Peter D Jones

Hugh White’s analysis of Australia’s future defence options (‘A Middling Power’, September) was depressing because it was based simply on military solutions for a complex multi-polar region. Given that conflicts are inevitable, especially over resources, Australia could instead be working towards a common security approach and non-military solutions to problems like control of the South China Sea.

Mechanisms like the International Court of Justice already exist for parties to use as an alternative to armed conflict and there are a plethora of regional groupings to build on.

Surely we could put more money into diplomacy rather than a dozen or more fiendishly expensive submarines. Yet we seem to prefer the option of a regional naval race and encouraging the line that a high-tech arms build-up is the best way to demonstrate a nation’s self-importance.

Peter D Jones

Lenah Valley, TAS