Can Australia Rely on America?

Can Australia Rely on America?

China is set to replace the U.S. as the dominant economic power in the Indo-Pacific region. What does this mean for the “Land Down Under”?

China will replace the United States as the world’s largest economy by 2030—and this has major ramifications for Australia. That is according to a report from the Center for Economics and Business Research.

This report provides insight into the growth prospects for 192 countries through the year 2032. According to its analysis, there will be a huge growth in the Asia region, with many East Asian countries rising to fill the top 10 spots in the global economic ranking.

“By 2032, three out of the world’s four largest economies will be Asian—China, India and Japan—while South Korea and Indonesia will enter the top 10 for the first time,” wrote James Law in “Advance Australia: Our Place in New World Order.

With China fast outpacing the U.S. as the dominant power in the Indo-Pacific region, Australia will have to adjust to the times.

For the last 70 years, America has been Australia’s greatest security ally. And for much of that time, Australia also relied on the U.S. economically. This is changing. Trade with China now represents the bulk of Australia’s international exports and imports. Statistics provided by Australia’s Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade show that trade with China accounts for almost a quarter of all Australian international exchanges of goods and services.

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull described the shift as the first time in Australian history that its dominant trading partner was not also its dominant security partner.

If this trend continues, Australia may soon cease to look to America for its security in the region as well.

According to Jane Perlez and Damien Cave of the New York Times, many Australian policymakers are expressing the belief that the U.S. can no longer be relied upon.

As the Trumpet recently reported, America is retreating from its role as the world’s policeman. Its influence in the Indo-Pacific region has greatly diminished over the last decade, leaving its allies feeling left out in the cold.

By virtue of its geography, Australia occupies a unique position in the world, a position that is causing its government to feel the effects of the American withdrawal even more acutely. Despite its geographic isolation, Australia is not automatically secure. It relies heavily on exports of its primary resources. This necessitates maintaining secure shipping lanes throughout the region.

According to Stratfor, in order to preserve its ability to conduct international trade, Australia requires two things:

First, Australia must be aligned with—or at least not hostile to—the leading global maritime power. In the first part of Australia’s history, this was Britain. More recently, it has been the United States. Australia’s dependence on maritime trade means that it can never simply oppose countries that control or guarantee the sea-lanes upon which it depends; Australia cannot afford to give the global maritime power any reason to interfere with its access to sea-lanes.

Second, and more difficult, Australia needs to induce the major maritime powers to protect Australia’s interests more actively. For example, assume that the particular route Australia depends on to deliver goods to a customer has choke points far outside Australia’s ability to influence. Assume further that the major power has no direct interest in that choke point. Australia must be able to convince the major power of the need to keep that route open. Merely having amiable relations will not achieve that.

Therefore, in order to maintain its economy and security, it is essential that either Australia or its allies, control the major sea gates of the region. This is beginning to change!

The United States and Great Britain once controlled virtually every important oceanic choke point on the planet. But over the past century, they have lost control of almost all of these strategic sea gates. The British Empire surrendered its Indo-Pacific ports in Hong Kong, Singapore and Sri Lanka. Now China is moving in to add these ports to its famous String of Pearls. In many ways, this puts Australia at China’s mercy.

Consider a biblical prophecy from Deuteronomy 28. This chapter contains prophecies aimed at the descendants of ancient Israel. (For proof of who these nations are, request our free book The United States and Britain in Prophecy, by Herbert W. Armstrong.) These prophecies specifically describe the curses that would come upon God’s people should they turn away from Him.

Speaking of Israel’s enemies, verse 52 states, “And he shall besiege thee in all thy gates, until thy high and fenced walls shall come down, wherein thou trustedst ….” These gates refer specifically to the major sea gates around the world, such as the Panama Canal and the Strait of Malacca. Once owned and controlled by America and Britain, these gates are now held by foreign powers.

In the July 2016 issue of the Trumpet magazine, editor in chief Gerald Flurry explicitly called out China’s growing power over the sea gates of the Indo-Pacific region, the very sea gates Australia relies upon. One by one, China is taking over these important waterways, filling the void left by the retreating U.S.

It is clear that as the U.S. diminishes, Australia can no longer rely on its one-time ally. China is taking center stage on the world scene, both militarily and economically.