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Brad Paisley Joins President Obama on Surprise Afghanistan Trip [PHOTOS]

Brad Paisley President Obama
Pete Souza, The White House via Schmidt Relations

Brad Paisley joined President Obama for an unannounced trip to Afghanistan over Memorial Day weekend, performing a surprise show for US troops stationed there.

Paisley boarded Air Force One on Saturday evening (May 24) with Obama and several of his advisers, making the overnight flight to Bagram. The visit was kept secret until they landed on Sunday (May 25).

The president addressed some of the 32,800 American servicemen and women still stationed in Afghanistan after the longest war in US history, which his administration plans to wrap up by the end of 2014.

“I’m here on a single mission, and that is to thank you for your extraordinary service,” Obama said (quote via USA Today). He went on to address the limited military presence the US plans to continue in the region, adding, “”After all the sacrifices we’ve made, we want to preserve the gains that you have helped to win.”

Brad Paisley Afghanistan performance
Pete Souza, The White House via Schmidt Relations

Paisley performed an hour-long acoustic set for the approximately 3,000 troops assembled at Bagram Airfield, the main US base of operations in Afghanistan. From the stage, he referred to the event as “the honor of my life.”

Paisley’s latest album, ‘Moonshine in the Trunk,’ is set for release on Aug. 26. The ‘River Bank’ singer kicked off his Country Nation World Tour recently. See a list of all of his upcoming shows here.

The tour includes a very special appearance at the 2014 Taste of Country Music Festival, which takes place from June 13-15 at Hunter Mountain in New York. Other headliners at the three-day country music and camping festival include Dierks Bentley, Brantley Gilbert and Hank Williams, Jr.

Brad Paisley Afghanistan troops
Pete Souza, The White House via Schmidt Relations

Next: The Top 10 Brad Paisley Songs

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