Newly elected Prime Minister Kevin Rudd on a surprise visit to Australian soldiers in Iraq promised the men he would have them home by June. “I visited the Australian battle group in Talil and spoke directly to what is a fine body of men and women. That battle group will come to a conclusion as of June next year and will be the last battle group we deploy.” he promised General Petraeus that Australia would do its best to assist in patrolling in the gulf and will do whatever it can to help Iraq have a competent government, but, his nation’s troops are coming home. Rudd previously stated that the 500 Australian troops in Afghanistan would remain there for the forseeable future.
Rudd made promises and has kept them about withdrawing troops from Iraq. At some point, the Iraq government must come to the realization that cooperation between all religious factions is a must if the nation is to remain viable. The question for America is whether or not withdrawing troops would result in a quickened movement towards integration of all factions in Iraq.