The United States has awarded a senior Australian Army officer a Legion of Merit for his work in Iraq.
Brigadier Steve Meekin received the honour for his role in the coalition's Iraq Survey Group, which involved collecting and making safe more than 3,000 tonnes of Iraqi military material.
Defence Minister Robert Hill has paid tribute to Brigadier Meekin, saying the Legion of Merit is a significant US award.
This is weird. Last October Hill said to the Senate:
Brigadier Meekin is the Commander of the Joint Captured Materiel Exploitation Centre, which has the mission of examining and locating Iraq's conventional weapons, and is only peripherally involved in the investigation of Iraq's WMD programs.
How do you go from 'peripherally involved' to the Legion of Merit for your 'role in the coalition's Iraq Survey Group'?