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Dec 8 - Why the US was able to bring home Brittney Griner but not Paul Whelan



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 2 months ago '22        #1
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Dec 8 - Why the US was able to bring home Brittney Griner but not Paul Whelan
 

 
The release of WNBA star*Brittney Griner*in a prisoner swap with Russia has brought renewed attention to the case of retired Marine Paul Whelan, who has been detained in Russia since 2018.*

Griner’s case received outsized media attention compared to Whelan given her status as a star women’s basketball player and Olympic gold medalist. But Whelan has been detained in Russia longer, and Thursday’s announcement, while celebrated by many, has raised difficult questions about why the U.S. was able to secure Griner’s freedom but not Whelan’s.

Sadly, for totally illegitimate reasons, Russia is treating Paul’s case different than Brittney’s. And while we have not yet succeeded in securing Paul’s release, we are not giving up. We will never give up,” President*Biden*said in remarks shortly after Griner’s release was made public.

Griner was arrested in February on charges that she illegally brought vape cartridges containing hashish oil into Russia. She was convicted on drug smuggling charges and sentenced in August to serve nine years in prison. She* had been recently transferred to a penal colony. Advocates had raised particular concern about her fate given she is a Black, gay woman.

The White House announced Thursday that Griner was freed in exchange for the release of Viktor Bout, a Russian arms deal who was serving a 25-year sentence for weapons trafficking.

Whelan, a former U.S. marine, has spent four years imprisoned in Russia following a conviction on espionage charges in 2020. The U.S. has determined his detention to be unlawful and criticized the Russian criminal allegations and court process as a sham. The State Department said last week he had been transferred to a prison hospital in recent weeks, but has since been returned to the penal colony where he is serving his sentence.

A senior administration official said Thursday they believe the Russians are holding Whelan’s release to a higher bar than Griner’s because of the espionage charges.*

“We as a government have sought to bring*Paul Whelan*home as well. We did so in good faith with the Russians and proposed multiple different options. Regrettably, due to the nature of the sham espionage charges Russia levied against Paul, the Russians have treated, continue to treat, his situation differently from Brittney’s and rejected each and every one of our proposals for his release.”

In an interview with CNN from Russian prison, Whelan said he was surprised he was not included in the swap, but seemed to agree that it was because Russia is holding him to a different standard because of the espionage charges.

While the Biden administration spent recent months trying to negotiate a deal that would lead to the release of Griner and Whelan together, including a reported deal that involved the release of Bout, the senior administration official said Russia ultimately rejected efforts to free Whelan.

“This was not a situation where we had a choice of which American to bring home. It was a choice between bringing home one particular American, Brittney Griner, or bringing home none,” the official said, speaking in a call with reporters shortly after Griner’s release was made public.

Whelan’s brother, David, released a statement following Griner’s release calling it the right decision by the administration to secure her freedom. He said he’d been in touch with the Biden administration prior to the public announcement, giving the family time to process the news that Paul would not be coming home at this time.

It is the second time this year the Whelan family has learned the U.S. had secured the release of an American wrongfully detained in Russia while Paul Whelan remains imprisoned there.*

The White House in April was able to free former Marine Trevor Reed as part of a prisoner exchange for a Russian citizen, Konstantin Yaroshenko, who had been serving out a 20-year sentence on drug charges.

At the time, David Whelan expressed happiness for Reed’s release but questioned whether Biden was willing to make the choices necessary to bring his brother home.

In recent weeks, the Whelan family had raised concerns about Paul’s status after they did not hear from him during the Thanksgiving holiday or on his father’s birthday, two dates where they were typically in touch.

They have since heard from him, but David Whelan on Thursday appeared pessimistic about his brother’s case moving forward.

“We do worry about what’s in Paul’s future,” David Whelan said Thursday on CNN. “I think it’s become clear that the U.S. doesn’t have any concessions that the Russian government wants for Paul. So I’m not really sure what the future holds.”
visit this link https://thehill.com/homen .. t-paul-whelan/
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159 comments
 

 2 months ago '17        #2
Ifeellikekobe  topics gone triple plat - Number 1 spot x8
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Its damn shame people can't be happy for this young woman. These goofballs got up early with the "but but but but...."
+35   

 2 months ago '16        #3
BathWaterMelody  topics gone triple plat - Number 1 spot x13
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Whelan, a former U.S. marine, has spent four years imprisoned in Russia following a conviction on espionage charges in 2020.
+47   

 2 months ago '05        #4
240sx 
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I wonder how she feels about the USA now …
+32   

Top 10 most propped recently  2 months ago '19        #5
aaf192020  topics gone triple plat - Number 1 spot x3
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 BathWaterMelody said
Came here to say this. Didn't read the OP because dude is an accused and convicted spy. You don't just get spy's back with such fanfare. Those trades are usually done in secret.
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 2 months ago '04        #6
x Tha Arkitek x  topics gone triple plat - Number 1 spot x3
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 BathWaterMelody said
 aaf192020 said
Came here to say this. Didn't read the OP because dude is an accused and convicted spy. You don't just get spy's back with such fanfare. Those trades are usually done in secret.
It's far worse than it seems...

1) He enlisted in the Marine Corps Reserve in 1994....After a court-martial conviction in January 2008 on multiple counts "related to larceny", he was sentenced to 60 days restriction, reduction to pay grade E-4, and a bad conduct discharge.

2) Allegedly in Russia to attend and a*sist with a wedding

3) ...had $80,000 in cash "temporarily confiscated" during a customs inspection at Domodedovo Airport.

4) ...acted as a local guide for the wedding guests, but had decided to spend the day of the wedding to meet a friend, per the account of other attendees.

5) Whelan was apprehended in his hotel room at the Metropol while concluding a long outing with a Russian citizen, who handed him a USB drive containing "a list of all the employees at a classified security agency".

6) The BBC cited family members of Whelan, who said Whelan previously bragged about knowing an agent of the FSB, and was privy to an unusual cache of personal details about his friend, including which intelligence training school he attended.

Who knows if he's really innocent or if Russia is stretching the truth....but the information in the story certainly doesn't make it look great.
+46   

 2 months ago '19        #7
Immersion Vox 
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Serve your country & get hemmed up by the opps of your country
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 2 months ago '22        #8
Booda Sack  topics gone triple plat - Number 1 spot x10
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Because everyone across the world know woke is a religion in the US and Biden is a devout follower. A black, gay, women athlete is a scared temple of woke and too good of PR to pass up. They would have never done this deal for any other American but Russian knew once they had Brittney, Biden would eventually fold so that was their line.
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Top 10 most propped recently  2 months ago '19        #9
aaf192020  topics gone triple plat - Number 1 spot x3
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 x Tha Arkitek x said
It's far worse than it seems...

1) He enlisted in the Marine Corps Reserve in 1994....After a court-martial conviction in January 2008 on multiple counts "related to larceny", he was sentenced to 60 days restriction, reduction to pay grade E-4, and a bad conduct discharge.

2) Allegedly in Russia to attend and a*sist with a wedding

3) ...had $80,000 in cash "temporarily confiscated" during a customs inspection at Domodedovo Airport.

4) ...acted as a local guide for the wedding guests, but had decided to spend the day of the wedding to meet a friend, per the account of other attendees.

5) Whelan was apprehended in his hotel room at the Metropol while concluding a long outing with a Russian citizen, who handed him a USB drive containing "a list of all the employees at a classified security agency".

6) The BBC cited family members of Whelan, who said Whelan previously bragged about knowing an agent of the FSB, and was privy to an unusual cache of personal details about his friend, including which intelligence training school he attended.

Who knows if he's really innocent or if Russia is stretching the truth....but the information in the story certainly doesn't make it look great.


I wonder if he was even an actual government sanctioned spy or if he is just one of these rogue dudes trying to make money off intelligence? Some of these former military guys are just trying to make a dishonest buck the best way they know how lol.
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 2 months ago '06        #10
bigkilla  topics gone triple plat - Number 1 spot x2
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I said it in another thread and saying it again

I think Putin got what he wanted out of this... forced the US to make a stupid trade and now it's caused conflicts between a lot of people on their point of views on Griner and how a celebrity/athlete was able to get preferential treatment when there's other people all over the world where the Government hasn't attempted as much to bring back.

Makes the Government look weak, and people debating if this deal should have been done.
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 2 months ago '04        #11
nicoled985  topics gone triple plat - Number 1 spot x2
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 x Tha Arkitek x said
It's far worse than it seems...

1) He enlisted in the Marine Corps Reserve in 1994....After a court-martial conviction in January 2008 on multiple counts "related to larceny", he was sentenced to 60 days restriction, reduction to pay grade E-4, and a bad conduct discharge.

2) Allegedly in Russia to attend and a*sist with a wedding

3) ...had $80,000 in cash "temporarily confiscated" during a customs inspection at Domodedovo Airport.

4) ...acted as a local guide for the wedding guests, but had decided to spend the day of the wedding to meet a friend, per the account of other attendees.

5) Whelan was apprehended in his hotel room at the Metropol while concluding a long outing with a Russian citizen, who handed him a USB drive containing "a list of all the employees at a classified security agency".

6) The BBC cited family members of Whelan, who said Whelan previously bragged about knowing an agent of the FSB, and was privy to an unusual cache of personal details about his friend, including which intelligence training school he attended.

Who knows if he's really innocent or if Russia is stretching the truth....but the information in the story certainly doesn't make it look great.
Exactly this. Plus, look at dude. Y'all realize that dude is 52? He looks late 50s or early 60s. 52 my a*s.
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 2 months ago '04        #12
nicoled985  topics gone triple plat - Number 1 spot x2
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 bigkilla said
I said it in another thread and saying it again

I think Putin got what he wanted out of this... forced the US to make a stupid trade and now it's caused conflicts between a lot of people on their point of views on Griner and how a celebrity/athlete was able to get preferential treatment when there's other people all over the world where the Government hasn't attempted as much to bring back.

Makes the Government look weak, and people debating if this deal should have been done.
Read about Paul Whelan and you'll understand why he wasn't traded. He was up to no good. In fact, a few posts above you will explain why
+9   

 2 months ago '12        #13
OldBusiness  topics gone triple plat - Number 1 spot x5
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 nicoled985 said
Read about Paul Whelan and you'll understand why he wasn't traded. He was up to no good. In fact, a few posts above you will explain why
Whe lab himself stated why she got out and he didn't this morning lol. He knows he was a spy/suspected of being a spy compared to someone who had a cartridge of cheap gas station vape thc oil lol,that's it.

On the surface level of it all tho it's amusing watching all of these so called "pro black" boxden members be so upset at the thought of a black person getting out of prison anywhere.

I don't care if they're locked up on sesame street, free my people - fu*k a paul whelan, joe biden, putin and whomever.
+20   

 2 months ago '06        #14
bigkilla  topics gone triple plat - Number 1 spot x2
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 nicoled985 said
Read about Paul Whelan and you'll understand why he wasn't traded. He was up to no good. In fact, a few posts above you will explain why
Point still stands that trading an international criminal who's moved weapons that have k*lled Americans for a basketball player is splitting people on opinions.

You responded to one part of my comment and ignored everything else.. kind of proves my point.
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 2 months ago '05        #15
240sx 
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Traded for a gun dealer
Gun control ?

 2 months ago '17        #16
Naga Sadow  topics gone triple plat - Number 1 spot x27
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Espionage charges weigh a lot heavier than herb smuggling. I'm surprised they didn't fly off his head top.

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 2 months ago '04        #17
nicoled985  topics gone triple plat - Number 1 spot x2
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 OldBusiness said
Whe lab himself stated why she got out and he didn't this morning lol. He knows he was a spy/suspected of being a spy compared to someone who had a cartridge of cheap gas station vape thc oil lol,that's it.

On the surface level of it all tho it's amusing watching all of these so called "pro black" boxden members be so upset at the thought of a black person getting out of prison anywhere.

I don't care if they're locked up on sesame street, free my people - fu*k a paul whelan, joe biden, putin and whomever.
man I was on Yahoo, these people were so mad she coming home. It was ridiculous
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Top 10 most propped recently  2 months ago '19        #18
aaf192020  topics gone triple plat - Number 1 spot x3
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 Naga Sadow said
Espionage charges weigh a lot heavier than herb smuggling. I'm surprised they didn't fly off his head top.

Right! They're probably keeping him alive to trade for someone already over here spying.

 2 months ago '11        #19
Silencer  topics gone triple plat - Number 1 spot x1
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She gunna munch the fuk out some carpet when she touches down

Bout to call her brittany dyson
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 2 months ago '14        #20
Sphynx 
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 240sx said
I wonder how she feels about the USA now …
Her jumping out of her seat is every time she hear the national anthem from now on


+8   

 2 months ago '19        #21
Perc Nowitzki  topics gone triple plat - Number 1 spot x33
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 Sphynx said
Her jumping out of her seat is every time she hear the national anthem from now on


Doubt it
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 2 months ago '17        #22
Naga Sadow  topics gone triple plat - Number 1 spot x27
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 Booda Sack said
Because everyone across the world know woke is a religion in the US and Biden is a devout follower. A black, gay, women athlete is a scared temple of woke and too good of PR to pass up. They would have never done this deal for any other American but Russian knew once they had Brittney, Biden would eventually fold so that was their line.
Describe woke.

+8   

 2 months ago '18        #23
Dehone 
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BXers swinging at the air right now. "She broke the rules!!!!!!"


Glad she's coming home
+4   

 2 months ago '15        #24
rangerrick012  topics gone triple plat - Number 1 spot x4
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 x Tha Arkitek x said
It's far worse than it seems...

1) He enlisted in the Marine Corps Reserve in 1994....After a court-martial conviction in January 2008 on multiple counts "related to larceny", he was sentenced to 60 days restriction, reduction to pay grade E-4, and a bad conduct discharge.

2) Allegedly in Russia to attend and a*sist with a wedding

3) ...had $80,000 in cash "temporarily confiscated" during a customs inspection at Domodedovo Airport.

4) ...acted as a local guide for the wedding guests, but had decided to spend the day of the wedding to meet a friend, per the account of other attendees.

5) Whelan was apprehended in his hotel room at the Metropol while concluding a long outing with a Russian citizen, who handed him a USB drive containing "a list of all the employees at a classified security agency".

6) The BBC cited family members of Whelan, who said Whelan previously bragged about knowing an agent of the FSB, and was privy to an unusual cache of personal details about his friend, including which intelligence training school he attended.

Who knows if he's really innocent or if Russia is stretching the truth....but the information in the story certainly doesn't make it look great.
Well said. The amount of people parroting that he's a "retired" marine without knowing or just flat out ignoring the facts of his case just shows how easy it is to spread disinformation.

Plus buddy was a noted Trump supporter yet his hero didn't lift a finger to try to get him out while he was still in office.

According to what to appears to be Paul Whelan’s profile on the popular Russian social media platform VKontakte, he posted “God save President Trump” — flanked by flag emojis — on Inauguration Day in 2016. A 2010 post referred to then-President Barack Obama as a “moron.”

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 2 months ago '05        #25
240sx 
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 crackrock said
All these Biden wins have rendered you so fu*king mad.

Why don’t you log off like you said you were after the midterms? Take this sh*t to a platform that has your kind. I’m sure you’ll love the maga circle jerk.

You’re an unemployed, self-hating, miserable, racist hoe pushing culture wars and perpetuating lies to advance your clown agenda. Guess what, it will never work.

Your opinions will never matter. While you bi*ch and moan all day from your mom’s basement, Biden is getting sh*t done. I know that sh*t burns your soul
Traded for a gun dealer is not a win …
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