While some MPs are spending their holidays on the beach or catching up with family, former prime minister Tony Abbott has been writing. He has also been writing a diary entry for the Spectator‘s Australian edition of his time in Jerusalem (yes, the one where he called for Australia to move its embassy there) and a book review for the Wall Street Journal. Abbott takes a mostly measured look at The End of the Asian Century: War, Stagnation, and the Risks to the World’s Most Dynamic Region by Michael R. Auslin, which takes a less than optimistic view of prospects in Asia. Abbott ends the review with this statement on Australia’s position in Asia:

“As for my own country, America is Australia’s indispensable security partner. Australia has more and more common interests with China but—at least so far—few common values. More trade, more investment, more tourism and more two-way education and work exchanges with China has always been my country’s approach. As I hope Mr. Trump might note, there’s much to be said for it: It doesn’t guarantee peace but it is certainly the best way to avoid disaster.”

In 2016 Abbott took a leaf from the Kevin Rudd book — How to become Prime Minister again after it was unfairly taken away from me — with well-timed comments to the Australian media on government policy matters, perhaps now he will focus on writing. He does have a book on the way with Melbourne University Press, as it is …

Peter Fray

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