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Jul 4th, 2011

Petraeus Hails U.S. Troops in Afghanistan as Patriots

‘Much work remains’ to be done in Afghanistan


Petraeus marks July 4 with troops in Afghanistan (NBC Nightly News, July 4, 2011) — General David Petraeus, the outgoing U.S. Commander in Afghanistan who is marking his last Fourth of July in uniform, speaks with NBC’s Atia Abbawi. (02:07)

By Deb Riechmann

July 4, 2011

KANDAHAR, Afghanistan — The outgoing U.S. commander in Afghanistan marked his last Fourth of July in uniform by speaking to American troops during a re-enlistment ceremony in the south of the country.

Gen. David Petraeus, who was recently confirmed as the next director of the CIA, told the 235 troops re-enlisting in Kandahar province that they have achieved progress on the battlefield but that “much work remains” to be done in Afghanistan.

“You raised your right hand and said ‘Send me,’ and today you raised your right hand again and said ‘Send me again, if needed,'” he told the soldiers on America’s 235th birthday.

“I cannot say how impressive your action is,” he said. “It is the most meaningful display of patriotism possible.”

Petraeus will be replaced by U.S. Marine Lt. Gen. John Allen even as 33,000 U.S. troops begin to withdraw from Afghanistan, the start of President Barack Obama’s promised withdrawal of all combat troops by 2014. …

Full story


FROM THE ARCHIVES: One Year Ago — July 4, 2010

Independence Day 2010

One year ago today, I reported that Baghdad’s Green Zone was targeted in a mortar attack as Vice President Joe Biden visited Iraq on America’s Independence Day.


FROM THE ARCHIVES: Two Years Ago — July 4, 2009

Independence Day 2009


Defiant North Korea launches seven missiles (MSNBC TV, July 4, 2009) — South Korean officials are reporting that North Korea has launched seven ballistic missiles while defying the international community and sending an apparent message to the U.S. on Independence Day. NBC’s Mike Viqueira reports. (01:21)

Two years ago today, on July 4, 2009, I reported on North Korea’s possible motives in launching seven ballistic missiles on America’s Independence Day and provided a link to a summary of my North Korean threat assessment and psychological profile of Kim Jong-Il, prepared for the Department of Defense.

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