In the photo, Biden appeared alone wearing a polo shirt in front of a large bank of monitors.
Several administration officials have also been on vacation, but began returning to work remotely Sunday or in the West Wing.
The notion the civilian government led by former President Ashraf Ghani would be unable to withstand the Taliban's advances is not a surprise.
Intelligence assessments over the past year have offered differing timetables for what was viewed by many national security officials as an inevitability.
Yet the downfall and collapse of the Afghan military has happened far quicker than Biden or his team expected.
Afghan Chairman of the High Council for National Reconciliation Abdullah Abdullah referred to him in a video statement as "former President.".
Aides have said remaining much beyond that date would open US forces to attack. »