CHARLESTON, S.C. — President Biden ignored the first anniversary of the Taliban’s Afghanistan takeover Monday, instead relaxing on vacation with no public appearances or statements calling attention to his administration’s foreign policy blunder.
Mr. Biden is in the middle of his week-long stay at Kiawah Island, South Carolina, an exclusive beach and golf resort. He has rarely ventured out in public outside of taking a bike ride with first lady Jill Biden on Sunday.
When asked Sunday whether he‘d speak with the press, he responded, “No.” There have been no events listed on the official schedule for the entire trip, which ends Tuesday.
The president did insist during the bicycle jaunt that he had been “on the phone a lot” throughout his vacation. He also said he’s enjoyed his time away from Washington “a great deal.”
But Mr. Biden has not acknowledged the fall of the Afghanistan capital into Taliban hands one year ago Monday. Last year, Mr. Biden cut short his Delaware vacation and returned to the White House to address the bungled Afghanistan withdrawal.
Republicans seized on Mr. Biden spending the anniversary enjoying sun and fun in South Carolina, blasting him as an out-of-touch politician.
SEE ALSO: Biden, Trump trade blame on anniversary of Afghanistan collapse
“Biden‘s latest vacation is as poorly planned and tone-deaf as his withdrawal from Afghanistan. It’s in America’s best interest for Biden to go on a permanent vacation and retire,” said Will O’Grady, a spokesperson for the Republican National Committee.
The White House did not respond to a request for comment.
While Mr. Biden was mum, the Taliban celebrated Monday. Hundreds of supporters marched into a central square in Kabul, just feet from where the U.S Embassy once stood. They waved flags and chanted “God is great,” jubilantly hailing their return to power after the U.S. invaded Afghanistan in 2001.
Since returning the power, the Taliban has reasserted its control over the lives of women, telling them not to go to work. They’ve also blocked girls over the age of 12 from attending formal schools and have restricted their freedom of movement.
The Afghanistan withdrawal was riddled with errors and miscalculations, including leaving behind more than 100 Americans and scores of Afghanistan allies. A few days later, 13 U.S service members lost their lives amid the withdrawal in a suspected Islamic State suicide bombing at Kabul airport.
The rushed withdrawal was carried out to meet Mr. Biden’s August 31, 2021, deadline to completely remove the U.S. from Afghanistan, ending a 20-year occupation that cost $1 trillion.
SEE ALSO: Afghanistan chaos: GOP report reveals new details of Biden administration’s disastrous withdrawal
Mr. Biden was widely panned for his administration’s handling of the withdrawal sending his approval rating south. His poll numbers still haven’t recovered, plagued by soaring inflation and record-high gas prices.
House Republicans on Sunday released a scathing report detailing how the Biden administration was caught flat-footed by the chaos and did not have a plan to evacuate people out of Kabul.
Vice President Kamala Harris, Mrs. Biden, and top Defense Department officials were so ill-prepared that they had to beg veterans groups to assist in the evacuation process, the report concluded.
It also revealed that there were only 36 State Department officials on the ground at the Kabul airport to process Afghans who were desperately trying to flee the Taliban as the Islamist militia swept through the country.