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Not an April Fool’s joke: U.S. weighs releasing Pollard to keep Israelis at negotiating table

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Jonathan Pollard

Jonathan Pollard

According to Barak Ravid, writing in the Hebrew web edition of Ha’aretz today, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry is close to concluding a blockbuster deal between the U.S., Israel and the Palestinian Authority.  According to Ravid, the agreement would include a limited Israeli settlement freeze, release of Palestinian prisoners, the release of the spy Jonathan Pollard, and the extension of the Kerry peace negotiations for one year.  During that year the Palestinians would not any make claims against Israel before the United Nations.

It is being reported that the Israelis have signed on and Kerry is awaiting the agreement from the Palestinian side.

Below is my translation of what Ravid claims are five articles of the deal.  Of note is the extremely ambiguous language which is employed in stating Israeli obligations of ceasing settlement construction. It is also important to note that English is the official language of all treaties between Israelis and Palestinians, so that Ravid translated the leaked treaty to Hebrew and then I translated his translation back to English.

  1. The Palestinians will agree to extend the negotiations for a year, until 2015, and will refrain during this period from taking any unilateral actions at the United Nations.
  2. The United States will free the spy Jonathan Pollard before Passover.
  3. Israel will initiate a fourth round of prisoner releases that will include 14 Israeli Arabs [Palestinian citizens of Israel]
  4. Israel will release 400 Palestinian prisoners “who have no blood on their hands,” that only have a few months remaining on their sentences.  These prisoners to be released will be determined by Israel and will include women and minors.
  5. Israel will freeze most of the construction, except in East Jerusalem, and use restraint [rein in] in publishing building tenders and marketing land to contractors.

Check out the comments at the New York Times site. Wow. The emperor has no clothes. Americans understand what a sham the peace process is.

Diogenes:

Releasing Pollard would not only be unjust, it would be a mistake. It would encourage the view that Jews receive favored treatment by the government. Otherwise, Aldrich Ames and other people convicted of betraying the United States should be released. Jonathan Pollard was sentenced to life in prison.

Kenan Porobic:

 This national security policy makes as much sense as if I expected to go to a dealership to get a new a car and have them pay for a car..

Frozy:

This is an outrage. What has the Pollard case got to do with the Near East peace talks? If Israel is holding these peace talks as hostage against the US, the US should cut off all help to Isreal and let them manage on their own.

Arnand:

I’m beginning to think Kerry is gullible and shouldn’t speak in public. The US releases Pollard and gets nothing in return. Extending negotiations is asinine since they can be extended to eternity and nothing will change. Israel will continue to build settlements and imprison Palestinians like Bitcoins to be used in the future.

r:

A better deal:

Netanyahu, Tzipi Livni and the rest of the Israeli war criminals and hoodlums are locked up along with Pollard and the Palestinians are granted a state.

AH2:

Looks like Obama and Kerry get duped again into an agreement that will change absolutely nothing. What happened to the final agreement Kerry promised. It’s never going to happen. This is a PR stunt.

And that’s just the start.

Ira Glunts

Ira Glunts is a retired college librarian who lives in Madison, NY. His twitter handle is @abushalom

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88 Responses

  1. seafoid on April 1, 2014, 9:37 am

    “4.Israel will release 400 Palestinian prisoners “who have no blood on their hands,” that only have a few months remaining on their sentences.”

    Big deal.

    I wonder how the US military feels about Pollard.

    Seymour Hersh gave him 2 barrels in 2001 – why would anything have changed in the meantime ?
    http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/fr/576453/posts

    http://mondoweiss.net/2011/04/former-head-british-spook-says-israeli-intelligence-couldnt-be-trusted.html/comment-page-1#comment-302158

    The Palestinians have nothing to lose by going to the UN at this stage.
    Israel’s kabuki game is up.

    • Krauss on April 1, 2014, 3:09 pm

      It’s shocking how craven the Obama administration is. They are softer on Israel than almost anyone. Still, this doesn’t beat the extreme giveaway of F-35s in 2010 to just extend the freeze a few months.

      Israel releases 400 prisoners who are basically political prisoners. It gets out a traitor to America, it does a “limited freeze”(which we can already tell is pointless), it does nothing, it gains everything.

      You know why Bibi is always warning the “Int’l Community” that Iran is fooling everyone, giving nothing and getting everything? Because he does that all the time in his interaction with Western “leaders” and he sees in Rouhani what he has been doing for decades.

      It’s a shameful thing to watch the slavishness of the American “leaders”, prancing around a tiny little gnat of a country.

      Kerry is just trying to breathe life into a dead process. It’s finished. It’s all about appearances now so that they can pass the buck to the next president and wash their hands. Israel walks away with everything, once again.

      The level of idiocy and corruption of Kerry and Obama is staggering. They both have no spine to stand up to AIPAC.

  2. atime forpeace on April 1, 2014, 9:45 am

    If US intel and Military didn’t resent Israel and our Zio-friendly Politicos enough yet, freeing the Israeli spy should pretty much finish pinning the tail on that donkey.

  3. Bumblebye on April 1, 2014, 9:47 am

    It’s obviously waaay past time that somebody leaked the contents of the secret memo on Pollard. Let the American people know exactly why he got as long as he did.

  4. FreddyV on April 1, 2014, 9:50 am

    Settlement freeze? Israel will probably just evict EJ Palestinians and give their homes to settlers, then cry when they’re called out for it….

    If Abbas goes for this he’s a twat….

    • Real Jew on April 1, 2014, 2:02 pm

      Agreed. Theres a very important word in regards to settlement freeze and thats “limited”. Does anyone remember the last time israel agreed to a settlement freeze? The only thing they did was postponed the announcement of new settlements while construction went ahead full speed. What a crock of shit. Essentially paleste is offered nothing while israel enjoys immunity from the UN and ICC and release of the treacherous pollard. Sad

  5. irmep on April 1, 2014, 9:53 am

    Israel apparently wants a pardon for Pollard (like Charles Winters, Hank Greenspun, Al Schwimmer) so that it can claim “no harm.”

    It is not surprising that no mainstream media has picked up the recent statements of M.E. “Spike” Bowman, the counter intel guy who wrote SecDef Weinberger’s memorandum in aid of sentencing that got Pollard life.

    On March 7, Bowman characterized Pollard in the “top four” rank of spies against the U.S. in terms of total damage.

    http://natsummit.org/transcripts/spike_bowman.htm

  6. Shmuel on April 1, 2014, 9:54 am

    Foxman gave us the heads up over 2 months ago:
    http://mondoweiss.net/2014/01/conducting-vendetta-american.html

  7. jimby on April 1, 2014, 9:58 am

    Enough of this “blood on the hands” bullshit. Has there ever been an Israeli leader who doesn’t have blood up to his armpits. Maybe free Marwan Barghouti for Pollard.

    • irmep on April 1, 2014, 10:03 am

      How about a trade for the mole who was never caught? The guy who was passing Pollard the espionage material requisition list?

      http://natsummit.org/transcripts/spike_bowman.htm

    • on April 1, 2014, 10:13 am

      Good point. Free Marwan Barghouti for Pollard. Barghouti can unite the Palestinians and Palestine needs a new leader. But the Zios fear him because he adds so much strength and negotiating power to Palestine.

      • Abierno on April 1, 2014, 11:12 am

        This was proposed by Abbas, but has gotten absolutely no traction
        since the state department is teeing up Muhammed Dahlan to take
        over for Abbas (who will shortly suffer an unusual accident or disease
        if he does not accept this current offer.) This is a similar situation to
        the Ukraine wherein our state department effects a disastrous regime
        change, in this case one wherein Israel has their own stooge heading
        Palestine. Given all the US hype about self determination, why not
        schedule a referendum in West Bank/Gaza regarding their desires
        regarding leaders, boundaries, one state/ two states.

      • puppies on April 1, 2014, 11:51 am

        @unverified – “Freeing” Marwan Barghouti is useless as long as he remains occupied –with all independent organizations liquidated. The best he can expect to do in the way of “adding so much strength” will be no more than Abbas anyway. “Negotiating power” consists in assets and armed force.

  8. NickJOCW on April 1, 2014, 9:59 am

    If it’s really not an All Fool’s Day joke, I hope the paper it’s printed on is suitable for some more practical application.

  9. Citizen on April 1, 2014, 10:02 am

    Dershie says releasing Pollard is a “no brainer,” a good deal for the USA: http://www.newsmax.com/Newsfront/dershowitz-pollar-israel-peace/2014/03/31/id/562873/?ns_mail_uid=37633641&ns_mail_job=1562607_04012014&promo_code=16FA9-1

    He also says Israel has a “right” to demand release of Pollard from the US. And, because it’s the just thing to do. Imus mentioned the Pollard offer on his show this morning, and said he didn’t know much about the issue–in discussion about the sorry headless state of American intelligence community these days. Who’s in charge? Nobody.

    Pollard was flashed on Fox News too this morning, saying he would not agree to be exchange for release of Palestinian prisoners.

    I noticed that the agreement casts the US and Palestinians promises in stone, while the Israeli promises are vague, full of weasel words, subject to lots of argument about just what Israel promises. Maybe Abbas has no lawyer at the negotiations, the question is, does Kerry?

    • seafoid on April 1, 2014, 10:19 am

      “I noticed that the agreement casts the US and Palestinians promises in stone, while the Israeli promises are vague, full of weasel words, subject to lots of argument about just what Israel promises. ”

      As per usual

      King Hussein was assured Israel would pull back from East Jerusalem if he signed up for UN res 242.
      Sadat was promised action on Jerusalem if he signed at Camp David
      Reagan was promised the Palestinian refugees would be protected if the PLO left Beirut in 82

      Zionism is incapable of good faith. Scumbags.

      • Abierno on April 1, 2014, 11:23 am

        Actually, Netanyahu is playing the US/Kerry/Obama for suckers – he
        refuses to complete his part a supposed “ironclad” agreement, and
        then is rewarded for so doing by being handed Pollard, a demand which
        Israel has frequently made to no avail.

        Kerry’s position is heinous given that Netanyahu has not only done nothing to facilitate the peace process but has exacerbated the situation
        by doubling the number of settlements, increasing home demolitions
        by 50% and raised the kill rate for Palestinians to one every 4.2 days
        for 2014. Of course, this does not cover the gratuitous injuring and maiming of Palestinians (think about the football players) which is far higher. It does not cover the daily gratuitous, unchecked violence by settlers. It does cover the regular incitement by IOF/IDF
        nor the regular incidences of hate crimes against Palestinians. The question should be asked that given this behavior, can the Palestinians afford another year of the peace process?

        Freeing Pollard only confirms that the US is Israel’s sucker and worse.

  10. justicewillprevail on April 1, 2014, 10:09 am

    So the Palestinians get next to nothing, the Israelis get a convicted spy back and will treat it like a major victory over the US. Meanwhile the Palestinians are barred from seeking justice at the UN for a year while Israel only has to pay lip service to not building and planning more squatter towns, which of course they have always ignored anyway. So no concessions from Israel, a propaganda victory in getting a spy released and business as usual. Some ‘negotiations’. And all so Kerry and Obama can keep the pretence of ‘peace’ talks going, with no results to show, and no hope of anything substantial to come. Honestly, the Israelis must be laughing at the capitulation of Kerry to their demands, and they didn’t have to give anything in return. Keep that money tap flowing, US taxpayers, for the benefit of that featherbedded and subsidised garrison of segregationists to lap up while they laugh heartily at you suckers.

  11. ritzl on April 1, 2014, 10:11 am

    So the US is going to release a spy (up the ante) in order to get Israel to agree to stuff it’s already agreed to and reneged.

    Sitcom material. I bet Abed (“Community” character) could explain it all perfectly.

    Meanwhile, Palestine essentially gives away EJ as part of a process “framework.” Sounds like final status to me. It looks like that was the payoff to Israel for this current nine months of intransigence. I wonder what the payoff will be, what Palestine will be asked to give up, to get the next year of process (ending 2016; new US President).

    Intransigence pays off big when this is serialized. I hope Palestine parallel-tracks this now. Go to the ICC/ICJ while Israel is playing its coy little games.

    Not that any of this matters in the end. The result will be one state, and Palestinians will still have standing in the ICC/ICJ. Maybe that’s the Palestinian strategy. Rope a dope.

    Thanks Ira.

  12. seethelight on April 1, 2014, 10:12 am

    “1. The Palestinians will agree to extend the negotiations for a year, until 2015.”

    Anti-two state forces in Israel undoubtedly sense that Republicans will take control of the Senate in the November mid-term elections. (They control the House for the foreseeable future.) If that happens, it’s a pedal- to- the- metal dash to Greater Israel Land for the next two years, and a furious drive to repopulate the West Bank with Israelis. And if a Republican is elected president in 2016, particularly one of those that participated in the Sheldon fallatio-fest in Las Vegas last weekend, or if Hillary wins, there will be no stopping the Israelis from transferring Palestinians completely out of the West Bank.

  13. amigo on April 1, 2014, 10:18 am

    “We have to ask ourselves, have the Palestinians become addicted to Israeli incentives?” Mr. Oren said in a radio interview.”

    Arrogant p–ck.

    There is only one addiction in force here and that is the Zionist addiction to someone else’s land and the ethnic cleansing of all non Jews from the so called Jewish State.

  14. Kay24 on April 1, 2014, 10:19 am

    The US is going to sell the Palestinians down the river. This deal stinks, and it only means the zio occupiers, will have more time to keep the land grabs going somewhere, have their favorite, disgusting spy back, and be able to control the Palestinians from going to the UN or ICC, for another year. At the end of it, the peace talks will fail, the US would have wasted tax payer’s money on Kerry’s frequent flying, and Israel would have rid the Galilee of Arabs, making sure they remain without rights, and unable to move in whatever acreage they might have left in the territories. If we were shocked at the shrinking map of Palestine, we should expect that there would be no more Palestinian territories on the map at all.
    Master plan accomplished, a rogue nation has achieved all it wanted by a ruthless occupation, and it will be proved that the US has been either naive, or have been an accessory to zio crimes.
    Pollard is a disgusting rat, and he truly deserves to be living among the devious and mean in zioland.

  15. mikeo on April 1, 2014, 10:23 am

    Has the thought not crossed anybody’s mind that maybe this is Kerry and Obama setting Israel up for a “Joe Public” backlash in the US?

    They know their hands are tied on this issue due to domestic influences.

    They know Netanyahus’s domestic situation in Israel means he’d have to jump at an offer like this – if offered.

    Israeli’s are so tone-deaf to how this stuff plays outside the bubble they will be celebrating in the streets with a ticker-tape parade.

    What will Joe Public in small town USA be thinking watching that on CNN or Fox (if they show it of course!).

    Plus all the gloating talking-heads on the talk shows rubbing the US’s face in it.

    Just a thought ;)

    • seafoid on April 1, 2014, 11:24 am

      Maybe. The Zionists love handouts and they will accept rope

    • Amar on April 1, 2014, 12:48 pm

      Has the thought not crossed anybody’s mind that maybe this is Kerry and Obama setting Israel up for a “Joe Public” backlash in the US?

      It did flash across my mind but then realized it would still be futile due to the MSMs in-built damage control for the Israelis. There will be no outraged talking heads debating it on CNN, FOX, et al.. and as you mentioned “if they show it”.

      • Walid on April 1, 2014, 1:01 pm

        “Has the thought not crossed anybody’s mind that maybe this is Kerry and Obama setting Israel up ”

        Only ones being set up are the Palestinian people. Everyone is in on it.

      • mikeo on April 1, 2014, 1:07 pm

        I wasn’t really thinking outraged talking heads.

        I was thinking the usual zio’s explaining why it was right and just to release Pollard.

        And everyday American’s at home watching going WTF?

        It seems to me that Pro-Israel talking heads are totally tone-deaf to the man on the street’s opinions.

        Look a this article:GOP Hawks Worry Rand Paul Has Too Much Ron

        Matt Brooks, executive director of the RJC, says the group is trying to “help move him along” on his transformation.

        “I think, unlike his father, he is genuinely interested in reaching out to the Jewish community,” Brooks says.

        But several donors who have had private conversations with Paul about his foreign policy said those talks have not assuaged their concerns. And unlike his father, whose intensely supportive base was fairly contained, they worry that Paul’s smoother approach could make him a contender. “Can he win Iowa, yes. Can he win New Hampshire, yes. Can he win the nomination, maybe — and that’s scary,” says one former Mitt Romney bundler at the conference who did not want to be named.

        On the margins of the conference, where attendees heard from four potential 2016 candidates who advocated for a strong American foreign policy and support for Israel, five donors huddled with a reporter pledged to reach into their deep pockets to ensure Paul doesn’t win the GOP nomination.

        “The best thing that could happen is Ted Cruz and Rand Paul run and steal each other’s support,” says one of the donors, “but if not, we’ll be ready to take Paul down.”

        Several prominent GOP donors at the conference suggested that Adelson, who spent more than $100 million backing Newt Gingrich and Romney in 2012, is likely to spend vast sums against Paul if he appears to be well positioned in the Republican primaries. Adelson’s spending is largely motivated by his strong concern for Israel, and Paul’s positions may well put a target on his back.

        “Paul hasn’t — and probably will never — win the trust of the pro-Israel community,” says Noah Pollak, executive director of the conservative Emergency Committee for Israel, which ran ads against the elder Paul. “But his foreign policy problems run far deeper. His mustering of fake outrage over issues like Tomahawk-missile cuts and the persecution of Middle East Christians are a shiny-object strategy intended to contradict the correct impression that, at his core, he is more or less an isolationist.”

        What do you think most Americans think when they read that…

    • Kay24 on April 2, 2014, 3:40 am

      The problem is, Americans are prevented by learning the truth about Israel’s crimes, and the reality of the occupation. The media (wonder who makes that decision hmm)
      keeps giving us the Israeli sob story of being bullied by the victims of their brutal occupation, with congress and the media being controlled by AIPAC, they will never know the true story of Pollard in depth. The media coverage out of the US, is totally different, that is why perhaps the world takes a different view about Israel. The informed one.

  16. annie on April 1, 2014, 10:24 am

    oh this is great!

    Israel will freeze most of the construction, except in East Jerusalem, and use restraint [rein in] in publishing building tenders and marketing land to contractors.

    The Palestinians will agree to use restraint [rein in] most unilateral actions at the United Nations.

    or how bout this:

    The Israelis will freeze all construction, including in East Jerusalem, and cease publishing building tenders and marketing land to contractors and agree to extend the negotiations for a year.

    is this a joke:

    Israel will release 400 Palestinian prisoners “who have no blood on their hands,” that only have a few months remaining on their sentences. These prisoners to be released will be determined by Israel

    • seafoid on April 1, 2014, 10:31 am

      Freezing settlement construction is a bit pointless at this stage.
      The baby is far too big. It’s either going to thrive for a few years with apartheid or bring the house down .

      • Walid on April 1, 2014, 12:42 pm

        Freeze would not apply to east Jerusalem; isn’t that where the final link via the E1 would cut the West Bank in 2?

  17. Nevada Ned on April 1, 2014, 10:24 am

    After 9/11, the US broke up a big Israeli spy ring, and deported over 100 people. Kerry ought to demand these Israeli spies in return for Pollard.

  18. lysias on April 1, 2014, 10:27 am

    Combined with the leaks to the Washington Post about the uselessness of the CIA’s torture program, this news will do nothing good for the morale of the intelligence agencies.

  19. annie on April 1, 2014, 10:32 am

    i do not believe this could be true. it’s like another love letter to israel. there’s nothing compelling here being offered by israel that remotely compares to the palestinians going to the UN and getting this show on the road. nothing.

    i’m ready for sanctions against israel to begin. let israel try bargaining with someone besides the very people they are occupying.

    • NickJOCW on April 1, 2014, 11:23 am

      Annie, What could be true is that they have reached the end of the line and this sad excuse for a deal is genuinely all Kerry can come up with. If so, he must have been aware for some time that Abbas could never be persuaded to meet Netanyahu’s demands, so at some point the priority became buffing the US image in the face of failure. Kerry, after traveling to the moon and back and burning countless tons of fuel, can scarcely be accused of having stinted his efforts, and the offer (if true) to bring even Pollard to the table clearly leaves the US no other mediating card to play against the dwindling time-scale; a noble effort, a worthy try, it can probably be made to appear.

  20. frankier on April 1, 2014, 10:34 am

    So, basically, Irael now agrees to do what it was already supposed to do (release of prisoners), but with some extra incentive (Pollard). On top of that, the Palestinians will be locked in for one more year of pasture while the “limited” freeze will be diluted or nullified by some one-sided interpretation of the agreement. In the mean time, Abbas will refrain from petitioning ICJ and/or UN.

    Upon getting this, I think that in Israel they must be really believing that all this bounty must be a clear sign that God is really on their side.

    • Citizen on April 1, 2014, 11:18 am

      I’d like to see lay out a public statement to the world on why he cannot accept continuing the deal, and why he’s therefore, going to the UN agencies and pursue Palestinian rights there. Release to all in the media. Instead, all we will get is a few leaks to the press that will simply cloud up the real issues, and why they are not really being addressed, with “honest broker” US complicity.

    • Walid on April 1, 2014, 12:54 pm

      “In the mean time, Abbas will refrain from petitioning ICJ and/or UN.”

      This has been the agreed plan from the start. Abbas never intended running with the ball to the UN or the ICC. It’s been a charade all along even the AL resolution of last week endorsing Abbas ‘ decision to refuse recognizing the Jewishness of Israel. The circus is all about preventing the Palestinians from going to the UN and the ICC. Wouldn’t be surprised to hear a last minute bonus being offered that would really sweeten the deal, the release of Barghouti.

  21. on April 1, 2014, 10:36 am

    Zionist demands to release Pollard just feeds the ugly stereotypes.

  22. HarryLaw on April 1, 2014, 11:03 am

    Abbas has shown a reluctance to resist US/Israel demands for an extension of the talks, they [the Israelis] could be forgiven for believing that Abbas would settle for a partial settlement freeze and more importantly a prisoner release, the latter has no political significance at all, except to boost Abbas’s short term local support, in other words, in the apolitical world the Palestinian leadership reside in, it may seem like a good offer. JV Whitbeck in the Arab News said “Friends of Palestine may legitimately start to wonder why the Palestinian leadership in Ramallah bothered to go to the UN General Assembly on Nov. 29 if it did not intend to follow up and build on its triumph in any useful way — most obviously by seeking to balance its huge disadvantages in the realms of power politics and brute force with its huge advantages under international law — and if it remains content to leave the fate of the Palestinian people and cause in the far from benevolent hands of the US government”.

  23. lysias on April 1, 2014, 11:06 am

    I wonder to what extent this willingness to release Pollard represents Democratic Party panic over their increasingly ominous-looking prospects for the 2014 offterm elections.

    • Woody Tanaka on April 1, 2014, 11:20 am

      Well, if a Dem. administration releases this traitor, the Party can kiss my vote and donations goodbye for the foreseeable future.

    • Citizen on April 1, 2014, 11:22 am

      @ lysias
      Good point. What will McCain say about offer to release Pollard? His daddy covered up the USS Liberty incident, and he’s on record as buying it was an accident, just negligence. Yet he’s never seen a war option he didn’t love.

      Yep, McCain now favors releasing Pollard (Shultz & Kissinger too): http://www.voanews.com/content/us-considering-releasing-israeli-spy-to-boost-mideast-peace-talks/1883484.html

      • Citizen on April 1, 2014, 11:38 am

        Politico article says Obama believes he can count on a release of Pollard as not risky as both parties leaders seem to think its ok and the main media would not press the issue, so no likely groundswell of protest from the masses. Certainly the IT community won’t protest, and even if it does, the main media won’t give that much coverage either.

        Politically smart, strategically stupid.
        A very weak hail mary pass by Obama-Kerry.

        http://www.politico.com/story/2014/03/jonathan-pollard-israel-trial-105224.html

      • annie on April 1, 2014, 12:34 pm

        Politico article says Obama believes …

        i think perhaps you read that wrong. politico says “experienced negotiators say ” and then later on it cites Aaron David Miller, so it was probably someone like that or just politico speculating.

        A very weak hail mary pass by Obama-Kerry.

        And there was no ‘pass’ by Obama-Kerry.’

        Asked about the reports at the White House on Monday, press secretary Jay Carney very noticeably did not say they were false.

        “This is a complicated issue that is being worked through with the parties, and I’m not going to get into details about that,” Carney said. “I don’t have any update on [Pollard’s] situation.”
        Officials at the National Security Council and State Department went no further in denying the reports.
        “Rumors about what may or may not be on the table is certainly not breaking news in terms of these negotiations and is not just new to the last few weeks,” State Department spokeswoman Marie Harf said at Monday’s daily press briefing. “So what we’ve said is the discussions are private, they are ongoing.”

        politico could have just as easily written:

        “Asked about the reports at the White House on Monday, press secretary Jay Carney very noticeably did not say they were true.”

        they also could have written:

        “Officials at the National Security Council and State Department went no further in confirming the reports.”

  24. American on April 1, 2014, 11:09 am

    ”According to Ravid, the agreement would include a limited Israeli settlement freeze, release of Palestinian prisoners, the release of the spy Jonathan Pollard, and the extension of the Kerry peace negotiations for one year. During that year the Palestinians would not any make claims against Israel before the United Nations.’

    HaHaHa ..so funny.
    Expecting Israelis to live up to their word on anything is like the frog expecting the scorpion to honor his promise not to sting him if he carries him across the river.

    But I want the US to release Pollard–it will infuriate US Intelligence agencies and the portion of the public mature enough to be familiar with the case. So do it.

    I would like to see our Israeli congress also put forth a house bill to insert the Star of David into the Stars and Stripes. Maybe superimpose it over the US flag instead of just adding it as a extra star.
    Maybe we can cultivate some Jewish double agents–have them feed suggestions like the flag addition to Schumer and others who would think its a great idea and go with it.

    I am all for I-dom showing their control of the US more and more.
    That’s how we will get rid of them.

    • Citizen on April 1, 2014, 11:42 am

      “But I want the US to release Pollard–it will infuriate US Intelligence agencies and the portion of the public mature enough to be familiar with the case. So do it.”

      The main media will put any protest on the last page, literally and figuratively, if at all. And both parties are on board already.

      • American on April 1, 2014, 12:43 pm

        But the net wont bury it.
        The net ‘grassroots’ is the grapevine against I-Firstdom.

    • NickJOCW on April 1, 2014, 11:47 am

      To me it reads like Obama leaving the party. The UN have entered the BDS fray http://nsnbc.me/2014/03/03/un-calls-for-ban-of-israeli-settlement-products-and-stresses-social-inequality-in-arab-region/ and the Europeans are girding their loins. It will soon be dawn. Time for us to go home.

    • Kay24 on April 1, 2014, 12:24 pm

      Good points, and I liked that similarity between Israel and the scorpion. Both devious, deadly, and despised for their sting. Good idea about superimposing the star of david over the US flag, it definitely is appropriate, considering the fact we are occupied by Israel too, and as long as we are, we will never get rid of this parasitic nation.

  25. LeaNder on April 1, 2014, 11:29 am

    For a “partial settlement freeze”. Well, have they artificially increased announcement in this context. So they could “freeze” whatever wasn’t intended from the start anyway?

  26. US Citizen on April 1, 2014, 11:38 am

    Memo to the Palestinians – NO DEAL !
    – The Palestinians will agree to extend the negotiations for a year, until 2015, and will refrain during this period from taking any unilateral actions at the United Nations.
    survey says ! No, they will agree to extend if Israel makes no unilateral actions such as continued illegal settlement building, night raids, and detentions.

    – The United States will free the spy Jonathan Pollard before Passover. survey says – Jonathan Pollard for Marwan Barghouti period.

    – Israel will initiate a fourth round of prisoner releases that will include 14 Israeli Arabs [Palestinian citizens of Israel] survey says – this to happen before Pollard is released for Barghouti and before passover.

    – Israel will release 400 Palestinian prisoners “who have no blood on their hands,” that only have a few months remaining on their sentences. These prisoners to be released will be determined by Israel and will include women and minors. Survey says – same as above but the Palestinians will determine who will be released.

    – Israel will freeze most of the construction, except in East Jerusalem, and use restraint [rein in] in publishing building tenders and marketing land to contractors. – survey says – all illegal settlement construction will be frozen ESPECIALLY East Jerusalem and all publishing building tenders and marketing land to contractors are null and void.

    Anything else is a sham and will expose the Israel, again, as a lying sack of hooey.

  27. traintosiberia on April 1, 2014, 12:00 pm

    This tells us and the world that US is run by some psychopath ,spineless rats who will sell their mothers to the cheapest bidder to be called something else
    Polard has hurt Americans not Palestininians or Jews. Why American people’s being sacrificed for the photo op of some spineless leaders ?

  28. RobertB on April 1, 2014, 12:16 pm

    Israeli Spying: The Mother of all Scandals

    “This should end the suggestion that Israel’s spies are harmless. They are not. The United States’ nuclear deterrent cost an estimated five trillion taxpayer dollars during the 50s and 60s to build and maintain, and less than $100,000 for Pollard to undermine. Israel waited 13 years to admit Pollard had been spying for them, and now lobbies for his release, having granted him Israeli citizenship.

    Pollard is hardly the only Israeli spy operating in the United States. He just had the misfortune to get caught. Here are just a few examples of the Israeli spy operations that have been detected.

    Click on link below for the rest of the details & a list of a few examples of Israel’s spy operations:

    http://www.whatreallyhappened.com/WRHARTICLES/motherofallscandals.php

  29. The JillyBeans on April 1, 2014, 12:22 pm

    Give them Pollard, we get Vanunu, sounds like a good trade right? At least one of them had world welfare in mind, while the other one was a flat out spy.

    I’m not sure if I’m the only one, but I rather with the Palestinians wouldn’t make prisoner release a part of the deal. It’s a distraction, and it’s like trading Tootsie Rolls for giving away a Snickers bar. They should go for a full settlement freeze and leave a prisoner release out of it, they can get back the prisoners after the states are established.

  30. Kay24 on April 1, 2014, 12:33 pm

    I wonder why the US is not insisting that the over 700 children, who are abused, and suffering, in Israel’s dungeons, without legal recourse, nor have family access, also be freed, and that no little Palestinian boy, will be attacked at night, and dragged away by IDF thugs. There are far too many crimes by Israel to address, and trying to make Israel do the right thing, will be like squeezing water out of a stone.
    The US is on a fool’s errand.

  31. phylliprezzel on April 1, 2014, 12:47 pm

    I am so offended by the possibility of releasing this convicted spy that I called both the White House (202 456-1111) and the State Department (202 647-4000) to express my outrage at what I said I hoped was an April Fool’s Day joke.

  32. Taxi on April 1, 2014, 12:57 pm

    Release Pollard and watch the USA antisemeticometer rise up a couple of notches, if not more.

  33. CloakAndDagger on April 1, 2014, 12:58 pm

    At one point, I would have been outraged at the prospect of Pollard being released, but I have reason to change my opinion on that as it would be a good chess move.

    To start with, he is nearing his release anyway, and he is not really adding any value being in prison. The damage he did is already done and cannot be undone. However, there is strategic value in releasing him, as in a game of chess.

    The release would raise a huge outcry across the nation, not the least from the intelligence and military communities. It would make headlines in every paper, because the I-firsters would want it to – sort of their way of saying “we leave no man behind”, as an encouragement to other would-be spies for Israel. In their hubris, they would end up educating the masses about what Israel has been up to in our country, something that very few Americans know (although the numbers are increasing).

    So, his release would get a lot more mileage for our side than his continued incarceration. If I had my druthers, I would have had him shot all those years ago, but now, we may benefit more from his premature release rather than letting him serve out the few remaining days of his term.

    Let the I-firsters gloat about having engineered his release. Their pride will hasten their fall.

    On a similar note, Kerry’s facilitating a terrible deal between Israel and Palestine is also a good thing in the same vein. I think we are past the point of trying to get justice through negotiations. Justice will have to come from a revolt from the grassroots, so the faster the flames are fanned, the quicker the uprising.

    More, more, I say.

    • American on April 1, 2014, 1:14 pm

      ”More, more, I say” …….Cloak&Dagger

      Ditto.
      My belief also.

  34. American on April 1, 2014, 1:06 pm

    The WP purports to say why Israel wants Pollards released…that’s it ‘scary’ to Israelis to see a Jew imprisoned for being a spy.

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/worldviews/wp/2014/03/31/jonathan-pollard-why-israel-wants-him-free-why-the-u-s-doesnt-and-what-might-happen-next/

    But the ‘scary’ part and ‘ The Reason’— is that imprisoning Pollard and keeping him in prison despite their demands is a huge infraction of their …”Thou Shall Exempt All Jews from Punishment and Accountings Forever and Ever As Per the Most Special Eternal Victimhood Status Rules. ”

    Israel cant afford to slack up in trying to enforce the Rules…if the world breaks one of their Rules no telling what other rules we might break. ..lol.
    Pollard is of no use to Israel or anyone else, this is just another ‘bow to us” , stick it to the goys on Israel’s part.

    • lysias on April 1, 2014, 2:48 pm

      So do they think it was scary for the Rosenbergs to be imprisoned (I’m ignoring their being executed, because I have serious doubts about that myself) and for their several accomplices, many of them Jewish, to be sentenced to prison terms?

  35. eGuard on April 1, 2014, 1:09 pm

    Watch Wolf Blitzer at CNN. He has been supporting this release for over 20 years. Back then he was openly Zionist.

    Remember how Blitzer already pushed the “Free Pollard” yell hoax, a year ago when Obama was visiting his hostage takers. Never admitted the mistake.

  36. eGuard on April 1, 2014, 1:16 pm

    Those NYT comments are revealing. A few years ago, no comments would be allowed in this situation.

    Their “NYT picks” selection tries to dam the surge, but to no avail. It is an admittance that they could not find a decent proponent for the release! (with the comment counter at 250).

  37. mikeo on April 1, 2014, 1:31 pm

    Palestinians apply to join UN institutions

    Convicted spy Jonathan Pollard waives parole hearing, U.S. parole commission official says.

    Haaretz

    I hope this is not a April Fools joke!

  38. Brown-Eyed Girl on April 1, 2014, 1:37 pm

    I can only hope it is an April Fools’ joke. But unfortunately, it looks like the Palestinian Authority will play the fool again. My God, if they agree to this “deal,” they will never get a scrap of historic Palestine much less a state, an autonomous region, a canton, or “autonomy” over the remaining acres of the West Bank and a building or 2 in Jerusalem.

    If the PA agrees to this, the Palestinian people will have no other choice than to launch a full intifada, damn the consequences. The PA has been neutered for years, Obama has become Netanyahu’s poodle, the Arab world is in disarray and the Arab leaders have abandoned them, while what is left of Palestine is rapidly disappearing. Of course, this is what Israel has planned all along.

    • Kathleen on April 1, 2014, 4:35 pm

      Agreed. And the push for one state will grow by leaps and bounds over the year.

  39. PAF on April 1, 2014, 1:42 pm

    If Pollard is to be released, I suggest only into the USA and population and under the same restrictive conditions endured by a real hero, Mordechi Vanunu, in Israel. See The Arab Daily News today.
    PAF

    • irmep on April 1, 2014, 2:11 pm

      It is unacceptable to Pollard that he be released into the U.S.

      He has been eligible for parole for years, but has never applied. He would rather be a prisoner or rock star in Israel, than a cad in the U.S.

      He is essentially an inmate within his own prison.

      • Kathleen on April 1, 2014, 4:36 pm

        Interesting

    • Kathleen on April 1, 2014, 4:34 pm

      Mordechai for Pollard….Doubt Israel would even consider

  40. Les on April 1, 2014, 1:47 pm

    There are many noteworthy comments on both Huffington Post and RawStory. This I found particularly pithy,

    “The difference is that Israel can restock its supply of Palestinian prisoners at any time.”

    http://www.rawstory.com/rs/2014/04/01/release-of-israeli-spy-jonathan-pollard-on-the-table-as-us-tries-to-salvage-mideast-peace-talks/

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/04/01/jonathan-pollard_n_5068502.html

    • lysias on April 1, 2014, 2:49 pm

      Of course, we could also restock our supply of people sentenced for spying for Israel, if only we had the will to do it.

  41. Abdul-Rahman on April 1, 2014, 1:56 pm

    The zios would actually be smart to be careful on this whole matter. One would have to think getting a convicted spy like Pollard released, couldn’t be good “pr” for Israel in the US. I guess the Likudniks and their neocon associates think the hasbara crew and its’ agents still have enough “pull” and control around the American “mainstream” media to get them through any “rough patches”.

    If this does come about I’m sure we’ll be seeing a lot of the hasbara gang spewing the myths on the convicted spy/traitor Pollard (that they’ve been using for some time) that allegedly Pollard’s espionage “didn’t harm America” and that supposedly Pollard “only spied for an ‘ally'”. A nice refutation of those (false) claims by Pollard’s apologists http://www.businessinsider.com/why-the-us-may-release-pollard-2014-4

    “‘Much of what he took, contrary to what he’d have you believe, had nothing to do with Arab countries or the security of Israel, but had everything to do with U.S. collection methods, to include most specifically against the Soviet Union,’ Admiral Thomas Brooks (Ret.), a former director of naval intelligence who Pollard worked for in 1980, told Foreign Policy.”

    Not to mention the American’s who’s covers Pollard’s espionage blew.

    Oh and as for these endless “talks”, the talk on supposedly halting (some) of the illegal settlements has to be some of the vaguest stuff one could ever read. It definitely does seem that the resumption of “peace talks” have a direct correlation with an increase in the illegal settlement activity of the Israeli regime. If Abbas and the PA weren’t so totally controlled by the same American officials (that AIPAC has their claws so fully into) they’d say “screw these Israeli games and ploys!” and go directly and unilaterally to the UN and ICC tomorrow.

  42. W.Jones on April 1, 2014, 2:39 pm

    The NYT interactive article’s map of where to draw the lines puts the West Bank in the middle and the rest of Israel is not in the map. The implication from a vsual standpoint is that to make things “equal” one would divide the territory in that mini picture. Maybe I am wrong. Let me know what you think:
    http://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2012/04/24/world/middleeast/lines-in-the-sand.html

    • Woody Tanaka on April 1, 2014, 3:06 pm

      I agree. The whole thing is slanted and ignores some of the key issues in the oppression of the Palestinians. Par for the course for the NYT — Israel’s Fan Club newletter here in the US of A.

      • W.Jones on April 2, 2014, 12:06 am

        Yes. It seems like if they showed the whole country of Israel, some people would want to divide the whole country equally. They focus in on the west Bank instead.

  43. RobertB on April 1, 2014, 3:15 pm

    BACKROOM BLACKMAIL WILL FREE POLLARD

    April 1, 2014

    Convicted spy for Israel Jonathan Pollard will be freed from a US jail before Passover, which begins April 14, a senior Israeli source familiar with ongoing peace negotiations with the Palestinians said Tuesday. The deal would also see hundreds of Palestinian prisoners released by Israel and the Palestinians agreeing to extend talks into 2015.

    Click on link below…for the rest of the story:

    http://www.desertpeace.wordpress.com/2014/04/01/backroom-blackmail-will-free-pollard/

  44. W.Jones on April 1, 2014, 3:21 pm

    It is hard to understand – Why would the US make releasing Pollard a part of an agreement for peace between two other countries. What did Pollard have to do with Palestinians?

    Phyllis Bennis gave a good talk recently on a progressive perspective on the Middle East and said that Washington does not help Israel out of fondness for Jews, but out of political calculations. She added that anti-semitism was strong in parts of Washington. But I found this latter claim strange. I oppose anti-semitism and I expect that cultural bigotry exists in Washington like it does in other parts of the country. But since accusations of anti-Semitism play such a big role in this topic, where might she think it exists in Washington? How is it manifesting itself? Politicians disagreeing with Israeli policies, after all, is hardly anti-semitic. Is she exaggerating based on previous decades when it was more common?

    • Kathleen on April 1, 2014, 4:32 pm

      Phyllis Bennis is wrong on this. Where does “fondness” come into this issue. A sense of guilt that is hammered on and persistent pressure from I lobby groups as well as ownership of congressional members. Israel has owned U.S. foreign policy in this part of the world for decades. As well as being a strategic geographical location for the U.S. military. What many experts have now been saying for decades. This U.S. Israel relationship has been and continues to undermine U.S. National Security. Little to no benefit for the U.S. any longer

      • W.Jones on April 2, 2014, 12:09 am

        She would tend to say some of those things – the strategic location and interest groups. But she did not say further what she meant in her declaration about part of Washington being anti-Semitic. I am curious how exactly that manifests itself if politicians are not saying anything anti-Semitic or proposing anti-Semitic rules.

        Maybe she is basing her impression on local town semi-official discrimination Chomsky talked about from the 1950’s?

  45. Kathleen on April 1, 2014, 3:55 pm

    What a sham. “Israel will freeze most of the settlements” MOST leaves all of the room in the world for Israel to continue to do as they please with absolutely no consequences. “restraint” Israel has no idea what that word means.

    Have read that the Pollard deal made meant that all information about how much damage that Pollard’s traitorous action caused U.S. National Security has never been released. That CIA analyst will go ape shit if he is released.

    With deal’s like this Israel is tickled pink. Buying time. Abbas is a total fool if he goes along with this sham

    • Woody Tanaka on April 1, 2014, 4:06 pm

      “What a sham. “Israel will freeze most of the settlements” MOST leaves all of the room in the world for Israel to continue to do as they please with absolutely no consequences. ”

      Not only that, but it will let them to continue the liquidation of Arab East Jerusalem, as they refuse to recognize the Jewish settlements there as settlements.

  46. a blah chick on April 1, 2014, 6:56 pm

    “JERUSALEM (AP) — A hard-line Israeli Cabinet minister says convicted spy Jonathan Pollard opposes being freed from a U.S. jail in exchange for Palestinians prisoners.”

    Cuz he’s a man of integrity!

  47. Citizen on April 4, 2014, 6:43 am

    I don’t know why anyone negotiating wouldn’t be aware Israel has a history of releasing prisoners, only to replace them by arresting more, replacing its bargaining chips, e.g., in negotiations to release Shalit a few years ago, when Israel arrested nearly the same number as they freed: http://www.jonathan-cook.net/2014-04-03/the-israeli-spy-and-palestinian-peace-talks/

    PS: Timing: Abbas didn’t proclaim he was going to the UN agencies until after Netanyahu had already missed the time he was supposed to release the prisoners, right?

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