A $50 billion budget increase will still leave the country vulnerable if there’s hostilities in the Indo-Pacific, the Australian Strategic Policy Institute (ASPI) warns.

The government’s plan to add an additional $50 billion to defence spending over the next decade will not enable Australia to scale up its defence should there be a threat in the region in the short term.

Its latest report says much more immediate funding is needed to ensure the “swift increases in capabilities that the Australian Defence Force (ADF) would need if our region were to deteriorate quickly.”

The increases announced in the budget were “directed towards strengthening the Australian Defence Force’s ability to fight in the next decade.” However, ASPI stressed that major funding was needed within the next couple of years.

Many other experts in strategic analysis and defence have said the same. And they all agree that we particularly need missiles and drones in huge numbers – and we need them now!

“This is not doom-mongering; the government has acknowledged that the warning time before any conflict, which had long been set at 10 years, has shrunk to effectively zero time,” ASPI’s report stated.

China has indicated that it is aiming at a 2027 deadline to attack Taiwan. Xi Jinping will then be 74 years of age, so time is running out for him to fulfil his dream of bringing Taiwan under Chinese Communist Party (CCP) control in his lifetime.

The ASPI report stated that the Australian government’s “rhetorical urgency is not being matched by action in the form of defence investment.”

The report also warned that the ADF “would essentially fight with the force it has today” if war were to break out at any time in the next decade.

“Most of the major new capabilities in the government’s defence investment blueprint are two decades away from being fully fielded. That blueprint does contain some shorter-term enhancements, but these will not be fielded until the 2030s.”

The report comes in the context of Beijing again claiming that it sees Taiwan as an inalienable part of China, and launching aggressive military manoeuvres encircling the island democracy, which it openly stated were a test of its capability to “seize power.”

Partly in response, ministers from members of the 53-year-old Five Power Defence Arrangement (FPDA) – Australia, Britain, Malaysia, New Zealand, and Singapore – agreed last week to stage more complex military drills in the region this year involving drones, fifth-generation fighter planes, and surveillance aircraft.

According to a report recently published by the Pentagon, U.S. Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin “expressed concern” about recent “provocative activity” by Chinese forces around the Taiwan Strait and reiterated that China should not use Taiwan’s recent presidential transition “as a pretext for coercive measures.”

Tensions across the Taiwan Strait heightened in late May as the Chinese military staged large-scale drills involving naval and rocket forces in the sea and air spaces surrounding the island, where a new leadership was being sworn in (see  below).  

The newly inaugurated Taiwanese president, Lai Ching-te, has pledged to maintain his predecessor Tsai Ing-wen’s moderate approach to China and preserve the status quo.

The CCP, claiming Taiwan as a renegade province, has long distrusted Mr. Lai and his Democratic Progressive Party and refused to rule out using force to seize the island.

The CCP also laid sweeping territorial claims in the South China Sea, leading to direct confrontations with other nations in the region, such as Vietnam, Indonesia, and the Philippines.

Russia has joined forces with China on military manoeuvres in that region.

China’s regime may also be trying to weaponize Ebola, a disease that can have a 90% mortality rate.

The CCP appears to have great interest in Ebola. The Canadian Security Intelligence Service, in a declassified report, revealed that Dr. Qiu Xiangguo, while working at Canada’s only P-4 laboratory in Winnipeg, without authorization sent to China the Ebola genetic sequence.

She was also working for the Wuhan Institute of Virology (pictured below) and sent with authorization samples of different strains of Ebola virus to that facility. She also sent to the lab samples of Nipah virus, another animal-borne, deadly pathogen.

Dr. Qiu, who had worked on a cure for Ebola, was also collaborating with China’s Academy of Military Medical Sciences, the highest-level medical research institution of the People’s Liberation Army.

Dr. Qiu and her husband were escorted out of the Winnipeg lab in July 2019, fired in January 2021, and moved to China, where they work under pseudonyms. In March of last year, a document posted by a Chinese pharmaceutical company revealed that Dr. Qiu was working on Ebola.

It is not easy to turn Ebola into a functional bioweapon. However, China can certainly make the disease highly contagious via the Wuhan Institute of Virology, which is a major centre for gain-of-function research.

It undoubtedly weaponized COVID-19. And there are nastier diseases, such as Ebola and Nipah, that, through gain-of-function experiments can be made into truly virulent plagues.

Ebola and Nipah, with some in-lab modifications, can therefore be China’s tools to exterminate people based on their genetics.

A quarter-century ago, Gen. Chi Haotian, China’s defense minister and vice chairman of the CCP’s Central Military Commission, reportedly gave a secret speech advocating the extermination of Americans.

He talked about using disease to clear out the vast spaces of North America so that the Chinese people could settle in the areas left uninhabited.

Since that time, developments have given the unverified report credibility.

Among other things, SARS-CoV-2, the pathogen causing COVID-19, was almost certainly engineered in the Wuhan Institute, and Chinese leader Xi Jinping then deliberately allowed the spread of this disease outside China once it had escaped from that laboratory.

He allowed international travel during the Chinese New Year celebrations in January 2020 when millions of ethnic Chinese travelled extensively to and from China.

The problem with COVID-19 is that it also infected and killed Chinese people. China’s military, however, is almost certainly working on pathogens that target particular ethnic groups.

China’s National Defense University, in the 2017 edition of the authoritative Science of Military Strategy, mentioned a new kind of biological warfare of “specific ethnic genetic attacks.” That is, it would only attack people of a nominated race.

Based on all these factors, it is incumbent upon the Albanese government to spend money NOW to enhance our military defence capabilities.

Anything less is totally unacceptable and would be yet another example of Albanese’s weakness as a leader and the outright incompetence of his government.

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This article is an amalgam of three articles in The Epoch Times written by Rex WiderstromBill Pan and Gordon Chang. Mr Chang is a distinguished senior fellow at the Gatestone Institute and a member of its Advisory Board. Commentary has been added by the author, Cliff Reece. Getty images is also thanked.