Dutton funds HUGE upgrade of air bases to support new fighter jets and anti-sub choppers

Over the last month or so, we’ve applauded he Morrison government for getting on with the job when it comes to national security several times...and they bloody deserve it.  

In another landmark announcement this week, the PM announced a $428 million upgrade of four key Australian Defence Force air bases to support the rapid deployment of fighter jets and anti-submarine warfare helicopters.

The air base upgrades will occur at Amberley, Richmond, Pearce and HMAS Albatross, and will be completed by 2024. 

According to Defence Minister Peter Dutton, the “upgrades … will ensure the men and women of the ADF can continue to provide the operational capability needed to keep our nation safe, whether that be Super Hornets and Growlers at Amberley, C-130 Hercules at Richmond, our pilot training at Pearce, or our Romeo helicopters at Nowra”. 

“When Labor was in government, they neglected our defence base upkeep because of their cuts to the defence budget – down to the lowest level since before the Second World War – leaving our national security exposed,” he finished. 

You’re bang on the money, Dutts! 

While Labor frets about net zero targets and the right of young people to get taxpayer-funded gender reassignment surgery, the Morrison government is bolstering our defence and the list of initiatives is impressive to say the least: 

  1. $3.5 billion to fast-track key guided long-range strike weapons including Joint Air-to-Surface Standoff Missiles for Australia’s Super Hornets and Naval Strike Missiles (NSM) for our Hobart-class Destroyers and Anzac Frigates
  2. The biggest ever investment into Australia’s cyber capabilities called Project REDSPICE – Resilience, Effects, Defence, Space, Intelligence, Cyber and Enablers
  3. An $875 million upgrade to 234 defence facilities across the country
  4. The first flight of the Boeing MQ-28A “Ghost Bat” – the first Australian-made combat aircraft to fly in 50 years
  5. $280 million to develop our relationship with key trade and defence ally, India 
  6. The biggest expansion to the Australian Defence Force in 40 years by increasing personnel numbers from 59,095 to 80,000 by 2040

In the updated AUKUS agreement, Morrison worked with Biden and Boris Johnson to provide an update as follows: 

  1. AUKUS partners will share naval nuclear propulsion information trilaterally
  2. Combined teams Australian, British and American teams will visit multiple sites in Australia to baseline its nuclear stewardship, infrastructure, workforce, and industrial capabilities and requirements
  3. Australia will establish a future submarine base on the east coast
  4. AUKUS partners will collaborate on autonomous underwater vehicles, with trials planned for 2023
  5. AUKUS partners will accelerate investments to deliver generation-after-next quantum capabilities for positioning, navigation, and timing over the next three years.
  6. AUKUS partners will cooperate on artificial intelligence and autonomy. This will provide critical enablers for future force capabilities, improving the speed and precision of decision-making processes to maintain a capability edge and defend against AI-enabled threats
  7. AUKUS partners will focus their efforts on strengthening cyber capabilities, including protecting critical communications and operations systems
  8. AUKUS partners will work together to accelerate development of advanced hypersonic and counter-hypersonic capabilities
  9. AUKUS partners will share understanding of tools, techniques, and technology to enable our forces to operate in contested and degraded environments
  10. AUKUS partners will expand and accelerate sharing of sensitive information 

Don’t let a Labor-Greens government spoil it, Australia!