TRADE WARS EXCLUSIVE:
Hawks within the Morrison government want it to goad China into a full-on war as the only practical way of winning back lost barley and beef exports and to safeguard other Aussie products the Communist state might now target.
The Bug understands support is quickly growing for actions such as those espoused just yesterday by right-wing commentator Prue MacSween who tweeted this to Prime Minister Scott Morrison and Trade Minister Simon Bermingham: “We know diplomacy doesn’t work with China …. so it’s time to get tough & stop the hand wringing. Give notice of eviction of the Darwin port, slap tariffs on our oil and gas, stop all sales of our assets. Stand up to this bully or fail us.”
But The Bug has heard many in the government, both in the ministry and on the backbench, want to go further.
“Prue might just be a rightwing ratbag rabble-rouser but her rhetoric is spot on and all the things she’s suggested are absolutely right to go,” one junior minister who asked not to be named told us.
“But we need to go further. We want to see a couple of Aussie warships enter that illegal 12-kilometre territorial zone the Chinese have declared around their illegally built-up Spratly and Paracel Islands in the South China Sea.
“If they fire on us, the RAAF should blow those islands sky high.
“Our superior F-35 squadrons will then take out their inferior, Chinese-made jets and with air supremacy assured, our brave troops can then begin their triumphant march on Beijing.”
But The Bug has also learned there are a few flaws to this military-driven solution to tough political problems that many argue are self-inflicted.
A Defence Department insider told us: “Most of our F-35s, as few as we have been sent so far, are grounded at the moment fixing various faults that make them hard to fly.
“We’re also very short on bombs for them any way.
“We get most of them from the Chinese city of Ordnance in Guangdong Province and that city of 25 million devoted entirely to war weaponry hasn’t been able to ship any of late because of the COVID-19 international lockdown.
“A lot of our military personnel are also desperately in need of new clothing, webbing and basic field equipment such as groundsheets, field rations and dixies that normally comes from the Chinese city of Q-Store with only 18 million workers just a few kilometres from Ordnance.