How Brittney Griner Became a Political Pawn


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By The New York Times. Discovered by Player FM and our community — copyright is owned by the publisher, not Player FM, and audio is streamed directly from their servers. Hit the Subscribe button to track updates in Player FM, or paste the feed URL into other podcast apps.

Brittney Griner, the American W.N.B.A. star who has been detained in Russia since February, recently sent a letter to President Biden. “I’m terrified I might be here forever,” she wrote.

The White House vowed to use “every tool” to bring Ms. Griner back to the United States, but organizing her release is a tricky proposition, complicated not least by Washington’s break with Moscow over the war in Ukraine.

Guest: Michael Crowley, a diplomatic correspondent for The New York Times.

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Background reading:

  • Brittney Griner has endured months in a Russian prison and faces the threat of years more.
  • Her letter to Mr. Biden asked him to keep her case in mind. “I realize you are dealing with so much, but please don’t forget about me and the other American detainees. Please do all you can to bring us home,” she wrote.

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