LETTER | The Association for Community and Dialogue (ACID) condemns the US, UK and Australia for setting up a trilateral security partnership aimed at confronting China, which will include helping Australia to build nuclear-powered submarines.
ACID is in view that this hegemonic strategy would place the South China Sea and Indo Pacific region as a whole into cold war territory, a recipe for a nuclear arms race, geopolitical proxy wars, and a possible all-out war between China and the United States in the future.
The initiative, called Aukus, was announced jointly by US President Joe Biden and UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson and his Australian counterpart, Scott Morrison, joined virtually by videoconference. They presented it as the next critical step in an old alliance.
The Aukus alliance is unjust because it is based on an exclusive grouping that tends to dictate policies in the Indo Pacific region, which will surely be resisted by countries in the region that value their independence.
Furthermore, bringing in nuclear-powered submarines reveals a deep-seated contempt for the survival of humanity.
It is disappointing that such an alliance to counter and compete with China does not take into consideration the lessons learned from the Covid-19 pandemic that requires more collaboration among nations to resolve deep-seated structural inequality and injustice in the global system.
There has been a failure among rich nations and developing ones to prioritise common human needs related to healthcare, socio-economic justice and the preservation of the environment.
The millions of deaths due to Covid 19 is a testimony of the global failure to protect humanity.
It’s time for the Malaysian ruling coalition and the opposition Pakatan Harapan to take a joint stand in Parliament against this exclusive and unjust alliance. Malaysia must make it clear that it not aligned to China or the US and both these nations should adhere to international law and the principle of common good in resolving disputes.
The world does not need a military or economic alliance that is exclusive. We should learn from the tragedies besetting countries in West Asia that allowed global powers to dictate policies in the region.
RONALD BENJAMIN is ACID secretary.
The views expressed here are those of the author/contributor and do not necessarily represent the views of Malaysiakini.