March 28th, 2010
03:03 PM ET
5 years ago

Afghan war remains 'absolutely essential,' Obama says


Bagram Air Base, Afghanistan (CNN) - President Barack Obama rallied coalition forces in Afghanistan during a previously unannounced visit Sunday, telling them the 8-year-old war remains "absolutely essential" to the security of the United States.

Speaking to about 2,000 U.S. and allied troops at the major U.S. base in Afghanistan, Obama said, "Those folks back home are relying on you."

"I know it's not easy," he said. "You're far away from home. You miss your kids, you miss your spouses, your family, your friends." But he added, "If I thought for a minute that America's vital interests were not served, were not at stake here in Afghanistan, I would order all of you home right away."

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Filed under: Afghanistan • President Obama
soundoff (11 Responses)
  1. CHIPS

    I'm setting here watching the President speak to the troops, and I see the American people. All nationalities. The Tea Party need to get on board or go somewhere and set down. And stop being fake American people.

    March 28, 2010 03:11 pm at 3:11 pm |
  2. CHIPS

    Can you say third term!

    March 28, 2010 03:12 pm at 3:12 pm |
  3. acfaber291

    if doubling the deaths of soldiers year over year is progress then progress it is.

    hope it's not your kid or relative.

    military warning: get out while you are still alive!

    March 28, 2010 03:20 pm at 3:20 pm |
  4. Casualties are rising in Obama's war....

    and how would he know war is not easy....he was never in the Army....he's a community organizer.....

    March 28, 2010 03:26 pm at 3:26 pm |
  5. Georgia Girl

    The President looked very "Presidential" in his leather jacket. The soldiers seemed to love him. I believe every word of support he said to them came from the heart and he will try to achieve every promise he made. The same way he did with healthcare. We love you POTUS.

    March 28, 2010 03:29 pm at 3:29 pm |
  6. Larry

    Mr President. End that war and bring the troops home. We're losing our soldiers without a cause and it's killing our economy.

    CAN I BE ANY CLEARER?

    March 28, 2010 03:42 pm at 3:42 pm |
  7. For better or worse...

    The people of Afghanistan for better or worse chose Hamid Karzai as their Leader...and so Pres Obama stop telling the country how to do it

    The people of Afghanistan are entiled to their sovreinty...

    March 28, 2010 03:44 pm at 3:44 pm |
  8. Stacie

    God Bless our troops! God Bless President Obama!

    March 28, 2010 04:09 pm at 4:09 pm |
  9. Terry from West Texas

    We have not been good to our soldiers during these two wars. We need to give those people good medical care, good education benefits, and good housing loans. We have sat on our butts in the living room and watched the war fought by a bunch of National Guardsmen who never volunteered for war and by a bunch of volunteer soldiers who have had to serve hitch after hitch over there because they are stretched too thin. We didn't have the grit to reenact the draft because we don't want to fight; we just want to be protected.

    I propose a war surtax on all non-veterans to pay for the war and benefits for our heroic veterans. I'm a veteran myself but no one ever shot at me. I think I should pay the tax too. We need to get a movement started.

    March 28, 2010 04:24 pm at 4:24 pm |
  10. Mike in NYC

    Talk about a staged photo op.

    The soldiers standing behind Obama as he spoke do not represent the ethnic/gender makeup of combat troops, which are 70%+ white men. They're also 70%+ of casualties.

    March 28, 2010 04:33 pm at 4:33 pm |
  11. Preston kathy

    I am a vietnam veteran i think we should draft gang members or go to prision the gangs would hide if we fight a war in another country we need to start a draft we need troops to guard are own country

    March 28, 2010 04:59 pm at 4:59 pm |