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Let Pollard go. But first get answers from Tel Aviv

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Jonathan Pollard
Jonathan Pollard

We take seriously the issue of humanitarian release for Jonathan Pollard. Twenty-nine years in prison– half his life until now– is enough. Let him go.

But what should be the terms of his release?

First, The Israelis have never come clean about what they got and what they did with it. They must give us that information before the U.S. unlocks Pollard’s cell. There’s a strong suggestion in Seymour Hersh’s coverage of the case, and others, that some in the intelligence community believe Pollard’s secrets were traded to the Soviet Union in exchange for Soviet Jewish emigres to Israel, at a huge risk to US national security. It’s possible US agents were killed. Were they? Who? We’d like to know. Let us have the answers.

Second. It’s clear that thirty years ago, Israeli intelligence took advantage of an emotionally-distressed young man with drug problems. Have any Israelis paid the price for helping to put this man in prison for thirty years? Pollard certainly approached Israel and offered to spy for them. But who in the end is to blame for this: Israel intelligence handlers stuck him in prison for nearly 30 years and walked away with a boatload of our secrets.

The real villain here isn’t Pollard. He’s a pathetic guy who’s suffered enough. Let him go, but we want answers and the answers don’t come from him. They come from Tel Aviv. Has anyone in the Israeli security apparatus been punished for taking advantage of an insecure young man with drug issues? Why did the investigation of this spying episode stop with him? What was Israel doing? And were any of these Israeli handlers– better called his manipulators– punished for taking advantage of this young man and sticking him in prison and violating American friendship?

Three, What does releasing Pollard on humanitarian grounds have to do with the Israeli occupation of Palestine? Nothing. Why should an American who spied for Israel have anything to do with why Palestinian people who live in Hebron should be free of the crushing burden of apartheid and occupation? (See Yousef Munayyer, who makes a similar point).

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Let him go… in exchange for one of the people responsible for attacking USS Liberty. Moshe Dayan is dead, but I’m sure there’s some commander who was young’ish at the time who surely has a few decades left. And if we can’t have him in prison, where he(and his colleagues)… Read more »

” First, The Israelis have never come clean about what they got and what they did with it. They must give us that information before the U.S. unlocks Pollard’s cell. ”>>> Well, that’s never going to happen. The Israelis have never and will never come clean about anything, regardless of… Read more »

First, The Israelis have never come clean about what they got and what they did with it. They must give us that information before the U.S. unlocks Pollard’s cell. Why? There are two different issues here. One is the actions of Pollard. Two is the actions of what is perceived… Read more »

Sometimes, the most reliable websites and individuals seem to defend positions that are not understandable. Like when Glenn Greenwald was pleading FOR Scooter Libby in the Plame affair. Why on Earth would North and Weiss all of a sudden push for a long standing goal of the Israel lobby on… Read more »

/We take seriously the issue of humanitarian release for Jonathan Pollard/

Bullshit.