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Gen. Petraeus Made Honorary Officer of Australia

Wednesday, 4 November 2009

The Chief of the Defence Force, Air Chief Marshal Angus Houston, congratulated General David Petraeus after he was appointed as an Honorary Officer of the Order of Australia in an investiture ceremony in Washington DC today.

General Petraeus was nominated for the award by Air Chief Marshal Houston in recognition of his distinguished service to the International Coalition Against Terrorism as Commanding General, Multi-National Force Iraq.

The Minister for Defence, Senator John Faulkner, representing the Governor-General, presented the insignia to General Petraeus in the presence of Air Chief Marshal Houston and Secretary of Defence, Dr Ian Watt.

Air Chief Marshal Houston said that General Petraeus’ appointment to the Order of Australia recognised his outstanding contribution to the increased safety and security of Australian forces in Iraq during 2007 and 2008.

“General Petraeus’ stoic determination, impeccible integrity and realist command approach was instrumental in the production of a safer environment for Australian forces in Iraq,” Air Chief Marshal Houston said.

“During his time as Commanding General, Multi-National Force Iraq, General Petraeus led Coalition Forces in an exceedingly complex operational environment to great effect. Under General Petraeus’ guidance the Coalition gained tactical momentum by conducting successful counter insurgency and offensive operations to clear and hold significant areas of Iraq. This directly led to strengthened reconciliation efforts and a renewed focus on political reform, subsequently resulting in a reduction in violence, lessening of casualties and a decrease in security incidents.

“I greatly valued General Petraeus’ leadership and determination in ensuring that young men and women of the ADF were operating within a coalition effort that was coordinated and effective. This award is the highest honour in our system and I can think of no one more deserving of this recognition than General Petraeus.”

General Petraeus of the United States Army is currently Commander, United States Central Command. He served as Commanding General, Multi-National Force Iraq from 26 January 2007 until 30 October 2008. In this position he was charged with command of all Coalition forces in Iraq, including members of the ADF. Prior to this he was the first commander of the Multi-National Security Transition Command Iraq where he was responsible for training Iraq’s Army, Police and other security forces.

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