Paul Keating, a legendary Australian leader and former Prime Minister of Britain, mocked Boris Johnson as a “coconut head” for his British counterpart.

Keating, who served as PM Down Under between 1991 and 1996, mocked Britain’s capability to provide a substantial military response to the rising of China.

He was asked in a Q&A with the National Press Club if he could see Britain ‘coming to Australia’s rescue’ in the Asia-Pacific.

“Look, poor coconut head Johnson,” Mr Keating responded dismissively to this question, referring to the British prime Minister.

British Prime Minister Boring Johnson has been mocked as a 'coconut head' by a legendary former Australian leader

Boring Johnson, British Prime Minister was mocked by legendary Australian leader

Talk about fantasy, Britain sent its largest battleships to East Asia in 1904 and took them out. You don’t think the British can play an important role.

You can’t help but think the Chinese are capable of building 63 sub-s. Would an aircraft carrier built by them have survived a serious dust up? Can Britain help us here? It is not.

“The France was the only country that was willing to help us, so we turned our backs on them.”

He also took aim at Mr Keating in another section of his speech before he was reminded about Mr Johnson’s name.

“Britain’s history is older than modern China. He said that China was going to be enormous.

Mr Keating also blasted current Australian PM Scott Morrison over the decision to build nuclear submarines, saying they will be impotent compared with Chinese naval power by the time they are ready in about 2040. 

He claimed that they will become obsolete so quickly it’d be like throwing teethpicks at the top of a mountain. 

He said, “Eight submarines against China, when we get them in 20 years, it will be like throwing some toothpicks at the mountain.” 

Former prime minister Paul Keating appears virtually to address the National Press Club

Paul Keating, former prime minister appears to be speaking virtually before the National Press Club

Morrison, who had been contracted with France for twelve conventional submarines, cancelled the contract in September and opted for a partnership between the USA and UK called AUKUS. The new relationship will provide Australia with technology for building nuclear vessels for the first-time.

However, Mr Keating stated that they would take too much time to arrive. This is in contrast to China’s navy, which has already six subs powered by nuclear and over 50 subs powered with diesel.  

Keating led Australia between 1991-1996 as Labor Prime Minister and said that eight US-style nuclear submarines would have little military effect. 

‘These Virginia-class submarines were designed in the 1990s – by the time we have half a dozen of them it’ll be 2045 or 2050 – they’ll be 50 or 60 years old.

‘In other words, our new submarines will be old tech – it’ll be like buying an old 747.

‘And here we were, we’re going to wait twenty odd years for the first one, 35 to 40 to get it all. What will these boats look like? 

Keating suggested that Australia could have asked France about its nuclear-powered submarines, instead of working with the US or the UK.

He said, “If we weren’t happy with diesels the obvious choice was to choose the most modern submarine on the drawing board which is the French nuclear submarine.”

Australia is now set to acquire at least eight nuclear-powered submarines to present a counter-balance to Beijing's growing navy, and will also be sharing other advanced military technologies with Washington and London

Australia will soon acquire eight submarines powered by nuclear fuel to counter Beijing’s increasing navy. It will also share advanced military technology with Washington, London and Washington. 

Britain and America are to help Australia build a fleet of nuclear-powered submarines as part of an unprecedented partnership known as AUKUS (pictured, a British Astute-class nuclear sub which is likely to mirror the Australian design)

Britain and America will help Australia to build nuclear-powered submarines in an unrivalled partnership called AUKUS. (pictured: A British Astute-class sub nuclear submarine that is expected to be similar to the Australian design).

Keating claimed that Australia had fallen in line with US strategies to use nuclear “hunter killer” submarines to control China. 

He stated that the whole purpose of the hunter-killer submarines was to capture the Chinese nuclear submarines, keep them in shallow water of the Chinese continental shelf and prevent them from reaching the Mariana Trench.

“To prevent them from possessing nuclear capabilities towards the United States.”

According to the 77-year old, China does not want to extend its eastward territory and Australia must focus on its defense with its conventional submarines.

«[Former Deputy Prime Minister]Kim Beazley & I designed the Collins [class submarines]It is. They were constructed for Australia’s defense. His purpose was to keep out any vessels that might be threatening us.   

Morrison however wants nuclear-powered subs of the US and UK design, as they are quicker, more stealthy, longer-lasting, and safer than standard submarines. This is expected to happen by 2040.  

Keating was also critical of the Morrison Government’s April 2020 request for inquiry into Covid-19’s origins, made in Wuhan, China.

China was outraged by the call and placed huge tariffs against Australian imports like wine and barley.

Mr Keating charged Mr Morrison with ‘wanting to only lead Australia into an end strategic by its needless provocations against China’. 

Instead, he suggested that Australia show China respect because of the fact it has lifted millions from poverty through its rapid economic growth in recent decades.

China has inflamed tensions in the South China Sea in recent years by expanding its claimed territory, to the objection of its neighbours in the Asia-Pacific

China’s recent expansion of territory claimed by it in South China Sea has exacerbated tensions, much to the annoyance of Asia-Pacific neighbours

He stated that he believed the Chinese desire to be acknowledged for the validity of their actions and creations. 

Mr Keating who has often defended Australia’s Chinese government said Beijing doesn’t pose a threat despite its massive military build-up in the South and East China Seas and extensive territorial claims within the region. 

He said that China does not pose a threat to Australia.

China does not want to overthrow the current world order. He stated that it only seeks to reform it and because it has the only size to do so.

“It joined the World Trade Organisation. It signed up for the International Monetary Fund.

Chinese President Xi Jinping attends the G20 Leaders' Summit via video link in Beijing on October 31

Xi Jinping (Chinese President) attends the G20 Leaders’ Summit in Beijing via video link on October 31,

Keating stated that Australia should focus its diplomacy on Asia, rather than the Anglosphere. 

“Here, we’re running to Cornwall for our safety in Asia.” He was referring to the G7 summit held in the UK last June, where the AUKUS agreement was signed.

“We’re at odds with geography, and have lost our way.”

Keating stated that China is too large to be ignored or contained and called for peaceful coexistence.

He stated, “We need to confront them because their power is so powerful in this region of the globe,”  

Former Prime Minister said Australia shouldn’t be involved in Taiwan. 

China has claimed Taiwan as its territory, and has made a vow to do so by force. Taiwan insists that it is independent and will protect its democracy and freedoms. 

He said that Taiwan was not an important Australian interest.

“We do not have any alliances with Taipei. Australia shouldn’t be involved in a military conflict over Taiwan, whether it is US-sponsored or not. 

Last month Taiwan reported 148 Chinese air force planes had flown over its air defence zone (pictured) over a four day period beginning on the same day China marked a key patriotic holiday, National Day

Taiwan last month reported that 148 Chinese aircraft had flown above its air defense zone over the course of a period of four days (pictured). This was on top China’s National Day, a significant patriotic holiday.

The Australian submarine program was criticised again by Jean-Pierre Thebault, the French Ambassador. He accused Australia of robbing France. in the back for the way it failed to tell Paris about AUKUS.

Morrison denied lying to President Emmanuel Macron and claimed France should have realized the $90billion deal was in the works. However, Mr Thebault stated that this was a ‘fictional’ statement and provided an example showing how France was tricked. 

He mentioned a joint statement, which was published on August 30, after an audio conference between Jean-Yves Le Drian (French Foreign Minister) and Florence Parly (Armed Forces Minister), and Peter Dutton (Australian counterpart).

According to the statement, ministers had discussed the significance of the submarine agreement. However, Australian officials planned to cancel the deal and launch a new partnership. 

An awkward handshake in Rome between Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison (right) and French President Emmanuel Macron (left) at the G20 summit this week

At the G20 summit in Rome this week, Scott Morrison, Australian Prime Minister (left), and Emmanuel Macron (left), exchanged awkward handshakes.

A joint statement (above) released on August 30 said Australia and France had discussed the importance of the submarine deal. Just two weeks later it was scrapped

A joint statement (above) released on August 30 said Australia and France had discussed the importance of the submarine deal. Two weeks later, it was scrapped

‘What is a hard fact is that still on August 30, French and Australian ministers of foreign affairs and defence had a dialogue, and they agreed a joint communique,’ Mr Thebault said.

It was made available to all and widely appreciated for its ambitious goals. The following sentence was agreed upon by the two nations: “The importance of Future Submarine Program” 

It was deliberate… it was clearly a stab in your back. 

Jean-Pierre Thebault Ambassador

Is it possible for you to reach an agreement on such a communiqué when there are any questions about the backbone of your cooperation? He said, “Maybe on Mars but not on the planet I live on.” 

He claimed that his leader had been’misled’ by Mr Thebault, which was an admission of guilt among the allies. 

“Was President Obama lying to you?” Yes, he was.

“Maybe there’s an important distinction between misleading and lying. You know that among heads of state and government, if you deceive a friend or an aIly you are lying to them.    

A secret leaked text message (pictured) appears to show that Emmanuel Macron was given warning that Australia would torpedo its $90billion submarine deal with France

Secretly leaked text message (photo) shows that Emmanuel Macron received a warning from Australia that it would destroy its $90 billion submarine agreement with France

The office of Mr Morrison leaked an intimate text between leaders in order to prove that he wasn’t lying to President Macron To show that the French president knew that the agreement was on unstable ground.

Macron said: “Should I Expect Good or Bad News for Our Joint Submarines Ambitions?” 

When questioned by Dubai reporters, Morrison admitted that he had leaked the text. 

He said, “Claims had already been made and they were rejected.” 

Morrison acknowledged that Macron did not know about negotiations with the US, UK and other countries. But Morrison said that France had informed Macron as soon as June that Australia was looking at alternative options for submarines.  

Why are Australia’s nuclear-powered submarines being built? 

Why are nuclear submarines so important?

The nuclear reactors that produce high-pressure steam and heat to power submarines spin turbines, creating steam which is used for their propellers. 

The maximum time they can stay on the water is 20 years.

They are quiet and harder to spot than enemies. The boats can also travel faster than sub-diesel-powered submarines at about 40 kmh.

The United States put the first submarines into sea in 1950s. The submarines can be used by Russia and France as well as the United Kingdom, China, India, and China. 

A senior US defence official told reporters in Washington DC: ‘This will give Australia the capability for their submarines to basically deploy for a longer period, they’re quieter, they’re much more capable. 

“They will help us sustain and increase deterrence in the Indo-Pacific.”

Zack Cooper is a senior Fellow at the American Enterprise Institute and stated that nuclear submarines could greatly increase Australia’s military capabilities.

He said that they would be much more competent in dealing with the vast, open ocean of Australia.  

Australia to have nuclear weapons 

Scott Morrison stated that there will be no nuclear missiles aboard the submarines of nuclear power.

Australia has never produced nuclear weapons and signed the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons in 1973 which prevents non-nuclear states which don’t already have them from developing nuclear weapons.

Morrison said that Australia doesn’t have plans to build any nuclear power plants which can be widely used all over the world. 

He stated, “But, let me make it clear: Australia isn’t seeking to acquire nukes or create a civil nuclear power.”

“And we will keep meeting our nuclear non-proliferation commitments.”  

Is it safe for them? 

A separate section protects the crew against radiation by isolating the reactors from the rest. 

Although the US’s nuclear-powered fleet has a great safety record, there were a few incidents that caused radiation poisoning to 20 US servicemen between 1960 and 1985.

After their twenty-year lifespans are up, nuclear reactors’ contaminated components must be dumped deep underground in specially designed waste storage containers. 

Campaigners against nuclear weapons claim that radioactive waste can be leaked, which could cause an ecological disaster. 

Adam Bandt, Greens leader, called the submarines “floating Chernobyls” in reference to 1986’s Soviet Union nuclear power plant explosion.

Why wait?

Australia should replace six Collins-class submarines that are now over 60 years old. 

It signed an agreement with French Company Naval Group in 2016 to construct 12 diesel-electric attack submarines. However, the two parties disagreed over how much building would take place in Australia.

This deal was reneged upon in favor of sub-powered nuclear submarines, which will be assisted by the US/UK who will supply the technology to Australia.

China is assertive in its Indo-Pacific region. It has staked huge claims to the South and East China waters, clashed against Indian forces and flown numerous planes above Taiwan. This makes the West increasingly nervous.

Morrison is keen for Australia to be able to defend the Pacific against China. Nuclear submarines with long range are the answer. 

China has significantly increased its military over the years. China now boasts six Shang class nuclear powered attack subs with cruise missiles and torpedoes.