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Photo Essay: Australia’s growing amphibious capabilities

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Australia’s geo-strategic reality has seen the Australian Defence Force shift its focus towards developing a credible amphibious ‘joint force’ combining key platforms and traditional Australian strengths to develop a uniquely Australian response to the changing power dynamics of the Indo-Pacific.

The nation's pursuit of a dedicated amphibious force as part of Plan Beersheba is a step in the right direction down a long-path towards developing a robust power projection force – combining key capability developments, platform acquisition and modernisation programs to enhance the power projection capabilities and full-spectrum response of both the Australian Army and the Royal Australian Navy. 

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Traditionally more cumbersome then deploying fleets of warships or forward deploying strategic fighter and bombing forces, which form the offensive tip of both power projection and strategic deterrence spears, ground-based quick reaction forces (QRF) serve a distinct role within the tactical and strategic calculations for policy makers and strategic leaders.

While the development and introduction of powerful defensive technologies, namely the introduction of advanced anti-access, area denial (A2/AD) systems like those introduced in the South China Sea by the People's Liberation Army and supporting branches, poses a threat to the use of ground-based power projection forces, force structure and doctrine is, like technology, in a state of constant evolution to overcome these tactical and strategic challenges.

Forming the core of Australia's future amphibious force, the 2nd Battalion, Royal Australian Regiment (2RAR) will leverage the sealift and amphibious warfare capabilities of key Navy platforms including the Canberra Class amphibious warfare ships, HMA Ships Canberra and Adelaide, and HMAS Choules to provide Australian decision makers with a credible amphibious force. 

Photo Essay: Australia’s growing amphibious capabilities
HMAS-Adelaide-waits-for-US-Marine-amphibious-assault-vehicles-to-embark-during-RIMPAC-18.jpg
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