The Greens have today announced that in the balance of power after the next election, they will push to boldly reform our defence force to ensure a peace-focused approach is prioritised.
This announcement coincides with the 20th Anniversary of the beginning of the invasion of Afghanistan, Operational Detachment A574, on 19th October 2001.
Quotes attributable to Australian Greens Peace Spokesperson, Senator Jordon Steele-John:
“The Greens are committed to reducing defence spending, this will make $312 billion available over the next decade for essential services our community needs. We can build 1 million homes, ending homelessness. We could improve ventilation in schools, making our kids safe. We could get dental and mental health into Medicare. We could increase income support so no one in the country needs to live in poverty.
“Our Australian Greens Towards Peace plan will renegotiate our alliance with the United States, close all foreign military bases in Australia, reduce defence spending and prioritise peaceful efforts in our region to tackle the climate crisis.
“As we reflect on the war in Afghanistan, it’s clear there was a complete lack of any overarching strategic objective from the very beginning. It’s been 20 years of bloodshed, trauma, and occupation. And many in our community have expressed deep sadness and anguish at the humanitarian disaster that has unfolded.
“We must never again participate in a colonial war of aggression. Our goal must always be peace.
“Our community does not want our future to be at the behest of the United States of America. The Australian Greens are committed to re-negotiating the ANZUS alliance, we will not proceed with the AUKUS nuclear-powered submarine deal, and we will close all foreign military bases across Australia.
“This is the plan we need to ensure a peaceful future for our country. Our plan will make Australia a better global citizen, and can ensure everyone in our community has what they need to live a good life.”
The details of The Australian Greens plan:
- Reduce defence spending to 1% of GDP by 2026 ensuring that Australia has a light, readily deployable, and highly mobile force that is commensurate with our size and location;
- Renegotiate the US alliance with the terms of a new relationship focused on making Australia safer and a better global citizen;
- Pass War Powers legislation that is currently before the Senate to require Parliamentary approval for decisions that commit Australia to war;
- Close all foreign military bases in Australia;
- Sign and ratify the Nuclear Weapons Ban Treaty; and
- Ban the development and use of lethal autonomous weapons.