It's obvious to anyone who has been paying attention that Secretary of State Colin Powell has been treated like shit by the neocon wing of the Bush Administration. He's done what he has been ordered to do, to be sure, yet with just enough gritting of his teeth to indicate his discomfort. Could it be that careerists who are sick and tired of being disregarded and who resent the fact that so many American soldiers and resources have been wasted in Iraq have decided to give up on W in order to lay the groundwork for a Colin Powell campaign in 2008? Powell would need the middle-of-the-road voters that Kerry and Bush are fighting over right now, since he'd lose some Fundamentalists and racists on the Right.
Maybe the moderate Republicans -- a category into which many white collar workers in Washington and the armed forces fit -- are going to make their own "lesser of two evils" choice and direct their energy, not to defeating Kerry, but to challenging the Bush team's story about Iraq and the War on Terror. I recognize that this might simply be wishful thinking on my part. Nevertheless, it doesn't hurt to dream as long as you remember you're still dreaming.