The Obama administration and Australian officials are completing final details of a plan for an increased U.S. military presence “down under.” Diplomatic sources say the formal announcement will come when President Obama visits Darwin next week.
U.S.officials declined comment on the timing of the announcement but National Security Council spokesman Tommy Vietor noted work, “was underway to develop options to align our respective force postures in ways that would benefit the national security of both countries…
At a September meeting, the U.S. and Australian officials discussed “a number of options aimed at positioning the military forces of both nations to respond in a timely and effective way to contingencies, including humanitarian assistance and disaster relief, and to enhance their ability to work with the armed forces of regional partners…”
Beijing will likely view the U.S.-Australian announcement as provocative. China has been flexing its military muscle in the South China Sea with an increased naval presence.
Douglas: Remember Libya. NATO military operations were portrayed as a humanitarian mission. The disarray will linger in North Africa for decades or longer. Egypt? Tunisia?