President Joe Biden promised last year that he would “never forget” the thousands of deaths from radical Islamic terror attacks on Sept. 11, 2001, but he’s being accused of doing just that this year.
“Twenty-one years, and still we kept our promise: never forget. We’ll keep the memory of all those precious lives stolen from us: 2,977 — at Ground Zero in New York; in Shanksville… in Pennsylvania; 184 of them here at the Pentagon,” Biden, 80, said last year, according to Spectrum News’ NY1.
“It’s good to remember,” he added. “These memories help us heal, but they can also open up the hurt and take us back to that moment when the grief was so raw.”
His official account on X, the social media platform formerly known as Twitter, reiterated those thoughts in a post Monday morning.
This year, however, the president is not visiting any of the 9/11 memorials usually honored with presidential visits on the anniversary of the attacks, as he is returning from a trip to Asia.
He will instead attend a ceremony at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson in Anchorage, Alaska — roughly 3,385 miles from the site of the World Trade Center attacks.
Much of the response to that decision has been critical.
“He is now just saying that flippantly that he doesn’t have to come to any of the sites and commemorate the loss with the families,” Terry Strada, who lost her husband at the World Trade Center and now chairs a family and survivor organization called 9/11 Families United, told Fox News. “That’s terrible.”
Strada called the president’s actions “the opposite of what we’ve all pledged to never forget.”
“It’s no surprise to me that he’s not coming to Ground Zero or any of the 9/11 sites. And quite frankly, I prefer he stay away anyway,” retired Air Force Lt. Col. Donald Arias, who lost his brother in the 2001 attacks, told “Fox & Friends First” on Monday.
“We will be spared one of his stories of how he can relate, like he did with the people of Lahaina, how he can relate because of a kitchen fire,” Arias explained. “We can do without that.”
A number of people shared similarly critical thoughts about the president’s 9/11 itinerary in replies to his X post.