"Whenever I go into a restaurant, I order both a chicken and an egg to see which comes first"

Tuesday, August 2, 2022

Biden, Griner, A Drug Bust And Racial Diplomacy–Putin Loves Diversity

President Biden is negotiating for the release of Brittney Griner, a black American professional basketball player who was arrested and detained at Russian customs for attempting to smuggle cannabis oil into the country.  She admitted the fact, but stumbled over herself trying to explain and justify it.  “I didn’t know it was there….I packed so quickly i didn’t realize that I had put it in my suitcase…I have a prescription for it…I forgot to bring the prescription with me….” and other less publicized self-serving remarks to save her skin. 

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Biden has made the Griner affair into a cause celebre because of the war in Ukraine and his avowed commitment to endorse and promote the rights of black people everywhere.  His political stature depends on his challenge to the authoritarian, brutally murderous regime in Moscow and his solidarity with historically oppressed minorities.  He has said that obtaining her release would be a top priority of his administration, and that he would stop at nothing to prevent the incarceration of an innocent black woman at the hands of America’s most corrupt and dangerous enemy.

Vladimir Putin was delighted at this turn of events.  Once again the American President put all his cards on the table before the betting even began.  There was no hole card, no bluffing, no intimidation.  We will give you anything for Griner’s release.

Image result for Images Smiling Putin. Size: 243 x 206. Source: www.centralmaine.com

The deal is in the works and the result a fait accompli. Griner -  a political nobody except for her race and her sexuality, a woman of petulant white animus and rejection of America’s patriotic pride, will be sent home, welcomed as a champion of justice, feminism, LGBTQ pride, and black righteousness, while Russia will get back Viktor Bout, a convicted Russian arms dealer, nicknamed the "Merchant of Death" by his accusers.

Bout a former Soviet military officer, is currently serving a 25-year prison sentence in the United States on charges of conspiring to kill Americans, acquire and export anti-aircraft missiles, and provide material support to a terrorist organization. Bout has maintained he is innocent. The Kremlin has long called for Bout's release, calling his sentencing in 2012 as "baseless and biased."

It is likely that given Biden’s naïve opening gambit, exposing his queen in an amateurish move, Putin will not stop at Viktor Bout.  Why not ask for some Ukraine concessions, elimination of economic and financial sanctions, and a blind eye to Russia’s currency swaps?

The American Justice Department, the State Department, and all but the most compromising members of the progressive Left are rejecting the idea of a prisoner swap, particularly when it concerns a most wanted, hunted, and finally captured arms dealer. Such a swap, especially for a rich, privileged, thankless, and duplicitous woman, sends exactly the wrong message to the international community.  Viktor Bout = Brittney Griner?  

The deal negates all that the US has said about arms trafficking, international terrorism, Russian treachery, and its own justice system.  It says that the purely national, politically inspired, transitory issues of race, gender, and ethnicity trump all serious international issues and concerns. It also opens the door to hostage-taking terrorism.  If Biden is willing to swap for such a trifle, he will certainly given in to hostage demands for more significant prey.

Behind closed doors, President Biden listened patiently to his military, diplomatic, and judicial advisors who to a person counseled against the swap, but was unmoved.  Not only had he made a commitment to the black and LGBTQ community and to his progressive political supporters, but to the world.  America’s greatness and international stature is based on moral issues of fairness, compassion, and diversity, and he would never compromise that ideal.

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Of course Biden’s critics have had a field day with the Griner affair.  Here was an American president, at odds and arms with the world’s biggest strongman, Machiavellian par excellence, brutal, amoral dictator playing  global Go Fish, an absurd childish playroom game of political simplicity.  Here we are at war with Russia, obstinate in our tracks against Putin and his empire, engaging him in a globally significant conflicting Ukraine, dealing for an insignificant, rich cipher who was stupid enough to try to sneak drugs past Russian customs.

“You’re doing the right thing, Mr. President”, said Biden’s Special Advisor on Diversity.  “Brittney Griner is more than just a black lesbian.  She is a symbol of courage and rectitude for all oppressed minorities in our great land.  Her value is universal, absolute, and undeniable.” 

The President listened quietly as his advisor went on, rising in tone and spirit like a Sunday preacher, urging, cajoling, insisting that the President do the right thing.  Her pitch became feverish until she reached a fiery crescendo, stopped, took a breath, and looked with anticipation and her boss.

Geopolitics had never been the President’s long suit.  As much as he tried to follow the arguments and expositions of CIA intelligence strategists about the consequences of militant support of Ukraine - the destabilization of the region, the new alliances between Russia and China, the new moral authority given to the Chinese in their claims to sovereignty over Taiwan, Tibet and the Uighurs, and the upsetting of world energy markets in a time of recession- Biden could only bring up images of old Cold War politics, the Evil Empire, and the American-style revolutionary courage of the Ukrainians. 

The fact that Ukraine was the equivalent of Brittney Griner – a symbol rather than a valuable geopolitical asset – was lost on him.  A good fight, he said, a fight to the death, a just war, a holy war, a righteous claim to goodness.

Image result for images china taiwan dispute

All of America’s adversaries were salivating over the Griner swap.  The American president was a patsy, a man who could be had for peanuts, a pushover; and so encouraged turned to their own arms buildup, terrorism, regional bullying, and international intimidation.  Biden was a suit and a smile and nothing more.

The Griner affair is nearing its end.  Her trial is nearly over, and the closed door negotiations are in their final rounds.  Whatever the outcome, it will be a shameful story for Biden and America, another white flag of surrender, and a sure sign of America’s political and cultural decline.

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