Paul Whelan, an american ex marine who currently holds 4 different passports
Including an Irish one
Has been arrested for spying in Moscow.
What's going on here?
Do we supply Irish passports to foreign spies as well as israeli assassins now?
How can you possibly be a citizen of 4 different countries at the same time? How can it be known where your loyalties lie in such a case?
And should we allow people to hold Irish citizenship in parallel with other citizenships or not?
(personally I say NOT!)
The Marine Corps found Paul Whelan, the American citizen detained by Russia on espionage charges, guilty of attempting to steal more than $10,000 worth of currency from the U.S. government while deployed to Iraq in 2006 and bouncing nearly $6,000 worth of checks around the same time, according to records obtained by The Washington Post.
The details of the charges against Whelan from a special court-martial two years later, which resulted in his discharge for bad conduct, add to an increasingly complex picture of the 48-year-old former Marine, whom Russian officials have accused of spying. His case grew more perplexing Friday after Ireland became the fourth nation to acknowledge him as a citizen and seek consular access.
Since his arrest last week in Moscow, Whelan has rocketed onto the public radar, drawing international attention to his complex journey from the Marine Corps Reserve to a detention cell in the Russian capital’s notorious Lefortovo Prison. People who served alongside Whelan said he was learning Russian and traveled to Moscow and St. Petersburg on vacation during the same deployment in which the Marine Corps accused him of attempted larceny.
The Marines have not provided any additional information about the circumstances surrounding Whelan’s crimes while serving in the armed forces. Russian authorities have not said what Whelan is accused of doing beyond the relatively broad charge of espionage, which, if he is convicted, could land him between 10 and 20 years behind bars.
Reading the whole thing, it seems evident that the Washington post article has taken the rather clever approach of apparently throwing this guy to the wolves, hinting strongly that he is an embezzler, probably a russian sympathiser and someone the public shouldn't really care too much about.
No doubt in a vain attempt to signal to the Russians that he is of no value to the americans so hence he is no use as leverage!
At the same time no less than 4 diplomatic consuls have been claiming him as their citizen and strongly pleading for his release, including our own.
Now I'm pretty sure they wouldn't be breaking their arses to help ordinary paddies like you and me.
The Irish being poodles for empire as usual, helping them get their spies back!
But then, what else can you expect from a vassal state!!
It's either a tit for tat in response to the persecution, economically forced plea
(because most people are forced to take a plea to avoid eye watering legal costs, even if innocent. Such is the system there)
and in general poor treatment of Russian gun nut Maria Butina, in the hope of securing a trade off
Or else he IS a spy and was caught up to no good. His former marine background, knowledge of Russian and 4 passports are certainly worthy of suspicion.
It seems a strong possibility to me he was up to some funny business over there. And had not just popped over for a wedding as is claimed.
Other rumours suggest he was caught taking possession of a USB stick with sensitive data on it.
Lets watch and see how this develops.
Hopefully it will also generate a few awkward questions for our shit government too,
regarding how they go about handing out passports and why Ireland is now providing cover and diplomatic aid for foreign spies!