chapter  3
Shared Experience, Different Lives
WithChristopher Hubbard
Pages 18

This chapter discusses the most important elements of similarity and difference which the Australian and American societies exhibit. It draws out and questions some of the most common nostrums held by traditionally-minded commentators about just what keeps the Australia New Zealand and the United States (ANZUS) military alliance together and functional. The chapter introduces the notion of similarity within difference and proposes ways in which the observable phenomena are partly responsible for the idiosyncrasy, durability and legitimacy of the ANZUS alliance. It analyzes the effect of the treaty's past interpretation on its future worth and utility as the central pillar of Australia's national security strategy into the new century. To draw the outlines of alleged individual characteristics and traits in the citizens of any state or nation, and then attribute trends and outcomes in the life of nations to these elements of individual character, is to enter dangerous analytical territory.