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Even on the core issue of Iraq withdrawal, he seemed to be wiggling away from a full pullout. “Three or four of his Iraq advisers are hinting of greater flexibility,” said Democratic defense analyst Michael O’Hanlon at the Brookings Institution. “That indicates the potential for some change in his previous position or at least some flexibility.”

In a recent conversation with Iraqi Foreign Minister Hoshyar Zebari, Mr. Obama reassured him “he will not take any drastic decisions or reckless actions” and would consult “very closely with the Iraqi government and the military commanders in the field” before any troop withdrawals, Mr. Zebari said.

All these and other changes in his campaign positions were “signs of increasing maturity and growth” in the young senator, former Democratic National Chairman Steve Grossman told me.

Or are they, as the McCain campaign charges, Mr. Obama’s willingness “to say or do anything it takes” to win the presidency?

Donald Lambro, chief political correspondent of The Washington Times, is a nationally syndicated columnist.