Australia's John Howard has lost his fifth election. Years of significant achievement have come to an end. I've written more about it on ConservativeHome.com.
Many will interpret Labor's victory as a difficult moment for George W Bush. After the end of Tony Blair and José María Aznar, the White House has lost another principal member of its coalition of the willing in Iraq. With relations between Brown and Bush already difficult, Canada's Stephen Harper is now George W Bush's most reliable Anglosphere ally.
Australia's new Prime Minister, Kevin Rudd, a Mandarin speaker, will probably tilt Australia's worldview towards Asia. The Australia-US relationship will be of less importance but Rudd is committed to continuing Australian involvement in Afghanistan.
Before the usual suspects interpret this change as a big setback for George W Bush - and it is a setback - they should note (as Mark Steyn has done) that pro-war leaders are not the only ones to have lost power in recent years. Blair, Howard and Aznar may have gone but so have Chirac, Chrétien and Schroeder. Iraq was certainly not a decisive factor in Howard's defeat as i explain over at ConservativeHome.