The National:

IN an excuse that would make the sweatless wonder Prince Andrew proud, Dominic Raab has said he couldn’t have been paddle-boarding while Kabul fell as the “sea was closed”.

The beleaguered Foreign Secretary has come under fire for his handling of the Afghanistan crisis, with the SNP, Labour, LibDems, Plaid Cymru, and the majority of the public all calling for him to resign.

But it takes more than a little international outrage to unseat one of Boris Johnson’s tame Brexiteers, so Raab is hanging on in there.

READ MORE: Dominic Raab rejects calls to quit despite 'risking lives' on holiday

When confronted with the news that 51% of the public thought he should resign on Sky News on Wednesday morning, Raab claimed: “Self-selecting reader polls in newspapers are not an accurate barometer.”

While that may be true, it wasn’t a reader poll being cited but a Savanta ComRes poll of more than 2000 adults. It even found that most Tory voters with an opinion thought he should go.

Ignorance is bliss for Raab though, as his holidaying in Crete while the Taliban took Afghanistan shows.

The National: Taliban spokesperson Zabihullah MujahidTaliban spokesperson Zabihullah Mujahid

Challenged about that holidaying, during which he reportedly refused to make a call which could have saved lives, the top Tory got more than a little tetchy.

He took exception to the claim it took him “three days” to return despite discussing the crisis on the Friday.

"I came back on Sunday evening, actually,” he insisted.

Two and a half days then.

And he raged against suggestions he had been “lounging around on the beach all day”, calling them “nonsense”.

READ MORE: Five times Dominic Raab was the least prepared Tory in the Cabinet

He went on: "The stuff about me paddle-boarding is just nonsense. The sea was actually closed, it was a red notice.”

It is unclear quite how Raab could have known that there was a red flag preventing people from entering the sea at that particular time unless he had been lounging on the beach.

And it’s not like Boris’s Brexiteers are overly used to listening to prescient and sensible warnings anyway.

But then, perhaps Raab was lucky the entire ocean was closed. After all, Boris Johnson reportedly had such a terrible experience paddle-boarding (or was it canoeing) that he’ll never holiday in Scotland again…