By David Connery
East Timor’s violent transition to independence, which all started early in 1999, awarded the Australian govt with an important international coverage quandary. This predicament was once no longer unexpected, absolutely unforeseen or eventually threatening to Australia’s survival. however the obstacle fed on the eye of Australian leaders, observed major nationwide and foreign assets hired, and ended in the most important operational deployment for the Australian Defence strength because the Vietnam struggle. This main issue additionally created an important rupture within the hitherto carefully-managed relationships among Australia and its vital neighbor, Indonesia. The occasions of September 1999 finally ended in the beginning of a brand new kingdom and the deaths of many of us who may need another way anticipated to take pleasure in that independence. during this significant research, David Connery examines how the Australian Government—at the political and bureaucratic levels—developed and controlled nationwide safety coverage within the face of this quandary. The occasions, and the policymaking approaches that either led and undefined, are reconstructed utilizing sixty interviews with key contributors. This learn identifies definite features of problem policymaking in Australia that come with a dominant govt, secrecy, exterior actors and complexity.
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Additional resources for Crisis Policymaking: Australia and the East Timor Crisis of 1999
Html>, accessed 20 April 2009. 7 As will be discussed later, independence for East Timor was not an Australian policy preference at this time. 9 According to the survey report by DFAT, the majority view called for a transitional autonomy arrangement that would be followed by a referendum in the future. 10 Australia’s internal policymaking process also increased in tempo. 12 Significant events occurred on other fronts around the same time. East Timor experienced further violence in October and November 1998, which increased international attention on the situation.
Clarke was Director General Joint Operations in Strategic Command Division in 1998–99, and Skoien was Director Indonesia Section in International Policy Division in Defence from December 1998 to September 1999. 49 Interview with Steve Darvill (Canberra, 5 July 2005) who said that the April 1999 assessment eventually blamed the delays on routine logistic problems, rather than on deliberate action by any party. Darvill was involved in operational planning as part of AusAID’s Humanitarian Emergencies section in 1999.
Under the 86 Interview with Aldo Borgu. 35 Crisis Policymaking: Australia and the East Timor Crisis of 1999 circumstances, it made sense to pool expertise to deal with the increased volume of work. Centralisation near the senior decision-makers would also cut down on the time taken to deliver that advice and make the group more responsive: Basically, we needed our own mini-SPCG. We needed someone to pull all of this disparate stuff together, to ask some hard questions about things that had not been thought of, and provide a bit of focus.