In 1969, the Commonwealth Government of Australia completed construction of its first high-profile, purpose-built embassy since the opening of Australia House in London in 1918. 1 Designed by Melbourne-based firm Bates, Smart & McCutcheon, the Australian Chancery (1964–9) in Washington, DC, represented a defining moment in Australian diplomacy. It was the physical confirmation of a relationship that had been building since 1942 when the United States of America entered World War II and Australia’s ties with Great Britain began to inexorably wane. The defeat of the Japanese, Australia’s ready engagement in the Korean conflict from 1950, the emergence of the Cold War and the threat of communism posed from Asia meant that Australia’s position in the world politically and to a significant degree economically, was, by the mid-1960s, defined by its relationship to America.