(CNN) - Retired Gen. Wesley Clark, a former Democratic presidential candidate, seemed to be enjoying his chance to bash the Republican presidential candidates Monday, making fun of their national security views and spotlighting what he says are their flip-floppy stances.
Clark was joined in remarks by former Navy Secretary Richard Danzig and Ret. Maj. Gen. Paul Eaton at the National Press Club on the eve of the CNN Republican National Security Debate in Washington, D.C. It will be the last foreign policy-focused debate before the Iowa caucus in January.
Programming note: GOP presidential candidates face off at 8 p.m. ET Tuesday, November 22, in the CNN Republican National Security Debate in Washington, D.C.
Organized to speak by the Democratic National Committee, the three gushed over President Barack Obama's policies, comparing them to the "all over the map" and "shifting positions" of the Republicans.
In what seemed like a highlight reel of Clark's best jabs, the former supreme allied commander to NATO seemed to single out former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney the most with his references, but Clark didn't go so far as to call out the presidential hopefuls by name.
"One (candidate) praised President Obama's troop surge and concurred with the idea of later taking combat troops out of Afghanistan while criticizing setting a withdrawal date," Clark said of Romney's stance on Afghanistan. "Then he suggested U.S. troops should stay there. Then he said he'd like to see the troops come home as soon as possible."
Clark, a former military commentator for CNN who made an unsuccessful bid for the Democratic presidential nomination in 2004, also challenged Romney on his Iran position.
"One veteran candidate's position has evolved from needing to consult military lawyers about how to proceed against Iran in 2007 to an eagerness for military action now that gives many of us pause," he said.
In a 2007 debate, when Romney was asked if the president needed congressional permission before launching an attack on Iran's nuclear facilities, Romney responded by saying as president, "You sit down with your attorneys" to determine whether such authorization is needed, but he said, "Obviously, the president of the United States has to do what's in the best interest of the United States to protect us against a potential threat."
Clark's jabs, however, weren't reserved for Romney. He called Newt Gingrich's idea of covert action in Iran "cute."
"Some candidates seem to be rattling the sabres for war with Iran," Clark said. "One candidate was placing heavy emphasis on covert action as though he had just invented the idea and nothing is happening now, which is a little bit cute since the definition of covert action is that it cannot be acknowledged."
Criticism from Republican candidates over the Obama administration setting an Afghanistan withdrawal date was also a point of contention for Clark.
"Does anyone really believe that in complex matters of national security worked over months and years in Afghanistan that these dates can be kept secret between Afghanistan and numerous foreign governments without the Taliban hearing about it?" he said.