BREAKING NEWS: President Obama in Afghanistan — After All (UPDATES)

UPDATE II:

“The surprise trip was a closely guarded secret, kept by White House officials and members of the White House press corps — as is customary with presidential trips to war zones.” — for the security of the President (added by author)

Read here how the rumors and news were handled by the media and the White House.

UPDATE I:

The New York Times now reports:

On Surprise Visit to Kabul, Obama to Sign Partnership Agreement With Karzai

President Obama landed in Kabul, Afghanistan, on a surprise visit, to sign a strategic partnership agreement with Afghanistan meant to mark the beginning of the end of a war that has lasted for more than a decade.

Mr. Obama, arriving after nightfall on Tuesday under a veil of secrecy at Bagram Air Base north of Kabul, flew by helicopter to the presidential palace, where he was to meet President Hamid Karzai before both leaders signed the pact. It is intended to be a road map for two nations lashed together by more of than a decade of war and groping for a new relationship after the departure of American troops, scheduled for the end of 2014.

Mr. Obama was scheduled to address the American people from Afghanistan on Tuesday evening, which would be the middle of the night in Afghanistan. The address – on the one-year anniversary of the American raid that killed Osama bin Laden in neighboring Pakistan – will give Mr. Obama a new opportunity to make an election-year case that he has wound down two inexpensive and now unpopular wars, in Afghanistan and in Iraq.

Read More Here

First, when one clicked on Memeorandum’s link to the story in the New York Post,”Obama arrives in Afghanistan report says; White House denies it,” this is what one found at The New York Post web site:

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Others reported the possible presidential travel as follows:

Mediaite.com:

On Tuesday morning, early and numerous reports that Presidents Barack Obama had made a surprise visit to Afghanistan were promptly struck down by the White House. But several foreign news outlets are confirming Obama’s trip to the South Asian nation.

The question is: where in the world is President Obama?

The Blaze reports that an official spokesperson in the White House denies Obama is in Afghanistan:

“That report is not accurate and the president is not in Kabul,” National Security Council spokesman Tommy Vietor said in comments made to NewsCore.

The president’s official schedule for Tuesday listed no public events, just meetings with senior advisors and Defense Secretary Leon Panetta in the Oval Office.

[::]

The Blaze notes that it is not out of character for the White House to deny the President is on an unofficial visit to Afghanistan to decrease potential security threats.

“It’s entirely possible that Obama is not in Afghanistan. Or, perhaps he is and security concerns have created a scenario under which government officials are avoiding the truth to ensure his protection.”

And Whitehousedossier, under “Something May be Going On . . .”:

There’s a report in the New York Post quoting something called TOLONews which reported that President Obama is in Afghanistan.

This would make sense as it’s the anniversary of the Bin Laden raid, Obama has no public events on his schedule, and the briefing has been weirdly scheduled for 3:00 pm…”

Well, MSNBC News has just reported that the President is indeed in Afghanistan. He arrived there at 2:39 PM EST and will be meeting with the Afghan president in Kabul.

The President will speak to the American people from Afghanistan this evening.

No doubt the lack of news and perhaps the confusion on the President’s trip was due to security concerns.

Author: DORIAN DE WIND, Military Affairs Columnist

2 Comments

  1. Gutsy move, though I am sure security is very tight and the visit quite short (not a criticism there, a very rational move).

  2. Oh, geez, the Reps are going to lose their minds, now. Do you suppose this is being done to preempt Frontline’s second part on the Financial crime spree scheduled for 9PM tonight?

    Wheels within wheels. I’ve just got to quit looking at those right wing websites.

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