Australia’s lessons from Putin’s missile attack on Ukraine

When over 2000 such weapons, which far exceeds the size required for the territorial defense of mainland China. Instead, this missile arsenal is an instrument of military coercion and strike. Most of Australia is within range of conventional missiles launched from China. This means that in the unlikely event that China wants to interfere with our provision of support to Taiwan or use our bases (especially in northern Australia), China’s missiles will (or such threats may be made) from warning.


Australia has little defense against these weapons. For generations, governments have loved to invest in sophisticated, expensive and sophisticated weapon systems such as submarines and stealth fighters. They are of no use in preventing direct missile attacks against our country or our forces deployed abroad. The only capabilities that can be supported in the near future are three Hobart-class destroyers and the Army’s new advanced surface-to-air missile system due for delivery in the next few years.

that’s it. As a result, Australia has minimal deterrence against China’s missile diplomacy. Our country is completely open to coercive military and economic power with these weapons. Given that President Xi Jinping consistently communicates China’s ambitions for Taiwan and beyond, there is no doubt that they will use this power.

This is something that the ongoing defense review must urgently address.

There are economically viable remedies available. Ukrainians have proven their ground-based air defense and missile defense systems to be highly effective. In fact, one of the open secrets of this war is that most Russian fighters and helicopters were shot down by ground-based missiles, not Air Force jets. They have achieved this because they can move radars and launchers quickly and often. This makes it harder to detect than other more expensive responses and has a much higher survival rate.

The Air Force needs to keep this in mind when proposing an additional F-35 fighter fleet. An expanded fleet of short-range fighters is unlikely to offer the same return on investment as major base, infrastructure, and city expansions and integrated air and missile defense capabilities.


One of the great arts of military strategy is investing in weapons that cost the enemy more than the buyer.

Ballistic missiles are one such example of a “cost bearing” weapon. Long-range missiles are therefore a very cheap tool for strategic coercion compared to many other military capabilities. It is difficult to detect before launch and difficult to intercept in flight. They don’t need expensive crews.

This is why Australia’s defense review must invest in them. We also urgently need ground-based survivable medium- and long-range air and missile defense capabilities.

Ukrainians showed us the way. All our defense bureaucrats have to do is obey.

The Opinion Newsletter is a weekly wrap-up of views that challenge, defend and inform you. SIGN UP HERE.

Australia’s lessons from Putin’s missile attack on Ukraine

Source link Australia’s lessons from Putin’s missile attack on Ukraine

Back to top button