Australian foreign policy at the end of the century faces a rapidly changing world, without the Cold War framework that, for 40 years, tied it to a common cause with great power allies. The shifting political, military and economic parameters of international relations challenge Australia to define and pursue its political, military and economic interests and relationships in new and more complex ways. Australia in the World presents a comprehensive introduction to Australian foreign policy before, during, and after the Cold War, with a major focus on the 1990's. Australia in the World is organized in three parts. Part One surveys the external and internal forces which shape Australian foreign policy. The second part examines Australia's restless search for a framework which positions Australia in the world and enables foreign policy objectives to be identified and prioritised: Australia's self-image as an ANZUS ally; the assumption that 'our future lies in the region'; and the concept that Australia is a middle power, operating in multilateral coalitions and international institutions.
The final part considers five major issues, each with its own dynamics and history: global military security, regional military security, economic security, environment, and human rights. In each case, the scope of the issue is characterized, and Australia's assumptions and objectives, actions and responses are presented, analysed and evaluated.