Billionaire Warren Buffett is not a man who believes in wasting money - and so when he donated $30 billion dollars to the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation a decade ago, they knew they had to get a great return on investment. And they have. From immunisations to contraceptives, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation has saved lives and reduced poverty by investing in small changes with big results. And they are optimistic. Please read for yourself - but their letter ends with a vision : "Polio will soon be history. In our lifetimes, malaria will end. No one will die from AIDS. Few people will get TB. Children everywhere will be well nourished. And the death of a child in the developing world will be just as rare as the death of a child in the rich world." That is definitely money well spent.
I could not agree more with Paul's comments today on superannuation. He introduced a fantastic policy for the country, bringing it to 9 per cent. I added to it, by bringing it to 12 per cent. And then the Liberals started watering it down. "Only the most reckless and wilful government would abort the policy settings to put the system at risk."
*ahem* what a ball tearing press conference from SA Premier Jay Weatherill on the uncomfortable truths regarding the national energy market... http://www.abc.net.au/news/2017-03-16/jay-weatherill-says-federal-govt-treatment-a-disgrace/8359222
Winter blizzard in Washington DC. Announced today here that there will be a summit next month between President Trump and President Xi Jinping of China. A difficult relationship. It also means a lot for all of us in Asia. Including preserving the post-war peace. North Korea the key.
Tonight Ian Thorpe will host a very confronting documentary on bullying that should be compulsory viewing for all of us. #Bullied It may be drastic but we need to protect our children from the scourge of bullying that is ruining and even ending lives...
Just ran into an Aussie student at the Fletcher School of International Diplomacy here in Boston. These guys just organised a conference on Political Risk in an Age of Populism." Snowing like crazy today. I was walking around in shirtsleeves yesterday in NYC. KRudd
Just been interviewed with CNBC here in New York about the North Korean missile launches. Key question is what are the strategic options for the U.S.: 1. Electronic warfare to degrade North Korea’s launch capabilities; 2. Diplomacy with China to do a grand strategic bargain on the Peninsula; or 3. Get used to a nuclear-armed North Korea.
Footy season is back with the #NRL tonight and the #AFL just around the corner! I can hear the collective sigh of relief around the nation. I'm a Brisbane boy, so of course I'll be backing in the Brisbane Lions and Brisbane Broncos all season. Good luck!
Singapore is bringing in carbon pricing. It's time for Australia to return to the most effective way to fight #ClimateChange. #ETS Full article: https://www.nccs.gov.sg/climate-change-and-singapore/domestic-actions/reducing-emissions/carbon-pricing
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu today challenged former Prime Minister Hawke and myself on what sort of Palestinian state we would recommend Israel recognise. I have a simple reply to Mr Netanyahu : The boundaries, internal security, external security, public finance and governance of a Palestinian state have been elaborated in detail in multiple negotiations with the US under the Clinton, Bush and Obama Administrations, most recently in the Kerry Plan. Mr. Netanyahu knows these formulations like the back of his hand. Mr. Netanyahu also knows he has torpedoed each of them, often at five minutes to midnight, often by changing the goalposts, to the enduring frustration of both Republican and Democrat Administrations. I have been a supporter of Israel all my life. And a public campaigner against any form of anti-Semitism. But to support the state of Israel does not mandate automatic support for each and every policy of Mr. Netanyahu. The state of Israel and Mr. Netanyahu are not co-definitional. That is why I beg to differ on this and other aspects of Mr Netanyahu's policies. For example, I also have a simple question for Mr. Netanyahu. Will he use this visit to Australia to apologise to the Australian people for his government using forged Australian passports to facilitate an Israeli assassination of a member of Hamas in Dubai? No apology has ever been received for that action which had the consequence of putting the integrity of Australian passports and the security of Australian passport holders travelling to the Middle East at risk. http://www.9news.com.au/national/2017/02/22/03/32/netanyahu-in-historic-visit-to-australia
Here's a podcast to add to your listening library. Kickass News Fantastic range of conversations - probably the least of which is my recent chat on Trump, the Asia Pacific region and the world. Take a look - have a listen.
I've followed closely recent developments in Israel and the US. In Israel, recent legislation by the Israeli Knesset legalising large scale Israeli settlements in occupied Palestinian territory on the West Bank fundamentally undermines the prospect of a two-state solution. It does this by degrading the overall territory remaining that would be incorporated in an independent Palestinian state. In Washington, I have also followed the ambiguous statements by President Trump concerning his administration's commitment to the fundamental principle of a two-state solution - a principle which has been supported by a succession of Republican and Democrat administrations in Washington. For these reasons, it is now critical for Israel's closest friends and allies to send a clarion clear message to both Tel Aviv and Washington that the abandonment of a two-state solution is unacceptable. Australia is one such close friend and ally. It is not acceptable, therefore, for Australia to use weasel words. I am proud to have been a lifelong supporter of the state of Israel and its right to exist behind secure boundaries. In office, I also significantly increased Australia's aid to the Palestinian authority, in partnership with many Western states in the world, to help build state capacity for a future Palestine. Over the years, I have discussed these matters in great detail with both Prime Minister Netanyahu and President Mahmoud Abbas. My deepest fear is we are drifting towards the disintegration and death of an independent Palestinian state. This would be a tragedy for both the Palestinian and Israeli people. For Israel, the isolation of Palestine and the removal of the prospect of both land and statehood, may well lead to the re-radicalisation of the Palestinian people. I deeply fear the possibility of a third Intifada. And so, the time has come for Australia to join countries like Sweden and the Holy See in formally recognising the Palestinian state. It is time for Australia to draw a line in the sand on this matter. As 137 states already have. http://www.smh.com.au/world/the-time-has-come-to-recognise-palestine-kevin-rudd-reveals-his-deepest-fear-20170219-gughjm.html
Hi guys, For those of you without a good home movie this evening, here’s the video of our discussion at the Munich Security Conference on the two big security challenges for our region this year. 1. What to do about U.S.-China relations without risking conflict or even war; and 2. What are the possible next steps to prevent the final nuclear breakout by North Korea. The discussion has a first class rank of participants: -The Foreign Minister of South Korea and Defence Minister of Singapore; -Fu Ying, Chair of the Foreign Affairs Committee of the Chinese National People’s Congress, and former Chinese Vice Foreign Minister; -Republican Senator Dan Sullivan, recently elected to the US Senate, and a member of the Senate Armed Services Committee; and -Lassina Zerbo, Executive Secretary of the Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty Organisation. This discussion has some real substance. So if you are a serious foreign policy nerd, go out and buy some popcorn and get into it. https://www.securityconference.de/en/media-library/munich-security-conference-2017/video/panel-discussion-pacific-no-more-security-in-east-asia-and-the-korean-peninsula/
Meet Kirsty Hansen, here at Munich Security Conference, ANU graduate from Canberra, and proud Australian. She works for Lassina Zerbo the Executive Director the UN's Comprehensive Test Ban Organisation. The CTBO is dedicated to enforcing nuclear testing across the world. It's been a great success. North Korea the only breakout country out of 193 states in the world. And the CTBT itself the result in part of extraordinary diplomacy by former Australian Foreign Minister Gareth Evans.
This bloke's name is Lassina Zerbo. Graduate in Geophysics UWA in Perth. Now head of Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty Organisation in Vienna. Doing great work. And an example of what a first class Oz university education can do.
Russian FM Lavrov now speaking at Munich Security Conference. Hard line speech. Laying out principles for future of US -Russia relations. My North Korea session with South Korean FM, Japanese Dep FM, Singapore FM, Indonesian FM and Exec Director of Comprehensive Test Ban Organisation.
At 3am on Sunday morning in Sydney or 11am on Saturday morning in New York, or 5pm Saturday here in Munich, I will be moderating a panel at the Munich Security Conference. You can watch it live at https://www.securityconference.de/ #MSC2017 The discussion panel is called "Pacific no more? Security in East Asia and the Korean Peninsula" The panel will tackle the major threats to our region, including the accelerating threat of a nuclear armed North Korea, as well as the emerging direction for the U.S under Trump. And importantly the panel involves many of the players themselves, representing many countries in the region. The panel includes; Yun Byung-Se Minister of Foreign Affairs, Republic of Korea, Seoul Ng Eng Hen Minister of Defence, Republic of Singapore, Singapore Fu Ying Chairwoman of the Committee on Foreign Affairs of the National People's Congress, Parliament of the People's Republic of China, Beijing Lassina Zerbo Executive Secretary, The Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty Organization, Vienna
Munich Security Conference opening now here by Chancellor Merkel. Vice President Pence to follow. 2017 is the Year of Living Dangerously. Multiple security challenges. The challenge is what to do about them. I chair the panel this afternoon on North Korea. KRudd
More video-selfies of kind folks I meet around Australia and around the world. Meet Nadia from Graceville in Bris. She is a terrific barista at the local coffee shop on the corner near Peter's Deli. KRudd