Not really, attorneys (and judges) have necessary security clearances, and when necessary proceedings are non-public. You may recall discussions of the process relative to GITMO trials. In any case, that’s no longer an issue, the information in the letter is declassified, there’s no reason not to declassify the letter, certainly no reason not to let his attorneys read it. As I understand it the primary legal issues revolve around the fact that he was presumably sentenced based on the letter, the content of which was in all liklihood unrelated to the crime he plead guilty to. The fact that other than 60 seconds in the courtroom, neither he nor his attorneys know what the basis of his sentencing was, thus were unable to contest the facts. And the fact that his attorney “forgot” to file his appeal, thus it was denied. A decision (not to get an appeal) upheld 2-1 on appeal. It may not be a miscarriage, we can’t know, but the system was clearly abused. I’ll note if he’d received the death penalty as many suggest, he’d have gotten his appeal.
>>Ill note if hed received the death penalty as many suggest, hed have gotten his appeal.
Ah, now the sentence makes sense. No one wanted any more dirty laundry aired.
“Not really, attorneys (and judges) have necessary security clearances”
Which is my point. Guilt was admitted to. It was only the sentence that was in question. The letter delivered by Sec of Def is classified. It was only necessary for people to see it on a need to know security basis, meaning the judge.
“The information in the letter is declassified, theres no reason not to declassify the letter”
From what I’ve read the letter is not declassified. Your stating the info in the letter is declassified but then stating they should declassify the letter. That doesn’t seem logical. How would anybody know what is in the letter if it’s classified still, which it is, to my understanding.
Again: The physical evidence of what he copied and sold is damning...more of the excerpts from the Jewish investigative reporter commissioned for Jewish newspapers Note the RASIN information and the US losing not only information but the ability to use that information:
“Ironically, no one has ever been able to reliably identify exactly what secrets Pollard sold to Israelnot even generically. Jewish leaders, such as Anti-Defamation League national director Abraham Foxman, who have been briefed by trustworthy sources have constantly been told the same refrain: “If you only knew how severe the damage was!” Despite reams of guesswork, media speculation and Washington’s porous nature, the details are still undisclosed.
But those details are clearly enumerated in a 46-page sworn declaration to the sentencing judge by then-Secretary of Defense Caspar Weinberger, most of which has been classified top secret. The secret affidavit includes a classified analysis of twenty illegally disclosed documents.
Although the Weinberger declaration was presented as the prosecution’s most powerful sentencing memo, it was in fact specifically requested by Judge Robinson. “The judge requested, the court asked, for a confidential, highly-classified summary to report the damage done,” Weinberger told me in an interview. Although the declaration was signed by Weinberger and submitted as the Secretary’s personal affidavit, the damning document was in fact assembled piecemeal by an inter-agency group of intelligence officials independently assessing Pollard’s damage to their own operations. A redacted copy of that sworn 46-page declaration, obtained by this reporter, together with information and analysis reported by several of the actual contributors, indicates that Pollard indeed compromised the most sensitive aspect of American intelligence. More than just intelligence substance, Pollard revealed the carefully guarded aspect of American intelligence, known as “sources and methods.”
Three classifications govern U.S. intelligence: confidential, secret and top secret. Beyond top secret is a special designation called Sensitive Compartmented Information [SCI]. SCI represents the highest stricture on America’s greatest intelligence secrets. Beyond even the highest security clearance, SCI limits access to those with a demonstrated “need to know” the specific files. Adding a “code word” to a top secret/ SCI classification, restricts access to those not only with a top secret clearance but also code word-specific authority.
As a key analyst in the Office of Naval Intelligence, Pollard enjoyed SCI multi-codeword access to many of the nation’s most sensitive intelligence projects and daily cable dispatches. “More than 1000 unredacted messages and cables,” of which a significant number were not just top-secret but “codeword sensitive,” were delivered to Pollard’s Israeli handlers, according to the Weinberger Declaration. These messages and cables displayed source references. By piecing those dispatches together, a foreign source could theoretically narrow the identities of specific sources overseas. That said, no U.S. intelligence agents to date have actually been harmed by Pollard’s disclosures, intelligence sources concede. Actual harm to sources is an important consideration in assessing the damage.
In addition, Pollard gave the Israelis more than 800 unredacted reports and publications. The many reports and publicationssome of them dozens of pages long and featuring satellite photos—also displayed tell-tale source identification. These publications are typically redacted to protect sources and methods, and only then shared with the intelligence agencies of other countries under what the Weinberger Declaration calls, “a quid pro quo basis... in exchange for desired information or other valuable assistance.” Recipient nations are required to safeguard the information. Pollard’s disclosures meant America lost horse-trading leverage with Israel’s intelligence services. But more importantly, Israel was suspected of re-editing and then itself trading the information with other intelligence services under its own quid pro quos. Washington resented that its secret information was no longer under U.S. control. It could theoretically end up anywhere, including Moscow, as a bargaining chip while Israel was trying to free Soviet Jews.
One of the largest of copied documents was a special Compendium of intelligence community documents, classified secret, according to a former Navy intelligence source who personally reviewed Pollard’s disclosed reports. The special Compendium outlined for the Israelis exactly how much Washington was withholding under a March 1982 Israeli-American intelligence sharing agreement, profoundly restricted after Israel bombed Iraq’s Osirek nuclear reactor. The Compendium was in many ways an index to the voluminous coded and numbered documents Pollard’s handlers asked him to retrieve.
Numerous intelligence reports about Soviet missile systems, delivered by Pollard, exposed the way America analyzed Soviet weapons.
Among the most sensitive materials were reports from the Sixth Fleet’s Air Reconnaissance Squadron TWO, codenamed VQ-2, headquartered in Rota, Spain. The forward-deployed squadron’s motto is “We deliver critical electronic combat information to our forces: Any place, any time!” In Pollard’s day, VQ-2 continuously deployed EA-3B Skywarriors and later the EP-3E ARIES over-the-horizon electronic eavesdropping aircraft across the Mediterranean. VQ-2 provided invaluable intelligence during the 1973 Yom Kippur War, the 1982-83 evacuation of Beirut, and America’s precision night-time bombing of Libya in April 1986. By providing unredacted VQ-2 dispatches, revealing America’s time and place acquisition methods, Pollard enabled Israel to virtually track America’s own intelligence capability in the Mediterranean and even over Israel itself. This was crucial in Israel’s 1985 bombing of the P.L.O. headquarters in Tunis, codenamed Operation Wooden Leg, which depended upon Israeli F-15s evading both American and Arab listening posts over North Africa.
But all of it together was dwarfed by photocopying for Israel the massive 10-volume RASIN Manual, according to a principal author of the Weinberger Declaration. An acronym for Radio and Signal Intelligence [RASIN], the precious manual is known as “the Bible,” according to the intelligence officer. The RASIN Manual details America’s global listening profile, frequency by frequency, source by source, geographic slice by geographic slice. RASIN was in effect, a complete roadmap to American signal intelligence. Pollard’s handlers required the spy to locate and copy the most up-to-date edition.
When Pollard’s attorneys tried to argue at the sentencing that although the spy had delivered volumes of classified papers, “the damage here is not serious damage,” Judge Robinson stopped them cold. Raising his arm, and cautioning them not to verbalize the sensitive information, the judge warned, “Well, then I would ask you to just think—and not articulate. ... I would ask you to think about the Secretary of Defense’s Affidavit, as it related to only one thingand I won’t even pinpoint it—as it related to only one category of publication.” Judge Robinson added, “Would you like to come to the bench, and I will refresh your recollection to what I am referring to.” A hushed classified bench discussion followed. Informed sources say Pollard’s RASIN Manual disclosure was the crux of that secret courtroom exchange held just moments before the outraged judge finally pronounced a life sentence. Some estimate the loss of the RASIN manual cost America billions of dollars, and many years, to completely restructure our worldwide eavesdropping operation.
By any measure, Pollard’s crime was lasting and inexcusable.”