The U.S.-Australia Alliance in an Era of Change: Living Complacently?

The U.S.-Australia Alliance in an Era of Change: Living Complacently?
Vol: 
23
Author name: 
Clarke, M.
Year: 
2017
Month: 
January
Abstract: 

U.S. primacy is both a strategic choice and an empirical condition, and thus analysis regarding the future of U.S. primacy should focus on both ideational (i.e., policy choices) and material variables (i.e., relativities of power).1 We are now witnessing significant shifts in the realms of U.S. primacy that carry great weight for Australia. In material terms, while the United States remains dominant across a range of measures (e.g., military spending),2 it has faced with growing intensity the great challenge of all hegemonic powers—managing never-ceasing political and military commitments and maintaining the economic capability to meet them.3 The Obama administration has attempted to grapple with this central challenge via the retrenchment of military commitments in Iraq and Afghanistan, budget sequestration, and a concerted effort to avoid new military and security commitments.

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