January 27, 2023

close Americans feel a ‘loss of control’ over Russia’s hostage negotiation tactics: Martha MacCallum Video

Americans feel a ‘loss of control’ over Russia’s hostage negotiation tactics: Martha MacCallum

Host of ‘The Story’ Martha MacCallum provides analysis of the Biden administration’s decision to exchange a Russian arms dealer for Brittney Griner rather than U.S. Marine Paul Whelan. 

“No one can beat us. We can only beat ourselves.”

That’s a common metaphor that you’ll hear in sports. The meaning is rather straight forward: our team is more talented and tactically superior than everyone else. The only way that we will lose to those lesser teams is by making mistakes.

In today’s world, that perfectly encapsulates the United States. And our enemies know it.

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Last week, the US executed a prisoner swap with Russia. In exchange for sending Viktor Bout, nicknamed “The Merchant of Death,” back to his homeland, we received WNBA player Brittney Griner who was arrested and convicted of drug possession charges and sentenced to nine years in prison.

The Russian media — run by the Russian government — mocked the trade. They said we accepted Griner instead of Paul Whelan, a US Marine who has been in Russian custody for four years, because she’s a gay, black woman and he’s a straight, white man.

Alleged Russian arms dealer Viktor Bout (C) is escorted by policemen as he arrives for a hearing at the Criminal Court in Bangkok on August 20, 2010.

Alleged Russian arms dealer Viktor Bout (C) is escorted by policemen as he arrives for a hearing at the Criminal Court in Bangkok on August 20, 2010.
(CHRISTOPHE ARCHAMBAULT/AFP via Getty Images)

The White House says that Russia never offered Whelan in exchange for Bout, but that part is irrelevant. The more important takeaway is this: the Russians know that poking at Woke Culture is the best way to mock America.

They know their citizens will find it ridiculous that a nation placed more importance on a professional athlete than a marine. That a nation believes someone’s skin color and sexual orientation make them more valuable than someone who fought for the country’s defense.

You might think that freeing Griner was a win for Woke Culture. After all, the United States was willing to free a man convicted of conspiring to kill American citizens in order to return a gay, black woman to her home.

Despite that, many in the media still say it wasn’t fast enough. There were headlines like this one from MSNBC:

“Brittney Griner is finally freed, but her peril is that of Black women in America.”

You know who’s gleefully reading that headline? Vladimir Putin. The Russians are ecstatic to see us continue to fight about race.

Brittney Griner isn’t even the only recent sports-related example

Tyler Adams of the United States attends a press conference on the eve of the group B World Cup soccer match between England and the United States, in Doha, Qatar, Thursday, Nov. 24, 2022.

Tyler Adams of the United States attends a press conference on the eve of the group B World Cup soccer match between England and the United States, in Doha, Qatar, Thursday, Nov. 24, 2022.
(AP Photo/Ashley Landis)

An Iranian journalist at the World Cup asked US Men’s National Team captain, Tyler Adams, how he can represent a country “with so much discrimination happening against black people in America.”

The Iranian government runs the Iranian media. Are you seeing a pattern?

The government almost certainly told the “journalist” to ask that question. The goal was to get Adams to say something negative about his country or, at the very least, prod at a wound that’s about to become infected.

You better believe our enemies don’t want that wound to heal. They’re going to keep digging until the disease spreads throughout the American body.

And, yes, Woke Culture is a disease. Despite all the claims by its constituents, wokeness is not about unity. It’s about dividing people into as many groups as possible. It is about focusing solely on people’s outward appearances and identities. It’s everything Americans used to stand against.

When I was growing up in the 1990s, the most important identity anyone had was as an “American.”

Listen to any Hollywood speech nowadays. How many of them start with, “As a woman…” or “As a person of color…” or “As a gay person…” The focus immediately becomes about the qualities that make us different, rather than the distinguishing characteristic that all Americans all have in common.

It would sound ridiculous if someone stood up tomorrow and stated “As an American…” In fact, that person would probably be called a xenophobe. That’s how far we’ve gotten from a united, American identity.

Our enemies know our weakness, and they happily exploit it

In this image made from video provided by Russian Federal Security Service, WNBA star and two-time Olympic gold medalist Brittney Griner sits in the plane as she flies to Abu Dhabi to be exchanged for Russian citizen Viktor Bout, in Russia, Friday, Dec. 9, 2022. 

In this image made from video provided by Russian Federal Security Service, WNBA star and two-time Olympic gold medalist Brittney Griner sits in the plane as she flies to Abu Dhabi to be exchanged for Russian citizen Viktor Bout, in Russia, Friday, Dec. 9, 2022. 
(Russian Federal Security Service via AP)

Last year, as China was facing international criticism over human rights abuses in Xinjiang, an official Chinese spokesperson stood at the Chinese Embassy in Washington, D.C. and held up a picture of black slaves picking cotton in America from over 150 years ago.

“Some are bent on linking [job opportunity] with forced labor and oppression because they have been doing this themselves for hundreds of years in history,” she said.

An official Chinese spokesperson, working on behalf of the Chinese government, deflected concerns about forced labor currently occurring in her home country by raising the issue of American slavery, which legally ended in 1866.

Why? Because China understands that dividing the races in America is one of the keys to taking us down. Race relations often create more division than any other issue in American culture.

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Continuing to beat the drum that American is a horrible, racist, homophobic country — despite all of the evidence to the contrary — is essential to ending the reign of the American Empire. And our enemies are dancing in unison to that beat.

They cannot beat us. But we can beat ourselves.

And right now, we are.