A New Partnership to Counter China in the Pacific
No story has been more important the last month than our disastrous withdrawal from Afghanistan and the Taliban’s return to power. Thomas Joscelyn has been covering the war on terror since it began, and few people are as knowledgeable about al-Qaeda, ISIS, and other threats that still challenge us. We’re sending you this preview of his weekly newsletter, Vital Interests, to give you an idea of what you’d be receiving if you were a full member of The Dispatch. His newsletter comes out every Thursday and he also touches on the challenges presented by foes China and Russia. Today, in fact, he was able to turn his attention to the new partnership announced by the U.S., the U.K., and Australia. Now is great time to sign up as a paid member. We’re offering 30-day trial free-trial memberships. Join now and you get 13 months for the price of 12. Even better: It’s risk-free and you can cancel anytime. (But we hope you won’t.)
On September 15, President Biden joined a virtual press conference with Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison and British Prime Minister Boris Johnson. The trio gathered via screens to announce the creation of AUKUS. As Morrison explained, AUKUS is “a new enhanced trilateral security partnership” in which the technological, industrial, and defense sectors of the three nations will work “together to deliver a safer and more secure region that ultimately benefits all.”
If you read through the transcript of the briefing, you’ll notice something missing: China. There is no mention of Beijing, the Chinese Communist Party (CCP), the People’s Liberation Army or Xi Jinping.
No, to hear the three allies talk, or read their words, one might think they are worried about some abstract threat to international security. That is not the case. AUKUS is mostly about countering the CCP.