Thursday, February 23, 2012

Tony Abbott's Foreign Policy: The Fine Print

Australia's next prime minister, Tony Abbott, takes time out from his ceaseless round of photo-ops in workplaces throughout the land to remind Australians that his foreign policy focus will be... well, substantially less foreign than Rudd's:

"Sensible countries focus their foreign policy on what's clearly in their national interest. That's why I keep saying that the next Coalition government's foreign policy would have a 'Jakarta focus rather than a Geneva one'. What happens in our region usually matters much more to us than what happens elsewhere... As foreign minister, Rudd visited Liechtenstein before he made it to PNG... " (On world stage, Rudd spoke loudly & carried a small stick, Sydney Morning Herald, 23/2/12)

Yes, most sensible, Tony. But wait, what's this?

"Clearly, Labor's obsession with winning a temporary seat on the UN Security Council is warping our priorities. For example, the government has softened Australia's support for Israel, the only mature democracy in the Middle East." (ibid)

Increased support for Israel? Forget Indonesia and PNG. See you in Tehran, mate.

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