Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull made his first visit to Washington as prime minister this week, where he met with President Barack Obama and gave a national security speech at the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS).
In his speech at CSIS, Turnbull discussed the Syrian civil war and expressed confidence in the fight against the self-proclaimed Islamic State, which he referred to as ISIL. The coalition against the Islamic State “will win,” he said, “by targeting ISIL militarily, using local ground forces supported by coalition air power, weapons and training; curbing ISIL finances; stopping foreign fighter flows; and pursuing political resolution and reconciliation in Syria and Iraq.”
Australia has been a key security partner of the U.S. and was one of the first countries to offer support after the Iraqi city of Mosul fell to the Islamic State in 2014. But while Turnbull has not drastically altered Australia’s Middle East policy, he has refocused it away from Syria, as Rodger Shanahan explained in a briefing for WPR in October:
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