The best book Senator John Kerry has read in the last year is Bob Woodward’s The War Within:
Bob Woodward’s “The War Within”. Amazing piece of reporting on Iraq and the surge. Boggled my mind to see how much access Woodward was given and how much highly classified information he had—including decision memos to and from the President, for heaven’s sake! Fascinating to read how the President played the players against each other to reach his goal of putting the surge in place. It would be a good read for the President-Elect as an example of how much internecine warfare occurs in a White House, and given the strong willed personalities in his, the Obama White House will not be an exception.
As former White House aide Peter Wehner wrote on this blog after the book was published:
As for the failure to confront reality: it is President Bush who was right and the opponents of the surge who were wrong. The President understood, like many others, that the previous plan was failing. But Bush also possessed the strategic insight and political courage to advocate an increase in troops and a fundamentally different counterinsurgency strategy, which very few others advocated at the time. So who was more in touch with the reality in Iraq during 2006-2008–Bush or those who opposed his plan?
It seems Kerry ultimately takes greater issue with Obama than with Bush. After all, Bush’s plan–despite opposition–has “succeeded beyond our wildest dreams,” according to Obama. And Kerry’s warning to the President-elect–“given the strong willed personalities in his, the Obama White House will not be an exception”–is evidence of Kerry’s severe resentment for not being selected to a cabinet position in Obama’s administration. Will Bob Woodward be around to cover this war within?