President Donald Trump quietly met with U.S. Special Forces troops involved in last year’s raid to kill Islamic State leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi.
Trump flew into Fort Bragg, North Carolina, on Thursday for what the White House described as “troop engagement.” It was conducted outside the view of the press corps traveling with him.
White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany told reporters traveling with Trump on Air Force One after the visit that Trump presented the troops with a Presidential Unit Citation and visited a Special Forces memorial on the sprawling military base.
CENTCOM commander releases video of raid on Baghdadi compound, which now looks like a ‘parking lot with large potholes'
The compound — located about four miles from the Turkish border near Syria’s Idlib province — now “looks pretty much like a parking lot with large potholes."
The visit came a little more than a year after the U.S. launched the operation to kill al-Baghdadi as he hid out in northeast Syria. The president has pointed to the raid as one of the most important national security achievements of his presidency.
Trump was also scheduled to hold a rally in nearby Fayetteville but postponed it as the area was forecast to be hit by dangerous wind gusts as Tropical Storm Zeta moves in.
An F-16 released a flare to get the attention of a nonresponsive aircraft flying in the restricted airspace over President Trump's Wednesday event in Arizona, NORAD said.