It has lead the news cycle today. “US Combat troops are all out of Iraq”. Lots of footage of Strykers rolling across the border with Kuwait.

And yet there will still be over 50,000 in the country, the large (huge) base complexes remain – let alone the monstrous/gigantic US Embassy in Baghdad (over 1000 US officials and growing).

Camp Slayer is still there, out on the huge lot near the airport.

Both sides of Australian politics (well, the two parties at least) went in there all keen and happy for a fight… and now we can’t even be bothered to pay attention. It’s the mess we’re all ashamed of, so we’ll just hope that it goes away (somehow).

The Huffington Post has a short piece by Michael Schwartz, an interesting little read. It is here.

President Barrack Obama’s statements in Chicago from 2006 (before he was President) are an interesting exploration of the idea of an ongoing ‘strike force’ presence in the region. Download the PDF here.

And just for a random bit of internet reading, here is a list that I lifted from McClatchy (by no means definitive!) of ‘violence’ in Iraq yesterday (so it doesn’t have the huge market bomb listed from the day before):


A roadside bomb targeted civilians in Beirut Square, east Baghdad, at 8 a.m. Wednesday, injuring four.

A roadside bomb targeted civilians in Zayuna neighbourhood, east Baghdad, at 8.30 a.m. Wednesday, injuring two.

Armed men in a speeding car assassinated a government employee in Harthiyah neighbourhood, central Baghdad, at 9 a.m. Wednesday, using pistols fitted with silencers.

Armed men, carrying pistols fitted with silencers, assassinated Judge Jabir Jumaa in Aden Square, Hurriyah neighbourhood, northwest Baghdad, at 2 p.m. Wednesday.

Two roadside bombs detonated in quick succession in Kesra neighbourhood, Athamiyah, north Baghdad at 5 p.m. Wednesday, targeting a police patrol, injuring two policemen and eight civilians.

A mortar round slammed into a house on Abu Nowas Street, central Baghdad, Wednesday, injuring two civilians and causing extensive damages to the house.

Armed men attacked a Sahwa checkpoint in Mada’in, a southeastern Baghdad suburb, at around 9 p.m. Wednesday, killing one Sahwa member and injuring two others.

Two roadside bombs targeted a U.S. military convoy in Taji district, north Baghdad, at 9.15 p.m. Wednesday, causing damages to one Hummer vehicle. No casualties were reported.

Armed men in a speeding car shot and killed Judge Najim al Talabani of the High Court, on his doorstep in Atayfiyah neighbourhood, north Baghdad, Tuesday, while he was just about to go to work.


Armed men entered Rabee’a village, 120 km to the northeast of Baquba and shot and killed three civilians who supported the Sahwa Councils and cooperated with the security forces. They threw fliers in the village that read, “Anyone who cooperates with the government, the Sahwa or the Americans will face the same fate”.


Armed men opened fire at an army checkpoint in Tanak neighbourhood, west Mosul, Wdnesday, killing one soldier.

A roadside bomb targeted an army checkpoint in Karama neighbourhood, east Mosul, Wednesday, killing one soldier and injuring two civilians.

An armed confrontation broke out between armed men and an army checkpoint in Jaza’ir neighbourhood, east Mosul, late Monday in which a civilian was killed and his young son, who was with him, was severely injured.


Armed men in a speeding car shot and killed two policemen on the bridge in Domeiz neighbourhood, Wednesday.


A roadside bomb targeted a police patrol in Ta’mim neighbourhood, in the centre of Ramadi, the capital of the province, Wednesday, injuring one policeman and two civilians.

A parked car bomb targeted a police patrol in Kamsa Kilo area, to the west of Ramadi, Wednesday, injuring three policemen, two of whom are critical, and four civilians.

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