Power Play

The Australian test case for Biden

How his administration responds to Chinese pressure on Canberra will signal to others the strength of US pledges of support for allies and would-be allies

Then US Vice-President Joe Biden (left) speaking at a joint press conference with then Australian PM Malcolm Turnbull in Sydney on July 18, 2016.PHOTO: AFP

WASHINGTON - On an official visit to Australia in 2016, then Vice-President Joe Biden gave a ringing endorsement of the alliance between the United States and Australia, forged in blood in World War II.

“It’s overwhelmingly in our interest that Australia continue to grow, succeed and prosper,” he said in a major speech that reiterated America’s staying power in the Asia-Pacific. “The partnership between Australia and America is at the core of our vision for the region’s future. It’s not what we can do for Australia. It’s what we can do with Australia.”

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