Pollard’s Father: He’s Served Too Long


pollardPressure in the United States to release jailed Israeli spy Jonathan Pollard continues to mount – The Washington Post today published an article written by Pollard’s father, Professor Morris Pollard, in whic he calls for his son’s release.

The article, titled “Locked up for too long,” was published ahead of the 25th anniversary to Pollard’s arrest, which will be marked on Sunday.

“Twenty-five years ago this month, Jonathan Pollard, a civilian naval intelligence analyst, was arrested for passing to Israel classified US data concerning Iraq, Syria and other Arab states, including evidence of Saddam Hussein’s development of chemical weapons,” his father writes.

“Pollard was later sentenced to life in prison – the only person to receive such a punishment for spying for an American ally or neutral country,” he adds.  

In his article, Pollard cites Lawrence Korb, an assistant secretary of defense at the time of Pollard’s arrest, who has been actively campaigning to release his jailed son.

Among his activities, Korb has appealed to President Barack Obama and asked him to mitigate Pollard’s prison sentence.

Prof. Pollard also mentions an editorial published by the newspaper in December 1993, which also called to alleviate Pollard’s punishment.

“(Former) Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin was urging President Bill Clinton to commute Pollard’s sentence to the eight years then served. That call was supported by members of Congress and a range of prominent religious and political figures,” he writes.

In the editorial, Prof. Pollard claims other spies received much lighter sentences: “CIA agent David Barnett, who sold the Soviets the names of 30 American agents, was sentenced to 18 years and paroled after 10. Michael Walker, a key figure in the Walker family Soviet spy ring, was sentenced to 25 years and released after serving 15. William Kampiles, a CIA officer who sold the Soviets the operating manual to the KH-11 satellite, America’s “eye in the sky,” received a 40-year sentence and was released after 18 years.”

According to Pollard senior, “The message of those still opposed to Pollard’s release is that, apparently, we can wink at espionage on behalf of Egypt, Saudi Arabia and China; we can limit the punishments of those who expose American agents, compromise sophisticated US electronic intelligence capabilities, advance the development of enemy weapons systems and even fight alongside enemy combatants – but that unauthorized transmittal of classified data about Arab states to warn Israel of existential threats is unforgivable. For that crime even 25 years in prison is not enough.”

At the bottom of the article, he concludes with an open ended question, writing “A petition for executive clemency for Jonathan Pollard sits on President Obama’s desk. Will he bring the injustice in this affair to a long overdue end or be a partner in its perpetuation?”



  1. Is everything in Israel a combina ?

    The linking of the fate of Jonathon Pollard to the settlement freeze is not right. Diplomatic combinas are fraught with danger if the bargaining chips are not of the same currency. They are two different areas of jurisprudence. One involves questions of national security. The other involves the correct order of the Redemption in the Holy Land and how things should progress on the ground. Literally. The exact nature of his sentence can be reassessed, but the issues should not be confused. I am no longer surprised by the lack of clear thinking in many people. Every case should be analysed on its merits. If this just an ambit claim tactic then people should realise that such machinations invariably just impede necessary deliberations. Time to get to the point everyone !

  2. i think its important for there to be a comprehencive article writen in the jewish press about mr pollard and his history . i believe that only someone familiar with the entire chain of events deserves the right to render an opinion on whether he is in truth being treted unfairly . lets all learn the story and then see how we feel …..