Keeping the dragon at bay

In a deal seen as an effort to counter China’s growing military power in the Indo-Pacific region, Australia will buy up to five U.S. nuclear-powered submarines, and then build its own using a British design. The plan, which will deepen technological integration and strategic coordination, was unveiled by U.S. President Joe Biden, Australian Prime Minister Anthony Albanese and British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak at a meeting of the AUKUS security partners. Although the trio did not mention China, the foreign ministry in Beijing said the collaboration reflected “a typical Cold War mentality” and will “harm regional peace and stability.”