President Joe Biden bent over in exasperation at his podium during a back-and-forth with Fox News White House correspondent Peter Doocy regarding whether he takes responsibility for the chaos in Afghanistan on Thursday.
Biden took Doocy’s question last at the end of the presser, smirking and describing him as “the most interesting guy that I know in the press.”
“Mr. President, there had not been a U.S. service member killed in combat in Afghanistan since February of 2020,” Doocy began. “You set a deadline, you pulled troops out, you sent troops back in, and now 12 Marines are dead. You said the buck stops with you. Do you bear any responsibility for the way that things have unfolded in the last two weeks?”
At least 13 U.S. service members died Thursday after an explosion went off in Kabul near the city’s airport. The Pentagon, which said Thursday morning that there were at least two explosions, said Friday morning that it was only one.
Biden said he bears responsibility for “fundamentally all that’s happened of late,” but he then went on to blame former President Donald Trump for the situation. He repeated his allegations that the Trump administration forced his withdrawal from Afghanistan on an abbreviated timeline but neglected to mention that his own administration moved the timeline up after originally setting the 20th anniversary of 9/11 as the deadline for withdrawal.
Biden then challenged Doocy to answer whether what he was saying about the Trump administration was true. “Do you remember that? I’m being serious.”
“Donald Trump is not president right now,” Doocy responded as Biden continued to interject. “I know, but I was just trying to extrapolate since — and I don’t think the issue is — do you think that people have issue with pulling out of Afghanistan in the way that things have happened?”
Cameras in the room shuttered as Biden bent over and closed his eyes in an apparent display of irritation at Doocy’s line of questioning.
Biden hangs his head in exasperation during a back-and-forth with Fox News’ Peter Doocy.
Biden turns the question back to Doocy, asking if he remembers the deal Trump made with the Taliban in 2020. pic.twitter.com/mWEd6CDMK7
— The Recount (@therecount) August 26, 2021
“I think they have an issue that people are [likely] to get hurt. Some, as we’ve seen, have gotten killed, and that it is messy,” Biden answered. Referring to Doocy, Biden said, “The reason why — whether my friend will acknowledge it or has reported it — the reason why there were no attacks on Americans, as you said, from the date until I came into office was because the commitment was made by President Trump, ‘I will be out by May 1. In the meantime, you agree not to attack any Americans.’ That was the deal. That’s why no American was attacked.”
Peter Doocy asks Biden if he bears responsibility for what's happened in Afghanistan the last 2 seeks. Biden acknowledges he does, but points out that Trump made a deal with the Taliban that contributed to the chaotic state of affairs there. pic.twitter.com/eo46M8Pmoj
— Aaron Rupar (@atrupar) August 26, 2021
Biden took questions from a pre-selected group of reporters, according to his own admission. “The situation on the ground is still evolving and I’m constantly being updated,” Biden said before calling an end to the press conference to attend “another meeting.”
This article has been updated to include additional information.
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