"A few months ago, our troops achieved our greatest victory yet in the fight against those who attacked us on 9/11 -- delivering justice to Osama bin Laden in one of the greatest intelligence and military operations in American history," Obama said in his address to the 93rd annual conference of the American Legion in Minneapolis, Minnesota.
"Having put al Qaeda on the path to defeat, we won't relent until the job is done. Having started to draw down our forces in Afghanistan, we'll bring home 33,000 troops by next summer and bring home more troops in the coming years," he said.
"As our mission transitions from combat to support, Afghans will take responsibility for their own security, and the longest war in American history will come to a responsible end," Obama said in his remarks.
"Through their service, through their sacrifice, through their astonishing record of achievement, our forces have earned their place among the greatest of generations. Toppling the Taliban in just weeks. Driving al Qaeda from the training camps where they plotted 9/11. Giving the Afghan people the opportunity to live free from terror," he said.
"When the decision was made to go into Iraq, our troops raced across deserts and removed a dictator in less than a month. When insurgents, militias and terrorists plunged Iraq into chaos, our troops adapted, they endured ferocious urban combat, they reduced the violence and gave Iraqis a chance to forge their own future," Obama said.
"When a resurgent Taliban threatened to give al Qaeda more space to plot against us, the additional forces I ordered to Afghanistan went on the offensive -taking the fight to the Taliban and pushing them out of their safe havens, allowing Afghans to reclaim their communities and training Afghan forces," he said.Obama said having started to draw down US forces in Afghanistan, he will bring home 33,000 troops by next summer and bring home more troops in the coming years.
"As our mission transitions from combat to support, Afghans will take responsibility for their own security, and the longest war in American history will come to a responsible end," he said.