Whom the Candidates Listen to on Iraq

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Former NATO commander and onetime presidential candidate Gen. Wesley Clark has become a key Clinton adviser on Iraq after endorsing her in September. Her campaign team also includes Rudy deLeon, who served as deputy defense secretary under Bill Clinton, and retired Lt. Gen. Paul Eaton, who trained Iraqi security forces before becoming a vocal critic of former Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld.


Rep. Patrick Murphy, the only Iraq war veteran in Congress, has discussed the war with Obama and campaigned for him, as has retired Air Force Maj. Gen. Scott Gration, who flew 274 combat missions over Iraq. Former House member and Iraq Study Group cochair Lee Hamilton has not endorsed anyone, but Obama praises the study group's work, and his foreign-policy team includes several former Hamilton aides.


As the current U.S. commander in Iraq, Gen. David Petraeus is not connected to any campaign, but McCain quotes him frequently on the campaign trail, and advisers say McCain would take cues from the general's views on Iraq. McCain has also drawn upon the work of retired Gen. Jack Keane and American Enterprise Institute scholar Frederick Kagan, who helped shape the Bush administration's surge strategy.