Kabul, Afghanistan (CNN) - President Barack Obama, speaking early Wednesday in Afghanistan at the tail end of a surprise visit there, discussed how the war will end and promised a steady drawdown of U.S. troops.
Obama committed to pulling 23,000 troops out of the country by the end of summer and sticking to the 2014 deadline to turn security fully over to the Afghan government. He said that NATO will set a goal this month for Afghan forces to be in the lead for combat operations next year.FULL STORY
Washington (CNN) – The White House strongly denied Tuesday that President Barack Obama's surprise trip to Afghanistan was executed for political motives, saying the visit was more than a year in the making.
On a conference call with reporters, a senior administration official speaking from Bagram Air Base in Afghanistan was asked if the trip – made on the one-year anniversary of the raid that killed Osama bin Laden – was opening the president to charges of "craven politics."
(CNN) - Ahead of President Barack Obama's speech from Afghanistan, the White House released excerpts of his remarks Tuesday.
See the excerpts after the jump.
(CNN) - Senate Republican leaders don't plan any formal reaction – or criticism – of President Barack Obama's surprise trip to Afghanistan, according to a top Senate GOP leadership aide.
The aide said the president announced the troop drawdown almost a year ago, and there is little new to say.
(CNN) - Longtime Republican Sen. Jim Inhofe of Oklahoma criticized President Barack Obama over the president's surprise trip to Afghanistan Tuesday, describing the visit as "campaign related" and an "attempt to shore up his national security credentials."
"We've seen recently that President Obama has visited college campuses in an attempt to win back the support of that age group since he has lost it over the last three years," Inhofe said in a statement. "Similarly, this trip to Afghanistan is an attempt to shore up his national security credentials, because he has spent the past three years gutting our military."
(CNN) - Speaking at Bagram Air Base in Afghanistan, President Barack Obama thanked troops for their service and said America is safe because of their sacrifice.
"I could not be prouder of you," Obama said. "There's a light on the horizon because of the sacrifices you've made."
Washington (CNN) – Sen. John McCain, who earlier this week leveled harsh criticism at President Barack Obama for what he said was the politicization of the killing of Osama bin Laden, said Tuesday he did not believe the president's trip to Afghanistan was a political move.
"Well I think it's a good thing," McCain said when asked about the president's surprise trip to Afghanistan. "I think it's always good when the president goes to where our young men and women are in harm's way and I think that many of us who have been involved in Afghanistan are very involved in the strategic partnership agreement, which I'm sure he will be talking about, and we think that the agreement is good and we obviously would like to know the details."
(CNN) - President Barack Obama and Afghanistan President Hamid Karzai on Tuesday signed a Strategic Partnership Agreement that outlines cooperation between their countries after the withdrawal of U.S.-led international forces in 2014.
(CNN) – A U.S. congressman barred from visiting Afghanistan over the weekend minced no words when characterizing the incident.
Afghan president Hamid Karzai is a "corrupt prima donna," House Foreign Affairs Committee member Dana Rohrabacher of California said in an interview Wednesday on CNN's "The Situation Room."
(CNN) - A top Republican on the House Foreign Affairs committee was asked by the Secretary of State and Secretary of Defense not to go to Afghanistan because President Hamid Karzai objected to the visit.
U.S. Rep. Dana Rohrabacher, R-California, told Security Clearance he was readying to travel with five other Republicans from Dubai to Afghanistan's capital, Kabul, when the State Department requested he stay behind.FULL STORY