Showing posts with label NATO in the Pacific. Show all posts
Showing posts with label NATO in the Pacific. Show all posts

Sunday, June 09, 2013

X-Post: PACNEWS - Australian Defence Encounters New Pacific Realities.

By Michael O’Keefe,

  Canberra has turned its attention back to the Pacific. No more potent a symbol of this renewed interest could be found than the Australian Defence Minister Stephen Smith’s visit to Tonga on the eve of releasing the Defence White Paper ‘Defending Australia and its National Interests’.

The fact that Smith was convening the inaugural annual ‘South Pacific’ defence ministers meeting is certainly significant. But there is also substance behind this symbolism. The minister foreshadowed the new Pacific Maritime Security Programme, which replaces the Pacific Patrol Boat Project and forms the centrepiece of Australia’s new Pacific strategy.

Canberra has some catching up to do after years of benign neglect. For over a decade, Australia and its US ally have been focused on Iraq, Afghanistan and the ‘War on Terror’. Operations in Afghanistan are winding down and the White Paper is sensitive to the implications of this major shift in tempo.

Australia’s other large and enduring operation in the Solomon Islands is also winding down. RAMSI has been a major bridge to the region and ending this link will have an impact on the Solomons and on Australian defence engagement. The second principal task of the Australian Defence Force (ADF) identified by the White Paper is to “contribute to stability and security in the South Pacific and Timor-Leste”.

Naturally this comes second to providing for the direct defence of Australia. However, it is widely acknowledged that a direct threat is highly unlikely to develop for a generation and therefore the focus on the Pacific gains priority. While the US is pivoting to Northeast Asia to focus on China, Japan and the Koreas, Australia is pivoting back into the Pacific. The challenge for both is that the seascape has changed dramatically in both areas since their attention shifted to the Middle East over a decade ago.

One key strategic shift that links this ‘pivoting’ is that the Pacific is becoming an arena for geopolitical contest between the great powers. Australian and US’ strategic interests may very well overlap in this regard, but Australia is apt to view the Pacific as its backyard rather than simply a venue for strategic competition.

A major stumbling block preventing re-engagement is the continuing diplomatic standoff with Fiji. A key plank in the sanctions regime is a ban on defence cooperation. Historically, Fiji has been Australia’s largest defence cooperation partner in the Pacific and the key to broader regional defence cooperation. This is not simply because of the size and capability of the Fiji Military Forces, but also because of Fiji’s place as a hub for the region.

When an Australian defence attaché arrives in Suva after the elections in 2014, he will find a radically different diplomatic environment than when his predecessor left. The Fijian government has a new-found confidence in its diplomatic affairs and Australia is no longer the dominant military cooperation partner. Countries such as China, Indonesia and Russia have filled the gap in defence training and logistics.

This situation is largely of Australia’s doing and it will be its responsibility to play ‘catch up’. It’s clear from the tone of the White Paper that Australian defence planners are sensitive to the changed dynamics of the region. The aim is not to “control” but to “contribute” to the maintenance of regional security.

Furthermore, the emphasis is on regional security challenges that more reflect the interests of the Pacific countries rather than the orthodoxies underpinning the rest of Australia’s strategy.

Michael O'Keefe

" One key strategic shift that links this ‘pivoting’ is that the Pacific is becoming an arena for geopolitical contest between the great powers. "
Seeing the Pacific through Pacific eyes means that the focus is on maritime security (such as fisheries management and protection), transnational crime (such as human trafficking, people smuggling and drug smuggling) and disaster management (humanitarian assistance, disaster relief and stabilisation).

The new maritime security boat programme neatly captures Australia’s intentions and the potential role Pacific leaders have in shaping it to suit regional interests.

This programme will be the centrepiece of defence cooperation. We have no idea what the boats will look like but the intention is clear.

At one point, the White Paper highlights the role of the Royal Australian Navy amphibious ships in humanitarian assistance, etc, in the Pacific. In contrast, the maritime security boats will be gifted to Pacific Islands states to assist islands nations in protecting their Exclusive Economic Zones (EEZs).

The capability of these boats will be defined in the year ahead and there is an opportunity to shape the project to meet the maritime security needs of Pacific Islands states for the next generation. Furthermore, whether the boats gifted to individual islands nations are connected into an integrated regional surveillance network supported by Australian assets (such as maritime patrol aircraft) remains to be seen.

To realise its potential, the gulf that has opened up between supporters of Fiji and supporters of Australia isolating Fiji will need to be bridged. Pacific and Australian leaders will have to navigate their way through the turbulent waters created by the ongoing diplomatic tension.

A significant gap in all the White Papers is that they don’t include implementation strategies and the most challenging issue will be how the defence cooperation with the region can be rebuilt.

The maritime security boat programme is one possible bridge. Another could be in relation to peacekeeping. Only last month, a new arrangement linking the training of Fijian and Papua New Guinean peacekeeping forces was announced.

Peacekeeping is a costly and admirable endeavour and one in which the FMF and ADF have some experience. It would be natural for Fijian participation in operations to expand after 2014 and much work could be done to prepare for this eventuality.

Similarly, military forces have the best training and expansion capacity to respond to complex humanitarian contingencies and coordinating the development of a regional capacity to act swiftly to natural disasters is long overdue.

There is great potential for the White Paper to support enhanced regional defence cooperation, but it has to be
acknowledged that the strategic seascape has changed. Whether it achieves its promise depends on the regional buy-in. Probably more than at any time since the Pacific Islands states gained independence, regional leaders have the capacity to shape the scope of defence cooperation.

• Dr Michael O’Keefe is a Senior Lecturer & Convener at La Trobe University, Victoria, Australia


Viewpoint in Islands Business magazine,  June 2013 Edition

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Monday, May 06, 2013

A Tale of Two Summits in the South Pacific.

Attendees to Pacific Defence Ministers meeting in Tonga (Image: Matangi Tonga)

On May 1st 2013, Defence Minister's of Australia, New Zealand, Papua New Guinea and representatives from US, UK, France and Chile met for a regional Defence summit in Tonga, a tiny monarchy in the South Pacific.
This inaugural meeting in Nukualofa, discussed aspects of defence and security issues, including maritime security, peacekeeping and disaster relief in the region.
Some bilateral meetings were also conducted between the attendees. One notable agreement of particular interest, which eventually panned out, is the Defence Agreement, signed by Tonga's Prime Minister, Lord Tui'vakano and New Zealand's Defence Minister, Dr Jonathan Coleman.
The Tonga-NZ Visiting Forces Agreement gave clearance on a temporary basis, for the New Zealand Defence Force to stay in Tonga and increase joint operations. Among the objectives, was to improve inter-operability links with the Tonga Defence Service.

French Ambassador to Tonga- arriving in Nukualofa (Image: Matangi Tonga)

Australia Defence Secretary, Steven Smith confirmed some assistance to Tonga Defence Services (TDS) in the form of military equipment and support, amid the looming shadow of budgetary constraints in the Australian Treasury:
“Australia would support the reinvigoration of Tonga’s dedicated sealift capability through the provision of a new Landing Craft. This Landing Craft will enable Tonga to transfer stores, people, and equipment to its outer islands, and will be essential in helping the TDS provide rapid relief in the event of natural disasters. [...]refurbishment of the TDS Naval Base at Masefield, and the reconstruction of TDS Headquarters facilities on the islands of Ha’apai and Vava’u [...]comprehensive support to Tonga’s maritime security through the Pacific Patrol Boat Program. Tongan Navy’s three patrol boats will receive ongoing advisory, training, maintenance, and operational support[…] Australia will maintain its extensive program of training and education support, including through continued officer training at the Australian Defence College and Australian Defence Force Academy, scholarships, single-service courses, and joint training.”

This military assistance and the Defence agreement between Australia, New Zealand, nascent member of NATO global partnership (PDF) and Tonga, a contributor to the (ISAF)International Security Assistance Force in Afghanistan, only underscores what many observers of NATO had long foreshadowed.
Richard Longworth opinion piece “Beyond NATO” in the American Review magazine highlighted the new global security frameworks:
“Ever since the Cold War ended 20 years ago, NATO has been an alliance without a mission, making itself useful in places like Libya and Afghanistan without the overarching challenge that the Soviet Union provided. The search for that new mandate continues, and the emphasis on partners, including Australia, indicates where NATO may be looking. If the Chicago summit is any guide, NATO is becoming more of a global alliance and less of a European bloc […] As the world’s most successful military alliance, NATO remains a useful umbrella and will no doubt be called upon to bless American forays far from Europe […] This is where the partners come in. The United States will try to get the formal authority of NATO for out-of-area missions, but it will mostly ask the partners to join in the real fighting.”
Rick Rozoff, a longtime observer of NATO, outlined the Pacific dimension:
“ The North Atlantic Alliance in fact has a Pacific strategy. Most of the most recent additions to NATO’s Troop Contributing Countries in Afghanistan have come from Asia-Pacific nations: Malaysia, Mongolia, Singapore, South Korea and Tonga. Japan has dispatched military personnel, medics, as well. Australia and New Zealand have had troops, including special forces, engaged in combat operations in Afghanistan for years. With 1,550 soldiers assigned to the International Security Assistance Force, Australia is the largest troop provider to that NATO operation of any non-NATO country. “
 A report (PDF) from the think tank, Atlantic Council, also envisions a Pacific footing for NATO:
“A new Pacific Peace Partnership would bind NATO to important US allies with shared values and common interests [...] Such a relationship would further the important goal of multilateralizing the US alliance system while permitting NATO to strengthen interoperability with like-minded, capable allies and increase collaboration on shared challenges of borderless scope, like cybersecurity. Furthermore, closer European linkages with key US Pacific partners will help ensure that European allies retain the capacity to shape security in a region toward which the global balance of power is rapidly tilting. It would be better for NATO proactively to build stronger links with like-minded and capable Pacific partners rather than be caught flat- footed in a future contingency.”
G77 summit attendees
G77 Summit attendees (Image: MoI)
An hour or so flight Northwest from Tonga is Fiji-which laid out the welcome mat to a multi-nation summit of a different sort. The diametrical opposing diplomatic approaches taken by the NATO global partners and the G77, to the Pacific region could not be more of a contrast.
President Evo Morales about to drink a bilo of Yaqona  (Image: MoI)
Fiji hosts the G77 and Bolivian President, Evo Morales, is in attendance as chief guest. The G77 being a political-economic bloc, has its core values inextricably linked with South-South cooperation, in which technical and economic development is one of the UN organization''s guiding principle.
President Morales presence in Fiji, is entirely unique because it appears to be the first Head of State from the South American continent and one of an indigenous extraction, to visit the region.
In addition, President Morales celebrated anti-imperial stances (a non-nonsense characteristic, that is devoid in most spineless Pacific island leaders) and whose well grounded assessments of United States foreign policies have been widely documented: 
“Bolivian president Evo Morales criticised US government early today, labelling Obama’s foreign policy as interventionist and authoritarian[...]The empire is no solution, capitalism is no solution for humanity either […] that’s why social movements have to think about new policies to save humanity from imperialism and capitalism.”
President Evo Morales inspects the guard of honor in Fiji. (Image: Moi)
Morales' latest action was capped off last week by expelling the USAID from Bolivia, allegedly for interfering in the country's domestic politics. Bolivia also has some international disagreements with Chile, regarding maritime access to the Pacific ocean. It is certainly not missed by some acute observers, that Chile was also attending the recent Defense Ministers meeting in Tonga.
All things considered, the South Pacific region is rapidly undergoing a re-configuration of the geo-political order. What can be determined of this New Zealand's deployment of troops in Tonga coupled with Australia's garrison of US marines in Darwin?
Undoubtedly, the pre-positioning of military resources in the South Pacific region, dove tails with the overall objective of a global Full Spectrum Dominance of the US and it has become increasingly clear, the magnitude and scope of the 'Great Game' in the Pacific region at large.

(l-r) G77 Chair, Voreqe Bainimarama, President Evo Morales, G77 Executive Secretary (Image : MoI)

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Monday, January 28, 2013

X-Post: Strategic Culture -The Pacific Ocean: The Pentagon Next Human Terrain Battlefield

Wayne MADSEN | 27.01.2013 |

The Pentagon planners and their paid anthropologist shills are gearing up for the Pentagon’s next battle: the one for the Pacific that will ensure that the island nations that dot the vast maritime expanse will remain a part of the Anglo-American sphere of influence and not become part of a «Chinese lake».
The Pacific Ocean has been a favorite stomping ground for U.S. government-financed anthropologists ever since Margaret Mead ‘s 1928 treatise on the Samoan people, Coming of Age in Samoa, laid the groundwork for the intelligence-related anthropological study of the peoples of the Pacific Ocean by the U.S. military and intelligence services. Mead later became a researcher for the CIA-connected RAND Corporation and became a supporter of CIA funding of anthropologic surveys and studies via laundered academic research grants from the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID).

USAID / CIA/Special Operations projects with names like Phoenix, Prosyms, Sympatico, and Camelot used anthropologists and social scientists to reconnoiter targeted tribal areas in South Vietnam, Indonesia, Pakistan, Colombia, and Chile to determine how U.S. Special Forces and intelligence agents could use indigenous peoples to further American military goals. The operations in the cases of Phoenix in South Vietnam and Prosyms in Indonesia resulted in genocide on a massive scale…
Today, the military’s tribal and native peoples targeting programs fall under the nomenclature of «human terrain systems» or HTS. Brought back to life in Afghanistan and Iraq, these genocidal programs now have their eyes on the Pacific in order to gear up for what the Pentagon and Langley planners believe is an inevitable war with China.

It is fitting, therefore, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers are now looking for up to 15,000 acres of land to lease on American Samoa. The U.S. military wants to establish a major training base on American Samoa for at least five years and probably longer. The base is to provide 24-hour road access that will permit 60 full days of training per year. The Army also wants the base to permit the use of pyrotechnic and blank ammunition during daytime and nighttime training. It is certain that the U.S. is looking at building a simulated rural and village tropical environment for the use of U.S. and future «coalition of the willing» armies to practice battling an enemy in the Pacific region. That «enemy» is China.

The United States obviously foresees the Pacific as a future battleground between American and its allied forces and China for control of the important trade routes that crisscross the vast maritime region. Not since the U.S. military campaign against Japan during World War II has the Pacific seen such an American military projection of power.

The decision by the Obama administration to «pivot» its military forces into Asia and the Pacific has brought about a strong response from China, which sees itself as the ultimate target for the increased U.S. military presence. China’s ambassador to Australia Chen Yuming called the stationing of 2500 U.S. Marines in Darwin an «affront» and a Cold War containment policy toward China.

The establishment of a U.S. military training base on American Samoa follows Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s first ever attendance by a U.S. Secretary of State of a Pacific Islands Forum (PIF) summit in Rarotonga, Cook Islands on August 31, 2012. It was the first such visit to the Cook Islands and underscored America’s decision to maintain its stranglehold over the small Pacific island nations while at the same time beefing up its military forces in the region.

The United States and its two Pacific overseers – Australia and New Zealand –- are attempting to cement their neo-colonialist hegemony over the Pacific states, which are independent in name only. Enter the Human Terrain practitioners from the Pentagon and CIA to keep the Pacific islanders divided. Clinton’s participation in the PIF summit is aimed at not only maintaining the status quo but in promoting the rivalries between Polynesians, Micronesians, and Melanesians among the island states. 

The United States, having virtual ownership of the quasi-independent Micronesian nations of Micronesia, Palau, and the Marshall Islands, as well as total control over the U.S. territories of Guam and the Northern Marianas, can use its influence over Micronesians to play them off against the other two major ethnic groups,. They are the Melanesian Spearhead Group of Papua New Guinea, Fiji, Solomon Islands, Vanuatu, and the New Caledonia (Kanaky) liberation front and the Polynesian Leaders Group of Samoa, Tonga, Tuvalu, Cook Islands, Niue, Tokelau, French Polynesia, as well as the intelligence eyes and ears of Washington, American Samoa. The United States, Australia, and New Zealand can use their Human terrain System knowledge of ethnic rivalries in the Pacific to ensure that China is kept out of the area.

Part of the strategy relies on Taiwan’s «checkbook» diplomacy to maintain Taiwanese rather than Chinese embassies and aid missions in the small island states. There are currently Taiwanese embassies in Tuvalu, Solomon Islands, Marshall Islands, Palau, Nauru, and Kiribati. Among these, Nauru, Solomon Islands, and Kiribati switched their recognition back to Taiwan after opening up diplomatic relations with China. Kiribati came under pressure after it decided to allow China to build a missile tracking station on south Tarawa. 

Wayne Madsen

" The United States and its two Pacific overseers – Australia and New Zealand –- are attempting to cement their neo-colonialist hegemony over the Pacific states, which are independent in name only [...]

The CIA, Australian Security Intelligence Organization (ASIO), and New Zealand Secret Intelligence Service (NZSIS) have programs to undermine South Pacific governments that establish close relations with Beijing [...]

Aware of the animosity that poor Pacific Islanders have toward local successful Chinese businessmen, the bought—and-paid for anthropologists have stirred up riots, especially in Solomon Islands and Tonga, to marginalize China’s influence in the region. There are contingency plans to foment riots against ethnic Chinese in Fiji, Vanuatu, and Papua New Guinea [...]

If Fiji’s military-led government , which has been the subject of diplomatic sanctions by Australia and New Zealand, continues to get close to China and North Korea, these Fijian mercenaries could see coup d’état duty on behalf of the CIA, ASIO, and NZSIS in their homeland of Fiji."

The U.S. believed the China Space Telemetry Tracking Station was going to spy on the «Star Wars II» activity at the Ronald Reagan Ballistic Missile Defense Test Site in the Kwajalein Atoll of the Marshall Islands. The Marshallese on the atoll are under constant surveillance by well-armed U.S. security personnel. In 2004, Vanuatu switched its recognition back to China from Taiwan after Prime Minister Serge Vohor paid a secret visit to Taiwan and was ejected from office in a vote of no confidence. Vohor actually punched the Chinese ambassador after Vohor returned from Taiwan. Such incidents in the Pacific Islands have been known to set off riots between opposing political parties and ethnic groups. The Pentagon will use such politico-ethnic tinderboxes as a secret weapon against China.

The CIA, Australian Security Intelligence Organization (ASIO), and New Zealand Secret Intelligence Service (NZSIS) have programs to undermine South Pacific governments that establish close relations with Beijing. However, the Human Terrain operatives have gone further. Aware of the animosity that poor Pacific Islanders have toward local successful Chinese businessmen, the bought—and-paid for anthropologists have stirred up riots, especially in Solomon Islands and Tonga, to marginalize China’s influence in the region. 

There are contingency plans to foment riots against ethnic Chinese in Fiji, Vanuatu, and Papua New Guinea. The CIA’s Operation Prosyms in Indonesia relied on longstanding animosity between Muslim Indonesians and ethnic Chinese to stoke riots against the Chinese in the aftermath of the 1965 CIA coup against President Sukarno. The mayhem resulted in the deaths of over 100,000 ethnic Chinese and a severance of relations between the CIA-installed Suharto government and China. President Obama’s anthropologist mother, Stanley Ann Dunham, played a crucial role in Prosyms. Mrs. Dunham’s son appears prepared to reenact anti-Chinese pogroms in the islands of the Pacific.

It is clear that the U.S. military training in American Samoa will be used to train Pacific Islander mercenaries, many of whom, such as Marshall Islanders, American Samoans, and Guamanians already serve in the U.S. military, to train young men from impoverished Kiribati, Micronesia, Samoa, and Fiji. Fijian and Tongan mercenaries, battle-hardened from Western campaigns in Iraq, Afghanistan, and other regions, are also available to supplement the U.S. Pacific Command’s training complex on American Samoa. If Fiji’s military-led government , which has been the subject of diplomatic sanctions by Australia and New Zealand, continues to get close to China and North Korea, these Fijian mercenaries could see coup d’état duty on behalf of the CIA, ASIO, and NZSIS in their homeland of Fiji. And the diplomats of the small Chinese embassy in Nuku’alofa, Tonga have witnessed how fast the fury of local Tongans can be turned on the Chinese business community. These blood-soaked scenarios all figure heavily into Pentagon HTS plans for the Pacific.

The United States will continue to keep the Pacific Islands within its vast gulag to prevent the extension of Chinese influence. Today, Pacific Islanders are faced with a virtual «Berlin Wall» that keeps Pacific Islanders confined to their own islands while outsiders, like Chinese and Russians, are kept out. The method by which Washington, Canberra, and Wellington have created airline and sea transit monopolies and transit visa requirements means that Samoans from the Independent State of Samoa cannot visit nearby American Samoa without a special permit. And the U.S. Department of Homeland Security decides who will receive special permits and transit visas, including for those traveling on diplomatic passports. Any scheduled airline that connects any of the islands via American Samoa, Guam, or Hawaii requires a U.S. transit visa and that entails invasive interviews by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement personnel.

There is a reason why so many negotiations and agreement to establish the Trans-Pacific Strategic Economic Partnership have been secret. As the title indicates, the TPP, as it is known, is a «strategic» trade bloc, which means it also has a military dimension. In essence, it is no different than the Greater East-Asia Co-Prosperity Sphere established by Imperial Japan during World War II. The United States, not wanting to be viewed as starting the bloc but wanting it to be a replacement for the Cold War military alliance, the Southeast Asia Treaty Organization (SEATO), sat in the background while New Zealand, Singapore, Brunei, and Chile signed up as charter members in 2005. 

As more nations joined, the TPP’s military profile became clearer. The countries that signed up to the TPP were all being groomed for the anti-China military bloc for the Pacific: Australia, Canada, Malaysia, Mexico, Vietnam, Peru, and the United States signed on. Japan, Thailand, South Korea, the Philippines, Colombia, Costa Rica, Laos, and Taiwan later expressed an interest in joining the TPP. The eastward blockade of China became clear. The United States already had existing military alliances with six of the other ten TPP member nations. From Darwin, Australia and Subic Bay, Philippines to Cam Ranh Bay, Vietnam and the U.S. built Mataveri Airport on Easter Island (Rapa Nui), the U.S. was delineating the borders of its own Asia-Pacific Sphere and a line over which China would be warned not to cross.

Mrs. Clinton may have arrived in Rarotonga last year amid waves and smiles but her sinister plans for the Pacific region have more to do with using the Pacific Islanders for cannon fodder in what Washington expects to be a coming regional war with China.

Source: Strategic Culture

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Wednesday, June 06, 2012

The Hunger Games- NATO's Stealth Entry Into The Pacific Region & The Colluding States.


The South Pacific geopolitical sphere has entered an interesting phase, considering the recent developments in the region, which amounts to an extension of the Grand Chessboard unfolding in the Great Ocean.

US Defense Secretary announced at the recent International Institute of Strategic Studies (IISS) Shangri-La Dialogue 2012, about the re-allocation of more naval resources to the Asia-Pacific area, to 60-40 split with the Atlantic region.

In a separate event, it was reported that North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO )sealed an Individual Partnership Cooperation Programme (IPCP) with New Zealand Prime Minister, John Key, cementing a security cooperation that encompasses cyber defense, disaster relief, crisis management, joint education and training. 

It is not beyond the imagination to consider the trajectory of the age old ANZUS treaty between the United States, Australia, New Zealand; project into a sub-chapter of NATO alliance.

Rick Rozoff of Stop NATO, noted in the blog post  : 
“The increasing use of the word global by the U.S.-dominated military alliance – New Zealand was recently announced to be a member of its newest partnership category, partners across the globe – leaves no room for doubt regarding the emergence of NATO as a self-designated international military force, history’s first, and its intention to assume so-called out-of-area missions much farther from the territory of its member states than previous military campaigns and operations in the Balkans, South Asia, North Africa and the Indian Ocean”.

It appears that NATO, Australia and New Zealand are on this accelerated glide path with increasing cooperation cum membership, that presents a unique albeit dangerous comity, that extends NATO's coverage to the Pacific region. Rasmussen remarked “We may be far away geographically, but we are linked by common values and commitment. NATO looks forward to building on this important partnership in the years to come.”

Rick Rozoff contrasted the remarks by the NATO chief:
“The common values alluded to comprise much more than the parliamentary system of government, which exists most everywhere in the world, and instead are a veiled reference to the fact that NATO is what it has always been: A military alliance of the former colonial powers in Europe and Britain’s past outposts in North America – the U.S. and Canada – now to be complemented by those in the South Pacific, New Zealand and Australia”.

It has been reported that , the Pacific Islands Forum (PIF) is being dominated by Australia and New Zealand and consequently, their ties to NATO, would profoundly mean that the PIF, a regional organization would obediently and unquestionably follow.
However, the regional sub-groupings like the Melanesian Spearhead Group (MSG) which will soon eclipse the PIF, and will have acquired the co-optive power to seek a counterweight to this developing NATO/Trans-Tasman axis.

Fiji Ambassador to UN Peter Thomson and Kazakhstan Ambassador Byrganym Aitimova (Min of Info)

Most recently, Fiji had extended its diplomatic relations with Kazakhstan, which is also a member of Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO)
Fiji, to date has established diplomatic ties with 3 of the 6 members of SCO and further increased ties with the remaining SCO member nations are to be expected.

Corbett Report and Boiling Frogs Post video, educates the layperson about the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO). Fiji also received a delegation from North Korea, seeking to explore mutual areas of interest and development cooperation.

As a fledgling member of Non-Aligned Movement, Fiji was continuing its 'Look North' policy and seeking more diplomatic relations away from the Trans-Tasman hegemony; in a nuanced manner, that propagates a countervailing initiative in the Pacific.

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