Essay from the year 2009 in the subject Politics - International Politics - Region: Other States, grade: 1,4, Macquarie University, language: English, abstract: By stating that 'that the protection of our continent starts well beyond our shores' the protection of our continent and citizens starts well beyond our shores has formed an essentially unbroken line in Australian strategic thinking' (Howard, 2006, p. 5), the former Australian Prime minister acknowledged the importance of distant events for Australia's interests in an era of globalization. Globalization does not only provide positive effects, in fact, global terrorism, a growing shortage of energy resources, and a higher economic vulnerability to foreign developments are also effects of globalization. The Middle East will remain a key region in the next decades for either of the mentioned negative effects and therefore, Australia's strategic interests in the Middle East will increase. Given a broader Australian security agenda, determined by 'a global power balance, favourable to our interests and to those of our allies; secure sea and air lanes as sinews of peace and prosperity; and a framework of international norms conducive to individual freedom, economic development and liberal democracy' (Howard, 2006, p. 5), events in the Middle East do matter. Therefore, this paper will analyze key strategic challenges Australia will face in the Middle East region. Since these threats are possible threats for Australia's security interests, this paper will also outline possible options of actions Canberra might have in order to protect its interests in the Middle East and on its broader security agenda.