Day 1806 - Paul Whelan - IK-17 Mordovia Russia - December 8, 2023 - So Many Words, So Little Action, and a Statement from Paul

Today, December 8, it will have been a year since the U.S. was last able to successfully return an American from being wrongfully detained by Russia.  Another year that Paul has had to wait for the U.S. government to go beyond words: "top priority", "substantial proposal".  What do they even mean any more?  If Paul's case was truly a top priority, you would think the White House would be moving mountains to secure his freedom. 

But they aren't.  It has taken nearly twelve months for the U.S. to gather its resources and make a singular offer for Paul's freedom.  The offer was rejected.  And we are once again back at square one, no further ahead than we were back on December 28, 2018.  If there remain any stones to unturn, now is the time to uncover them.

President Biden has said "I'm not walking away" from Paul's case. [6/16/2021]  "We ain't giving up."  [11/23/20233] That sounds great but literal years are flowing by and out of Paul's life as he sits there waiting for this glut of words to mean something.  John Kirby said the President "was willing to make the difficult decisions" to bring Paul home. [12/6/2023] Now is the time for President Biden to make them, just as he did last year and has in other hostage cases.

Our sister Elizabeth asked for a meeting with President Biden this past August and the White House has brushed her request off.  Now would be a great time for the White House to show they were willing to do more than just air another platitude.  A meeting would go a long way to reassure us that the President will keep his promise to Paul and will not miss an opportunity to bring Paul home to our family.  Even an opportunity that is difficult to create and a hard decision to make.

 

Paul spoke to our parents as he does most days and, on Thursday's call [12/7/2023], asked them to pass on this statement from him in light of the year that has passed since December 8, 2022.  Paul says, as relayed via our parents:

"A year has passed since the last prisoner exchange between the United States and Russia, a trade that left me behind for a second time. I sit here, an innocent man, for nearly five years while my life is bartered for in a diplomatic dispute that involves me only because I'm an American citizen. That is the only crime I have committed in Russia: being an American.'

 

The fake espionage case, amateurish as it was, has been debunked for years. Russia holds me for a king's ransom, constantly asking for more and more for the life of a tourist wrongfully detained. My parents are quite elderly and I have given up hope of seeing them again. Friends have moved on, relatives have passed away, as has my long suffering golden retriever Flora, who for 15 years and four days eagerly awaiting my return home.

 

The Russians have ruined my life. One that is destined to end in a slave labor camp, fraught with intolerable conditions for no reason other than a hatred of human rights and freedoms. I have been denied medical care that resulted in emergency surgery. Two prison officials were disciplined for misconduct towards me. I was recently assaulted by a prisoner for no reason other than being an American citizen.

 

The unconscionable act of leaving me behind twice now has devalued my life in these people's minds. The Russian government does nothing to ensure my safety. What will happen next? I remember a sense of shock when a young American citizen was left to die in North Korea by an administration that did not do enough to get him home. Now I am living that nightmare.

 

For nearly five years, I've been told that my release was a priority. I was told that everyone was doing everything they could to secure my release. In my mind, that has not been done at all. I've been promised that the United States is coming for me. I hope that happens before it's too late. Russia holds an innocent man in a country that does not honor the rule of law.

This game of diplomatic niceties and pleasant dialog needs to end. The White House, National Security Council and Department of State must take decisive action to secure my release.

 

President Biden, I have paid a high price for being an American citizen. A promise is a promise. The clock is ticking on getting this done. Please bring me home.

 

Thank you very much to my family, friends and supporters for your tireless efforts and for enduring this tiresome nonsense."


Friday, today, is Paul's 1,806th day as a Kremlin hostage.  Every day he spends there is an injustice.  We call on the U.S. government will do what is necessary, now, to bring Paul home.

 

 
 

More Articles ...

  1. Day 1796 - Paul Whelan - IK-17 Mordovia Russia - November 28, 2023 - Paul Whelan attacked
  2. Day 1792 - Paul Whelan - IK-17 Mordovia Russia - November 24, 2023 - President Biden "Not Giving Up"
  3. Day 1751 - Paul Whelan - IK-17 Mordovia Russia - October 15, 2023 - 2023 Foley Freedom Run
  4. Day 1740 - Paul Whelan - IK-17 Mordovia Russia - October 4, 2023 - Senate Resolution Adopted
  5. Day 1721 - Paul Whelan - IK-17 Mordovia Russia - September 14, 2023 - Ambassador Tracy Visit
  6. Day 1704 - Paul Whelan - IK-17 Mordovia Russia - August 28, 2023 - The Silver Lining
  7. Day 1693 - Paul Whelan - IK-17 Mordovia Russia - August 17, 2023 - Secretary Blinken Call to Paul
  8. Day 1663 - Paul Whelan - IK-17 Mordovia Russia - July 18, 2023 - Mail surge
  9. Day 1658 - Paul Whelan - IK-17 Mordovia Russia - July 13, 2023 - US Government Perseveres
  10. Day 1642 - Paul Whelan - IK-17 Mordovia Russia - June 21, 2023 - Flora Has Died
  11. Day 1636 - Paul Whelan - IK-17 Mordovia Russia - June 15, 2023 - House Resolution Passes
  12. Day 1634 - Paul Whelan - IK-17 Mordovia Russia - June 13, 2023 - Congress Acts, Retaliation Continues
  13. Day 1611 - Paul Whelan - IK-17 Mordovia Russia - May 27, 2023 - IK-17 Retaliates For Non-Russia Today Participation
  14. Day 1599 - Paul Whelan - IK-17 Mordovia Russia - May 15, 2023 - Day 1,600 Approaches
  15. Day 1591 - Paul Whelan - IK-17 Mordovia Russia - May 7, 2023 - Ambassador's Visit
  16. Day 1574 - Paul Whelan - IK-17 Mordovia Russia - April 24, 2023 - UN Spotlight on Russian Hostage Taking
  17. Day 1570 - Paul Whelan - IK-17 Mordovia Russia - April 17, 2023 - Abandoned
  18. Day 1561 - Paul Whelan - IK-17 Mordovia Russia - April 7, 2023 - Political Advocacy for Wrongfully Detained Americans
  19. Day 1554 - Paul Whelan - IK-17 Mordovia Russia - March 31, 2023 - New Congressional Resolutions
  20. Day 1553 - Paul Whelan - IK-17 Mordovia Russia - March 30, 2023 - Potential Hostage, No Path to Freedom
  21. Day 1546 - Paul Whelan - IK-17 Mordovia Russia - March 23, 2023 - Not Forgotten, But Not Home
  22. Day 1525 - Paul Whelan - IK-17 Mordovia Russia - March 2, 2023 - Secretary Blinken Speaks Up
  23. Day 1500 - Paul Whelan - IK-17 Mordovia Russia - February 5, 2023 - 1,500 Days a Hostage
  24. Day 1490 - Paul Whelan - IK-17 Mordovia Russia - January 26, 2023 - [Paul Whelan] Ambassador Tracy Reaches Moscow
  25. Day 1461 - Paul Whelan - IK-17 Mordovia Russia - December 28, 2022 - [Paul Whelan] Four Years a Hostage
  26. Day 1441 - Paul Whelan - IK-17 Mordovia Russia - December 8, 2022 - [Paul Whelan] Hooray for Brittney!
  27. Day 1431 - Paul Whelan - IK-17 Mordovia Russia - November 28, 2022 - [Paul Whelan] No Calls
  28. Day 1421 - Paul Whelan - IK-17 Mordovia Russia - November 18, 2022 - [Paul Whelan] Another Consular Visit
  29. Day 1413 - Paul Whelan - IK-17 Mordovia Russia - November 10, 2022 - [Paul Whelan] Veteran in a Foreign Land
  30. Day 1387 - Paul Whelan - IK-17 Mordovia Russia - October 15, 2022 - [Paul Whelan] Paul, Other IK-17 Prisoners Walk for Foley Freedom Run
  31. Day 1384 - Paul Whelan - IK-17 Mordovia Russia - October 12, 2022 - [Paul Whelan] Paul Calls Home
  32. Day 1378 - Paul Whelan - IK-17 Mordovia Russia - October 6, 2022 - [Paul Whelan] Russia Continues to Act in Bad Faith
  33. Day 1359 - Paul Whelan - IK-17 Mordovia Russia - September 17, 2022 - [Paul Whelan] Meeting with President Biden
  34. Day 1348 - Paul Whelan - IK-17 Mordovia Russia - September 4, 2022 - [Paul Whelan] Toil and Trouble
  35. Day 1316 - Paul Whelan - IK-17 Mordovia Russia - August 5, 2022 - Watch and Wait
  36. Day 1313 - Paul Whelan - IK-17 Mordovia Russia - August 2, 2022 - Will Paul Hang in the Wind Again?
  37. Day 1306 - Paul Whelan - IK-17 Mordovia Russia - July 27, 2022 - US offer to Russian Government
  38. Day 1300 - Paul Whelan - IK-17 Mordovia Russia - July 19, 2022 - 1,300 Days, But Progress by Biden Administration
  39. Day 1292 - Paul Whelan - IK-17 Mordovia Russia - July 12, 2022 - Thanks to President Biden, Hope for Governor Richardson
  40. Day 1288 - Paul Whelan - IK-17 Mordovia Russia - July 8, 2022 - President Biden Calls
  41. Day 1286 - Paul Whelan - IK-17 Mordovia Russia - July 6, 2022 - Unfocused White House
  42. Day 1273 - Paul Whelan - IK-17 Mordovia Russia - June 22, 2022 - Visits by the US, UK
  43. Day 1258 - Paul Whelan - IK-17 Mordovia Russia - June 8, 2022 - Trades Off the Table #NotAllTools
  44. Day 1243 - Paul Whelan - IK-17 Mordovia Russia - May 24, 2022 - Continue the Fight
  45. Day 1238 - Paul Whelan - IK-17 Mordovia Russia - May 19, 2022 - What Does It Take?
  46. Day 1217 - Paul Whelan - IK-17 Mordovia Russia - April 28, 2022 - Third Congressional Resolution Passed
  47. Day 1216 - Paul Whelan - IK-17 Mordovia Russia - April 27, 2022 - Trevor Reed Released
  48. Day 1181 - Paul Whelan - IK-17 Mordovia Russia - March 23, 2022 - Paul Saves An Attempted Suicide
  49. Day 1161 - Paul Whelan - IK-17 Mordovia Russia - March 3, 2022 - Concessions Clarified
  50. Day 1133 - Paul Whelan - IK-17 Mordovia Russia - February 3, 2022 - Prison Investigations
  51. Day 1120 - Paul Whelan - IK-17 Mordovia Russia - January 21, 2022 - Secretary Blinken Comments
  52. Day 1096 - Paul Whelan - IK-17 Mordovia Russia - December 28, 2021 - Three Years a Hostage
  53. Day 1074 - Paul Whelan - IK-17 Mordovia Russia - December 6, 2021 - US Engagement on Wrongful Detainees
  54. Day 1070 - Paul Whelan - IK-17 Mordovia Russia - December 2, 2021 - Additional-Corruption-Investigations
  55. Day 1064 - Paul Whelan - IK-17 Mordovia Russia - November 26, 2021 - Back in Contact
  56. Day 1057 - Paul Whelan - IK-17 Mordovia Russia - November 19, 2021 - IK-17 Warden Denisov Arrested
  57. Day 1056 - Paul Whelan - IK-17 Mordovia Russia - November 18, 2021 - Prison Retaliation
  58. Day 1046 - Paul Whelan - IK-17 Mordovia Russia - November 8, 2021 - Paul waits
  59. Day 1000 - Paul Whelan - IK-17 Mordovia Russia - Sept 23, 2021 - 1000 Days a Hostage
  60. Day 993 - Paul Whelan - IK-17 Mordovia Russia - Sept 16, 2021 - Three months since Biden/Putin Summit
  61. Day 985 - Paul Whelan - IK-17 Mordovia Russia - Sept 8, 2021 - Mordovian Supreme Court to Hear Transfer Request
  62. Day 966 - Paul Whelan - IK-17 Mordovia Russia - August 20, 2021 - Lawyers File a Motion to Transfer
  63. Day 955 - Paul Whelan - IK-17 Mordovia Russia - August 9, 2021 - Out of Solitary
  64. Day 950 - Paul Whelan - IK-17 Mordovia Russia - August 4, 2021 - Still a Russian Government Hostage
  65. Day 938 - Paul Whelan - IK-17 Mordovia Russia - July 23, 2021 - Senate Resolution Passes
  66. Day 936 - Paul Whelan - IK-17 Mordovia Russia - July 21, 2021 - Silent Summer
  67. Day 920 - Paul Whelan - IK-17 Mordovia Russia - July 5, 2021 - Back at IK-17
  68. Day 913 - Paul Whelan - IK-17 Mordovia Russia - June 29, 2021 - Where's Whelan?
  69. Day 899 - Paul Whelan - IK-17 Mordovia Russia - June 14, 2021 - Request for President Biden
  70. Day 895 - Paul Whelan - IK-17 Mordovia Russia - June 10, 2021 - Milestones
  71. Day 891 - Paul Whelan - IK-17 Mordovia Russia - June 7, 2021 - Retaliation and Visitors
  72. Day 880 - Paul Whelan - IK-17 Mordovia Russia - May 26, 2021 - Consular Support, Presidential Summit
  73. Day 867 - Paul Whelan - IK-17 Mordovia Russia - May 14, 2021 - Consular Services Temporarily Restored
  74. Day 854 - Paul Whelan - IK-17 Mordovia Russia - April 30, 2021 - Consular Support Cut
  75. Day 840 - Paul Whelan - IK-17 Mordovia Russia - April 16, 2021 - Sanctions and Summits
  76. Day 824 - Paul Whelan - IK-17 Mordovia Russia - March 31, 2021 - spring visitors to Paul Whelan
  77. Day 800 - Paul Whelan - IK-17 Mordovia Russia - March 7, 2021 - Visit by Canadian Ambassador LeClaire
  78. Day 768 - Paul Whelan - IK-17 Mordovia Russia - February 3, 2021 - State Dept Listens
  79. Day 761 - Paul Whelan - IK-17 Mordovia Russia - January 26, 2021 - A New Hope
  80. Day 716 - Paul Whelan - IK-17 Mordovia Russia - December 15, 2020 - 23 1/2 Months in Russian Detention
  81. Day 686 - Paul Whelan - IK-17 Mordovia Russia - November 13, 2020 - Human Rights Visit
  82. Day 675 - Paul Whelan - IK-17 Mordovia Russia - November 5, 2020 - Prison Inflicts Sleep Deprivation
  83. Day 650 - Paul Whelan - IK-17 Mordovia Russia - October 8, 2020 - Hostage Diplomacy
  84. Day 636 - Paul Whelan - IK-17 Mordovia Russia - Sept 24, 2020 - Ambassador Sullivan Visit
  85. Day 634 - Paul Whelan - IK-17 Mordovia Russia - Sept 22, 2020 - US Ambassador Visits Camp IK-17
  86. Day 628 - Paul Whelan - IK-17 Mordovia Russia - Sept 16, 2020 - Paul Whelan allegedly moved to Mordovia
  87. Day 612 - Paul Whelan - IK-17 Mordovia Russia - August 31, 2020 - Nowhere Man
  88. Day 559 - Paul Whelan - Lefortovo Prison Moscow - July 3, 2020 - Some News, Some Waiting
  89. Day 545 - Paul Whelan - Lefortovo Prison Moscow - June 25, 2020 - No Appeal
  90. Day 536 - Paul Whelan - Lefortovo Prison Moscow - June 16, 2020 - What's Next
  91. Day 535 - Paul Whelan - Lefortovo Prison Moscow - June 15, 2020 - Sentenced to 16 Years
  92. Day 531 - Paul Whelan - Lefortovo Prison Moscow - June 11, 2020 - Last Update Before Trial Ends
  93. Day 518 - Paul Whelan - Lefortovo Prison Moscow - May 29, 2020 - Emergency Surgery
  94. Day 515 - Paul Whelan - Lefortovo Prison Moscow - May 26, 2020 - Trial Over, Sentencing on June 15
  95. Day 510 - Paul Whelan - Lefortovo Prison Moscow - May 21, 2020 - Setup for a $1400 Debt
  96. Day 507 - Paul Whelan - Lefortovo Prison Moscow - May 14, 2020 - The Trial Continues
  97. Day 500 - Paul Whelan - Lefortovo Prison Moscow - May 7, 2020
  98. Day 488 - Paul Whelan - Lefortovo Prison Moscow - April 29, 2020 - Prosecution Rests, Still No Evidence of Espionage
  99. Day 474 - Paul Whelan - Lefortovo Prison Moscow - April 15, 2020 - Hearings, Virus Threat
  100. Day 461 - Paul Whelan - Lefortovo Prison Moscow - April 2, 2020 - Denied PPE, Court Hearings Postponed
  101. Day 453 - Paul Whelan - Lefortovo Prison Moscow - March 25, 2020 - Visit by Three Ambassadors
  102. Day 447 - Paul Whelan - Lefortovo Prison Moscow - March 19, 2020 - Secret Trial Scheduled for March 23
  103. Day 432 - Paul Whelan - Lefortovo Prison Moscow - March 4, 2020 - Turns 50 in Prison, Awaits Trial
  104. Day 419 - Paul Whelan - Lefortovo Prison Moscow - February 22, 2020 - Trial Approaching
  105. Day 402 - Paul Whelan - Lefortovo Prison Moscow - February 3, 2020 - Ambassador Sullivan's Visit, Appeal Hearing
  106. Day 398 - Paul Whelan - Lefortovo Prison Moscow - January 30, 2020 - First Consular Visit in 2020
  107. Day 362 - Paul Whelan - Lefortovo Prison Moscow - Christmas Eve, 2019 -Detention Extended...Again
  108. Day 357 - Paul Whelan - Lefortovo Prison Moscow - December 19, 2019 -Next Detention Hearing, Job Loss
  109. Day 355 - Paul Whelan - Lefortovo Prison Moscow - December 17, 2019 -Collateral Damage
  110. Day 350 - Paul Whelan - Lefortovo Prison Moscow - December 12, 2019 -Russian Corruption, American Defiance
  111. Day 344 - Paul Whelan - Lefortovo Prison Moscow - Update December 6, 2019 - Prison Turkey, MFA Loses Facts
  112. Day 328 - Paul Whelan - Lefortovo Prison Moscow - Update November 21, 2019 - Detention Continues
  113. Day 326 - Paul Whelan - Lefortovo Prison Moscow - Update November 18, 2019 - No Medical, Misinformation
  114. Day 323 - Paul Whelan - Lefortovo Prison Moscow - Update November 15, 2019 - Upcoming appeal hearing
  115. Day 300 - Paul Whelan - Lefortovo Prison Moscow - Update October 24, 2019 - Detention until December 29
  116. Day 298 - Paul Whelan - Lefortovo Prison Moscow - Update October 22, 2019 - House Resolution H.Res.552 passes
  117. Day 294 - Paul Whelan - Lefortovo Prison Moscow - Update October 18, 2019 - David Urban lobbies for Paul
  118. Day 278 - Paul Whelan - Lefortovo Prison Moscow - Update October 2 - Ambassador Huntsman's last visit
  119. Day 271 - Paul Whelan - Lefortovo Prison Moscow - Update September 24 - detention appeal denied...again
  120. Day 261 - Paul Whelan - Lefortovo Prison Moscow - Update September 17 - Paul tells media about set-up by FSB
  121. Day 259 - Paul Whelan - Lefortovo Prison Moscow - Update September 13 - House/Senate resolutions introduced
  122. Day 238 - Paul Whelan - Lefortovo Prison Moscow - Update August 28 - prison officials retaliating
  123. Day 217 - Paul Whelan - Lefortovo Prison Moscow - Update August 1 - Foreign Minister Lavrov's wish list
  124. Day 200 - Paul Whelan - Lefortovo Prison Moscow - Update July 1 - Deputy Foreign Minister Ryabkov's comments
  125. Day 182 - Paul Whelan - Lefortovo Prison Moscow - Update June 28 - G20 summit
  126. Day 173 - Paul Whelan - Lefortovo Prison Moscow - Update June 19 - Ambassador Bolton meeting
  127. Day 168 - Paul Whelan - Lefortovo Prison Moscow - Update June 14 - FSB investigator angry at Paul
  128. Day 160 - Paul Whelan - Lefortovo Prison Moscow - Update June 6 - FSB breaking Russian laws
  129. Day 151 - Paul Whelan - Lefortovo Prison Moscow - Update May 28, 2019 - Detention extended another 3 months
  130. Day 145 - Paul Whelan - Lefortovo Prison Moscow - Update May 22, 2019 - citizen unjustly held abroad
  131. Day 129 - Paul Whelan - Lefortovo Prison Moscow - Update May 6, 2019 - attempts to coerce false confession
  132. Day 101 - Paul Whelan - Lefortovo Prison Moscow - Update April 8, 2019 - no SPEHA for Paul
  133. Day 80 - Paul Whelan - Lefortovo Prison Moscow - Update March 18, 2019 - call with DAS King
  134. Day 78 - Paul Whelan - Lefortovo Prison Moscow - Update March 16, 2019 - Congress tweets
  135. Day 62 - Paul Whelan - Lefortovo Prison Moscow - Update Feb 28, 2019 - FSB isolates Paul
  136. Day 56 - Paul Whelan - Lefortovo Prison Moscow - Update Feb 22, 2019 - Extension of detention by 3 months
  137. Day 53 - Paul Whelan - Lefortovo Prison Moscow - Update Feb 19, 2019 - lawyer Zherebenkov meeting
  138. Day 40 - Paul Whelan - Lefortovo Prison Moscow - Update Feb 6, 2019 - still no Power of Attorney
  139. Day 29 - Paul Whelan - Lefortovo Prison Moscow - Update Jan 25, 2019 - 5 consular visits
  140. Day 26 - Paul Whelan - Lefortovo Prison Moscow - Update Jan 22, 2019 - Bail Hearing
  141. Day 25 - Paul Whelan - Lefortovo Prison Moscow - Update Jan 21, 2019 - gofundme campaign started
  142. Day 21 - Paul Whelan - Lefortovo Prison Moscow - Update Jan 17, 2019 - Pompeo speaks to Freeland
  143. Day 20 - Paul Whelan - Lefortovo Prison Moscow - Update Jan 16, 2019 - Irish Embassy visits Paul
  144. Day 19 - Paul Whelan - Lefortovo Prison Moscow - Update Jan 15, 2019 - still no Privacy Act Waiver
  145. Day 18 - Paul Whelan - Lefortovo Prison Moscow - Update Jan 14, 2019 - lack of information from MFA
  146. Day 15 - Paul Whelan - Lefortovo Prison Moscow - Update Jan 11, 2019 - Ambassador Huntsman calls family
  147. Day 12 - Paul Whelan - Lefortovo Prison Moscow - Update Jan 8, 2019 - consular meeting requests
  148. Day 11 - Paul Whelan - Lefortovo Prison Moscow - Update Jan 7, 2019 - family talks to embassies
  149. Day 08 - Paul Whelan - Lefortovo Prison Moscow - Update Jan 4, 2019 - need Congress and State Dept help
  150. Day 05 - Paul Whelan - Lefortovo Prison Moscow - Update Jan 1, 2019 - our brother arrested by FSB