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Using the Web to stop a war

Wes is more
By MIKE MILIARD  |  March 14, 2007

VIDEO: The latest from Wesley Clark

Wesley Clark is 62 years old. He is a retired four-star general, and is the former supreme allied commander of NATO. He’s a recipient of the Presidential Medal of Freedom and a former (and perhaps future) presidential candidate. He’s a West Point valedictorian and a Rhodes Scholar. He also has a MySpace page, and a Facebook page, and he posts videos to YouTube.

The past year has seen public figures embracing sites like these to varying degrees. Hillary Clinton, Barack Obama, and Sam Brownback all announced their candidacies via Webcasts. Many 2008 presidential candidates have official MySpace pages. (Some have more friends than others — John Edwards: 12,253; Tom Tancredo: 957.) Edwards has embraced video blogging. Former candidate Mark Warner even hosted a town hall–style meeting last summer in Second Life. Of course, YouTube can also provide less flattering glimpses of candidates, as with the infamous George Allen “macaca” kerfuffle, and David Obey’s “idiot liberals” outburst last week.

But Clark is using online technology a little differently. He’s not a candidate (at least not yet). He’s trying to prevent a war. Last month, Clark helped launched, a site billed as a “one-stop resource for all Americans” to help avoid a looming catastrophe like the one playing out in Iraq.

On the site, Clark uses YouTube for video blog entries. In his stiff but straight-talking way, he teams with Jon Soltz, an Iraq veteran and chairman of, to explore and explain the military ramifications of a potential attack on Iran: what it would mean from a strategic perspective for our overextended National Guard and reserves, for the troops on the ground in Iraq, and for our interests across the region.

There are only two clips up so far, but Clark and Soltz also text blog (each post branded, of course, with the requisite, Digg, and Technorati markers, and open for comments). Most interesting, though, is how Clark embraces the many ways of amplifying his message across cyberspace. Visitors are encouraged to add Clark as a friend on Facebook and to join his “Securing America’s Future” MySpace group. He employs the mapping program Frappr — a site originally conceived by its founders as a means of keeping in touch with post-college friends — to help connect constituents in far-flung areas. The site even uses Flickzor to allow visitors to send and receive video messages.

More prosaically, users are given the YouTube code and encouraged to post Clark’s videos on their own blogs. There’s an online petition, audio presentations of Clark’s media appearances, form letters meant for Congress — even downloadable T-shirt transfers.

The site’s ultimate efficacy remains to be seen, of course. But it would be nice if the Bush administration could approach Middle Eastern diplomacy with the same open mind and innovative thinking that Clark is using trying to prevent their next foreign policy blunder.

On the Web //
Wesley Clark on MySpace: //

Related: The new armies of the ’net, Spin Cyle: WooTube, You and your tech-chic, More more >
  Topics: This Just In , Barack Obama, Blogs and Blogging, Elections and Voting,  More more >
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Using the Web to stop a war
Wes is definitely more! I hope and pray this amzing and gifted man does run for President. He is the only one with the experience and international respect to put our country back on the right path.
By maven819 on 03/15/2007 at 12:59:39
Using the Web to stop a war
Also, visit Clark's website where he also features guest bloggers who discuss Iraq, foreign policy and Iraq war veteran issues at <a href="//">The Danger of Silence</a> //
By KR on 03/15/2007 at 1:12:26
Using the Web to stop a war
THANK YOU for acknowledging the work General Clark has been doing to stop the next war before it starts! He will enter the race in good time and his supporters, while anxiously awaiting his announcement, are busy helping him and get the word out to stop war with Iran. Much more important than spending 2 years running for president! Please go to the website, sign the petition and use the tools to write congress, your local media, print out signs, doorhangers, petitions and yes, even t-shirt transfers! General Wes Clark is the President this country needs to put us back on track and gain back the respect we've lost around the world. An International Statesman, scholar, diplomat -- a man who has seen war and knows that it should only ever be used as a last, last last resort. YES to WES!!
By jen on 03/15/2007 at 1:24:29
Using the Web to stop a war
Mark, Thank you for pointing out the innovative and open mindedness of Wes Clark. He's a refreshing change to "politics as usual." I hope he enters the race and gives people in our country the kind of leadership we so desperately need. I have chosen to help him try to prevent a war in Iran. I hope many of your readers will choose to do the same. Thanks again.
By MsLily on 03/15/2007 at 6:40:46
Using the Web to stop a war
Please, Arizona! Say no to escalation of the war into Iran! General Clark knows all too well that this is a very real likelihood unless enough Americans just say no, NOW!
By Nick Kelly on 03/15/2007 at 3:26:10
Using the Web to stop a war
Wes Clark is doing a great service to this country in using his vast diplomatic, national security, and military experience to call attention to the dangerous situation in Iran and suggest effective non-military ways of addressing it, so we do not go to war unnecessarily. Visit to support his efforts, and take advantage of this easy way to tell your elected officials to make every effort to effectively address the Iran situation without a war. You will be making a difference. Thank you.
By Florence in VA on 03/15/2007 at 7:11:54
Using the Web to stop a war
Thank you for using this forum to call attention to this very important movement to Stop a War on Iran. Hopefully all you readers will visit the web site and sign the petition. I agree with your other readers who find General Clark to be an ideal person to lead this nation. Let's hope he decides to take the journey to the White House.
By Barbara Yeager on 03/16/2007 at 12:16:35
Using the Web to stop a war
Mike's original comments noted Wes Clark's "stiff" speaking style. His You Tube clip with Soltz might have been a bit that way, probably because of the seriousness of the subject. In person and on the campaign trail, he is passionate, engaging, empathetic, and inspirational. I go way back, and not since Bobby Kennedy have I been so inspired by a public figure as I have been inspired by Wes Clark. He belies the military man stereotype; he is more like the Renaissance man with a truly progressive platform. See
By xkenx on 03/18/2007 at 4:13:51
Using the Web to stop a war
I think this project is great. Thank god for Wes Clark. However, letters to congress and petitions don't really work all that well. They don't read them. I built in hopes to reach people who do read their faxes and mail....there are 88 people behind the scenes...all who are directly influencing Iran Policy. Check it out and get involved before it is too late! //
By Jenny Anderson on 04/02/2007 at 10:53:52

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