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Australian foreign policy throughout the Cold War was tied very closely to the United States. As one of the English-speaking allies of the United States, along with Great Britain, Canada, and New Zealand, Australia shared a special relationship with the U.S. that made it one of this country's closest partners in the fight at communism.
The close relationship between the United States, Australia, and New Zealand, was formalized with the signing of the "Australia, New Zealand, United States Security (ANZUS) Treaty of 1951. While New Zealand would effectively opt out of that security arrangement in 1984 over its prohibition on visits from nuclear-powered ships -- U.S. nuclear-powered aircraft carriers and submarines routinely made port calls on allies with maritime borders -- Australian participation in the alliance remained firm. Australian troops served alongside American soldiers in the Korean and Vietnam Wars, and continue to contribute forces in support of other U.S.-led conflicts.
In addition to diplomatic and military support during the Cold War, Australia also played a very important role in the intelligence arena. Extremely sensitive U.S. satellite ground stations are located in remote areas of Australia, and intelligence sharing between the two countries, along with Australia's former colonial master Great Britain, was extremely important in monitoring Soviet military activities in the Pacific region.
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