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Australia the US ally

Turnbull plays his Trump card

IN his first statement congratulating Donald Trump on his victory in the US Presidential Election, Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull spoke glowingly of the strength of America’s alliance with Australia. “Americans understand that they have no stronger ally, no better friend, than Australia,” Turnbull said. “We have no stronger relationship; whether it is on the battlefield or in commerce, than we have with the United States. They are a great and powerful nation; they are a great and powerful friend. And our relationship with the United States is built on millions of Australians and Americans who have been working together, fighting together, serving together, for over a century.”

Implicit in Turnbull’s laudatory message was an appeal for the US not to abandon Australia when Presidentelect Trump takes over next month, nor indulge in pursuits that would put Australia in the difficult position of choosing between its most valuable economic partner in China and its prized protector, America. It was a petition borne out of the uncertainty that Trump generated in the lead-up to his election as he articulated his position on a limited number of foreign policy issues.

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