Multiple reporters call BS on Biden for saying Americans are able to get to the Kabul airport

The good news is that he sounded more empathetic in today’s remarks than he did in his cringily defensive Stephanopoulos interview and pro-withdrawal speech on Monday.

The bad news is that he either doesn’t know what’s happening on the ground or he’s deliberately lying to Americans about it.

I’m leaning towards “deliberately lying” because there were other obviously deliberate lies in his presser this afternoon. There’s no way Biden’s denial runs this deep:

Angela Merkel’s heir apparent in Germany called our withdrawal fiasco “the greatest debacle that NATO has seen since its foundation” and “an epochal change that we are facing.” One British MP gave a celebrated speech deriding Biden’s criticism of Afghan troops as “shameful” to murmurs of approval from Parliament a few days ago. The withdrawal fiasco will eventually end but international perceptions that American foreign policy incompetence is now a thoroughly bipartisan and therefore unsolvable problem will not.

Here’s the soundbite that made reporters flip their wigs:

That’s simply not true and you already know it because you’ve watched this clip. But various correspondents who are either on the ground in Afghanistan or plugged into their sources there know it especially well. Clarissa Ward didn’t hold back after Biden’s presser:

ABC’s Ian Pannell was flabbergasted:

Jennifer Griffin of Fox marveled that there were so many things Biden said that needed correcting that she didn’t know where to start. She focused on his comments about being able to police Afghanistan from “over the horizon,” outside the country. The whole reason U.S. troops can’t stray from airport and into greater Kabul to retrieve stranded Americans, Griffin noted, is because we no longer have eyes and ears on the ground. How are we going to find jihadis in Afghan cities when we can’t find our own people now?

Here’s how the “over the horizon” policy is working out at the moment:

Even Biden’s own SecDef seems to be fact-checking him this afternoon:

The thrust of Biden’s remarks today was that cooperation with the Taliban was going well. There’s no crisis, supposedly, because the jihadis are playing nice.

Except they aren’t, according to his own brass.

There’s a new complication in the evacuation too:

Why not Guam? Two months ago, when calls to commence the evacuations had already begun, the governor of Guam wrote to Biden saying the island stood ready to accept Afghan refugees. How about it?

Use Guam as a processing center en route to settling them in the U.S.

The one encouraging thing Biden said today was to guarantee that no American will be left behind. (Although he did it with an odd formulation: “Any American who wants to come home, we will get you home.” Are there Americans over there eager to join a seventh-century caliphate?) But he was also stark in hinting about where this might go. “Make no mistake, this evacuation mission is dangerous. It involves risks to our armed forces, and it’s being conducted under difficult circumstances,” he added. “I cannot promise what the final outcome will be or what it will be — that it will be without risk of loss.”

One reporter asked him the question of the moment, whether we’re actually relying on the Taliban to guarantee Americans’ security. He didn’t answer that one.