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Biden Abandons Americans Detained Abroad

Posted on Tuesday, May 14, 2024
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by Ben Solis
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AMAC EXCLUSIVE

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With Election Day fast approaching, the growing number of U.S. citizens detained in foreign countries could become a liability for President Joe Biden’s re-election bid – particularly in light of former President Donald Trump’s strong record of securing the release of Americans jailed abroad.

The most recent headache for the Biden administration is the case of Gordon Black, a U.S. soldier who has been detained in Vladivostok, Russia, following allegations of theft. Although Russian authorities have provided no evidence of his wrongdoing, Black is scheduled to remain in prison until at least July, when he will go on trial before Russia’s notoriously corrupt courts and could receive a long sentence, particularly given heightened tensions as a result of the Russia-Ukraine war.

As the Associated Press reported in March, “arrests of Americans in Russia have become increasingly common.” One of the most high-profile cases is that of Wall Street Journal reporter Evan Gershkovich, who was arrested last year and is being held on espionage charges.

The story of ex-Marine Paul Whelan has also captivated public interest and generated criticism of the Biden administration. In 2020, Whelan was sentenced to 16 years behind bars for espionage after he traveled to Moscow to attend a friend’s wedding. He maintains his innocence, and the Russian government has provided no evidence to back up the charges against him.

Both Gershkovich and Whelan have been designated as wrongfully detained by the U.S. State Department, but the Biden administration has made little progress in securing their release. (Notably, back in 2022, Biden swapped infamous Russian arms dealer Viktor Bout for WNBA star Brittany Griner, who had been arrested in Russia for marijuana possession, igniting intense public backlash given that Biden reportedly rejected a plan to trade Bout for Whelan.)

Biden has also drawn criticism for his failure to secure the release of American hostages in Gaza following Hamas’s assault on Israel last year. At least five American citizens are still believed to be captive inside Gaza – along with the bodies of three Americans already murdered by Hamas.

Even when Biden has brought prisoners and hostages home, it has often been through questionable methods, namely releasing dangerous criminals and sending cash to U.S. adversaries. In addition to the controversial decision to trade Bout for Brittany Griner, Biden in 2022 also released $6 billion in frozen Iranian assets in exchange for five prisoners – a move critics slammed as a ransom payment that will only encourage more hostage-taking.

These failures contrast sharply with the Trump administration’s success at securing the release of Americans held abroad. “I brought 58 HOSTAGES home from many different countries, including North Korea, and I never paid anything,” Trump posted on his Truth Social account following the 2022 Iran swap. “They all understood they MUST LET THESE PEOPLE COME HOME! Toward the end, it got so that countries didn’t even start the conversation asking for money, because they knew they would not get it.”

One of Trump’s greatest successes was securing the release of three Americans held prisoner in North Korea in 2018. In an extraordinary middle-of-the-night arrival at Joint Base Andrews, Trump and a crowd of media reporters welcomed the prisoners, Korean-American Christians falsely accused of espionage, home ahead of Trump’s summit with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un.

Professor Kai Diefenbach, who advised the German government on North Korean affairs in the late 1980s, told me that North Korea’s decision to release the prisoners “astonished” him, saying he was sure it wouldn’t happen because Trump “punched the regime.”

“We thought soft language and silence would help,” he said. “Trump proved us incorrect.” Diefenbach added that Trump showed strength and exposed the evil nature of the North Korean regime, putting immense pressure on Pyongyang to release the prisoners.

Professor Aurélien Clément Nouvel, who helped negotiate the release of French emissaries detained by Egypt in the 1980s, added that those with experience in hostage negotiations believed what Trump did to be “impossible” and were “surprised by the administration’s success.”

Professor Nouvel, a Catholic, believes that Trump’s moral courage may have convinced the regime that his administration was different. “It had been a while since a U.S. President demonstrated such moral clarity,” he said. “The regime could notice the difference in Washington.”

A former high-ranking Japanese diplomat, who wished to remain anonymous due to his ongoing involvement in prisoner release negotiations, believes that non-allies or even enemies of the U.S. suddenly saw in Trump someone who would respect their sovereignty and be tough, but fair. “It seemed like they understood the depth of America First policies more than even many U.S. allies did,” he said.

Biden, meanwhile, has failed to see even close to the same level of success as Trump. Families of those detained abroad have grown increasingly frustrated with the administration, repeatedly demanding more urgent action. Another Japanese diplomat I spoke with, who also asked to remain anonymous, told me “it is evident to families and observers that President Biden is not directly involved in negotiations, unlike his predecessor, Donald Trump.”

There is perhaps no better demonstration of Trump’s commitment to “America First” principles than his success at securing the release of Americans held in foreign prisons. As Biden faces Trump in a rematch this fall, his failures on this front are all the more glaring.

Ben Solis is the pen name of an international affairs journalist, historian, and researcher.

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Phillip Nagle
Phillip Nagle
15 days ago

Of course for the Biden administration, getting an entitled woman basketball player who in the past has bad mouthed her country is more important than veterans.

Max
Max
15 days ago

Bottom line — The Biden administration continues to show off its dismal record of a nonexistent foreign policy. A “star” is more important than a military member especially when “money” is involved. A “star” has more votes to be collected than the ordinary citizen. Hopefully the people can recognize the charade and smoke that has been generated by the Left’s agenda and put in responsible representatives at all levels of government.

Carol
Carol
15 days ago

When are the American people going to realize that Democrats don’t give a rat’s behind about anyone but themselves! These Marxist only exploit folks for advancing themselves!

Sydney
Sydney
15 days ago

Biden, the corrupt and compromised squatter, cares nothing about American citizens. He deserves the Mussolini treatment and that is too good for him.

Joe
Joe
15 days ago

Give Brittney Griner back. We’ll even throw in Beau Burgdahl (sp)!!!!

John
John
15 days ago

Why not? He has abandoned the people here at home already.

David Barksdale
David Barksdale
15 days ago

This further goes to show how little O’Biden cares about “We The People” and America!!!!
We MUST Wake Up, Wise Up and Rise Up America!!!! We Are in Very, Very, Extremely, Grave and Dire Danger “From Within” by Local, State the Seriously Corrupt Washington, DCeivers, China, George Soros and his Henchmen, the Clinton Klan and Sadly many other Subversive Groups both Foreign and Domestic!!! This Anti-American Madness Must Be STOPPED!!!!! No Guts, NO America!!!!! Government of the People, By the People and FOR THE PEOPLE!!!! Not, of the Politicians, By the Politicians and MUCH LESS FOR THE POLITICANS!!!!! The Voting Public MUST be Very, Very Careful for Whom They Vote For!!!! In a General Election, such as the coming 2024 November Presidential Election, Voter Can Vote Across Party Lines!!!

Thinking
Thinking
15 days ago

Ole Joe has no empathy for Americans. Illegals get his full support. The only way he is going to get those Americans held in Russia or held in other countries, is through paying billions of dollars in ransom like he did with those held in Iran. Wasn’t that a billion per prisoner? He can’t afford anymore of that he needs the money for the illegals to start an uprising in America.

Veteran
Veteran
15 days ago

Biden and Obama deserve to stand trial for their crimes against the American people, and crimes against humanity in light of the human drama unfolding at, and now within our border. For their punishment upon sentencing they should have the chain gang brought back just for them so they can then actually “improve America’s infrastructure” with “shovel ready jobs”, among them the preponderance of pot holes their tenure created, and most of all the wall at our Southern border; they, and their party should be forced to build it by hand, all by themselves, and under arrmed guard, while all American citizens should be encouraged to provide them negative feedback in the form of produce. In light of what’s going on between them, the UN, NGOs, the WEF, the Mexican Cartels, and China concerning our “border crisis” by their making, they are turning betrayal, treason, and organized crime into another Olympic discipline, with no one in history being able to ever challenge their Gold Medal

Joe McHugh
Joe McHugh
15 days ago

Joe Biden has always been a remarkable creature. He only survived expulsion at Syracuse University Law School after his father promised that his son would not again resort to plagiarism to get passing grades. Joe Biden later used plagiarism in his career as an elected representative of the people of Delaware. Inexplicably, Joe won election after election. It’s almost as if the voters cared more for Joe’s promises than they cared for integrity.
Joe Biden reminds me of something a dog might leave at a curb. I can’t think of another human being in America, that lacks the virtuous standing to breath precious oxygen. Joe Biden’s whole life is a study in sociopathic behavior. He has no ethics, much less morals. The question must be asked, …… how twisted are the people who have voted for this despicable wretch. In simple words, what were these voters thinking?

Pat R
Pat R
15 days ago

There is nothing Biden does that is good, right, or helpful to US citizens – never has been actually. Nor will there ever be anything good, right or helpful in what he does in the future other than lose his return to the WH and Retire. It is sickening that he will have such big retirement benefits on taxpayer $$.

oldhagar
oldhagar
15 days ago

“Russia’s notoriously corrupt judicial system…” Do you truly believe that ours is any less corrupt?

Jeri
Jeri
15 days ago

Stay home where it is relatively safe. Face it this government does not care about you.

Bob Hellam
Bob Hellam
15 days ago

And Gonzalo Lira, an American, recently died in a Ukrainian prison, where he was held for the crime of criticizing Zelensky.

Ronald
Ronald
15 days ago

They must not be socialists. I bet if hunter was getting paid they would have been home a long time ago, right? Both Gershkovich and Whelan have been designated as wrongfully detained by the U.S. State Department, but the Biden administration has made little progress in securing their release.

Granny26
Granny26
15 days ago

Biden is an a**hole what else would you expect? Hopefully they won’t be able to ‘fix’ the next election like the last one.

Denise
Denise
15 days ago

Why would this be a surprise? He left several hundred Americans stranded in Afghanistan along with $85 billion of the highest tech new weaponry. He obliterated our border. He is a total and utter failure as a congressman, who did nothing of any importance the whole time he was a congressman…oh he did visit his buddy Xi, dictator of China in a yuk it up session…only aired on one of those “right wing stations”. Oh, and has a thing for children and women’s hair….other than that what can go wrong??

Lover of God and America!
Lover of God and America!
15 days ago

yes, American courts are becoming just as bad as Russia’s courts! – thanks to Bejing Biden…..

Glennis
Glennis
15 days ago

He does not care about anyone except himself and his power and money. Sad little man.

Robert Zuccaro
Robert Zuccaro
15 days ago

Biden has no shame buying votes with US taxpayers money, so of course Biden would trade an arms dealer for an African-American WNBA star over a white Marine: because Griner is a Democrat and every vote, even one, counts!

Barbara Charis
Barbara Charis
15 days ago

Biden’s Brains making decisions, which have capsized America; and took multi-millions for doing so…need to realize their actions come with a penalty. The Constitution states. Giving aid to the enemy is treason. Article 3. Section 3…and this is punishable by loss of every asset and death! The Constitution is the Law of the Land.

Iron Mike
Iron Mike
15 days ago

Let’s go ahead with a swap for the American being held on fake charges. We’ll swap you one old senile diaper wearing inbred moron for our American warrior. Best you do it this way. If you piss us off, we’re gonna take him back with force. You don’t get to coose really.

John
John
15 days ago

Democrats are sorry pieces of s**t! I’m sick of their lies and destroying America!

debra
debra
15 days ago

Let’s Face the Truths…If Money Is Not Being PAID TO THE “BIG GUY” He’s NOT Interested….Seriously. You Think The So-Called…Intelligent Members, Well 1st That’s the Worst Joke Against AMERICANS, There Are NO Intelligent Members of the Entire Admin Nor Any Connected to Them..But I Digress, So, You think the DEI Members or the LEFTISTS, MARXISTS, COMMUNISTS, GLOBALISTS Of the Now, Fundamentally Also TRANS-FORMED….AMERICAN MILITARY, Education, I Mean, INDOCTRINATION, The So-Called..JUDICIAL, IMMIGRATION, ANY & ALL Systems, Departments, Agencies, BRANCHES, ANYTHING “Connected Or Aiding” This ILLIGITIMATE REGIME….They Care ABOUT ONE….COMMON THING….THEIR OWN Wealth, Power, Safety, Security, CAREERS & Well, They’re Followers, NOT LEADERS…There IS ONE…Leading, SAME One That Has HATED AMERICA & Vowed to “FUNDAMENTALLY TRANS-FORM” It Years Ago…Now for a 3RD Term. MONEY< CONTROL & POWER…That’s IT…Used REPLACEMENT MIGRATION TO GET IT GOING….Now, Going to GO There Again, SEE ANY “WHITE” People Being IMPORTED? No, You Won’t. ALL THINGS Are Part of the GOAL & PLAN TO….Fundamentally TRANS-FORM, America TO…OPEN BORDERS, NO “AMERICAN CITIZENRY” …Matters Because THERE WON’T BE ANY…WHO Cannot DO Anything WE Can’t…Oh Wait, I Take That Back, If You Are WHITE, STRAIGHT, A CONSERVATIVE, & DARE TO BE A TRUMP SUPPORTER…..WELL,….Y O U ..HAVE NO RIGHTS, NO FREEDOMS & NO CHANCE! IN THIS….”FUNDAMENTALLY TRANSFORMED, NATION”….WHERE WHITES ARE BEING REPLACED….AS ONE OF THEIR…GOALS…What Does Any of This Have to Do With Leaving AMERICANS In Foreign Countries? Well, Do You Remember WHO THEY HAVE “”RESCUED””?? I DO…You Should Too.

jerry d.
jerry d.
13 days ago

Thats because joey nobiden is a complete stupid numskull, he is about as sharp as a cue ball.

PapaGrouch
PapaGrouch
10 days ago

When you visit a foreign country there’s always an element of risk due to their laws, customs, however unusual or unjust, especially in developed first world “civilized” nations across the globe. So, with that in mind, given why these people being U.S. citizens detainments, THAT’S WHAT THE STATE DEPARTMENT IS FOR. And where is the hopelessly corrupt State Dept.? On a stage in Kiev strumming his guitar and crooning false overtures to a fallen and hopelessly corrupt “leader” who sold out his nation’s sovereignty to the communist heathens Obama/Biden/Blackrock/defense industrial cartel. Add to this the author’s article and reviewers’ comments and we have quite a telling indictment of these traitors indeed. Divine Justice will visit us all.
Trump ’24 MAGA

Liz
Liz
15 days ago

This is ridiculous. Trump left Paul Whelan behind — Trump had two years to get him out of Russia, and had the connections to do it from what we hear.
Biden has inherited Trump’s mess on Whelan’s case, and because the work wasn’t done up front to get him out, Putin is making it more difficult to effect his release.
The person writing this article is very uninformed about hostage diplomacy and hopes their audience is just as ignorant.

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