Obama Shows Up in Afghanistan to Thank US Troops

World | December 3, 2010, Friday // 20:45|  views

US President Obama arrived at the Bagram base on Friday. Photo from LA Times

US President Barack Obama has arrived on a surprise visit to Afghanistan, which is his second since he took office.

Obama landed at the Bagram Air Base in Afghanistan meeting with the commander of the NATO/ISAF forces in the country, Gen. David Petraeus, the Los Angeles Times reported.

The President is said to have gone to Afghanistan to thank the American troops there for their service.

A planned meeting with Afghanistan President Hamid Karzai has been put off allegedly because of bad weather with conditions precluding a helicopter trip to Kabul. Thus, Obama and Karzai will videoconference instead of meeting in person.

The main reason for the trip was for Obama to spend time with US troops during the holiday season, to thank them and to wish them happy holidays at a "particularly tough time of the year" for service members, according to US Deputy National Security Advisor Ben Rhodes.

In a speech before the American troops at the Bagram Air Base, Obama declared that the United States will not allow Afghanistan to be turned into a base for the operations of the global terrorist network Al Qaeda.

He told the US soldiers that there were still many tough battles ahead for them in Afghanistan but that they will complete successfully their mission.

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Tags: Barack Obama, US President, Afghanistan, Bagram Air Base, Kabul, NATO, ISAF, insurgency, Hamid Karzai, David Petraeus, Al Qaeda


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