Phil, your take seems solid and raises three points:
1) Will Hillary continue to hold the Democratic anti-war base at bay or will they finally explode and harness their energy behind a get out now anti-war candidate? She’s been doing fine so far but the anti-war forces are going to get angrier and more frustrated after the Democrats lose this next round, as appears will be the case.
2) If she survives, gets the nomination and wins(unlike a lot of commentators I think she is formidable and is the odds on favorite to be president if she gets the nomination) she will then be faced with the exact dilemma she did not want: Iraq will be her problem. You recall how early in her run she declared that Bush needed to clean up his “mess” (i.e. get out of Iraq) before the next president took office. At that point we can only hope Joe Biden is Secretary of State and a reasoned approach carries the day. (If her opponent is Mitt Romney there may be very little daylight between the two as was discussed yesterday.)
3) If we have more than 100,000 troops still in Iraq there’s a lot to be said for the “Republicans are doomed” theory. Unless you think there is going to be an extremely dramatic change in the situation in Iraq, allowing not only the 30,000 troops to come home in July but the prospect of many more, the GOP prospects don’t look great. The good news: someone other than Bush(i.e. the GOP nominee) will be there to explain the stakes and try to convince anyone who still is listening what is involved.