Thanksgiving dinner -Turkey, stuffing, mashed potatoes and jellied cranberry sauce – the traditional feast of our childhood was sent to our troops serving in far away places, including the new troop deployment in Saudi Arabia. But that wasn’t all that was sent to them… the surprise today was an unannounced visit to Bagram Air Base by the Commander-in-Chief.
First the logistics of making Thanksgiving meals for deployed troops is daunting.
- 4,925 whole turkeys
- 44,384 lbs of shrimp
- 43,648 pounds of ham (except in countries that prohibit pork)
- 27,605 lbs of sweet potatoes
- 39,797 pies
- 7,032 cakes
- 5,804 gallons of eggnog
The meals were sent to troops deployed to the Middle East, Europe, Africa, Korea, Japan, Qatar and Honduras. The US Army’s portion was sent to CENTCOM’s area of operations.
According to Military.com, delivering that much food is a huge undertaking.
“The Defense Logistics Agency, which distributes supplies to the Army, Navy, Air Force, Marine Corps, Coast Guard and others, began planning in April on how to deliver 66,741 lbs of roasted turkey, 80,546 lbs of beef and other food in time for the troops’ Thanksgiving meals.”
On November 23, Vice President Pence and his wife Karen delivered a small portion of those meals in an unannounced visit to Iraq.
“On behalf of the President of the United States and every American, for all the things we are thankful for this week, we are most thankful for all of you.”@VP Pence & @SecondLady Karen Pence make unannounced Thanksgiving trip to Iraq to visit US troops https://t.co/qiruYRGQai pic.twitter.com/rhvbOhgi3K
— The Hill (@thehill) November 23, 2019
Thanksgiving Dinner with the President
But the real surprise was when President Trump and Melania arrived unannounced in Afghanistan to have Thanksgiving dinner with the troops at Bagram Air Base. He also announced that he had reopened talks with the Taliban. To cheers of “USA USA,” the President addressed about 500 troops at the airbase (according to NBC) and served them a Thanksgiving feast. Last year he visited Iraq.
United States Army General and the 20th Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Mark Milley introduces the 45th President of the United States @realDonaldTrump at Bagram Airfield in Afghanistan. HAPPY THANKSGIVING!!🇺🇸🇺🇸 pic.twitter.com/uMRA5t5yyk
— Dan Scavino Jr.🇺🇸 (@Scavino45) November 28, 2019
Originally, the President was scheduled to be at Mar-a-Lago in Florida. But he “sneaked” off and flew out of an undisclosed airport, winging his way to Afghanistan.
“There’s nowhere I’d rather spend Thanksgiving than with the toughest, fiercest warriors,. I’m here to say Happy Thanksgiving and thank you very much. As president of the United States, I have no higher honor than serving as commander-in-chief. We will continue to work tirelessly for the day when all of you can go home to your families, and that day is coming very soon.” President Trump (Fox)
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