President Joe Biden has initiated a wave of enraged comments and criticism on Sunday by appearing to check his watch during the ceremony of the arrival of the caskets of the US Marines killed in Kabul he was attending to pay his respect, Fox News reports.
After previously meeting with the families of the troops killed in the attack, Biden also attended the “dignified transfer” at Dover Air Force Base in Delaware, a military ritual of receiving the remains of troops killed in foreign combat alongside the First Lady Jill Biden, State Secretary Antony Blinken, military leaders and family members of the deceased.
While standing with their hands on their hearts or saluting the caskets carried past them, they lowered their hands after each coffin was loaded into a van, but at one point Biden held up his left wrist and appeared to check the time.
The incident caused a series of comments filled with contempt, criticism and disbelief, especially among conservatives, with one Trump supporter saying on Twitter that it was disgusting watching how the man responsible for the deaths of 13 soldiers checks his watch while their caskets are being carried into trucks right in front of him.
The Twitter storm followed with conservative writer Nicholas Fondacaro mocking Biden for the watch-checking, asking him if it was nap time or ice cream time for him while Daily Wire editor Ian Haworth asked Biden if all of that bored him to death.
Conservative commenter Dave Quesada brought the comments to the next level, calling Biden’s behavior a “low-class move by this disrespectful clown”, mocking Biden supporters for their never ending job to defend the president.
One of those ‘defenders’ tried to justify Biden’s gaffe speculating that the watch had belonged to Biden’s deceased son Beau, who was also military, noting that people doesn’t need to go that low, while other suggested that time conscious look at their watches and that it doesn’t mean Biden thought the ceremony is unimportant.
Yet, it seems that Biden’s watch checking at awkward moments is somewhat of a habit for him since he did exactly the same later during a briefing on Hurricane Ida at FEMA’s headquarters but also in the past, like during a presidential debate and during former president Barack Obama’s conversation with Saudi Arabian King Salman.
Biden was previously ridiculed for allegedly falling asleep during a White House meeting with Israeli PM Naftali Bennett though CNN reporter Daniel Dale refuted the accusations, saying Biden was merely looking downward and replied immediately after Bennett finished speaking.