Until the end of World War II, Australia's predominantly European population and close cultural and historical ties with Britain and the United States meant that it could remain aloof from its nearest neighbours in the rest of Asia. With the decolonisation that followed the end of the War, Britain's Far East suddenly become Australia's "Near North". It became clear to Australia that it could no longer choose to ignore what was happening in Southeast Asia and so began its attempt to engage Asia. In 1951, Australia and six other Commonwealth nations launched the Colombo Plan, an aid programme designed to help the economic and social development of South and Southeast Asian countries. This book examines the public and private agendas behind Australia's foreign aid diplomacy and reveals the strategic, political and cultural aims that drove the Colombo Plan. It also examines how Australia sought to project itself into the region, how foreign aid was seen as crucial to achieving regional security, how the plan was sold to Australian and Asian audiences, and the changing nature of Australia's relationship with Britain and the United States.
Facing Asia: A History of the Colombo Plan
$51.40 Regular Price