For a while, it looked like the United States might be able to pull off a two-for-one trade, sending Viktor Bout back to Russia in exchange for both Brittney Griner and Paul Whelan.
But on Thursday morning, the trade was officially announced and Whelan was not included. Russia reportedly refused to include Whelan in its trade for Bout.
Whelan, the American marine arrested in Russia on suspicion of espionage, remains in prison overseas. He shared his reaction to the Griner news on Thursday morning.
“I am greatly disappointed more hasn't been done to secure my release, especially as the four year anniversary of my arrest is coming up. I was arrested for a crime that never occurred. I don’t understand why I’m still sitting here.”
It's certainly fair for Whelan to feel that way.
Hopefully, the United States will continue to work hard to bring Whelan home. He's been in custody overseas for four years now.