David Yepsen of the Des Moines Register covered his visit, and had this to say:
The nation is bogged down in a war. There seems to be no way out. A president's job-approval rating tanks.
Iraq, 2006? Yes. It's also Korea, 1952. And in 1952, a war-weary nation grew tired of its president and turned to a retired general to be the next chief executive - giving him the mission of getting the country out of the conflict.
This presidential cycle, retired Gen. Wesley Clark is showing up in Iowa, hoping to repeat something of the same feat Dwight Eisenhower accomplished when he succeeded Harry Truman in 1952.
"You'll not get an 'A' out of this," he said in an interview. "You might get an 'F.' If you're lucky, you'll get a 'D+.' The failure will come if you just get mad and pull out - just say 'That's it. You people are fighting; we're leaving.' If you do that, they'll fight even more."
Instead, he said, the United States must now try to hold the country together; not let it become a haven for terrorists, and prevent any other single country in the region from dominating it.
Also, the United States has to work to let people "lead some semblance of normal life," help put a government in place, get U.S. troops off the streets and reduce the U.S. troop presence.
The United States also must expand its diplomatic efforts in the region and make clear it seeks "no permanent presence" of troops in the area. Also, it should work to establish a government, bolster the economy and improve security.
"You'll be left with an Iraq that is a lot more Islamist than before and anti-American. It's not a very pretty outcome, but that's the absolute best you can hope for," he said.
So is this the program that makes Clark president? It's not a grabber like Ike's "I will go to Korea" line. Also, the Bush administration is already trying to execute some of it. And there are a lot of angry Democratic activists who want to leave immediately and won't like hearing candidates say we have to remain awhile longer.
But as a decorated military leader, Clark has a credibility on war and national security that none of the other potential candidates has.......
And he closes with this:
Also, Democrats may finally be learning that the nation's mainstream voters just aren't going to elect a president near the pacifist end of the political spectrum. Democrats have rarely won the White House unless they nominated candidates who were seen as strong on national-defense questions. That's what they thought they were doing when they nominated John Kerry in 2004.
Democrats looking to take back the White House in 2008 need to consider the lessons Eisenhower and the Republicans taught them in back 1952.
Des Moines Register
I have been a Clark supporter since the Draft Clark days. I know Kossacks have their favorites and sometimes they seem to change weekly. When Kane won, everyone jumped on the Warner bandwagon. When Feingold called for censure, he was the new favorite. Right now it's Gore. For me it has always been Wes Clark.
Apart from the fact that I still think he has the best credentials to win the WH, I like that he continues to slog away week in and week out spreading the Dem message around the country, while at the same time, having to make a living. He doesn't have the luxury of campaigning on the tax payers' dime, nor is he independently wealthy like others. But it doesn't stop him from maintaining a killer schedule like this:
January 10th: DNC Statement on Bush failure to provide body armor for troops
January 10th: Liberal Supper Club, Washington DC
January 11th: DNC Press Conference Call with Lt Col Andrew Horne, candidate for U.S. Congress in KY-3; Democratic pre-buttal to Bush WOT speech in Louisville KY
January 11th: Letter-writing campaign to demand body armor for troops
January 17th: 7:30PM, Sears Lecture Series, "Do We Really Care about Human Rights?" - Purdue University, Loeb Playhouse, West Lafayette, Indiana - "The Balkans: A Strategic Vision"
January 19th: Securing America: "Where is the leadership and the rule of law?"
January 24th: Press conference with Senator Schumer introducing "Consumer Telephone Records Protection Act of 2006"
January 25th: Release of "The US Military: Under Strain and at Risk" for US Senate National Security Advisory Group; aka Albright/Perry Report
January 26th: Paul Begala's Radio Show, WOR-AM NY
January 26th: 1PM, Fundraising Reception for Bob Gammage for Governor, Hotel Derek, Houston TX
January 26th: Rally with Representative Hubert Vo in TX House District 149, Houston TX
January 26th: 6PM, Kickoff of Juan Garcia's race for Texas House District 32, Selena Auditorium, Corpus Christi TX
January 27th: "Take Back Your Privacy" E-Mail Campaign in support of S. 2178, "The Consumer Telephone Records Act of 2006"
January 27th: Mississippi Delta Grassroots Caucus Third Annual Conference, Little Rock AR
January 30th: "Real State of the Union" speech before New America Foundation, Washington DC
February 1st: WesPac Reception and Fundraiser, Biltmore Hotel, Coral Gables FL
February 2nd: WesPac Reception and Fundraiser, "Evening in San Francisco with General Wesley K. Clark" at Hotel Monaco, San Francisco CA
February 4th: Bloggers' Roundtable, Los Angeles CA
February 4th: "Take Back the House with General Wesley Clark" in support of Democrat Francine Busby for CA-50, Hollywood CA
February 4th: WesPac fundraiser sponsored by 4-Star Democratic Club, Los Angeles CA
February 6th: ABC World News Tonight
February 8th: Veterans for a Secure America fundraiser, Washington DC
February 9th: Stephanie Miller radio show on AAR
February 10th: "Iraq: The Way Forward--A Conversation with General Wesley Clark," Council on Foreign Relations, Washington DC
February 11th & 12th: Hosting C-Span Book-TV program "After Words"; Guest David Rieff, author of "At the Point of a Gun: Democratic Dreams and Armed Intervention"
February 11th: Speech at National Student Leadership Conference, Washington DC
March: Fundraiser for Mike Weaver in KY-02, Owensboro KY
March 5th: "This Week" interview by George Stephanopoulos
March 10th: Ed Schultz Radio Show
March 10th: WesPac fundraising luncheon, Cambridge MA
March 11th: Congressman Marty Meehan's St. Patrick's Day Breakfast, Dracut, MA
March 11th: Vietnam and the Presidency Conference, JFK Library, Boston MA
March 13th: Wall Street Journal Op-Ed, "A Petty Hitler" - death of Slobodan Milosevic'
March 14th: Diane Rehm Show on the situation in Iraq
March 14th: Fundraiser for Eric Massa NY-29, Washington DC
March 15th: ClarkCasts introduced on Securing America
March 17th: Email Fundraiser for Lt Col Andrew Horne, Democratic candidate in KY-03
March 17th: Chicago Public Radio "The Future of Kosovo"
March 18th-20th: New Hampshire House Democratic Caucus
March 18th: Town Hall Meeting, New England College, Henniker NH
March 18th: New Hampshire Veterans Home visit, Tilton NH
March 18th: Salem/Windham Democrats host General Clark, Windham NH
March 19th: Upper Valley Democrats and Young Democrats of Dartmouth College host General Clark, Hanover, NH
March 21st: Ohio Democratic Party fundraiser, Cincinnatian Hotel, Cincinnati OH
March 23rd: "Evening with General Wesley Clark" Reception and Dinner, The Houstonian, Houston TX
March 24th: CSPAN - "Vietnam and the Presidency: Lessons Learned" - JFK Library, Boston MA 3/11/06
April 1st: North Dakota Democratic-NPL Convention, Fargo Civic Center, Fargo ND, Keynote Speaker
April 10th: Emory University Presidential Distinguished Lecture Series, Atlanta GA
April 22nd: Arkansas Democratic Party Jefferson-Jackson Dinner, Guest Speaker, Little Rock AR
April 26th: 7PM, "Take a Meeting With the World" Public Lecture Series, Interview by George Stephanopoulos, University of Judaism Gibson Amphitheatre, Bel-Air CA
May 5th: Boys and Girls Club of America Centennial Celebration, Guest Speaker. Boston MA
May 13th: Hawkeye Labor Council fundrasier, Cedar Rapids IA
May 19th: Wagner College Commencement Address, Staten Island NY
May20th: Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute Commencement Speech and Honorary Degree, Troy NY
June 8th: Texas Democratic State Convention, Opening Speaker, Ft. Worth TX
June 24th: Tennessee Democratic Party Jackson Day, Guest Speaker, Ryman Auditorium, Nashville TN
Does he ever sleep?