Morris Pollard 311 AP.
(photo credit: Associated Press)
The 94-year-old father of ex-US Navy analyst Jonathan Pollard, convicted of
spying for Israel, said Sunday he can’t sleep at night with his son still in
prison serving a life sentence.
Morris Pollard said the 1987 sentence of
his son is “such an overwhelming miscarriage of justice” that he keeps “waking
up fighting with people” in his imagination.
The elder Pollard, a former
cancer researcher and director of the Lobund Laboratory at the University of
Notre Dame, told the South Bend Tribune he’s particularly upset about the role
that then-US defense secretary Caspar Weinberger played in a letter to the court
seeking a heavy sentence.
“How can you have a man in prison on the sealed
testimony of an accuser, Caspar Weinberger, who should be automatically
disqualified for being convicted... as part of the Iran- Contra Affair?” he told
“I can’t sleep because of it.
It’s such an
overwhelming miscarriage of justice that I keep waking up fighting with
Jonathan Pollard is now 54.
He worked as a civilian
intelligence analyst when he was arrested, tried and convicted of passing US
secrets to Israel.
The elder Pollard believes the US government is using
his son as a pawn in negotiations with Israel.
“You can fight for justice
as much as you want to,” he says, “but the government has decided to use him as
a means to get Israel to agree to certain things. This is my interpretation: He
is a hostage.”
Pollard has not spoken to his son since 2003, when
Jonathan phoned from prison to speak to grieving family members upon the death
of his mother, Mildred Pollard, at the age of 84.
At the time, father and
son spoke of reconciliation after a long period of estrangement, but ever since,
the elder Pollard says, Jonathan has refused to accept phone calls or grant
requests for visitation.
“I happened to be in North Carolina a couple
times,” Morris Pollard told the Tribune, “and I called the prison and said, ‘I’d
like to come visit my son. Can you see if it’s OK?’ And they said no.”
said he feels “bad” about the state of the relationship but does not blame his
“I have a friend who is a retired federal judge in Chicago, and he
said, don’t blame the person in jail on trumpedup charges,” he says, “because
they change, they become angry with everyone.”