NOTE: When this article was originally written, President Biden was 80 years old. It has since been updated to reflect that Biden is 81 years old. He turned 81 on November 20, 2023. Some old versions of the article might be found on social media with the headline saying that Biden is 80. However, this version is current and reflects that he is now 81.
Joe Biden recently appeared for a speech in Philadelphia, this one also not great optics-wise for the current President because of an awkward stumble on his part as he tried to get up the stairs to the podium, and because of an eyebrow-raising remark he made about al-Qaeda.
The stumble comes as one of many bad physical moments for the 81-year-old and rapidly aging president, who had been known throughout his presidency for his age and, according to many conservatives, physical infirmities.
In this incident, the elderly president staggered as he initially began to climb the small set of steps up to the stage, then he lurched forward as it seemed he would lose his balance completely. Unlike a bad spill he took at the Air Force Academy commencement exercise earlier this year, however, Biden more or less regained his footing and made it to the podium, which he theatrically gripped with both hands.
Biden then went on to contrast Hamas, the Palestinian terror organization, with al-Qaeda, saying, “These guys make — they make Al Qaeda look pure. They’re pure evil. As I said from the beginning, the United States, make no mistake about it, stands with Israel.”
It is unclear why the current President would favorably contrast al-Qaeda, which murdered thousands of Americans and went on to kill many more in Iraq and Afghanistan, with Hamas, which, though evil, has killed far fewer Americans.
In any case, Biden also spoke about his attempts to handle the hostage situation, as numerous Americans who were in Israel when Hamas launched its attack are still missing. He said, “This morning I spoke with the family members of all those Americans who are still unaccounted for on a Zoom call for about an hour and 10-15 minutes.”
Continuing, he added, “They’re going through agony not knowing what the status of their sons, daughters, husbands, wives, children are. You know, it’s gut wrenching. I assured them my personal commitment to do everything possible — everything possible — to return every missing Americans to families.”
He also said, “We’re working around the clock to secure the release of Americans held by Hamas, in close cooperation with Israel and our partners around the region. And we’re not going to stop until we bring them home.”
Biden was originally supposed to focus on his “Bidenomics” agenda in the speech, with the White House issuing a news release saying, “The president will discuss how his Bidenomics agenda is creating good-paying union jobs, investing in infrastructure, accelerating the transition to a clean energy future, and combatting the climate crisis.”
In any case, watch Biden lose his battle with the stairs here:
In a recent tweet, the Israeli military said, “During the last day, the IDF forces carried out local raids in the territory of the Gaza Strip to complete the effort to cleanse the area of terrorists and weapons. In these operations, an effort was also made to locate missing people.”
It added, “Infantry and armored forces searched and gathered in the area for findings that may help in the effort to locate the missing and thwarted terrorist infrastructure and terrorist cells found in the area, among which a cell of the terrorist organization Hamas fired anti-tank fire at Israeli territory.”
Featured image credit: screengrab from the embedded video
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