Former President Donald Trump acknowledged the 20th anniversary of 9/11 on Saturday with a video message and an in-person trip to New York City to visit with first responders — and he didn’t shy away from taking shots at his predecessor along the way.
Speaking at the New York City Police Department’s 17th precinct, Trump said the chaotic withdrawal of U.S. troops from Afghanistan last month was the result of Joe Biden’s “gross incompetence,” according to Fox News.
“Do not fear”
In his video message, the former president doubled down on his message to the NYPD officers. “We will struggle to recover from the embarrassment this incompetence has caused,” he said of Biden and others in his administration, according to Fox.
“This is the 20th year of this war, and should have been a year of victory and honor, and strength. Instead, Joe Biden and his inept administration surrendered in defeat,” Trump added in his video statement, according to Fox. “We will live on, but sadly our country will be wounded for a long period of time.”
He added: “Do not fear, however, America will be made great again.”
Trump also said in the video that in addition to the “great sorrow” that Sept. 11 traditionally represents for Americans, it’s a “sad time” now after the “harm to our country” that was done as the U.S. military completed its withdrawal from Afghanistan. “The loss of 13 great warriors and the many more who were wounded should never have happened,” Trump said.
He also said “the leader of our country was made to look like a fool,” and that the attack on the Kabul airport “was caused by bad planning, incredible weakness, and leaders who truly didn’t understand what was happening.”
During his Saturday visit with the NYPD, Trump also took time to praise the officers, who he called “incredible people.”
Asked by one whether he would make a bid for the White House in 2024, the former president wasn’t as clear, but he left the door open.
“Actually, for me, it’s an easy question. I mean, I know what I’m going to do, but I’m not supposed to be talking about it yet from the standpoint of campaign finance laws, which, frankly, are ridiculous,” he said, as Fox reported.
“But I think you’re going to be happy,” Trump added.
He certainly looked presidential on Saturday.