We need not imagine the national uproar that would have ensued had George W. Bush talked to American soldiers the way that the President Obama did today at a U.S. military base in South Korea:
President Obama will not announce his decision on sending more troops to Afghanistan before the Thanksgiving holiday, senior aides said Thursday.
The news came as the president greeted 1,500 troops at Osan Air Base in South Korea, just before boarding Air Force One and heading back to Washington after an eight-day trip to Asia.
…Obama arrived on the base 3:19 p.m. local time (1 a.m. Eastern Standard Time) and received a rousing welcome from 1,500 troops in camouflage uniforms, many holding cameras or pointing cell phones to snap pictures.
“You guys make a pretty good photo op,” the president said.
Standing on a riser wearing a blue suit and red tie, with a cluster of troops and a large American flag behind him, Obama expressed “the gratitude of the American public” and said his meetings in four countries over eight days in Asia will help deliver a “safer, more prosperous world for all of us.”
He got a huge cheer when he told them he was increasing military pay. “That’s what you call an applause line,” he said, before boarding his jet and taking off at 4:11 p.m.