washington, dc

The Democratic Strategist

Political Strategy for a Permanent Democratic Majority

TDS Strategy White Papers

Obama and Iraq: A General Election Strategy by Bruce W. Jentleson

Iraq needs to be addressed as a three-dimensional issue: (1) the war itself and the need to shift emphasis from what Obama is against to what he is for, and not just the calendar for getting out but the alternative strategy for doing so; (2) Iraq as a measure of Obama’s overall foreign policy capability, particularly passing the commander-in-chief test without getting trapped into the “I’ll bomb, too” Democratic wannabe role; and (3) Iraq as a temperaturetaker as to whether this is another anti-military Democrat or someone who genuinely respects the institution, its people and its culture.
Read the entire memo here.


Military Strategy for Democrats: The Reality Behind McCain’s Claim That the Surge Has Succeeded by James Vega

This is an absolutely extraordinary claim. In fact, it could very easily be dismissed as just another of McCain’s increasingly frequent “gaffes” or “blunders” except that it has actually become a critical pillar of the basic Republican “party line”–one that is particularly emphasized by the Wall Street Journal and other Rupert Murdoch-owned media.
Until a few weeks ago the standard way this was expressed was that the US was “on the verge of success or victory”. In the last 10 days, however, the rhetoric has actually been ratcheted up to an even higher level. In a major Wall Street Journal op-ed commentary on July 16th–one titled “The New Reality in Iraq”–Frederick Kagan, Kimberly Kagan and Jack Keane, all major military analysts, made the following quite breathtaking assertion:
Read the entire memo here.