Obama Makes Surprise Visit to Afghanistan

He'll be thanking US troops
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Dec 3, 2010 10:31 AM CST
Obama Makes Surprise Visit to Afghanistan
President Obama steps off Air Force One during an unannounced visit to Bagram Air Base in Afghanistan. Friday, Dec. 3, 2010.   (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)

(Newser) – President Obama slipped unannounced into Afghanistan today, one year after widening an ever deadlier war and just days before a pivotal review about the 9-year-plus conflict. Under intense security, Obama landed in darkness after a clandestine departure from the White House yesterday. He was to personally thank US troops for their service during the holidays, but a planned meeting with Hamid Karzai has been scrapped.

The White House said rough weather forced the president to cancel plans to meet with the Afghan president in Kabul. (Given the leaked State Department cables complaining of rampant corruption, it could have been a strained session anyhow.) In total, Obama was to spend three hours on the ground in Afghanistan, about half the time he had scheduled. (Read more President Obama stories.)

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