U.S. Senator John McCain (R-AZ) today issued the following statement on President Obama's announcement of an agreement to establish a rotational presence of U.S. Marines in Australia:
"I commend President Obama and Prime Minister Gillard for their important and mutually beneficial agreement to establish a rotational presence of U.S. Marines in Australia. The United States has no greater ally than Australia, and this agreement is a critical expansion of our historic military cooperation. A growing part of this cooperation is increasingly focused on deepening our joint engagement with other Asian-Pacific military partners, and this agreement will make our alliance more effective in that mission. Increasing our military presence in Australia will also move us closer toward our goal of a more geographically dispersed and operationally resilient force posture in the Asia-Pacific region, which we must do to meet the emerging challenges we face.
"The United States is a Pacific power, and nothing will change or weaken our enduring commitment to the security and success of this vital region. Indeed, regardless of shrinking budgets or domestic politics, the United States will continue to expand our commitment to, and presence in, the Asia-Pacific region. Our new agreement with Australia is further evidence of that fact."