Obama Visits Afghanistan on the Anniversary of bin Laden’s Death
President Barack Obama secretly went to Afghanistan on the anniversary of the raid that killed Osama bin Laden. He stated that after years of sacrifice, the role of the US in the country is winding down just as it has already ended in Iraq.
He added that the goal was to destroy the al Qaida and they are on the right path to achieve it. He spoke after signing a deal with Afghan President Hamid Karzai that would cover the decade after the planned withdrawal of US troops in 2014. President Obama said that the US forces will be in counter-terrorism and training of the Afghan military. He promised that Americans will not build permanent bases in Afghanistan nor will they patrol the cities and mountains.
President Obama arrived in Bagram and boarded a helicopter that took him to Kabul for the meeting with President Karzai. Security was tight. Then he went back to the base and shook the hands of the US troops stationed there. He ended his visit with a speech delivered straight to the TV camera and to the voters he’s trying to reach.
His Republican counterpart, Mitt Romney, was in New York. He accused the president of politicizing the national unity achieved with the death of bin Laden.
At the air base, President Obama noted the sacrifice of the American troops in Afghanistan. He added that there’s a light on the horizon. It was Obama’s fourth trip to the country, his third as the commander in chief. He was there for less than seven hours. He also visited the hospital at the Bagram base, where he awarded 10 Purple Hearts.
According to the Pentagon, more than 1,800 American troops have been killed in the war in Afghanistan. At present, there are around 88,000 who are still serving in the country.