China’s Coercive Behaviour Needs Proportionate Response: Maritime Strategist James Goldrick

NEW DELHI: Australia needs to have strategic weight, increase deterrence to increase lethality and reach in the region so that we can tell people ‘this far and no further’, says maritime strategist James Goldrick. Elaborating on his country’s plan to ratchet up defence capabilities in the coming decade to deter Chinese aggression, Rear Admiral (retd) Goldrick told StratNews Global Editor-in-Chief Nitin A. Gokhale that Australia doesn’t want China to be an enemy but “coercive behaviour needs to be responded to in a proportionate way”. A lot of China’s behaviour in recent months has been against China’s interests, he added. Adm Goldrick favours frequent and constructive Indian and Australian maritime presence in the South China Sea, exercises with littoral countries and helping them build capacity. South China Sea cannot become a closed sea, he asserts. ‘We need to push back against what is not right’. And not all cooperation necessarily need to be Quad. There’s enormous potential for bilateral and trilateral cooperation, he said.