I've read multiple articles on this situation, so am not sure which stories had what details now. Apparently, the child was able to maintain his Russian passport although he was finalized in Russia and became a US citizen (duel citizen). Duel citizenship gives country of current location jurisdiction. The US agency is WACP, which has a good reputation from what I understand. The postplacement reports are all glowing, so I think that needs to be looked into carefully. I read in one article from the UK that the birthmother was an alcoholic and the child was removed from the home at 6y. So in addition to all the international adoption/orphanage issues, it sounds like there are homelife issues (neglect, abuse, etc) typical of foster care situations.
There are 2 main issues that I see here, and one is clouding the interpretation of the other. 1.) the disruption, and 2.) the manner of disruption. As far as disruptions go, I would like to say I could never do it. That I would do whatever it takes to fight through it all. But having never been in such a situation, I don't think I can make such a blanket statement. I wonder where her education and support was, where the extra visits were with the SW (the last one, with glowing report, was in Jan). What was her access to outside professional help? What was her SW position on seeking outside help? Putting on a plane solo is callous and awful, but it is curious to me that it was the grandmother, not the mom. Was the GM the driving force in give him back? Was the mom otherwise still wanting to try to seek help? Was the mom incapable of actually putting him on the plane, even though she may have fantasized about it and even written the letter? And if they were going to drop him off, why not at the US agency's doorstep? Or could they have then been prosecuted? Or have CPS involvement that risked her other child? Because of the duel citizenship/location issue, did she feel that she was legally safer this way? To me, putting him on a plane, while awful, may have been the only way to to do this in her (obviously overstressed and irrational) mind. Having been to the point of overstressed and irrational, I can see how desperation would have made that make sense.
I really want to read the follow-ups to this. Right now my judgement is reserved until more details. What I can say is that how awful it must have been for all of them that this was perceived as the best solution. How awful it is that so many other adoptions are on hold in limbo--I can not imagine! And finally, while Russia is landing this squarely on the US and Mom's lap, which is politically expedient to do, how much responsibility do they bear? How much of his scary behavior was known prior to removal from the house, and how poor conditions in the orphanage to help create this? And if this was truly ignorec or not disclosed to the Mom, that certainly removes some responsibility. My heart is broken all the way around.