East Timor, Australia and regional order: Intervention and its aftermath in Southeast Asia by James Cotton (2006)

A book review of a collection of essays on the theme of Australian policy towards East Timor with specific reference to the “turnaround” of 1999. Continue reading “East Timor, Australia and regional order: Intervention and its aftermath in Southeast Asia by James Cotton (2006)”

Food security and agriculture in the Australia-East Timor relationship (2006)

This chapter will discuss important conflicts of interest over agricultural development in the Australia-East Timor relationship. East Timor needs to stabilise domestic production, as the central element of its food security strategy. However Australia has a strategic view of global agricultural liberalisation, and uses aid programs to advance these interests. Different approaches to ‘food security’ are linked to distinct interests. This paper discusses those different approaches and their associated agricultural development implications. Continue reading “Food security and agriculture in the Australia-East Timor relationship (2006)”

The Howard Government, Australian aid and the consequences (2006)

In 1997 the Howard Government gave Australia’s foreign aid program a ‘poverty reduction’ focus with a ‘national interest’ link, later developing ‘good governance’ as the principal program theme. This anticipated the IMF and World Bank’s 1999 abandoning of ‘structural adjustment’ in favour of ‘poverty reduction’ programs, and build on National Competition Policy established by the previous Labor Government. Most aid moneys are now contracted to private Australia (and New Zealand) based companies, and the total aid budget has grown considerably. Continue reading “The Howard Government, Australian aid and the consequences (2006)”

Independent development in East Timor? (2005)

Independent development is possible, but difficult, in a small country like Timor-Leste. It requires solidarity and independent thinking. Yet independent thinking is constantly under threat from what might be called the ‘Anglo economic technocracy’, a mindset which stresses privatisation, uncoordinated investment and supposed open markets. Continue reading “Independent development in East Timor? (2005)”

Self-determination after Independence: East Timor and the World Bank (2003)

This paper introduces the concept of self-determination in the East Timorese struggle for political independence, and then examines the question of economic self-determination, with special focus on the role of the World Bank in East Timor The paper discusses the Bank’s relationship with East Timor’s Transitional Administration (under the United Nations’ Transitional Authority), and then some new self-determination dilemmas for the politically independent Democratic Republic of East Timor. Continue reading “Self-determination after Independence: East Timor and the World Bank (2003)”

Aid, trade and oil: Australia’s second betrayal of East Timor (2003)

Having abandoned the East Timorese people to invasion and genocide for a quarter of a century, a bewildered Australian Government was forced into military intervention in late 1999, just as that little nation began its final race towards independence. Though civil solidarity had grown over many years, state intervention in support of the East Timorese was a very last minute affair. Informed observers note that there were joint US-Indonesian military exercises just days before the August 1999 referendum. Continue reading “Aid, trade and oil: Australia’s second betrayal of East Timor (2003)”

Ukun Rasik An: More than independence (2002)

Short documentary based on interviews with East Timorese people as their nation prepares for the ‘restoration of independence’ on 20 May 2002 [Independence was first declared in 1975]. The video ends with footage of the 2002 celebrations. Music: ‘O Cabalo Azul’ by Carlos Nuñez and friends. Continue reading “Ukun Rasik An: More than independence (2002)”