WNBA Star Britney Griner Pens Letter To Biden Asking For Help
On America’s 246th birthday, detained WNBA star Britney Griner sent a handwritten letter to the White House in appeal to President Joe Biden asking for help to win her release. Her letter expressed fears of her being detained in Russia indefinitely and pleaded that the president not forget about her and other detainees.
Griner’s agent Lindsay Kagawa Colas kept most details of the letter private, saying that was delivered on Monday afternoon. In a heartfelt opening, Griner expressed how different this 4th of July feels as she is not in her beloved country. “As I sit here in a Russian prison, alone with my thoughts and without the protection of my wife, family, friends, Olympic jersey, or any accomplishments, I’m terrified I might be here forever,” she wrote. “On the 4th of July, our family normally honors the service of those who fought for our freedom, including my father who is a Vietnam War Veteran. It hurts thinking about how I usually celebrate this day because freedom means something completely different to me this year.”
Griner’s trial for her February arrest began last week, but many fear that it may not lead to her freedom. Russian courts have a 99% conviction rate with the ability to appeal extremely rare.
BRITNEY GRINER SENDS LETTER TO PRESIDENT BIDEN
Griner’s agent says she wrote:
“…as I sit here in a Russian prison, alone with my thoughts and without the protection of my wife, family, friends, Olympic jersey, or any accomplishments, I’m terrified I might be here forever.” pic.twitter.com/bPoatku7J5
— Zach Crenshaw (@ZachCrenshaw) July 4, 2022
White House National Security Council spokeswoman Adrienne Watson released a statement saying, “We believe the Russian Federation is wrongfully detaining Brittney Griner, President Biden has been clear about the need to see all U.S. nationals who are held hostage or wrongfully detained abroad released, including Brittney Griner. The U.S. government continues to work aggressively – using every available means – to bring her home.”
There are other American detainees currently in Russia seeking freedom. Most notably Paul Whelan, a former Marine serving a 16-year sentence on espionage charges. Many see a prisoner swap between the two countries as a reasonable way to bring Griner home, similar to the one that occurred in April with Marine veteran Trevor Reed and a Russian pilot.
Griner asked Biden to help ensure her return. “Please do all you can to bring us home. I voted for the first time in 2020 and I voted for you,” she said. “I believe in you. I still have so much good to do with my freedom that you can help restore. I miss my wife! I miss my family! I miss my teammates! It kills me to know they are suffering so much right now. I am grateful for whatever you can do at this moment to get me home.”