Australian Governments throughout its history has commissioned military ‘White Papers’ which assesses the nation’s military capabilities.
Sometimes these White Papers reflect
How ineffective is the nation’s current military
What needs to be done - surrounding nations’ politic
What specific areas of military need addressing
Army, Navy, Air Force
White Paper – current military
A White Paper pulls no punches. It looks at what has occurred in previous conflicts, what worked historically, and how things failed and how other matters succeeded. A White Paper then looks at the current situation and studies any inadequacies or what is over strength. It is a vital document for a nation’s safety.
What needs to be done
A White Paper also studies and reflects on the surrounding nations - this is straight talking. There was a time when Indonesia was seen as the great menace, not so much now. China is today on the horizon. It is politics 101.
What military needs addressing
A White Paper has access to the secrets and wonderful weapons of war and then assesses how effective they might be and what impact they might make in offense or defence and how potent in terms of ultimate victory or defeat.
Army, Navy, Air Force
A White Paper looks at each of these. Be under no illusion, like all families, they fight each other – when the pie is carved up, who gets what monies, who gets what resources. Who is doing best on the ground. In battle fields abroad, which is producing the better results, what hardware lasts longest, what is the return for the dollar spent. Yep, it comes down to the dollar.
A White Paper is a White Paper. Decisions are made elsewhere at the political level and one does not have to be genius in such matters to realise the French Submarines being built in South Australia was politics front and centre. Political commentators are at one in suggesting it saved the Federal Seat of a former Federal Member.
The White Paper value
The White Paper has enormous value. It provides an overall picture of the military proclivities for the politicians of the day to make decisions for the protection of the nation. This is not a place for those politicians who are more concerned about things green or atmospherics where there is a vast array of scientific opinion. Rather this is place for those with hard heads.
Churches and Missions
I can relate all this to the many churches and missions I have been involved. The equivalent of a White Paper for churches and missions are reviews and reports and they are just as important and hard headed as is a White Paper.
I recall a few years ago now, where for one small denominational church, a well researched and resourced presentation gave the congregation a strategic and Biblical account of their future. One might have equally gone to any hospital and looked at a patient’s chart where the line was clearly going down, down, down.
Those holding out on the status quo eventually all moved on and a new minister came who had a very different scenario – that congregation that went 20 people to now over 260. The White Paper was critical.
Dr Mark Tronson is a Baptist minister (retired) who served as the Australian cricket team chaplain for 17 years (2000 ret) and established Life After Cricket in 2001. He was recognised by the Olympic Ministry Medal in 2009 presented by Carl Lewis Olympian of the Century. He mentors young writers and has written 24 books, and enjoys writing. He is married to Delma, with four adult children and grand-children. Dr Tronson writes a daily article for Christian Today Australia (since 2008) and in November 2016 established Christian Today New Zealand. Dr Mark Tronson’s Press Service International in 2019 was awarded the Australasian Religious Press Association’s premier award, The Gutenberg. In September 2020 Summer Moore presented her commission portrait of Dr Mark Tronson holding the Gutenberg plaque. The above photo is the upper part from this portrait.
Mark Tronson's archive of articles can be viewed at: http://www.pressserviceinternational.org/mark-tronson.html