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‘A new age is coming’: Abbott calls on Australia to ramp up defence efforts

Luke Grant
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Former Prime Minister Tony Abbott thinks Australia is on the precipice of a “new age” when it comes to what is required of our national defence.

After demands made by Donald Trump at this week’s meeting with NATO allies, Abbott says the days of free-riding our allies for protection could be numbered. Trump’s isolationist “America first” policies mean Australia needs to be prepared to defend itself against potential adversaries, according to Abbott.

Senator Jim Molan agrees Australia has relinquished its self-sufficiency and needs to gain it back.

“I think Abbott is totally on the money,” says Jim Molan.

“What he is saying goes to the intent. Does America want to assist its allies? At the moment, Trump is saying, ‘if you don’t pay more money, why should we pay 60 to 70 percent of the cost of NATO when you guys won’t even come up with 2% of your GDP to defend yourselves?’ ”

“We have been able to really use the alliance with the US since the Second World War. But we have free-ridden a lot of that time.”

With America clearly tiring of doing all the heavy lifting, Molan says Australia needs to step up, especially in the area of emergency fuel supply, where our reserves sit at just 21 days or less.

“The quite unique circumstances this nation has had since 1945, that we have not been directly threatened, is an unusual circumstance for human beings.

“But now the world is changing and it has changed very, very quickly.”

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Luke Grant