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Obama Praises the Military in Farewell: "You Have Earned Your Place Among the Greatest Generations"


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Getty - Jim Watson

The military honored President Obama during the Armed Forces Full Honor Review farewell ceremony in Virginia Wednesday.

The president, Vice President Joe Biden, and Defense Secretary Ash Carter were all in attendance.

The Commander-in-Chief was honored with a pin for his distinguished public service during the ceremony, and delivered a speech focusing on the challenges the United States military has faced and overcome over the last eight years, praising the troops for their hard work:

“Through year after year after year of continuous military operations, you have earned your place among the greatest generations. The list of accomplishments that Joe and Ash mentioned, they're because of you. It's what I tell my staff. I'm the front man. But you're the ones doing the work.”

The repeal of “Don't Ask, Don't Tell,” the execution of Osama Bin Laden, post-9/11 victories against terrorism, and hurdles abroad that remains were all topics the president brought up.

“You’ve shown that when it comes to fighting terrorism we can be strong and we can be smart. Not by letting our forces get dragged into sectarian conflicts and civil wars but with smart, sustainable, principal partnerships,” President Obama said. “That’s how we brought most of our troop’s home from nearly 180,000 troops in Iraq and Afghanistan down to 15,000 today. That’s how, even as we’ve suffered terrible attacks here at home, from Boston to Orlando.”

Then he added the line:

No foreign terrorist organization successfully planned and executed an attack on our homeland these past eight years."

He capped the speech off with a final thank you:

“Thank you for your patriotism. Thank you for your professionalism. Thank you for your character in representing the very best of the American spirit. Our nation endures, we live free under the red, white and blue because of patriots like you. It has been a privilege of a lifetime to serve with you. I have learned much from you. I’m a better man having worked with you. I’m confident that United States and our armed forces will remain the greatest force for freedom and security that the world has ever known.”

As President Obama's final term comes to a close, there are many farewells to deliver. Earlier in the day, President Obama received his final briefing on the war on terror and said goodbye to his generals.

You can read the president's full farewell address here, via Time

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