I can understand that Susan Rice and Claire McCaskill can’t agree whether Barack Obama has already or will be changing his Iraq policy and if so what it will be.
It is very possible that the Obama camp hasn’t decided exactly what they are going to do. And considering that we have troops in the field, have been executing the surge for 18 months, have voluminous data on the results of the surge, and have mainstream media outlets reporting on its remarkable success, it’s noteworthy–some would say frightening–that we don’t know where the Democratic nominee is going on this issue.
But unlike NAFTA, campaign financing, gay marriage, guns, or even meetings with leaders of state terror sponsors, a war is not something a President can be for one day and against another, or decide if he has enough cover from the mainstream media before making the leap from one position (absolutely opposed to the surge) to another (sort of in favor, until you aren’t). Well, he can, but it looks bad and it gets people fretting that he doesn’t have the foresight to figure out a winning hand and the force of will to stick with it.
I don’t blame either Obama advisor –maybe both are right or neither is — for guessing and maybe trying to shape the next Obama position on Iraq. What is troubling is that Obama is now trailing the New York Times and New Yorker on recognizing the need to shift ground. But then again, perhaps he already recognized that he must embrace the surge strategy, but is afraid to tell his supporters. Either way, it’s not exactly a study in leadership. It’s not even a good example of followship.