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John Howard should get onto the phone.....

Whilst the Federal Parliament has been in uproar in debate about whether Australia should stay on in Iraq and the PM this morning sprouts forth on the ABC's AM program that Australia couldn't cut and run from Iraq leaving the US and the UK behind there, it seems like he isn't across where the US is headed.

The Independent reports:

"George Bush and Tony Blair were looking more isolated than ever last night as the ground shifted further under their strategy of remaining in Iraq "until the job is done".

The President and the Prime Minister were left clinging to the dream of establishing a lasting democracy in Iraq as their advisers urged them to look for a new, more realistic, exit strategy.

A leaked report by the Iraq Study Group, chaired by former US secretary of state James Baker, a close friend of the Bush family, paved the way for a large-scale withdrawal of US forces and a dramatic shift of US policy.

It suggested that instead of the "stay the course" policy, President Bush could extricate the US from the quagmire of Iraq by removing US forces to bases outside Iraq. In an even more spectacular U-turn, they are believed to suggest that Iran and Syria could be invited to co-operate in the stabilisation of lawless Iraq."

This piece is a clear analysis of the current state of play in what the US is looking to do in Iraq. It also looks at the various "positions" of the main players in relation to the war-torn country. John! - call the White House and find out what is happening.

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