The Challenges for Strategic Forum

Serious security challenges now confront Australia and its allies. They require careful discussion and analysis. Primary concerns include:

  • The trajectories of the major powers in the Indo-Pacific and the strategy options for the Western allies.
  • Deep tensions between the major powers over contested territory in the South China Sea, the East China Sea and Ukraine.
  • The strategies and strategic cultures of the major authoritarian states and options for allied counters.
  • The proliferation of long-range missilery and other strategic weapons in countries like North Korea, Iran and Pakistan.
  • The growth of radical Islamist terrorism and its attempts to reach Australia and the homelands of our close allies and friends.
  • Aggressive cyber operations by many countries, terrorist organisations and criminal syndicates.
  • Increasingly sophisticated criminal organisations trafficking in people, drugs, weaponry and other sensitive cargoes.
  • The potential of the Fourth Industrial Revolution to transform allied defence capability development and acquisition.

Many of the challenges now confronting Australia’s national security decision-makers are significantly different to those of only a decade ago.

New thinking is required.

Strategic Forum has been established to help.



The Next Major War: Can the US and Its Allies Win Against China?


This book is the product of two and a half years of intensive research and extensive consultation with leading experts in the United States, Australia and the broader allied community.

What is the Book About?

Key questions the book addresses include:

  • How likely is a major war in the Indo Pacific?
  • How would such a war begin?
  • How are China and the United States preparing to fight such a war? (Actually, very differently.)
  • What would be the driving goals and game plans of each side?
  • What are each side’s strengths and weaknesses?
  • How would such a war progress? What would be the primary phases?
  • How long would such a war last?
  • What would be the supply chain, business and broader economic dynamics of such a war?
  • How ready are the two sides to fight and win such a war in this decade?
  • And how could America and its allies prevail in such a calamitous contingency?

More details can be found on the Publications page. The publisher has produced a promotional video here.


The book was launched by the Australian Strategic Policy Institute on June 21st, 2023 with Senator James Paterson, the Hon. Kim Beazley AC and the author Dr Ross Babbage AM which can be viewed here. The Institute has also released a podcast episode with “Ross Babbage on deterrence and defence strategy” here.

The Sydney Morning Herald published an article by Matthew Knott titled “Military expert warns of ‘very serious risk’ of China war within five years” on 22nd June, 2023, which can be read here.

On 3rd July Defence Connect published a transcript of a podcast titled “In Focus: We have to be committed to building our industrial capacity” here.

Sky News Australia has interviewed the author several times and interviews can be found at these links:

“‘Exposed’: Australia must improve security of supply chains“, The Bolt Report, 22nd June 2023

National security expert Ross Babbage warns ‘strong possibility’ of war with China in latest book“, Australia News: Defence and Foreign Affairs, 22nd June, 2023

US and China ‘at loggerheads’ over Taiwan“, Sharri, 3rd July, 2023

Australia could fight alongside allies ‘much faster’ than anticipated“, Sharri, 3rd July, 2023

The Irregular Warfare Initiative released the “Gray Zone – Chinese Political Warfare” podcast in September 2023 here.

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