Obama's Surprise Visit to Afghanistan

Wednesday, May 02, 2012

President Obama speaks to troops during a visit to Bagram Air Field. (Mandel Ngan/Getty)

In a move that marks the beginning of the end of our war in Afghanistan, President Obama made a surprise visit to Kabul on Tuesday to sign a strategic partnership agreement with Afghan President Hamid Karzai. After months of intense negotiations, the agreement is expected to serve as a road map for both countries as they begin to transition out of a prolonged period of war.

American troops are scheduled to depart Afghanistan at the end of 2014, and the agreement pledges American aid for another 10 years after the last soldier leaves.

The trip corresponds to the one-year anniversary of the death of Osama bin Laden. And in a rare move, President Obama addressed the nation on Tuesday night from Afghanistan, marking on the first time a sitting president has made such an address from a war zone. Michael Semple, a fellow at the Carr Center for Human Rights at the Kennedy School of Government, explains the political and foreign policy implications of the agreement.


Michael Semple

Produced by:

Arwa Gunja

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