Sections

Services

Information

US United States

Asia

Articles (1 - 20 of 115)

Chee Soon Juan, pictured campaigning for Singapore’s 2011 general elections, hopes to build on that success in the next election, which is widely expected to be held early, possibly even this year. Wikimedia Commons/Dexterleezh

Talking a bird down from a tree: a conversation with Chee Soon Juan

The Lee dynasty and their People's Action Party have ruled Singapore since 1959, but their grip on power has weakened. Opposition leader Chee Soon Juan talks about about his long fight for change.
US Army members carry out an evacuation drill in Thailand during the Cobra Gold joint military exercises, which have gone ahead this month with a reduced American role. EPA/Diego Azubel

Does US pressure really risk driving Thailand into China’s arms?

The US is trying to play a careful game of not appearing to interfere in Thailand's internal affairs.
The Genbaku Dome at the Hiroshima Peace Memorial has long been the focus of remembrance and now also serves as a site for reconciliation between former enemies. Saleem H. Ali

The case for Japan to play a bigger part in global affairs and security

The horrific murder of Japanese nationals by Islamic State (IS) terrorists in early February has sparked a pensive debate about whether the pacifist Japanese constitution is an anachronism. Article 9 of…
It is hard to understand exactly where Indonesia under Joko Widodo stands on the death penalty. EPA/Mast Irham

Indonesia’s stance on the death penalty has become incoherent

For months, Indonesian President Joko Widodo – popularly known as Jokowi – has repeatedly stated his determination to show no mercy to drug offenders facing execution. Jokowi is even reported as having…
If Tony Abbott loses office in the near future, his Japanese counterpart Shinzo Abe will suffer a not-inconsiderable setback. EPA/Barbara Walton

Why Japan has a big stake in the fate of Tony Abbott’s leadership

As Prime Minister Tony Abbott dusts himself down after what might be the first of a number of challenges to his leadership, interest in Japan about Australian politics is acute. Japanese political elites…
Silencing dissent: Thai police officers secure the area after the military junta prevented former prime minister Yingluck Shinawatra from holding a press conference after her impeachment. EPA/Rungroj Yongrit

While the military junta buries democracy, the Thai state is failing

Growing edginess on both sides of Thai politics about the performance of the military government is proving to be quite justified. The National Legislative Assembly (NLA) has made clear the centrality…
Ousted prime minister Yingluck Shinawatra’s impeachment is but the latest act in Thailand’s political tragedy. EPA/Narong Sangnak

Yingluck impeachment is an execution of Thai democracy

No-one should be surprised that Thailand’s former prime minister, Yingluck Shinawatra, has been impeached by the military-appointed National Legislative Assembly. This was one more act in a political tragedy…
Death row inmates Myuran Sukumaran and Andrew Chan find themselves at the centre of a series of complex Indonesian political controversies. AAP/Mick Tsikas

Bali Nine: hypocrisy, politics and courts play out in death row lottery

One of the strongest arguments against the death penalty is that its administration is fundamentally unfair. Too often, the question of who receives a death sentence and whether and when it is actually…
Bob Hawke on a 1984 visit to China. His government implemented policies which boosted Asian engagement. National Archives

Cabinet papers 1989: The origins of Asian engagement

The Hawke government in the 1980s is widely considered to be the most competent and effective of recent years. Some may say this is not setting the bar terribly high, but the cabinet papers of 1988-89…
Only a community development approach can truly result in ‘build back better’ when it comes to responding to natural disasters such as the Boxing Day tsunami. EPA/Peter Endig

Boxing Day tsunami: balancing social and physical recovery

There have been many natural disasters since the 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami, but none have exceeded it in the combination of scale and scope of its destructive impacts. The scale of devastation for coastal…
Shinzo Abe’s decisive win at the weekend’s Japanese election has given his LDP a mandate for sweeping reform. EPA/Kimimasa Mayama

Abe’s early election gambit pays off

As widely expected, Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has led his conservative Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) to a landslide victory in the country’s snap election. The LDP holds a 291-seat majority in…
Australia is now the most China-dependent economy in the world – does this pose a problem for our future? AAP/Alan Porritt

Australia’s China dependence: do we need a Plan B?

If something can’t go on for ever, it won’t. – Herb Stein, chief economic adviser to former US president Richard Nixon. China’s economic rise has been a good news story for Australia. According to most…
Amid clouds of teargas, the Hong Kong ‘Umbrella Man’ defies police attempts to end the protest. Wikimedia Commons/Pasu Au Yeung

Umbrella Man: a unique threat to China or symbol of wider change?

The haunting image of a masked protester defiantly hoisting two black umbrellas amid a cloud of tear gas flickered across global social media platforms in the seconds and minutes after the Umbrella uprising…
Police move in on protesters who marched on the Hong Kong Chief Executive’s office in some of the worst clashes in the two-month pro-democracy demonstrations. EPA/Jerome Favre

Splits emerge in protest ranks as Hong Kong stand-off continues

The umbrellas were out in full force on Monday night in the Admiralty district of Hong Kong – but mainly because it was actually raining. A few hundred people, myself included, had shown up to listen to…
Supporters celebrate after Ko Wen-je, an independent candidate, won the Taipiei mayor’s seat in local elections in which the ruling Chinese Nationalist Party suffered heavy losses across the nation. EPA/Henry Lin

Voters assert themselves as Taiwanese in a warning to KMT

Taiwan’s opposition Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) has won an unprecedented landslide victory in the country’s local elections. The ruling Kuomintang (KMT) won only one of Taiwan’s six largest “special…
President Xi Jinping has a PhD in Marxism and recently directed more resources to the study of the works of Marx and Mao Zedong. AAP/Jason Reed

To make sense of modern China, you simply can’t ignore Marxism

How does one come to understand China? Many wish to do so, especially in light of China’s growing global influence. For some, language is the key that opens the door. With Chinese language, one is able…
Thai coup leader Prayuth Chan-ocha is consolidating power but playing his cards close to his chest, giving few if any signs of a return to democratic rule. EPA/Azhar Rahim

Thai army’s firm hold on levers of power won’t win it legitimacy

Thailand is an increasingly edgy place six months after a coup removed its elected government. Protagonists on the side of the curtailment of democracy fear the elaborated military regime will stuff up…
Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe is presenting a snap election as a referendum on his once-lauded policy of ‘Abenomics’. EPA/Franck Robichon

Abe takes a high-stakes gamble in calling an early election in Japan

It may seem politically counter-intuitive for a prime minister to seek an early election just when the economy has gone into recession. But following his return to Japan from the G20 Leaders' Summit in…
In his first visit to Australia as prime minister, Narendra Modi emphasised the opportunities in improving ties with India. AAP/Lukas Coch

Shared values, common interests: Modi’s mantra in Australia

For the roughly 450,000 people of Indian origin in Australia, the highlight of Narendra Modi’s first visit as Prime Minister of India to Australia was his address at an Indian community reception in Sydney…

Top contributors

More