Trump to welcome Australia’s PM, cementing strong trade, security ties

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – U.S. President Donald Trump is set to welcome Australia’s prime minister on Friday in only the second state visit of his administration, signaling the close bond between the two allies as Washington takes on Beijing and Tehran. FILE PHOTO: U.S. President Donald Trump meets Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison during the G20 leaders summit in Buenos Aires, Argentina November 30, 2018. REUTERS/Kevin LamarqueREUTERS/Kevin Lamarque Trump and Scott Morrison are expected to discuss security and trade, as China’s increasing assertiveness, especially in the energy-rich South China Sea, has…

Donald Trump To Name Robert C. O’Brien As National Security Adviser

President Donald Trump announced Wednesday that he plans to appoint Ambassador Robert C. O’Brien, the special presidential envoy for hostage affairs, as the next national security adviser. O’Brien is set to replace John Bolton, who last week announced he is leaving the White House. Trump said he fired Bolton. Bolton said he was resigning following disagreements about foreign affairs. The post does not require Senate confirmation. I am pleased to announce that I will name Robert C. O’Brien, currently serving as the very successful Special Presidential Envoy for Hostage Affairs at…

South China Sea tensions threaten Philippine energy security – Oil&Gas Eurasia

The following analysis was published by the Foreign Policy Research Institute. The author, Felix K. Chang, is a senior fellow at the Institute. He is also Chief Strategy Officer of DecisionQ, a predictive analytics company in the national security and healthcare industries. About 80 km off the northwest coast of Palawan Island in the South China Sea is the Malampaya natural gas field, the Philippines’ main domestic source of energy. Once piped ashore, its natural gas fuels five power plants, which provide half of the electricity…

Philippine Energy Security And The South China Sea – Analysis – Eurasia Review

By Felix K. Chang* (FPRI) — About 80 km off the northwest coast of Palawan Island in the South China Sea is the Malampaya natural gas field, the Philippines’ main domestic source of energy. Once piped ashore, its natural gas fuels five power plants, which provide half of the electricity supply for the Philippines’ most populous island of Luzon and the national capital of Manila. But by the mid-to-late 2020s, Malampaya is expected to run dry. If the Philippines is to keep Luzon’s lights on and its national economy growing,…

Mattis Points to ‘Increasing Contempt’ and ‘Growing Debt’ As Major National Security Threats

(CNSNews.com) – “What is the biggest national security threat?” Margaret Brennan, the host of CBS’s “Face the Nation,” asked former Defense Secretary Gen. James Mattis on Sunday. I think the biggest national security threat can be broken into two segments. One is external. And, clearly, those nations, Russia and China, that are trying to impose their authoritarian models and decisions over other countries, whether it be in the South China Sea or in the Ukraine, in parts of Georgia that Russia has occupied, they’ve mucked around in our elections. So,…

Will China Take Advantage of the Japan-South Korea Security Rift?

Relations between South Korea and Japan, two major U.S. allies in northeast Asia, appear to be in free fall. In the final days of August, the South Korean government announced it would not renew the 2016 General Security of Military Information Agreement (GSOMIA) with Japan later this year, chipping away at a foundational intelligence-sharing agreement between Seoul and Tokyo. Source link

Running Out of Gas: Philippine Energy Security and the South China Sea

About 80 km off the northwest coast of Palawan Island in the South China Sea is the Malampaya natural gas field, the Philippines’ main domestic source of energy. Once piped ashore, its natural gas fuels five power plants, which provide half of the electricity supply for the Philippines’ most populous island of Luzon and the national capital of Manila. But by the mid-to-late 2020s, Malampaya is expected to run dry. If the Philippines is to keep Luzon’s lights on and its national economy growing, then it will need to develop…

Mahathir Visit Highlights Vietnam-Malaysia Security Cooperation Prospects

The trip highlighted efforts by both sides to make inroads in the defense aspect of ties despite lingering challenges. Last week, Malaysia’s Prime Minister embarked on a visit to Vietnam. While the agenda of the trip was wide-ranging, it also put the focus on ongoing efforts by the two Southeast Asian states to explore opportunities to broaden and deepen their bilateral defense cooperation, following the shock election of a new government in Malaysia that occurred last May. As I have observed previously in these pages, Vietnam and Malaysia share a…