FORT CAMPBELL, Ky. President Barack Obama on Friday privately thanked some of the special military operators who killed Osama bin Laden.
"Job well done," he said of their daring raid.
In a series of closed-door meetings, Obama and Vice President Joe Biden met with some of the special operations forces who went on Monday's early morning raid in Pakistan, and with members of the broader assault force that supported the mission.
"I came here for a simple reason: to say thank you on behalf of America," Obama told soldiers at Fort Campbell, the home of the 101st Airborne Division, after his meetings. "Thanks to the incredible skill and courage of countless individuals, intelligence, military, over many years, the terrorist leader who struck our nation on 9/11 will never threaten America again."
The president said he had visited New York the day before to pay homage to the victims of bin Laden's 2001 terrorist attacks, as well as to the firefighters and police who responded to the catastrophe.
"I promised that our nation will never forget those we lost that dark September day," he told about 2,000 troops in a steamy hangar. "And today, here at Fort Campbell, I had the privilege of meeting the extraordinary special ops folks who honored that promise."
The commandos briefed Obama about the raid, White House aides said, and he gave each of the groups the Presidential Unit Citation, the highest honor he can give a military unit.