What about Pollard, Mr. President?

Morality, American style: Obama and Kerry want us to free Palestinian murderers, even while denying Jonathan Pollard his freedom.

July 23, 2013 15:23
2 minute read.
Jonathan Pollard red, white and blue

Jonathan Pollard red, white and blue. (photo credit: Courtesy)


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The United States is the leader of the free world, the strongest democracy on the face of the earth, the cradle of human rights and freedom. But these bombastic titles are worthless when the US acts cruelly, hypocritically and according to double standards.

Yesterday, Udi Segal of Channel 2 TV announced that the US had rejected Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu’s proposal that Jonathan Pollard also be released when Israel releases dozens of murderers serving life sentences.

The Americans have no problem asking Israel to release savages who’ve slaughtered innocent civilians. This is a no-brainer for them. They urge Israel to make “gestures” toward Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas to promote peace, to strengthen the moderates, to help calm things down and to get the Palestinians to return to the negotiating table. But then, when in return we ask for one basic humanitarian gesture – for Pollard to be released – the Americans are horrified.

We should release Pollard? What the heck are you talking about? Where did this come from? DID POLLARD kill anyone? No.

Was he responsible for someone’s death? Absolutely not (despite the fact that they did try to pin this on him, too). Pollard passed on classified information to Israel.

This offense usually comes with a relatively light sentence; many people indicted for such offenses in the US have been sent home after serving for just a few years.

Pollard has been sitting in jail for almost 30 years. That’s three decades. Pollard has spent most of his life in prison. He has been deprived of a family life and was not allowed to attend either his mother’s or his father’s funeral.

I understand, my dear Americans, that you need to prove a point, to set a precedent for other American Jews who might also feel a dual loyalty. But I think we passed that point a long time ago, and that now it is time for you to go back to being civilized and to make amends for your vindictiveness and recklessness by releasing Pollard.

It must be said – to Netanyahu’s credit – that of all of Israel’s leaders, he has been the only to consistently fight for Pollard’s release (not that it’s done us or Pollard any good.) At the Wye Plantation conference, president Bill Clinton promised Netanyahu Pollard would be released, but reneged at the last minute (due to pressure from the CIA.) Netanyahu tried again with George Bush and Barack Obama – and now once again with Obama.

But when it comes to its own prisoners, the US is much less flexible.

When it concerns prisoners sitting in Israeli jails who’ve murdered innocent citizens and who still swear every morning to continue to fight until Israel is completely destroyed, they are flexible.

Israel is expected to release these prisoners, many of whom will go on to carry out additional terrorist attacks, while the Americans continue with their own style of cruelty by keeping Pollard locked up. This is a morality lesson, American style.

Translated by Hannah Hochner.

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