Skip to comments.Thinking About Jonathan Pollard
Posted on 12/08/2002 4:27:36 PM PST by SJackson
The third Lubavitcher Rebbe, Rabbi Menachem Mendel Schneerson, also known by his pen name, the Tzemach Tzedek, sent a letter to one of his emissaries on behalf of another, named Reb Chaim Yehoshua, who was languishing in a Russian jail. Through tireless efforts and at great personal risk, Reb Chaim Yehoshua had managed to rescue hundreds of boys from the fate of being inducted for prolonged service in Czar Nicholas´ army as Cantonists. The Czar´s purpose in recruiting the boys (literally boys) was to force them to accept baptism - by any means. Reb Chaim landed in prison due to the workings of an informant, and he was charged with sedition.
The letter was sent to another Chabad activist named Rabbi Zev Wolf, calling upon him to act on Reb Chaim Yehoshua´s behalf. Reb Chaim was being held in a military prison and faced severe punishment by a military court if convicted of the charges. Just one line from the very short letter contains very potent massages for us all. The Tzemach Tzedek wrote, "Watch over him closely," facing charges in military court, he was in great danger; "With all your heart and soul," Rabbi Zev Wolf usually conducted rescue efforts in a calculating manner with little emotion. In this instance, he was instructed to put emotion into the effort; "And bestow upon him kindness," as Reb Chaim had placed himself at risk and saved so many, there must be reciprocity for his deeds;(*) "Do this for me," As if he would be acting on behalf of the Rebbe - the Tzemach Tzedek - himself. This case was personal. Every case of releasing captives is special, but the case of Reb Chaim Yehoshua was of extra importance.
Such is the case with Jonathan Pollard.
I personally have acted on behalf of Jonathan Pollard, as have many of us. We have recited prayers, and have written letters, and attended synagogue functions on his behalf. Some of us have also protested at the steps of the Justice Department in Washington D.C., and on the streets of New York and other cities. But we must ask ourselves, as the years pass and Jonathan Pollard remains in jail, What have we done lately? And have we acted with sufficient fervency and dedication? Clearly, not enough has been done.
A reminder: We all still owe Jonathan Pollard. He refused to remain silent. And when he discovered the dangers to Israel, he took risks for over a period of four years in order to inform Israel of the emerging threats from Iraq. The consequences he is paying are for actions on our behalf. As Jonathan himself wrote in a letter back in 1987, "I´d rather be rotting in prison then sitting shiva for the hundreds of thousands of Israelis who could have died." We all owe him, big time.
If we do not speak up, who will? Why should a non-Jewish congressman speak up when so many Jewish representatives of heavily Jewish districts are silent? If their constituents were more vocal, they would be as well. Some action on the matter would also no doubt awaken more Knesset members to act. It is time to get moving again, to speak up, to redeem a special captive.
Even during the horrendous and panic ridden days of Nicholas I, efforts to pressure the authorities, succeeded in having Reb Chaim Yehoshua´s case moved from a military to a civilian court, where he received a far lighter sentence. We should be able to accomplish no less for Jonathan Pollard, our brother.
(*) The comments are from the compilation, Igrois Kodesh.
Larry Domnitch is an author and educator who resides in Efrat.
From my perspective, Pollard can rot, I disagree with Theodore Olson on this point, despite the unusual nature of his sentence vs the charge.
The real issue here is the leniant sentences given to others.
We aim to please...
There is always someone willing to advocate further lapses of justice to correct lapses from the past.
Rosenburg them all, afaiac.
Oh well, it's all in good fun. Hey, check out LF, they have a great thread going on those fake gas chambers at Auschwitz. You'll love it.
And you know what, RCW is correct, a state for those who call themselves palestinians in Saudi Arabia might be a good idea. Check the thread. Personally, I think the Sinai is a better idea.
As long as it's applied equally to Americans who betray their country, yes, it would.
A worthless ping, but only because poor RCW2001 needed a shill to post another Pollard thread, so the jihadist troll asked me.
... We should be able to accomplish no less for Jonathan Pollard, our brother ...I hope not.
Both. I don't think RCW likes me. I'm in tears.
I don't much like Pollard. I don't much like RCW, though I understand he can't post many more Pollard/Liberty articles, his credibility is shot.
But I'm glad to help him when I can.
I agree, so does Ted Olson.
Of course, if you'd said he should have been shot after his conviction, I might have agreed too.
This is history.
GREAT!We can all agree!
Wait, Pollard, you, me agree. Jury takes 12 (?). The returns aren't in, wait for a few more posts.
Just ask, I understand you already used your Pollard tag's this year. New season coming up.
Funny how the article forgot to mention that the information Pollard provided ended up with our enemies at the time, the Russians. He's lucky to be sitting in a cell.Does anyone actually still defend this traitor? He spied on the US, and some of the information he stole ended up in the hands of the Soviets.
The only question that's really relevant anymore is if it got to them through a Soviet mole in Mossad (as the Israelis claim) or if it was being traded to the KGB for emigres (as many in US intelligence suspect). The nature of some of it indicates the latter.
Well actually, I was fully prepared to post this article but was saving it for a 'slow day'.
Good job done...either way.
As I have seen you post otherwise. My question would be: do we take away folks like your self, or RCW2001, who contribute much, who suspect more, but prove little?
I'd like to see 'em all dance (including that slut who sold intelligence to Cuba and then stated she was proud of it).
Such is the case with Jonathan Pollard.
Could someone please tell this guy to put his pen down?
The two cases have noting in common. Reb Chaim Yehoshua has been wronged by an oppressive Russian tsarist regime, and freeing him would be correcting that wrong.
In contrast, Pollard has wronged (betrayed) his own country that has treated him not only fairly but entrusted him matters of survival. And, also in contrast, unlike Russia which imposed on the Jews the pale of settlement and other restrictions, the Jews in this country enjoy full equality. So neither at the personal level nor for Jews in general these two cases have anything in common.
Pollard should rot in jail. SJackson, I agree completely with your assessment: the lack of proportion is there but it arose not because Pollard is treaed harshly but because others were treated all to liniently.
RCW2001 can sleep well now. (Liberty/Pollard is like a cady for this little girl).
The point is that a U.S CITIZEN spied for Israel, and sold out his own country.
How would YOU like it to find out that an Israeli citizen, a veteran of the IDF in fact, was in fact selling secrets to the U.S. who in return was giving the information to Hamas in exchange for Hamas' leaving American targets out of their outrages?
Don't even bother answering; the screams from you and others would be audible from the Atlantic to the Pacific.
That's why we spit on you and anyone else who tries to make Pollard into this pathetic martyr to your stinkin' cause.
Pollard's going to rot in prison and it couldn't happen to a nicer guy.
Are you alleging the U.S. is "anti-Semitic" then?
Let's hear your "proof."
Another classy post from the poster boy for Ritalin. I have never seen a freeper say he spits upon another. Not until you came along.
No he hasn't. The debt will be paid in full when he dies in prison. Until then, let him rot with all the other traitors.
Are you alleging the U.S. is "anti-Semitic" then?
No but you are.
Let's hear your "proof."
|Name||Country Spied For||Sentence/Punishment||Time Served
|Jonathan Pollard||Israel||Life imprisonment|
|Michael Schwartz||Saudi Arabia||Discharged from Navy||No time served.|
|Peter Lee||China||1 year in halfway house||No jail time.|
|Samuel Morison||Great Britain||2 years||3 months|
|Phillip Selden||El Salvador||2 years|
|Steven Baba||South Africa||8 years; reduced to 2 years||5 months|
|Sharon Scranage||Ghana||5 years; reduced to 2 years||8 months|
|Jean Baynes||Phillipines||41 months||15 months|
|Abdul Kader Helmy||Egypt||4 years||2 years|
|Geneva Jones||Liberia||37 months|
|Frederick Hamilton||Ecuador||37 months|
|Joseph Brown||Phillipines||6 years|
|Michael Allen||Phillipines||8 years|
|Robert Kim||South Korea||9 years|
|Thomas Dolce||South Africa||10 years||5.2 years|
|Steven Lalas||Greece||14 years|
* Time served before release is shown where known. Other cases of early release exist.
Are you alleging the U.S. is "anti-Semitic" then?
No but you are.
Oh? In what way? (Did Pollard get a disproportionately long sentence) Let's hear your "proof."
Here it is pal:
|Name||Country Spied For||Sentence||Time Served
|James Wood||Soviet Union||2 years|
|Sahag Dedyan||Soviet Union||3 years|
|Randy Jeffries||Soviet Union||3-9 years|
|Amarylis Santos||Cuba||3½ years|
|Joseph Santos||Cuba||4 years|
|Mariano Faget||Cuba||5 years|
|Brian Horton||Soviet Union||6 years|
|Alejandro Alonso||Cuba||7 years|
|William Bell||Poland||8 years|
|Alfred Zoho||East Germany||8 years|
|Nikolay Ogarodnikova||Soviet Union||8 years|
|Francis X. Pizzo||Soviet Union||10 years|
|Daniel Richardson||Soviet Union||10 years|
|Ernst Forbich||East Germany||15 years|
|William Whalen||Soviet Union||15 years|
|Edwin Moore||Soviet Union||15 years|
|Troung Dinh Ung||North Vietnam||15 years|
|Ronald Humphrey||North Vietnam||15 years|
|Kurt Alan Stand||East Germany||17½ years|
|Robert Lipka||Soviet Union||18 years|
|David Barnett||Soviet Union||18 years|
|Svetlana Ogarodnikova||Soviet Union||18 years|
|Albert Sombolay||Iraq & Jordan||19 years|
|Richard Miller||Soviet Union||20 years||6 years|
|Theresa Maria Squillacote||East Germany||21.8 years|
|Sarkis Paskallan||Soviet Union||22 years|
|Harold Nicholson||Soviet Union||23 years|
|David Boone||Soviet Union||24 years|
|Ana Belen Montes||Cuba||25 years|
|Clayton Lonetree||Soviet Union||25 years||9 years|
|Michael Walker||Soviet Union||25 years||15 years|
|Bruce Ott||Soviet Union||25 years|
|Kelly Warren||Hungary &
|Earl Pitts||Soviet Union||27 years|
|H.W. Boachanhaupi||Soviet Union||30 years|
|Roderick Ramsay||Hungary &
|James Hall||Soviet Union
& East Germany
|Christopher Boyce||Soviet Union||40 years|
|William Kampiles||Soviet Union||40 years||19 years|
|Veldik Enger||Soviet Union||50 years|
|R.P. Charnyayev||Soviet Union||50 years|
|Marian Zacharski||Poland||Life||4 years|
|Aldrich Ames||Soviet Union||Life|
|Robert Hanssen||Soviet Union||Life|
* Time served before release is shown where known. Other cases of early release exist.
Aldrich Ames' treatment was far more benign, and (except for a relatively short period of time during debriefing) did not include the rigours of long years of solitary; nor was he ever subjected to the harsh conditions of "K" Unit at Marion - even though his offence was far more serious.
Maybe, and yes we are allies, but as a matter of policy I don't think it's in either nations interest to just start turning a blind eye to spies.
Besides, the political fallout would become unbearable at some point.
The volume and quality of what Pollard passed along should not have earned him life imprisonment. It should have gotten him executed for treason.
Wouldn't you consider such a statement to be a blatant insult to your intelligence as an Israeli?
I would. It would anger me.
Frankly, I think it would anger most anyone.
Everyone knows his sentence is out of proportion, and if hed spyed for any other nation hed be commenting on Fox news as we speak. What are facts in a discussion of this nature.
To preempt you, Ill post some of the leftist drivel Im sure youll soon bring to the thread next. Mark my words, freepers will see through Ted Olson.
Gibson Dunn & Crutcher Lawyers
1050 Connecticut Ave. NW
Washington DC 20036-5306
December 23, 1992
Mr. Phil Baum
Mr. Jerome A. Chanes
Natl. Jewish Community Relations Advisory Council [NJCRAC]
443 Park Avenue South
New York, New York 10016-7322
Re: Jonathan J. Pollard
Dear Mr. Baum and Mr. Chanes:
I have been supplied with a copy of your memorandum of November 30, 1992 to NJCRAC member agencies concerning your meeting with me on October 21, 1992. 1 am very disappointed with your memorandum for several reasons:
I had understood that our meeting was to be an off-the-record briefing. I do not recall being informed that you intended to memorialize your perceptions of the meeting along with out-of-context quotations and to distribute those remarks to member agencies. Had I known of your intentions, I would have concentrated on presenting a complete summary of Jonathan Pollard's positions on the commutation issue rather than allowing the time to be used almost exclusively for responding to hostile questions. Because the meeting was focused entirely on points advanced by persons who have historically been opposed to supporting Jonathan Pollard, the meeting and thus your memorandum is quite one-sided.
You did not extend me the courtesy of sharing your summary with me in advance of its dissemination to give me an opportunity to correct any errors and misimpressions. Had you been interested in a fully accurate and fair portrayal of these issues, you surely would have done so. Distribution of this memorandum without any effort to discuss it with me and without even sending me a copy betrays your intention to advocate your point of view rather than to present an objective and balanced presentation of the issues. I had been cautioned in advance not to expect fair treatment and urged not to respond to your invitation. Unfortunately your memorandum and the manner in which it was prepared confirms what I was told about your lack of objectivity.
Your summary mischaracterizes Mr. Pollard's posture before the Supreme Court. While it is certainly true that the Supreme Court accepts few of the cases submitted to it, Mr. Pollard's petition presented important and compelling legal questions, which your memorandum does not discuss. And, while it is also true that this Court has not been sympathetic recently to collateral attacks on sentences resulting from plea bargains, there was a real possibility that if the Court had taken the case, it would have agreed with Mr. Pollard that the sentencing judge's actions should have been scrutinized under a more exacting standard. Had there been such a review, there was a substantial likelihood that Mr. Pollard's sentence could well have been overturned. By focusing exclusively on the procedural posture of the case, you overlooked the more important substantive legal issues, i.e., the fact that Mr. Pollard's disproportionate sentence was the direct result of the Government's violation of its plea bargain with him.
1 did not state that there would have to be unanimity among Jewish organizations for Mr. Pollard's commutation application to be successful. I simply stated the obvious fact that there are strong reasons favoring a commutation of Mr. Pollard's sentence and that we were anxious, on his behalf, to receive the support of as many individuals and organizations as possible. However, the unwillingness of some organizations to support a humanitarian act or commutation by the President certainly can undermine Mr. Pollard's chances of success.
On the question of anti-Semitism, you correctly stated only a segment of my remarks and did not capture the gist of my point. I acknowledged that anti-Semitism could not be established in this case by clear, compelling and objective evidence. It seldom can. But I added that there are many in Government, who do not wish their identities to be revealed, who do believe that the Government's treatment of Jonathan Pollard was affected by anti-Semitism.
I also emphasized that Jonathan Pollard's actions, however misguided they may have been, were motivated by a desire to alert the people of Israel to the actions of nations sworn to destroy it. I stated my conviction that all individuals who care about human rights should be sensitive and concerned over excessive punishment of someone who had acted to save the lives of an historically persecuted people, Your summary ignores this point.
With respect to solitary confinement, I stated that it is not necessary for Mr. Pollard to he in solitary confinement in the nation's most closely guarded prison. However, if he is going to be held in that institution, it is necessary that he be protected from others who would harm him.
Your reference to the government of Israel is confusing because it was wrenched from its context. I stated that there were a variety of reasons, after the fact, why the Government of Israel may not have wished to associate itself with Mr. Pollard's conduct. However, the fact is that Mr. Pollard was transmitting information to persons whom he had every reason to believe were fully authorized representatives of the Government of Israel. And the information he supplied was, indeed, transmitted to Israel. Certainly the Government of Israel should, and in fact has, come forward to aid Mr. Pollard's effort to seek a commutation of his sentence. We would hope that you and the NJCRAC member agencies would feel as sympathetic as Israel's last two prime ministers.
With respect to the level and nature of advocacy on behalf of Mr. Pollard, I simply acknowledged that it was entirely possible that some supporters of Mr. Pollard may have over-pleaded their case. I do not know this to be true, but stated that I understood how that could happen given the growing number of people who support his cause, most of whom are not subject to our control. However, I emphasized that the indisputable facts of Mr. Pollard's situation warranted the relief that we were seeking and that any exaggeration or hyperbole that may have occurred had to do with peripheral issues and could not distract from the central point that justice requires that Mr. Pollard be released from prison.
With respect to the issue of ex parte communication with Judge Robinson, I believe that I said that I did not know whether there had been any ex parte communication with Judge Robinson, but that Judge Robinson had categorically denied such an allegation and that, absent clear evidence of such conduct, there was no point in focusing on that subject. It was simply distracting from other considerably more compelling issues. There is no point to continue in discussing this issue. It is legally and substantively irrelevant and I do not know why it is so important to you.
As to the question of Mr. Pollard's remorse, I pointed out that Mr. Pollard's 60 Minutes statement was many years ago and had been superseded by many explicit statements by him of remorse. I also said that his statement on 60 Minutes in no way excuses the Government's response to it: the deliberate violation of its plea agreement with Mr. Pollard. Your concern with ill-conceived statements by Mr. Pollard several years ago is another red herring. Mr. Pollard has acknowledged that his conduct was wrong and asks, not that he be forgiven, but that his punishment be brought to an end. Dwelling on statements he made six years ago simply avoids today's issues.
The Government has recently taken the position that parole may be considered in 1995. But the essential point is that the law enforcement and intelligence agency officials who will be given the opportunity to express themselves on the subject have indicated that they will oppose parole. The experts with whom we have consulted agree that parole is a virtual impossibility under these circumstances. The emphasis on the possibility of parole avoids addressing the circumstances and fairness of Mr. Pollard's incarceration. The fact is that he has been punished enough now.
Your memorandum overlooks the massive evidence of injustice and unfairness in the treatment of Mr. Pollard and the fact that his sentence is utterly out of scale with that imposed on any other individuals who gave information to an ally in order to save lives. I am enclosing the memorandum we filed on December 11 in support of Mr. Pollard's commutation application.
As a matter of fundamental fairness, you should circulate this letter and the enclosed memorandum to the member agencies to whom you circulated your November 30 memorandum.
very truly yours,
Theodore B. Olson
Pollard Has Been Punished Enough
March 8, 1994 - Theodore Olson, Esq. - The Wall St. Journal
It is plain than columnist Al Hunt and the anti-Pollard faction within the Clinton administration for whom he is giving voice do not like Jonathan Pollard (President Clinton, Dont Free the Traitor Pollard, February 24). But his rationale for opposing clemency is mostly misinformation and ignorance, and his conclusion implicitly concedes the shallowness of his convictions.
As Mr. Pollards attorney, I offer these counterbalancing facts:
First, the matter of motives and money. Mr. Hunts carefully chosen litany of phrases such as big bucks, well-paid and well-heeled produces a profoundly false impression. As Mr. Hunt knows, Mr. Pollard sought out the Israelis and volunteered to give, not sell, information to Israel about nuclear, chemical and biological weapons under construction by Iraq and others for use against Israel. Six months down the line, Pollard was persuaded to accept paltry sums - pocket change compared with what Washington journalists routinely receive for weekend television appearances. Intelligence services know that it is impossible to control idealists - and it is standard procedure to corrupt them with money. Mr. Pollard was wrong to acquiesce, but everyone who has studied the record objectively knows that he acted as he did because he could not stand the implications of silence in the face of another Holocaust, not for money.
Second, Mr. Hunt repeatedly uses the term traitor. That word describes one who commits treason, the only crime considered so egregious that is mentioned in our Constitution. It is defined by law as committing war against the U.S. or aiding its enemies. It is punishable by death. Mr. Pollard did not commit, nor was he charged with, treason. Even the government has admitted that is use of the word treason and traitor to describe Mr. Pollard was wrong and regrettable. The court that reviewed Mr. Pollards case, whose opinion Mr. Hunt quotes, said that the traitor could justifiably be called rank hyperbole.
Third, Mr. Hunts comparison of Mr. Pollard to the Aldrich Ames case is appalling. Mr. Ames allegedly aided the Soviet Union when they were implacable enemies of the U.S.: Mr. Pollard helped one of our closest allies. Mr. Ames is said to have betrayed American agents: Mr. Pollard told Israel about instruments of mass destruction against Jews. Mr. Ames purportedly took millions of dollars and was motivated by greed: Mr. Pollard gave defensive information to save a people that had been nearly exterminated 50 years ago. What can Mr. Hunt be thinking?
Fourth, Mr. Hunt has mischaracterized the court decision regarding the governments violation of the Pollard plea bargain. Mr. Pollards appeal was rejected as untimely, not because it was lacking in merit. All three judges who considered the appeal expressed considerable skepticism concerning the governments conduct. One of the three went so far as to call Mr. Pollards treatment a fundamental miscarriage of justice.
The fact is that the government blatantly betrayed Mr. Pollard and its written contract with him. It made three promises, and broke them all. It agreed to represent to the sentencing judge that Mr. Pollards cooperation had been of considerable value to enforcement of the espionage laws, but did precisely the opposite, denigrating the value and motivation for that compensation - listing it among factors compelling a substantial sentence. It promised to limit its sentencing argumentation to the facts and circumstances of Mr. Pollards offense, but instead heaped savage vituperation on his motives on his motives, character and arrogance. Finally, it agreed not to seek a sentence of life in prison, but obtained exactly such a sentence by, among other things, demanding a sentence commensurate with the crime of treason.
Fifth, Mr. Hunt rejects as bogus and irrelevant the assertion that Mr. Pollards sentence was excessive. He could not be more wrong. Mr. Pollard has served more than eight years, mostly in solitary confinement in the nations harshest prison. No one who gave defense information to an ally has ever been punished so severely. The government did not even charge him with harming or having reason to know that his actions would harm the U.S. Once again, Mr. Hunt has outpaces Mr. Pollards prosecutors by pressing to maintain a level of punishment that the prosecutors promised not to seek.
Sixth, it is curious that Mr. Hunt thinks that the information Mr. Pollard gave away was so sensitive that officials still insist they cant provide specifics. What officials? The Office of Naval Intelligence has said that much of Mr. Pollards information was declassified during the Gulf War. Mr. Pollards chief prosecutor has urged publicly that it all be declassified.
Finally, after all of Mr. Hunts rhetoric, his main grievance seems to be that Israel has failed to come clean and acknowledge what a despicable act Pollard performed. If it did so, he concludes, then clemency [would] be in order. This is an amazing conclusion because Mr. Pollard himself has admitted that what he did was wrong and has expressed great remorse for his actions. And two successive Israeli prime ministers have put in writing formal requests for mercy - not forgiveness - for the Pollard affair. The significance of these extraordinary official requests cannot have been lost on President Clinton - who, incidentally, may not be anxious to acknowledge publicly that the U.S. has spied on Israel. What more does Mr. Hunt want? Some sort of Chinese Communist public act of self-abasement?
There is more, but too little space to say it all. Defense Secretary-nominee Bobby Inman has publicly admitted that he cut off Israel from promised defensive information as retaliation for Israels destruction of Iraqs nuclear reactors. (Maybe Mr. Hunt can tell us how many America soldiers would have died in the Persian Gulf had Israel not taken that action.) Mr. Pollard stepped into the breach and opened the spigot that Mr. Inman had closed. He had no right to do so, but voices as diverse as Cardinal Law, Nobel laureate Elie Wiesel, Benjamin Hooks, Father Drinan, Sen. Carol Mosely-Braun, Pat Robertson, dozens of Members of Congress, the city councils of New York, Los Angeles and Chicago, and two Israeli prime ministers have pleaded for an end to his punishment. Apparently many officials at State, Justice and the White House now agree.
The fundamental issue is when we can stop punishing a man who broke the law to expose a massive, malignant and malicious arms buildup so that a beleaguered people could defend themselves from weapons of terror and mass destruction. It might take some courage from President Clinton to do the right thing, but Mr. Pollard has been punished enough.
Theodore B. Olson is the former lead attorney for Jonathan Pollard.