Saturday 20th of April 2024

Welcome to Adelaide, Defence Colony Of America (Pt II)


I'm feeling a bit sad tonight. The main reason that I orginally came here, to warn of the US military takeover of Adelaide, has been finalised over the last few days, and South Australia has had the last nails driven into the coffin of its independence from global events. In fact, we've been globalised "military style."


[The Australian Paul Maley | January 19, 2008]

A BRITISH firm yesterday became the Australian Defence Force's biggest supplier, in a $775 million deal that also consolidated Adelaide as the nation's defence industry hub.

The sale of Tenix's defence division to BAE Systems, revealed in The Australian yesterday, will more than double the British company's size in Australia, with its local operations based in South Australia.

Jim McDowell, chief executive of BAE Systems Australia, said the deal would allow the two companies to develop synergies and address engineering skill shortages in defence industries. "This type of consolidation will lend itself to high levels of productivity, better use of the skills base and still within a competitive landscape," he said.

He also hinted that, for now, BAE harboured no aspiration to acquire the Australian Submarine Corp, which the Rudd Government has indicated it will sell. "The Government seemed to be fairly clear on a two-shipyard policy," he said. "We've just bought one of them, so it's unlikely they'll want us to own the other one.

"Provided we can stay competitive in a two-shipyard pool, then we'll be happy at that."

The company expects to generate sales of more than $1.2billion each year as a result of the acquisition. Tenix, currently based in North Sydney, is already involved with Spanish company Navantia in a $3billion shipbuilding project for the navy, and operates in all states and territories.


Nearly three years ago, when Your Democracy founders Margo Kingston and Hamish Alcorn invited and helped me to start a blog on Your Democracy (the "primary piece" has now had more than 20,000 page visits) I opened it with these words:


I am writing this blog because South Australia needs help. We are an extremely strategically located city, for years headquarters of Murdoch, Halliburton and BAE, and are being systematically brainwashed into becoming defence industry drones without ever being given the choice of taking this path.


Thursday's news had been depressing enough


[ABC Regional]

South Australia's Deputy Premier, Kevin Foley, says the state has the potential to attract more defence projects worth billions of dollars.

Mr Foley will meet international defence companies in Los Angeles this week to promote the state's credentials in defence manufacturing.

He says the state has already secured more than $12 billion worth of defence contracts in the past two and a half years



What he really meant to say was this:

SOUTH Australian Deputy Premier Kevin Foley will lobby key US defence companies in a bid to have them establish a presence in Adelaide.

Mr Foley will meet senior executives from some of the world's largest defence organisations in a series of meetings beginning in Los Angeles today.

They include representatives from Northrup Grumman, the producers of the new Joint Strike Fighter, BAE Systems and Raytheon.

"I will be encouraging the representatives from the major defence companies I am meeting to consider establishing a presence or regional hub in South Australia," Mr Foley said.

"A number of leading edge defence companies have already established themselves in SA with more to come as South Australia cements its position as the defence capital of the nation."


It's typical that the BAE takeover of Tenix has been presented to us as a British takeover even while Foley has been finalising contracts in Los Angeles. Says it all, really. And how do you think that this is being presented to the SA public in the local Murdoch? The answer is- not at all.

Australia, at least in military/industrial matters, has become symbiotically subservient to the US Empire. If everything is as Chalmers believes, we will fall with it when it goes. I hope the former Liberal ministers consider their dividends worth the cost of what they've done.

Remember Defence Minister Reith's first job out of cabinet? Tenix consultant.

Ah, bugger it, I may as well give you a reprint of Part 1, first published here in May 2005


Welcome To Adelaide- Defense Colony of America

I grew up in the Western Victorian town of Portland Victoria, where the major sources of income were tourism, fishing and meat processing.

Along came Alcoa, paying for a colour edition of the local paper to announce it's new aluminium smelter. Jobs for all, booms in construction, industry driven revival for the town were all emlazoned over display boards in an exhibition at the Civic Centre.

What did we end up with? A self-contained factory on the hill, empty shops and suiciding builders. The company con-man who had smooth-talked us moved on to his next destination .

Forgive me if I'm not excited about the defence contracts.

At least today we're hearing about extra troops moving into town so that they can use the railway to move north, construction of ships that will in an "emergency" be under George Bush's command, announcements of bids to build unmanned air vehicles.

Welcome to Adelaide: Defense Colony of America. If you're a travelling employee of one of the Pentagon's most successful corporations, you'll feel proud of our little Outpost Of Democracy.. Halliburton, Raytheon, Lockheed, SAAB, Tenix, Northrop Grunman and BAE are the heroes of this city. No doubt we'll be erecting statues of Dick Cheney soon.

I wonder how much of all this money will be seen by the average South Australian. Is our city to become a Utopia funded by defence dollars, or like poor old Portland, will we be blinded by greed and used for multinational profits?


Enough. I'm going to bed.