Donald Lambro

Clinton's team includes former Secretary of State Madeleine Albright, former U.N. Ambassador Richard Holbrooke and former National Security Advisor Samuel Berger, who was caught red-handed stealing classified Clinton documents from the National Archives.

Obama's advisers include former National Security Advisor Anthony Lake; Susan Rice, an assistant secretary of state in Clinton's second term; and Jimmy Carter's National Security Advisor Zbigniew Brzezinski.

Drawing advisers from the same administration feeds the impression that both Clinton and Obama will in most cases follow similar policies.

Writing last month in The Nation magazine, foreign-affairs analyst Ari Berman said there is a widely shared "suspicion that despite all his talk about providing 'change,' the Obama campaign's differences with Clinton on foreign policy may be more stylistic than substantive."

They seem to be joined at the hip on getting out of Iraq as soon as possible, and that bothers O'Hanlon, a Clinton supporter, who has been a leading Democratic advocate of the military surge there.

"I'm troubled about what they both say about Iraq. He's the one who wants to get out very fast, unconditionally, and to some extent, he's pulled her along," he said.

However, both candidates have little-noticed caveats on their withdrawal plans that they rarely if ever talk about on the campaign trail, but that bear more notice by their antiwar supporters.

At the end of her position paper on "Ending the War in Iraq," Clinton said she "would devote the resources we need to fight terrorism and will order specialized units to engage in narrow and targeted operations against Al Qaeda and other terrorist organizations in the region," including Iraq.

At the end of Obama's position paper, in which he promises "I will end the war in Iraq," he said, "If Al Qaeda attempts to build a base within Iraq, he will keep troops in Iraq or elsewhere in the region to carry out targeted strikes on Al Qaeda."

Which begs the question: How long do you think it will take Al Qaeda to re-establish bases throughout the country once we're out?" You get one guess.

"If you add up all of their differences, they both fail on Iraq," O'Hanlon said. "They both are advocating a policy that, unless significantly modified, would lead to a reversal of all our military progress in 2007."

The American people may have a different position on this issue when they go to the polls on Nov. 4.

Donald Lambro

Donald Lambro is chief political correspondent for The Washington Times.