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Thursday, June 14, 2012

Proud of Shimon Peres? Will He Help Jonathan Pollard?

Shimon Peres, Israel's President, a position which is supposed to be ceremonial not political sort of like the Queen/King of England, was recently presented with the Medal of Freedom by United States President Barack Hussein Obama.

Many Jews and Israelis are proud and happy that an Israeli was honored in such a way.  I'm not.  Peres has been an active participant in Israeli politics and policy for many, too many decades.  Lots and lots (I'm sick of writing "many") Israelis and Jews have high hopes that he'll return home with Jonathan Pollard. 

I also wish that Pollard would be released, but I can't see Peres as his savior.

Dry Bones from 1987

Shimon Peres was in a high political position, Prime Minister of Israel, when Pollard was captured and arrested.  That makes Peres very much part of the original problem

Very few Israeli politicians came to Pollard's aid and support in the early years of his incarceration.  The most dedicated, to him to this day, has been Geula Cohen who was then a Member of Knesset.

I think it's ridiculously ironic and naive for people to think that Peres will fight for Jonathan Pollard's release without first admitting his own guilt and involvement.

One of the reasons I have absolutely nothing to do with the official "free Jonathan Pollard" organization is because it ignores the full history of Pollard's arrest and punishment.  The Pollard family has been totally rejected and pushed away from the issue, as if they are the enemy, the cause of the problem.  And people like Peres, who actually were involved --the guy was Israeli Prime Minister at the time of the arrest-- are considered the good guys.  That makes me very suspicious of the entire organization. 

My husband worked for former MK Geula Cohen at the time of Pollard's arrest.  Geula immediately got involved trying to get Israel to help Pollard and his wife Anne.  (Yes, for those who may be unaware, Pollard had been married to Anne Henderson at the time of his arrest.  She was later arrested and spent some time in jail; then she moved to Israel and then went back to the states.)  My husband had even been sent to visit Pollard in jail twice.

It's a moral and legal crime that Jonathan Pollard is still in prison, and I have no doubt that his official supporters are just continuing bungling the campaign to free him.


Eliyahu S. said...

Sadly, I must entirely agree with you.

Batya said...

It was with great sadness that I wrote that post.
Eliyahu, thanks

Moishedor said...

I agree with your story, Batya but we heard more than that. We heard in the U.S. Pollard gave away secrets that were promised to be given to Israel and he knew they should know to avoid disaster.

Someone from the State dept made a deal with him to plead guilty and no jail time and he would be free.

At the moment of sentencing, Weinberger(forgot what position he had as it was so long ago) came into the courtroom and took the Black Judge out of the court. He told him that Pollard was anti-African American and worked against Mandella.

Then the Judge came out and gave that horrible sentence. Our government lied to him and Alan Dershowitz knew it.

English spies have received only 5 years in prison doing worse than Pollard did,but, then again, they were not Jewish. It is nothing but clear anti-semitism and it will never stop.

Batya said...

Yes, that's true. The whole business agains Pollard was filthy from every side.

Eliyahu S. said...

"Cap" Weinberger was SecDef (Secretary of Defense) during the Pollard affair. As the Wikipedia article suggests, he was up to his neck in other problematic behavior. I always thought it was a shame that Israel didn't kidnap him, imprison him on charges relating to his spilling the beans about Israeli security operations during the Iran-Contragate hearings, and hold him as a trade for Pollard. THAT would have been "justice."

Batya said...

Eliyahu, Then Latma's "Tell on Me," Latma's Ballad should be sung to him, too.