Saagar Enjeti | White House Correspondent
President Donald Trump left the White House Saturday to receive the bodies of U.S. service members who were killed this week in Syria.
Trump revealed Saturday morning that he would be making the trip to Dover Air Force Base, which is his first visit to a ceremonial arrival of a fallen U.S. service member since the early months of his presidency.
Will be leaving for Dover to be with the families of 4 very special people who lost their lives in service to our Country!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 19, 2019
Trump told reporters as he was departing from the White House that “I think it is the toughest thing I have to do,” adding, “when I’m going to meet relatives of some of our great, great heroes that have fallen, I think it might be the toughest thing I have to do as president.”
The recently fallen U.S. service members were killed in a suicide bombing this week deep inside northern Syria by a member of the Islamic State terrorist organization. The fallen included a Green Beret, a Navy cryptologist, a former U.S. Navy SEAL, and a contractor. (RELATED: ISIS Kills US Troops In Syria)
Pentagon identifies 3 Americans killed in Syria blast:
Army Green Beret CW2 Jonathan Farmer, 37, of Boynton Beach, Florida.
Navy Chief Cryptologic Technician (Interpretive) Shannon Kent, 35, of upstate New York.
DIA civilian Scott Wirtz of St. Louis, Missouri.
— Lucas Tomlinson (@LucasFoxNews) January 18, 2019
Three other U.S. service members were wounded in the attack, and it marked the first time a female member of the Department of Defense was killed in combat in nearly three years. The attack comes at a fraught time for the U.S. mission in Syria, with President Donald Trump determined to withdraw U.S. forces and declare the mission against ISIS completed.
“We have gone into Syria and in two years we have I guess reduced it to 99 percent of the territorial caliphate,” Trump told reporters at the White House. “But you do have to ask yourself, we’re killing ISIS for Russia, for Iran, for Syria, for Iraq, for a lot of other places. At some point you want to bring our people back home. I have been talking about this since the campaign.”