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No Enemies No Friends by Allan Behm on best-of lists for 2022 book releases!

From Forbes.com 30 December 2022

12 Must Have Books And Podcasts For Leaders In 2023

Michael Sheldrick, Contributor

Global Citizen, Contributor Group

No Enemies No Friends: Restoring Australia’s Global Relevance, by Allan Behm

Talking of Australia’s role, I greatly enjoyed reading Behm’s No Enemies, No Friends, after it was recommended to me by a friend in the Australian Senate. Those who know me well will appreciate that I have always been passionate about Australia’s ability to harness creative middle power diplomacy and have a positive impact in nurturing global public goods, both for the world’s interests and for Australia’s.

The book also strikes a chord with my own grumpiness about the short-sighted and uninspiring nature of Australian foreign policy over the last two and a half decades, but particularly the last 10 years. Terms like “punching above our weight” illustrate the problem clearly. It implies a rather low assessment of Australia’s ranking in the world and that somehow we are already acting above our station when in fact the opposite is arguably more true. If anything, putting a few exceptions to one side, we punch below our weight.

The election of the Labor Albanese Government in Australia earlier this year has already seen a few positive strides from higher climate ambitions to a slight increase in the Australian aid program. Yet, this is the bare minimum and more must be done, ideally in a bipartisan way, to cite Behm, if Australia is to indeed restore its global relevance. Behm’s book is a great read on how this should be approached.

From the ANU Australian Studies Institute Reading list 2022

Professor Mark Kenny:No Enemies, No Friends: Restoring Australia’s Global Relevance (Allan Behm, Upswell, 2022)
My book you should read? “No Enemies, No Friends: Restoring Australia’s Global Relevance”, by the inestimable Allan Behm. Behm is a Canberra-based foreign policy intellectual. His work is authoritative, majestic, searing and hopeful. This readable book takes us into the masculinised, frustrated soul of Australia’s presentation to itself and the world, and then points the way up and out. Its lessons are already finding their way into the new government’s tone and trajectory. Check it.