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The Trident-class nuclear submarine Vanguard. The Scottish National Party want the weapons system to be scrapped. PA/PA Wire

Fact Check: will renewing Trident cost £100 billion?

Nicola Sturgeon has set out her Scottish National Party's opposition to renewing Britain's nuclear deterrent. Will it cost that much?
The government’s political play on submarines could backfire. Image sourced from Shutterstock.com

Tender doublespeak adds risk to submarine decision

Days after announcing Australia’s largest ever defence contract will be awarded via a “competitive evaluation process”, the government is still scrambling for a sensible definition of what such a process…
Seriously, don’t drop that. US DOD via Wikimedia Commons

Look out Iran, the US has built the biggest ever bunker-buster

The world’s largest non-nuclear bomb, and easily the most powerful “earthquake bomb” ever built, has now been tested and can be delivered by the B-2 stealth bomber. While the Massive Ordnance Penetrator…
AAP/Tony Phillips

Substandard strategic thinking

Of all the questions that have emerged about the future make-up of Australia’s new submarine fleet, one has been conspicuous by its absence: do we actually need them in the first place? No doubt strategic…
Defence Minister Kevin Andrews has stood by the term “competitive evaluation process” despite many questioning what it means. Nikki Short/AAP

Too much at stake for weasel words on submarines

It appeared to be the announcement Australian industry had been waiting for. Finally, political pressure on prime minister Tony Abbott’s leadership had forced a “fair go” for Australian shipbuilding. On…
Defence’s year in 2015 will be defined primarily by its response to the forthcoming white paper. AAP/Hugh Peterswald

Shaping 2015: Andrews must show $30b defence budget is well spent

Australia has decisively responded to the strategic uncertainty of contemporary East Asia by forming committees and undertaking reviews. 2015 brings with it Australia’s third defence white paper in six…
An F-35A Joint Strike Fighter on a night mission in the US. Flickr/Lockheed Martin

Hacking the secrets of Australia’s Joint Strike Fighter

Design details of Australia’s new F-35 Joint Strike Fighter (JSF) have been stolen by Chinese spies, according to reports this week, although it’s not clear whether the information was highly classified…
Australia’s Super Hornets, like these US planes, will be used against ISIL targets. AAP/EPA/DOD/US AIR FORCE/SGT. SHAWN NICKEL

Cabinet approves Super Hornet strikes against ISIL

Cabinet has given the go-ahead for Australia’s Super Hornet fighter jets to strike ISIL targets in Iraq, as well as for its…

Defence: sub-optimal naval gazing

Rumour has it Australia is about to spend an awful lot of money buying some new submarines. This may not be the sort of thing to get the pulses of the casual reader racing, but it ought to be, not least…
An Israeli Iron Dome missile is fired to intercept a rocket from Gaza. EPA/Abir Sultan

Explainer: Israel’s Iron Dome anti-missile system

The breakdown of an initial ceasefire between Israeli forces and Hamas last weekend played out to a familiar soundtrack: the wail of air-raid sirens and the menacing hiss of incoming rocket fire, followed…
Prime Minister Tony Abbot in the pilot seat of an F-35 Joint Strike Fighter. AAP/Alan Porritt

Take out the pilot from Australia’s F-35 Joint Strike Fighter

Prime Minister Tony Abbott sat in the pilot seat of a F-35 Joint Strike Fighter at the time he announced his government will buy an additional 58 planes at a cost of at least A$12.4 billion. But imagine…
The F-35B short take-off and vertical landing (STOVL) variant of the Joint Strike Fighter. Flickr/Lockheed Martin

Australia’s jump jet strike fighter option: lessons from the UK

If Australia is serious about buying the jump jet version of the Joint Strike Fighter it would be wise to look at why the UK is the only country to change its mind on which version of the aircraft to buy…
Treasurer Joe Hockey and finance minister Mathias Cormann face a difficult sell for the Abbott government’s tough first budget. AAP/Alan Porritt

Federal budget 2014: political experts react

The Abbott government is hoping an A$11.6 billion infrastructure spending package, combined with a $20 billion medical research fund, will help soften the blow of widespread tightening of health and welfare…
original.

The best security money can buy?

The news that Australia is about to spend $24 billion on a new generation of fighter aircraft has been greeted with remarkably little critical comment or analysis. It is hard to imagine that any other…

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