November 16th, 2011
10:14 AM ET

U.S. troops to Australia as buffer against China

President Barack Obama announced an agreement with Australia Wednesday that will expand military cooperation between the long-time allies and boost America's presence in the region, Dan Lothian and Lesa Jansen report from Canberra, Australia.

It is a continued effort by the U.S. to maintain a buffer against China, whose growing military capabilities has unsettled many American allies in the region.

As Charley Keyes reported on Security Clearance on Tuesday, the announcement a signal than a significant expansion for the U.S. military.

Under the agreement, up to 250 U.S. Marines will be sent to Darwin and the northern region of Australia for military exercises and training. Over the next several years their numbers are expected to climb to 2,500 - a full Marine ground task force.

At the news conference, Obama insisted fear wasn't driving the enhanced military initiatives.

"The notion that we fear China is mistaken," the president said at the Australian parliament building. China has a looming military presence in the region.

Read more details on the military plans on CNN's 1600 blog

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Filed under: Asia • Australia • China • Foreign Policy • Military • Obama • Pacific Command
soundoff (15 Responses)
  1. carlos

    i think tha usa wana make war with china
    cause china have a good economy and that is a trhreat

    war don solve anithing

    dont worry about who win or loose
    god existe and wiill judge separatly for your acts

    February 8, 2012 at 12:06 am | Reply
  2. Koko

    Wow!!! 2,500 Marines will do hell of a job against 200,000,000 Chinese marines! Go US marines!!!

    November 18, 2011 at 2:39 pm | Reply
    • US Marines To The Rescue

      Sounds like a fair fight to me!

      December 15, 2011 at 3:56 pm | Reply
  3. imaguard

    Here's a short history lesson.

    If it weren't for the United States Navy and the U.S. Marine Corps, it's very possible that Australians would be speaking Japanese today. In 1942, the Japanese Empire was unstoppable, until WE stopped them in the Coral Sea and on Guadalcanal. If they had prevailed they would have completed air superiority over the sea lanes running between the U.S. and Australia and the Aussies would've been completely isolated before being invaded. That was the plan. I'm certain that there are a number of elderly Australians who are immensely grateful to the U.S. for helping to stop a seemingly juggernaut of a foe; and if another enemy came along with the same ambitions for the area, I would like to think that the U.S. would do it all over again.

    In addition to segments of the U.S. surface fleet, a good portion of the U.S. submarine force in the Pacific was BASED out of Perth/Fremantle and Brisbane. Through 3 years of commerce raiding, the subs virtually eliminated the Japanese ability to make war by sinking any and every merchant ship flying the Rising Sun of the Empire. Budgets and politics aside, if Australia ever requires our assistance in the future, they'll be considered brothers in arms and will most certainly be welcome to our help.

    November 16, 2011 at 10:53 pm | Reply
  4. Cassandra Chu

    ... whatever. Obama needs to spend 10 times less energy appeasing AIPAC and Israel... and 20 times more energy focused on our Asian relationships.... we need to get the AIPAC out of our American politics... !!!

    November 16, 2011 at 9:46 pm | Reply
  5. Matt

    The idea of a US marines base was given to Kevin Rudd when he was in opposition 2006, which is why even though Howard was a friend of the President, he was removed from power. Howard would never allow it. It is in place for strategic denial that is to prevent the PLA establishing bases beyond the offensive defense line, first chain islands.

    The Australians under Howard had established and expeditionary capability which can be used for this purpose. Overtime in the future and at various times a US Marine Expeditionary Force will be rotated out of Darwin, the Australian population will in time fear the dragon and be more welcoming of a larger presence.

    The force projection sends the message do not host PLA bases, if that fails the Australians have the capability to invade and a Marine Expeditionary force will be floating off the coast of the victim and various capabilities of interoperability, logistics etc.

    Come near me and I will kick your head in, that is the first line of the DOA, no one will have the will to allow a base because it means certain death for the leaders of that country. That is what I got for my loyal service.

    November 16, 2011 at 9:09 pm | Reply
  6. la la lalala ala lala alla

    Haha, Australia is under US control – awesome, time to create problems in ausi and justify an attack. With a US presence there, I'm sure if war were to ever break out Aussie would suffer the most as China would want to attack US military.

    November 16, 2011 at 7:14 pm | Reply
  7. DemocracyNow

    Good! We need more military presence in Asia to show them we're top dog. China is by far the greatest threat to Freedom and Democracy.

    November 16, 2011 at 3:45 pm | Reply
    • John

      Do tell how China, where the majority of the people are enjoying increases in living standards, threaten your freedom and democracy in the US, where the majority are experiencing declining living standards.

      November 16, 2011 at 5:01 pm | Reply
    • Koko

      "Good! We need more military presence in Asia to show them we're top dog. China is by far the greatest threat to Freedom and Democracy"...HAHAHAHAHA!!!! It is not China who is placing their troops around the US but the other way around. BTW, USA is not a "top dog" any longer. Check your facts live off of Chinese loans TODAY!

      November 18, 2011 at 2:42 pm | Reply
      • steve-o

        I have traveled all over the world and there is still no place I would rather raise my kids. The USA is not perfect, but I am sure where you live isn't either!

        November 21, 2011 at 4:32 pm |
  8. Torchsnuffer

    "As Charley Keyes reported on Security Clearance on Tuesday, the announcement a signal than a significant expansion for the U.S. military."

    seriously, I hold my tongue most of the time with all of the grammatic and spelling errors in todays news, but I'm at the point where I want to scream.

    Do you people even try to read what you write before you post it for the whole world to read?

    Read the sentence I quoted above, and tell me how it makes sense.

    November 16, 2011 at 1:29 pm | Reply

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