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Tags: griner | wnba | whelan | bout | russia | putin

Oliver North to Newsmax: Bout-Griner Trade Benefits Putin in War Against Ukraine

By    |   Saturday, 17 December 2022 12:30 PM EST

Retired U.S. Marine Corps Lt. Col. Oliver North said President Joe Biden's decision to trade notorious arms dealer Viktor Bout for WNBA star Brittney Griner benefits Russian President Vladimir Putin more than it does the U.S.

"Putin's wanted Bout back for a long time. In fact, he offered to exchange Bout for [Paul] Whelan way back over a year ago," North said Saturday during an appearance on Newsmax's "Saturday Report."

"Bout has been in jail for some time. He's convicted in the United States, sentenced to life in prison. It was shortened to 20-some-odd years. He is a man who acquires weapons. What does Putin need most right now? Weapons.

"He's running out of almost everything, and Viktor knows where to go to get it. That's why he was exchanged in this case — I think wrongly — for an NBA or Women's NBA LGBTQ, you know, celebrity. And I, for the life of me, can't figure out who it is that's giving this kind of advice to the president of the United States. It's the wrong advice to give. This is an evil man."

Griner was released on Dec. 8 from a Russian penal colony, where she was serving a nine-year sentence after pleading guilty to a minor drug charge.

She was released in a prisoner swap for Bout, an arms dealer who had been convicted in 2011 on charges including conspiring to kill Americans.

Republican lawmakers criticized Biden for the deal and for failing to free Whelan, a U.S. Marine veteran who has been jailed in Russia since 2018 on spying charges that the U.S. government has said are baseless.  

North on Saturday also said the U.S. wasn't giving Ukraine what it needs in its war against Russia.

"They need the long-range rocket missiles. They need the surface-to-air missiles. They need the ability to stop the Russians from doing what they're doing to the civilians inside Ukraine," he said.

And Chinese President Xi Jinping "is watching every single move we make. He has designs on everything in the South Pacific; he has designs on Taiwan. The idea that the United States isn't doing all it should be doing to help the Ukrainians defend themselves against Russia and repel this invasion ... and we've got an invasion of our own we're dealing with on the southern border. Who's giving advice to this president on what's happening on the invasion of our southern border?"

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Solange Reyner

Solange Reyner is a writer and editor for Newsmax. She has more than 15 years in the journalism industry reporting and covering news, sports and politics.

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Retired U.S. Marine Corps Lt. Col. Oliver North said President Joe Biden's decision to trade notorious arms dealer Viktor Bout for WNBA star Brittney Griner benefits Russian President Vladimir Putin more than it does the U.S.
griner, wnba, whelan, bout, russia, putin
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2022-30-17
Saturday, 17 December 2022 12:30 PM
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