Paul McCartney is playing the Beatles card to try to get 28 Greenpeace protesters and their photographer and videographer out of jail in Russia where they are being held on charges of Hooliganism, according to CBS.
He quoted the line from the song “Back in the USSR”: “Gee it’s good to be back home,” and McCartney asked Vladimir Putin, “Could you make that come true for the Greenpeace prisoners?”
McCartney partly defended, partly threw under the bus, environmental group Greenpeace. They have a habit of staging protests against alleged environmental offenders around the world. He assured Putin that they were nonviolent and “most certainly not an anti-Russian organization. In my experience they tend to annoy every government!”
His plight may be falling on deaf ears, however, as Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said he only heard of the letter, written October 14th, from media reports. He said that he had not received it, according to NBC.
Were I a Greenpeace prisoner, I wouldn’t hold my breath. McCartney was one of a group of celebrities who attempted to use their star power on Putin, in order to convince him to free two members of the punk band, Pussy Riot. They remain jailed…
The Greenpeace activists face up to seven years in prison for their antics during a protest against Arctic oil drilling, during which they attempted to scale the Prirazlomnaya oil rig on September 18th. The rig is owned by state energy giant Gazprom, and is central to the Kremlin’s effort to tap the Arctic’s natural resources, therefore expanding Russia’s economy.
It’s kind of a big deal to them.
“It would be great if this misunderstanding could be resolved and the protesters can be home with their families in time for Christmas. We live in hope,” McCartney wrote on his website. Well, that would be great, but since accusations run rampant that Putin uses the court system to persecute those that dare to oppose them, I wouldn’t count on it.
Image via wikimedia commons