There is much talk of war drums beating, China battles and military deployments to North East Asia. Such visions are improbable and distant, and even if they occurred, Australia would be a small player among many much larger ones.

Instead, literally on each Australian’s doorstep, are the progressively worsening disasters that are driven by rising global temperatures. This is both Australia’s most pressing national security threat and a problem for Australians alone. In the end, Australian’s must help themselves.

The remarkably intense 2018–19 drought in Australia was then followed, not unsurprisingly, by nine months of horrific bushfires across 2019–20. The fires burnt an estimated 18 million hectares, destroyed almost 6000 buildings and killed at least 34 people. This was a bushfire season on a national scale that involved deploying 6500 Australian Defence Force personnel and Australia’s first ever national callout of military reservists.

Please click here to read the full “Only a truly national security strategy can forestall disaster” article published at The Interpreter, written by Griffith Asia Institute Visiting Fellow, Dr Peter Layton.