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Brittney Griner Freed
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scullyfu



Joined: 01 Jan 2006
Posts: 8869
Location: Niagara Falls


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PostPosted: 12/13/22 8:49 am    ::: Reply Reply with quote

Bob Lamm wrote:
scullyfu wrote:
The NYTimes is behind a paywall. If you can gift it, it would be appreciated. Thanks.


I hope this works:

https://www.nytimes.com/2022/12/09/sports/basketball/brittney-griner-return-letter.html?unlocked_article_code=PHwPsQUoRWTrt4SYLqh2TbQdTiTsFGM6s_3t2laA3Ea5SB05KShaTM9PRp0iSXKuQOKzmUtE851m-IZLnSGW_UBDvmPTTVw8j6QV_LpvEnu0h7ZggNJ6Jcz-hAjkkldwslAhXyrWZam9Ll5F_G6GINMJfpGoAEAd3-RlUomIeplNrVuh8eJYIXcfh0z9x3mTTPBcJX4SXFSOV5h5u3vIoQfNF1LQTrp3uE-oRNtmnZYtI2_UFOao9Kmkb8a9cTjAz-ZLF8_jCJyN5qg8mHMU9Cp2zdsv5WI0iKjyQK2iZz6TAGTShLG9pHpNuQMctPZRdZFoomScA-7EeiaR15mvVDxDj75gZQoR09IqMU_Yy8Q&smid=share-url


Thanks, Bob. The link worked & the sentiments of the article were positive.



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Ex-Ref



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PostPosted: 12/13/22 9:30 am    ::: Reply Reply with quote

GlennMacGrady wrote:
jammerbirdi wrote:
Paul Whelan was court-martialed and dishonorably discharged for larceny, dereliction(s) of duty, lying, using someone else's social security number, and writing 10 bad checks.


Not quite correct. He was not convicted of larceny and was not dishonorably discharged. He was convicted of attempted larceny and received a bad-conduct discharge, which is less severe a dishonorable discharge.

How about folks do research beyond Twitter. Here is a quote from Whelan's actual military appeals court decision:

Quote:
A military judge sitting as a special court martial convicted the appellant [Paul N. Whelan], consistent with his pleas, of attempted larceny, three specifications of dereliction of duty, making a false official statement, wrongfully using another's social security number, and ten specifications of making and uttering checks without having sufficient funds in his account for payment . . . . He was sentenced to 60 days restriction, reduction to pay grade E-4, and a bad-conduct discharge.

. . . we affirm the findings and the sentence as approved by the convening authority. 


Maybe because to most people the distinction between a dishonorable discharge and a bad-conduct discharge is equal to the distinction between a travel in basketball and a walk in basketball?

And if he did a plea deal, doesn't that mean that he probably did worse than what he claims in the deal? So his "attempted larceny" then becomes actual larceny?



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pilight



Joined: 23 Sep 2004
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PostPosted: 12/13/22 11:03 am    ::: Reply Reply with quote

It seems odd that a company would hire someone with an attempted larceny conviction to be their corporate security manager

In any event, the Russians think he's a spy and value his release accordingly. Whether or not he actually is a spy is beside the point. The circumstances of his discharge are even less relevant.



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scullyfu



Joined: 01 Jan 2006
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Location: Niagara Falls


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PostPosted: 12/13/22 2:33 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

pilight wrote:
It seems odd that a company would hire someone with an attempted larceny conviction to be their corporate security manager

In any event, the Russians think he's a spy and value his release accordingly. Whether or not he actually is a spy is beside the point. The circumstances of his discharge are even less relevant.


It’s relevant in that some folks are holding him up as a great patriot bc he served in the Marines with no mention of how his behaviors went against the very ethics of the military, meanwhile denigrating BG as as a drug smuggler. Why is it that she’s never described as an Olympian & social justice warrior?

Even if he is a POS, I don’t want anyone held behind bars in Russia.

Too bad 45 didn’t take the offer to trade Whalen for Bout back in 2018, as per John Bolton. Or when he could have offered Maria Butina to Russia for Whalen when she truly was a spy & infiltrated both the NRA & GQP, but 45 just let her walk.



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johnjohnW



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PostPosted: 12/13/22 3:17 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

scullyfu wrote:
pilight wrote:
It seems odd that a company would hire someone with an attempted larceny conviction to be their corporate security manager

In any event, the Russians think he's a spy and value his release accordingly. Whether or not he actually is a spy is beside the point. The circumstances of his discharge are even less relevant.


It’s relevant in that some folks are holding him up as a great patriot bc he served in the Marines with no mention of how his behaviors went against the very ethics of the military, meanwhile denigrating BG as as a drug smuggler. Why is it that she’s never described as an Olympian & social justice warrior?

Even if he is a POS, I don’t want anyone held behind bars in Russia.

Too bad 45 didn’t take the offer to trade Whalen for Bout back in 2018, as per John Bolton. Or when he could have offered Maria Butina to Russia for Whalen when she truly was a spy & infiltrated both the NRA & GQP, but 45 just let her walk.


I don't agree with this. Pointing out his questionable history is no more relevant than the people who tried to bring up aspects of BG they didn't like to discredit her need for release. She is often described as an Olympian in stories about her and a lot of the press has been complimentary of her and given her a humanizing portrait with the photos that have been used, the stories of her building rapport with the people on her plane and stories of her being welcomed home with BBQ food. Just because right wing media, who would've criticized this no matter what and likely would have criticized a Whelan for Bout trade as well, is trying to position him as a great marine is irrelevant. We tried to get him first and Russia said no. We are lucky they even said yes to BG. The truth is, Whelan actually was the higher priority for the Biden administration but the deal couldn't be done. So save your smear campaign. It just makes us look bad.


Stormeo



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PostPosted: 12/13/22 3:59 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

the US govt would know Whelan’s history here, good parts & bad parts alike. and they still consider him wrongfully detained, like they did BG, hence why they’re trying to work to get him out. that would mean his history in its totality don’t matter here, as it relates to his present-day situation.

now if you don’t believe Biden/the US govt on their face when they claim these Americans are being wrongfully detained by Russia, that’s its own thing entirely. maybe you don’t believe other things they claim, either. to each, their own.


scullyfu



Joined: 01 Jan 2006
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PostPosted: 12/13/22 4:37 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

johnjohnW wrote:
scullyfu wrote:
pilight wrote:
It seems odd that a company would hire someone with an attempted larceny conviction to be their corporate security manager

In any event, the Russians think he's a spy and value his release accordingly. Whether or not he actually is a spy is beside the point. The circumstances of his discharge are even less relevant.


It’s relevant in that some folks are holding him up as a great patriot bc he served in the Marines with no mention of how his behaviors went against the very ethics of the military, meanwhile denigrating BG as as a drug smuggler. Why is it that she’s never described as an Olympian & social justice warrior?

Even if he is a POS, I don’t want anyone held behind bars in Russia.

Too bad 45 didn’t take the offer to trade Whalen for Bout back in 2018, as per John Bolton. Or when he could have offered Maria Butina to Russia for Whalen when she truly was a spy & infiltrated both the NRA & GQP, but 45 just let her walk.


I don't agree with this. Pointing out his questionable history is no more relevant than the people who tried to bring up aspects of BG they didn't like to discredit her need for release. She is often described as an Olympian in stories about her and a lot of the press has been complimentary of her and given her a humanizing portrait with the photos that have been used, the stories of her building rapport with the people on her plane and stories of her being welcomed home with BBQ food. Just because right wing media, who would've criticized this no matter what and likely would have criticized a Whelan for Bout trade as well, is trying to position him as a great marine is irrelevant. We tried to get him first and Russia said no. We are lucky they even said yes to BG. The truth is, Whelan actually was the higher priority for the Biden administration but the deal couldn't be done. So save your smear campaign. It just makes us look bad.


Glen posted this up above:

Not quite correct. He was not convicted of larceny and was not dishonorably discharged. He was convicted of attempted larceny and received a bad-conduct discharge, which is less severe a dishonorable discharge.

How about folks do research beyond Twitter. Here is a quote from Whelan's actual military appeals court decision:

Quote:
A military judge sitting as a special court martial convicted the appellant [Paul N. Whelan], consistent with his pleas, of attempted larceny, three specifications of dereliction of duty, making a false official statement, wrongfully using another's social security number, and ten specifications of making and uttering checks without having sufficient funds in his account for payment . . . . He was sentenced to 60 days restriction, reduction to pay grade E-4, and a bad-conduct discharge.

. . . we affirm the findings and the sentence as approved by the convening authority.”

So you tell me how I smeared him. As for making ‘us’ look bad, I doubt any of our comments on this board are being read by non-Rebkellians or used on news outlets. I stand by my comments about the disparity of the MSM’s narrative of their histories. Since she’s been released they have put out more positive stories about her, prior to that they minimized her accomplishments by describing her only as a WNBA player. There were exceptions, mostly on msnbc.



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tfan



Joined: 31 May 2010
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PostPosted: 12/13/22 5:19 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

The US Government doesn't have to consider someone "wrongfully detained" in order to try and get them exchanged. They would want their spies back in order that future spies are reassured they can come back even if discovered. And in the case of non-spies like Griner they can feel the punishment exceeds the crime and/or they don't want foreign governments that a thousand people in Washington are monitoring and plotting against daily, punishing USA citizens, regardless of what they did. And in the specific case of Griner they got public pressure to negotiate her release.


Bob Lamm



Joined: 11 Apr 2010
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PostPosted: 12/13/22 11:58 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

Max Boot, a columnist for the Washington Post, has written this provocative piece on the current hostage debates. I am putting it here as a gift article; if this works, everyone should be able to read it--whether you're a subscriber to that paper or not.

To be as clear as possible, I'm not posting this because I agree (or disagree) with various positions that Boot takes. I've actually been trying to stay clear of this part of the debate here. But since this debate IS happening here, I believe this piece is worth reading, whether people agree or not.

https://wapo.st/3HAEZIH

(If by chance the link doesn't work, I'm sorry. As far as I can tell, it should.)



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GlennMacGrady



Joined: 03 Jan 2005
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PostPosted: 12/14/22 12:51 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

tfan wrote:
The US Government doesn't have to consider someone "wrongfully detained" in order to try and get them exchanged.


I don't know about spies, but "wrongfully detained" is not a legal determination about some foreign country's legal system. It's just a bureaucratic lingo trigger phrase within the U.S. State Department that, indeed, must be determined before various offices throughout the State Department and other U.S. government agencies can begin work to develop a strategy to secure the release of an American detained by a foreign country.

Again, the best source for anything is the official source, such as the U.S. Department of State website, which outlines the "wrongful detention" procedure:

Quote:
If the circumstances of your loved one’s detention suggest that he or she was arrested on discriminatory or arbitrary grounds, the Department will determine whether the detention is “wrongful.” This discretionary determination is an assessment of the totality of the circumstances and is not a legal determination. . . . [T]he Department will consider the criteria outlined in the Robert Levinson Hostage Recovery and Hostage–Taking Accountability Act when making an assessment.


Quote:
When the Secretary determines that an individual has been wrongfully detained, various offices throughout the State Department and other U.S. government agencies will work collaboratively with colleagues inside and outside the government to develop a strategy to secure their release. Part of the strategy will include whether or not to message the wrongful detention determination either publicly or privately in diplomatic engagements, so it is always a good idea to discuss your social media and public statement plans and media engagement with the Family Engagement Team.
pilight



Joined: 23 Sep 2004
Posts: 67162
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PostPosted: 12/16/22 12:01 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

Griner has released a statement on Instagram

https://www.instagram.com/p/CmPAWB5O8F1/

Quote:
I also want to make one thing very clear: I intend to play basketball for the WNBA’s Phoenix Mercury this season, and in doing so, I look forward to being able to say ‘thank you’ to those of you who advocated, wrote, and posted for me in person soon.



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johnjohnW



Joined: 11 Aug 2020
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PostPosted: 12/16/22 12:42 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

pilight wrote:
Griner has released a statement on Instagram

https://www.instagram.com/p/CmPAWB5O8F1/

Quote:
I also want to make one thing very clear: I intend to play basketball for the WNBA’s Phoenix Mercury this season, and in doing so, I look forward to being able to say ‘thank you’ to those of you who advocated, wrote, and posted for me in person soon.


DT probably begged her so she can have a decent farewell tour. Jk.

I am thrilled she is back and cannot wait! I have no expectations for her but will just be glad to see her doing what she loves.


mercfan3



Joined: 23 Nov 2004
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PostPosted: 12/16/22 4:41 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

Selfishly, as a basketball fan - I’m super happy she’s back. I’ve always been a fan of guards because I appreciate the skills of that position. But Brit is just a tremendously skilled player and super fun to watch.

For her sake, I’m happy she’s playing. I’m glad Russia didn’t take that from her.



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PUmatty



Joined: 10 Nov 2004
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PostPosted: 12/16/22 5:10 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

I am looking forward to her first trip to Chicago and applauding her in person.


Silky Johnson



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PostPosted: 12/16/22 7:57 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

johnjohnW wrote:
pilight wrote:
Griner has released a statement on Instagram

https://www.instagram.com/p/CmPAWB5O8F1/

Quote:
I also want to make one thing very clear: I intend to play basketball for the WNBA’s Phoenix Mercury this season, and in doing so, I look forward to being able to say ‘thank you’ to those of you who advocated, wrote, and posted for me in person soon.


DT probably begged her so she can have a decent farewell tour. Jk.

I am thrilled she is back and cannot wait! I have no expectations for her but will just be glad to see her doing what she loves.


She's either going to have the worst season of her career, or she's going to be the MVP. No in between.



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PostPosted: 12/17/22 9:51 am    ::: Reply Reply with quote

Silky Johnson wrote:
johnjohnW wrote:
pilight wrote:
Griner has released a statement on Instagram

https://www.instagram.com/p/CmPAWB5O8F1/

Quote:
I also want to make one thing very clear: I intend to play basketball for the WNBA’s Phoenix Mercury this season, and in doing so, I look forward to being able to say ‘thank you’ to those of you who advocated, wrote, and posted for me in person soon.


DT probably begged her so she can have a decent farewell tour. Jk.

I am thrilled she is back and cannot wait! I have no expectations for her but will just be glad to see her doing what she loves.


She's either going to have the worst season of her career, or she's going to be the MVP. No in between.


With the amount of sentiment and subjectivity that so often goes into WNBA award voting, having the worst season of her career and being voted MVP is not out of the question, either.



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PostPosted: 12/17/22 12:20 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

There's something I'm curious about. But first, let me make myself clear that I am happy BG is back home and intends to play again. I don't know or care if she had the contraband or not, and I believe the Russians were using her as a political pawn.

So here's my question. Anyone paying attention to the news at the time would have known that Russia was preparing to invade Ukraine and start a war. I'm trying but I can't find the date the State Department issued a Do Not Travel advisory.

How myopic and oblivious would her management team have to be to send her into danger like that?


pilight



Joined: 23 Sep 2004
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PostPosted: 12/17/22 1:09 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

craigmont wrote:
I'm trying but I can't find the date the State Department issued a Do Not Travel advisory


23 January 2022. About three weeks before Griner's detainment.

https://ru.usembassy.gov/security-alert-update-to-travel-advisory-for-russia-january-23-2022/#:~:text=On%20January%2023%2C%20the%20Department,along%20the%20border%20with%20Ukraine.

Quote:
How myopic and oblivious would her management team have to be to send her into danger like that?


People don't always listen to their management teams



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Howee



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PostPosted: 12/17/22 1:21 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

pilight wrote:
Quote:
How myopic and oblivious would her management team have to be to send her into danger like that?


People don't always listen to their management teams


Correct me if I'm mistaken, but....she was ALREADY there playing, no? Along with numerous other American players, I thought - I don't follow that season very closely.



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johnjohnW



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PostPosted: 12/17/22 1:58 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

craigmont wrote:
There's something I'm curious about. But first, let me make myself clear that I am happy BG is back home and intends to play again. I don't know or care if she had the contraband or not, and I believe the Russians were using her as a political pawn.

So here's my question. Anyone paying attention to the news at the time would have known that Russia was preparing to invade Ukraine and start a war. I'm trying but I can't find the date the State Department issued a Do Not Travel advisory.

How myopic and oblivious would her management team have to be to send her into danger like that?


Weren't there a lot of American players in Russia once the invasion occurred? It's not like she was the only one.


johnjohnW



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PostPosted: 12/17/22 1:59 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

Howee wrote:
pilight wrote:
Quote:
How myopic and oblivious would her management team have to be to send her into danger like that?


People don't always listen to their management teams


Correct me if I'm mistaken, but....she was ALREADY there playing, no? Along with numerous other American players, I thought - I don't follow that season very closely.


She was entering Russia.

I don't recall if she had been there any earlier and left and came back or if that was her first trip over for the season.


craigmont



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PostPosted: 12/17/22 2:05 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

pilight wrote:


People don't always listen to their management teams


Thank you for the link to the date.

We don't have any evidence either way, but I think it's a little more far-fetched to speculate that she went against advice from her management team.


Richyyy



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PostPosted: 12/17/22 2:25 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

She'd already played a bunch of games for UMMC that season and was flying back to rejoin them. I think there might've been an international break so letting her head home for a quick break during that would've made sense. In fairness, she was flying back to a team that still had a host of international stars on it (and a league of teams with many other Americans). It was definitely getting worrying but the exodus hadn't really begun.



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myrtle



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PostPosted: 12/20/22 3:02 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

Richyyy wrote:
She'd already played a bunch of games for UMMC that season and was flying back to rejoin them. I think there might've been an international break so letting her head home for a quick break during that would've made sense. In fairness, she was flying back to a team that still had a host of international stars on it (and a league of teams with many other Americans). It was definitely getting worrying but the exodus hadn't really begun.


true the exodus was largely precipitated by BG's arrest.


myrtle



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PostPosted: 12/20/22 3:02 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

Richyyy wrote:
She'd already played a bunch of games for UMMC that season and was flying back to rejoin them. I think there might've been an international break so letting her head home for a quick break during that would've made sense. In fairness, she was flying back to a team that still had a host of international stars on it (and a league of teams with many other Americans). It was definitely getting worrying but the exodus hadn't really begun.


true the exodus was largely precipitated by BG's arrest.


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