Trump Cuts Rally Short to Pay Respects to Soldiers Killed in Afghanistan
President travels to Dover Air Force Base in Delaware to receive remains
President Donald Trump prematurely ended his rally in New Hampshire in order to pay respects to two U.S. soldiers killed in Afghanistan on Saturday.
The President traveled to Dover Air Force Base in Delaware following his rally.
The troops were killed when a soldier dressed in an Afghan army uniform opened fire with a machine gun.
Trump wrapped up the reelection campaign rally in New Hampshire so he could visit the families and soldiers, according to National security adviser Robert O’Brien.
O’Brien added that such moments “probably the toughest thing he does as president,” as well as visiting wounded soldiers at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center.
“These are terrible sacrifices for the families," O’Brien said.
"And these guys are heroes, they’re real warriors and did a great job for the American people,” he added.
“These are tough times," he continued.
"It’s tough for the president, but he thinks it’s important to be there for the families and recognize them.”
The slain American soldiers were identified as Sgt. Javier Jaguar Gutierrez, 28; and Sgt. Antonio Rey Rodriguez, 28, according to the Defense Department.
Six other American soldiers were wounded in the attack.
Since the beggining of 2020, six U.S. service members have been killed in Afghanistan, inclduing the casualties on Saturday.
Last year, Trump opened up about writing letters to parents of slain soldiers in the Middle East.
The president spoke about the difficult process after presiding over a signing event for new the U.S and Japan trade deal at the White House:
“I have to sign letters often to parents of young soldiers that were killed, and it’s the hardest thing I have to do in this job,” Trump said.
“I hate it. I hate it.”
“We make each letter different, each person is different, and we make them personal, but no matter what you do, it’s devastating,” Trump said.
“The parents will never be the same; the families will never be the same.”
Trump added that the United States was “bogged down," and a lot of money was still being spent maintaining forces in Afghanistan, Iraq, and Syria.
“We’re willing to do what we have to do, but there has to be an end game,” he said.
“And if you stay, it’s going to be the same thing. Eventually, you’re going to have to leave.”