Surprise Obama visit to Afghanistan
Addressing the troops at Bagram air base near Kabul, the US president said that he is grateful for their input and service.
“There is no visit I consider more important than this visit I am making right now because I see no greater honor than serving as your commander in chief,” he said. “So my job here today is to say thank you on behalf of the entire American people.”
Obama added that the US mission in the country is to “help Afghans forge a hard won peace.” “We did not choose this war,” he said. “We were attacked viciously on 9/11.”
During his visit, which lasted just a few hours, President Obama also spoke to Afghani president Hamid Karzai in his palace.
Barack Obama stressed the need to create a more credible judicial system in the country. He also urged the Afghan government to do more to root out corruption and improve governance.
The US leader also said reducing the flow of money from poppy production and drug-trafficking was essential to help curb the insurgency, which benefits from the narcotics trade.
During his trip, Obama also met with US Ambassador to Afghanistan Karl Eikenberry and US and NATO forces commander in Afghanistan General Stanley McChrystal.