Trump and Australian PM Turnbull stage mutual embrace in New York
6 May 2017
US President Donald Trump and Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull conducted an effusive and chilling display of unity on board a former World War II aircraft carrier in New York harbour on Thursday night.
A ceremonial dinner to highlight the 75th anniversary of the Battle of the Coral Sea against Japan became a platform for vows that Australia would unconditionally support America in its present wars in the Middle East and future wars.
Turnbull was so intent on consummating a bond with Trump that he flew to the other side of the world for what turned out to be a 40-minute face-to-face meeting aboard the USS Intrepid, followed by gushing speeches of mutual gratitude.
In what was meant to be an intensely symbolic event, in front of a tuxedo-wearing audience featuring Australian billionaires with major investments in the US, Trump declared that the US had “no better friend than Australia,” extolling ties that “were sealed with the blood of our fathers and grandfathers.”
Turnbull reciprocated by making clear that his government is committed to Washington both militarily and economically. Invoking every war over the past century from World War I to the present, Turnbull pledged: “From the mud of Hamel to the waters of the Coral Sea to the sands of the Middle East today, Australians and Americans stand shoulder to shoulder defending our freedoms.”
Against a backdrop of escalating US militarism in Syria and Afghanistan and threats of military action against North Korea, Trump said he would look to Australia for continued support on “security threats” in Asia and the Middle East. “Security also requires friends that you can truly count on, that is why I was…