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The president made no public remarks in Delaware, but spoke of the tragic incident in a Monday afternoon address on the economy, calling it a “stark reminder of the risks that our men and women in uniform take every single day on behalf of their country.”

“Day after day, night after night, they carry out missions like this in the face of enemy fire and grave danger,” Mr. Obama said. “These men and women put their lives on the line for the values that bind us together as a nation.”

In late 2009. Mr. Obama ordered a surge of 30,000 additional U.S. troops to Afghanistan after arguing that the conflict had been neglected. Under an agreement with the Afghan government, U.S. forces have started to draw down with an eye toward transitioning full control to local forces by 2014.

Tuesday’s somber visit marked the president’s second trip to Dover to honor casualties of the decade-old war.

Mr. Obama had been slated to visit a moving company in suburban Virginia on Tuesday and announce new energy standards, but he canceled that event early in the day and instead had industry leaders meet with the president at the White House.

• This article is based in part on wire service reports.