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Green, powerless and defenceless

By Viv Forbes - posted Monday, 6 November 2023

As net zero strangles Australian industry, Australia is becoming green, powerless and defenceless.

History holds lessons which we ignore at our peril.

Japan was opened to trade with the US in the 1850's. They were daunted by the naval power of Britain and the US but were determined to catch up.


In the 1930's Japan attacked China, Mussolini attacked Ethiopia and Hitler planned how to avenge WW1 in Europe. Britain's PM Chamberlain negotiated with Hitler and proclaimed he had achieved "Peace in our Time".

But Churchill warned:

Britain must arm. America must arm. We will surely do it in the end but how much greater the cost for each day's delay.

In November 1938, just after the signing of the Munich Pact, John Curtin (Leader of the Labor Party in the Australian Parliament), made this statement:

...I say that any increase in defence expenditure appears to be an entirely unjustifiable and hysterical piece of panic propaganda.Source: Hansard, p1095, Nov 2, 1938.

Just ten months later, in September 1939, Germany attacked Poland.


On this side of the world, the Japanese built a large navy and air force. However the Americans, British and Dutch controlled Asian oil supplies needed for trucks, tanks, ships and planes. With Britain pre-occupied with Germany and Italy in Europe, Japan decided on a huge grab for land and resources.

In 1931 Japan occupied Manchuria and by 1937 Japanese troops were attacking Chinese soldiers outside Beijing. Japan invaded French Indochina in 1940 and a large Japanese force threatened the Philippines where US General Douglas MacArthur was based.

On Monday 8 December 1941, Australian PM Curtin was told that Japanese aircraft had attacked the large US Pacific Fleet at Pearl Harbour and US bases in the Philippines.

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About the Author

Viv Forbes is a geologist and farmer who lives on a farm on the Bremer River.

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