Yes, it is extraordinary that no clear answer has emerged to the question of whether or not we are setting up permanent bases in Iraq. The next question is — why not? The answer must be that leading Democrats aren't really pushing for an answer. The next question is — why not? The answer must be that they think a future Democratic administration might need such bases, but it would not be politic to say so. The implication? Since 9/11, Niall Ferguson and Tom Friedman have been writing the foreign policy platform for Democrats in 2008.