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Letter: The right decision

A recent letter excoriated President Joe Biden. The president’s “failure to secure … Paul Whelan’s release is a national disgrace,” the writer wrote.

Former U.S. Marine or not, as an American, Canadian, Irish, British citizen it is imperative to secure his release from Putin.

Mr. Whelan was arrested in Russia on Dec. 28, 2018, alleging he is a spy and isn’t eligible for the same sort of prisoner swap as Brittney Griner was. Donald Trump was president from 2017 through 2021. Any criticism of Trump’s failure to bring Whelan home? Or even acknowledging Putin imprisoned him?

“We’ve not forgotten about Paul Whelan, who has been unjustly detained in Russia for years,” Biden said. “This was not a choice of which American to bring home. We brought home Trevor Reed when we had a chance earlier this year. Sadly, for totally illegitimate reasons, Russia is treating Paul’s case differently than Brittney’s. And while we have not yet succeeded in securing Paul’s release, we are not giving up.”

Newsweek, Dec. 2, 2022: “Whelan’s family members welcomed Griner’s release and noted the different circumstances of the two cases. The Biden administration made the right decision to bring Ms. Griner home, and to make the deal that was possible, rather than waiting for one that wasn’t going to happen,” David Whelan, Paul’s brother, said.

“I think to prolong the punishment of one American in a foreign hostage situation in the hope that you might be able to bring home two of them is absolutely the wrong call for the U.S. president to make,” Whelan said.

Helen Torscher

Crystal Lake

Source: The Daily Chronicle

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