Was Jonathan Pollard please agreement with the US government violated by an interview he gave to then Jerusalem Post reporter Wolf Blitzer and now CNN anchorman back in the late 1980’s? Well that newspaper seems to believe that is the case with the release of previously confidential files now released by the US about the Pollard affair.
Jonathan Pollard was a US Navy Analyst who pleaded guilty in 1986 for spying for Israel while in the employee of the Navy. Though pleading guilty and agreeing to do so on the condition that he not receive a life sentence, Pollard was sentenced to life by presiding judge Aubrey Robinson in Washington, DC. The newly released documents indicate that the government was no longer obligated to uphold their end of the sentencing agreement in the aftermath of the interview given by Pollard to the newspaper.
Segments of the American Jewish community have protested and been up in arms about the Pollard case for more than two decades. Pollard is now in his 27th year of imprisonment in the US with no end in sight to his ordeal. Many former leading US officials as well as Senators and Congressman have been beseeching President Obama as well as presidents before him to finally release Mr. Pollard. Numerous requests have been made by leading Israeli officials—amongst them Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and President Shimon Peres—to release Mr. Pollard and allow him to go live with his wife Esther, in Israel. US policy, however, has been not to respond to those requests and to take no action on the matter.
The new information also reveals that Pollard was not spying for Israel on the US but was rather seeking information on Arab governments that made its way through the CIA and State Department.
In addition to the interview that Jonathan Pollard gave to Blitzer, the memo says, an interview given by his ex-wife, Anne Pollard to 60 Minutes three days prior to sentencing was also considered by the US a violation of the plea agreement. Pollard lawyers disagree with this assessment indicating that it would have been impossible for Mr. Pollard to give an interview to anyone without authorization because Mr. Blitzer required Prisons Service approval to enter the prison and record the interview.
For now the Pollard saga continues with no discernible end in sight.