- Military Exercises further entrench us with the US and pitch us closer to war
- Northern Australia developing into a US military colony
The Independent and Peaceful Australia Network (IPAN) Media Release - For Immediate Release date - 20 August
Exercise Pitch Black returns to the Northern Territory and Queensland from 19 Aug to 8 Sep, amid much fanfare, with a display at Mindil Beach and Open Day at the RAAF Base Darwin.
Not all groups, however, welcome Pitch Black, with the Independent and Peaceful Australia Network (IPAN) and its members, holding significant concerns.
IPAN has real concerns that these exercises serve to further entrench Australia with the US and actually pitch us closer to war, rather than increasing regional security and fostering closer ties throughout the Indo-Pacific region as the RAAF stated is an intended outcome. The military is also a huge greenhouse gas emitter, but these emissions likely won’t be counted in our national inventory.
The biennial warfare training hosted by the Royal Australian Air Force aims to practice military exercises in a simulated war environment, conducted mainly from RAAF Base Darwin and RAAF Base Tindal. Some exercises will also occur at RAAF Base Amberley (Qld).
Pitch Black is a massive military exercise which continues to expand. This year fifteen countries (including QUAD partners the US, the UK and India), around 2500 personnel and 100 aircraft will be involved – with both Offensive Counter Air and Defensive Counter Air combat exercises to take place.
For the first time, the Luftwaffe will also be participating, training together with the Royal Australian Air Force, Japan and the Republic of Korea. Germany will deploy six Eurofighter Typhoons, three A330 multi-role tanker transports and an A400M transport Aircraft to the Pacific, aiming to show that they can be in Asia (Singapore) within a day.
“These exercises are about simulating threats in a war setting and involve a huge level of resources and greenhouse emissions. Every dollar spent on war or practising war, is a dollar taken away from working for peace, stated Dr Vince Scappatura, IPAN Spokesperson and a specialist in politics and international relations at Macquarie University.
The exercises are also disruptive to local communities in the vicinity - and include day and night flying. Even prior to the official start of the exercises, military aircraft have been observed flying later than the 11pm official curfew. With the Darwin airport within the city, the noise levels are extreme.
Concerns have been expressed by a range of voices for some time that Northern Australia is developing into a US military colony. Exercises such as this only serve to reinforce such concerns.
IPAN calls on the Australian Government to focus on diplomacy and peace and to be more mindful of the environment in this time of climate crisis,” stated Dr Scappatura.
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Media Liaison: Kathryn Kelly 0417 269 984