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Biden defends his withdrawal from Afghanistan during 9/11 memorial ceremony

Joe Biden has defended his chaotic withdrawal from Afghanistan while attending a 20th anniversary memorial service for the victims of 9/11

The Commander-in-chief was asked about his decision to pull out troops from the Middle Eastern country as he left the service in Shanskville, Pennsylvania on Saturday.  

‘Could al Qaeda come back? Yeah. But guess what, it’s already back other places,’ Biden stated. 

‘What’s the strategy? Every place where al Qaeda is, we’re going to invade and have troops stay in? C’mon. I’m told 70 percent of American people think it was time to get out of Afghanistan spending all that money, but the flip of it is they didn’t like the way we got out. But its hard to explain to anybody how else could you get out?’

Biden then appeared to reference the heartbreaking footage of Afghanis clinging to and falling from a US Air Force plane as it took off from an airport at Kabul last month. 

‘For example, if we were in Tajikistan  and we pulled up in a C130 and we said “We’re gonna let anybody who was involved in being sympathetic to us get on the plane” we’d have people hanging in the wheel-well. C’mon,’ he bizarrely stated. 

Meanwhile, the President has not spoken publicly about a US drone strike that mistakenly killed an Afghani aid worker and seven children on August 29. The New York Times revealed the US blunder an investigative piece published on Friday. 

Biden’s defense of Afghanistan on Saturday, came just before his predecessor, Donald Trump, trashed him during a meeting with first responders in New York City. 

Joe Biden has defended his chaotic withdrawal from Afghanistan while attending a 20th anniversary memorial service for the victims of 9/11

President Joe Biden and First Lady Jill Biden lay a wreath at the Wall of Names during a visit to the Flight 93 National Memorial in Shanksville

President Joe Biden and First Lady Jill Biden lay a wreath at the Wall of Names during a visit to the Flight 93 National Memorial in Shanksville

Footage from Kabul's airport last month showed hundreds of people running alongside - and in front of - a US Air Force plane preparing to take off

Footage from Kabul’s airport last month showed hundreds of people running alongside – and in front of – a US Air Force plane preparing to take off

Desperate Afghan nationals tried to run onto RCH 885 as it took off from the airfield last month. Some were crushed by the C-17's wheels and others clung to the fuselage as it took off

Desperate Afghan nationals tried to run onto RCH 885 as it took off from the airfield last month. Some were crushed by the C-17’s wheels and others clung to the fuselage as it took off

Trump took aim at Biden over the ’embarrassment’ of the Afghanistan withdrawal as he surprised officers at NYPD’s 17th Precinct in East Midtown in Manhattan.

‘It was gross incompetence and I hate to talk about it on this day,’ Trump told the crowd. 

‘They gave $85 billion [worth of equipment] away – brand new Apache helicopters. Can you believe it? They gave them away. Why would you give them away? You’d fly them out, you’d take them out,’ he said. 

‘And they had all the time in the world. We had everybody on hold, the Taliban was on hold.

‘I dealt with the top guy – Abdul – and there was nothing he was going to be doing with us.’

Trump then pushed his claims that the 2020 election was ‘rigged.’  

‘All of a sudden we have a rigged election and all of a sudden we flee Afghanistan,’ he said. The former president has failed to produce any evidence to back up his claim. 

‘That’s why I’m saying what timing, what horrible timing – the 20th anniversary – and I watch the speeches and not one person spoke about the fact that three days ago we fled Afghanistan and we left Americans behind and others too and we left $85billion of the best equipment ever made – much of it that I bought.’ 

He continued to slam the president’s handling of the withdrawal saying ‘a five-year-old would have said the military goes out last.’   

Donald Trump paid a visit to NYPD and FDNY officers on the 20th anniversary of the September 11 terrorist attacks, after deciding not to make his own solo trip to Ground Zero

Donald Trump paid a visit to NYPD and FDNY officers on the 20th anniversary of the September 11 terrorist attacks, after deciding not to make his own solo trip to Ground Zero

The former president surprised officers at NYPD's 17th Precinct in East Midtown in Manhattan, New York City, Saturday afternoon where he posed for photos with a group of cops and held a brief question and answer session

The former president surprised officers at NYPD’s 17th Precinct in East Midtown in Manhattan, New York City, Saturday afternoon where he posed for photos with a group of cops and held a brief question and answer session

Trump said very little about America's darkest day and instead took aim at Joe Biden over the 'embarrassment' of his Afghanistan withdrawal

Trump said very little about America’s darkest day and instead took aim at Joe Biden over the ’embarrassment’ of his Afghanistan withdrawal

‘They could have stayed there for one month or three years. They [the Taliban] weren’t going to be able to do anything but they left and when they left there was a vacuum,’ Trump said.  

‘And then they came in and filled the vacuum and whoever thought of this – a five-year-old would have said the military goes out last and that’s what they [the Taliban] wanted.

‘They couldn’t believe they were leaving so it was gross incompetence and I hate to talk about it on this day but people are saying why aren’t they talking about what the hell they did.’ 

Trump has repeatedly laid into Biden over the withdrawal of US troops from Afghanistan last month.  

The withdrawal was turbulent with 13 American troops and dozens of Afghans killed in a suicide attack in Kabul, while the Taliban has regained control of the country.  

His visit to the precinct came after Biden was joined by former Presidents Bill Clinton and Barack Obama at the official 9/11 memorial ceremony at Ground Zero Saturday morning (pictured above)

His visit to the precinct came after Biden was joined by former Presidents Bill Clinton and Barack Obama at the official 9/11 memorial ceremony at Ground Zero Saturday morning (pictured above)

Biden, First Lady Jill Biden, Vice President Kamala Harris and Second Gentleman Doug Emhoff lay a wreath at the Pentagon

Biden, First Lady Jill Biden, Vice President Kamala Harris and Second Gentleman Doug Emhoff lay a wreath at the Pentagon

In his brief address before taking questions, Trump described the anniversary as a ‘sad day’ before launching into an attack on Biden over Afghanistan. 

‘It’s a sad day, a very sad day,’ he said. 

‘For a lot of reasons and we just added to that reason last week as it should never have been allowed to happen. 

‘I watched all the speeches and nobody mentioned what they did but we have to live with it for a period of time. It’s very disappointing.’ 

The former president circled back to Afghanistan later describing the Biden administration’s withdrawal as ‘gross incompetence’ and claiming his deal with ‘Abdul’ from the Taliban meant the militants were ‘on hold.’ 

‘They gave $85 billion [worth of equipment] away – brand new Apache helicopters. Can you believe it? They gave them away. Why would you give them away? You’d fly them out, you’d take them out,’ he said. 

‘And they had all the time in the world. We had everybody on hold, the Taliban was on hold.

‘I dealt with the top guy – Abdul – and there was nothing he was going to be doing with us.’

Trump then pushed his claims that the 2020 election was ‘rigged.’  

‘All of a sudden we have a rigged election and all of a sudden we flee Afghanistan,’ he said. The former president has failed to produce any evidence to back up his claim. 

‘That’s why I’m saying what timing, what horrible timing – the 20th anniversary – and I watch the speeches and not one person spoke about the fact that three days ago we fled Afghanistan and we left Americans behind and others too and we left $85billion of the best equipment ever made – much of it that I bought.’ 

He continued to slam the president’s handling of the withdrawal saying ‘a five-year-old would have said the military goes out last.’ 

Trump told Fox News Friday he would be attending Ground Zero in New York City Saturday. He had been expected to make a trip around 1:30pm to avoid any chance of bumping into Biden

Trump told Fox News Friday he would be attending Ground Zero in New York City Saturday. He had been expected to make a trip around 1:30pm to avoid any chance of bumping into Biden

‘They could have stayed there for one month or three years. They [the Taliban] weren’t going to be able to do anything but they left and when they left there was a vacuum,’ Trump said.  

‘And then they came in and filled the vacuum and whoever thought of this – a five-year-old would have said the military goes out last and that’s what they [the Taliban] wanted.

‘They couldn’t believe they were leaving so it was gross incompetence and I hate to talk about it on this day but people are saying why aren’t they talking about what the hell they did.’ 

Trump has repeatedly laid into Biden over the withdrawal of US troops from Afghanistan last month.  

The withdrawal was turbulent with 13 American troops and dozens of Afghans killed in a suicide attack in Kabul, while the Taliban has regained control of the country.   

Biden and First Lady Jill Biden visited all three sites of the 9/11 attacks Saturday.  

The president did not hold speeches at any of the ceremonies instead releasing a pre-recorded video statement Friday telling Americans to ‘not be afraid’.

The Bidens walk through Shanksville, western Pennsylvania, where Flight 93 crashed on September 11 2001

The Bidens walk through Shanksville, western Pennsylvania, where Flight 93 crashed on September 11 2001 

First, he attended the New York City ceremony at Ground Zero where the name of each victim was read out, beginning at 8:30am and lasting several hours. 

There were six moments of silence throughout the ceremony started by the chime of a bell – for the moment each tower was struck by the planes, the time both towers fell.

Bell chimes also rung out for the moment the Pentagon was struck by the third hijacked plane and the moment Flight 93 crashed in Shanksville. 

Biden then flew to the Flight 93 memorial in Shanksville where he attended a wreath-laying ceremony. 

The president told reporters the memorials are ‘really important’ but ‘also incredibly difficult for the people affected by them’.

‘It brings back the moment they got the phone call, it brings back the instant they got the news, no matter how years go by,’ he said. 

The Bidens also paid a visit to the Shanksville Volunteer Fire Department, which responded to the crash on September 11. 

Dr. Jill Biden was captured passing out Bud Light and IC Light – a local Pittsburgh brew – to the first responders while the president took photos with firefighters and their families, including – he told reporters – some boys in Trump hats. 

He then visited the Pentagon where he was joined by the first lady, Vice President Kamala Harris and Second Gentleman Doug Emhoff to lay a wreath. 

President Joe Biden and First Lady Jill Biden followed by Vice President Kamala Harris and Second Gentlemen Doug Emhoff at the Pentagon where they laid wreaths

President Joe Biden and First Lady Jill Biden followed by Vice President Kamala Harris and Second Gentlemen Doug Emhoff at the Pentagon where they laid wreaths


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