When Verum’s crystal ball started spinning today, it highlighted not one, not two, but three countries. They were the United States (US), the United Kingdom (UK), and Australia. This piqued Verum’s curiosity. She knew that something big and important had taken place.

So, she sat in front of her crystal ball with closed eyes and concentrated on understanding the news. By the time she opened her eyes, her friends had gathered around her to know more about it.

Verum said, “Last Wednesday, the leaders of the US, the UK, and Australia announced a new trilateral security alliance. It means that the three countries have come together and formed a union to maintain peace and security in the Indo-Pacific region.”

“That’s a huge step,” said Orak, “What is this alliance called?”

“It’s called AUKUS,” replied Verum, “As a part of this alliance, the US and the UK will make a joint effort to help Australia get its hands on nuclear-powered submarines (a watercraft that can move underwater).”

Orak explained, “Everything is made of components called atoms which have a part called the nucleus at the center. When this nucleus is split, it generates a lot of nuclear energy. This nuclear energy can be used to make destructive weapons.”

“But the three countries have insisted that the submarines won’t have nuclear weapons,” countered Verum.

“What is the reason behind this alliance?” said Felix, “With three important countries working together towards security, there must be a threat.”

“You’re right, Felix,” said Verum, “While they didn’t directly mention it, the threat is China. There is growing competition between China and the US and its allies in the Asia Pacific region. This is especially present in the South China Sea. China claims the entire area which has led to tensions between China and countries like Malaysia, Vietnam, and the Philippines.”

“The growing tensions between China and Taiwan, which is the US’s ally, must have also contributed to this,” said Orak.

“Australia’s worsening relations with China have also played a role, I think,” said Scorch.

“But China isn’t happy about this deal. Chinese foreign ministry spokesman Zhao Lijian called this alliance an extremely ‘irresponsible threat’ to ‘regional stability,” said Verum.

“Everyone certainly noticed the AUKUS,” said Orak.