A most popular blog post recently has been that of a fellow blogger here, Rabbi Eric Yoffie who thinks people are going crazy about Pollard. Usually, one doesn’t relate to a colleague, but, since this is blogger territory, I’ll permit myself to do so.
But a point of personal disclosure: I was the first coordinator of the Knesset’s lobby on Behalf of Jonathan Pollard and visited him in jail twice, in 1990 and 1993. I still maintain contact with his family.
Yoffie writes against the charge being raised that the main problem with the lack of Pollard’s release is anti-Semitism:
…there is a huge difference between prejudices that may have been at work with a person here and there and a policy of anti-Semitism in which a large number of people—judges, security officials, military personnel, politicians—would have had to be complicit…it is simply incredible to think that a vendetta against the Jewish community could be taking place without these Jews being aware of it, or that they would tolerate it for a single second if they knew it to exist.
A little less pontificating, please, and a little more reality.
Unfortunately, due to a matter of timing, shortly after his post went up, this paper carried in this story the words of the former head of the CIA, James Woolsey
“I certainly don’t think that it is universally true, but in the case of some American individuals, I think there is anti-Semitism at work here.”
That, of course, goes right against Yoffie’s main charge against a colleague in American Jewish leadership:
The Anti-Defamation League’s national director, Abraham Foxman , criticized Pollard’s continued incarceration last month, calling it “on the verge of anti-Semitism.” He said he believed Pollard was being kept in prison to intimidate American Jews. “It is an intimidation that can only be based on an anti-Semitic stereotype about the Jewish community,” he said,
So, where does that leave Yoffie?
The words of Paul Simon come to mind:
I fear I''ll do some damage
One fine day
But I would not be convicted
By a jury of my peers
Still crazy after all these years