed to assert their supremacy in the Asia Pacific” said Dr Gwyther