Small Wars Journal

Pollard, American Who Spied for Israel, Released From U.S. Prison

Fri, 11/20/2015 - 7:44pm

Pollard, American Who Spied for Israel, Released From U.S. Prison

Voice of America

Israeli spy Jonathan Pollard was released on parole Friday after spending 30 years in a U.S. prison, a move welcomed by Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

Pollard is a former U.S. Navy Investigative Service civilian analyst. He was sentenced to life in prison in 1987 after pleading guilty to selling classified defense documents to Israel, a huge cache of intelligence summaries about the capabilities of Israel's enemies.

He was freed from a prison in the mid-Atlantic state of North Carolina and later registered with a probation office in New York.

'Difficult Decades'

"After three long and difficult decades, Jonathan is at last reunited with his family," Netanyahu said in a statement. The Israeli leader had repeatedly pushed for Pollard's release.

"The people of Israel welcome the release of Jonathan Pollard," Netanyahu added.

The 61-year-old Pollard, who was granted Israeli citizenship in 1995 while in prison, is expected to settle in the New York area while he spends at least the next five years on parole. He is barred from traveling outside the United States, including to Israel, without permission. Pollard has said he wants to move to Israel, where his second wife lives.

The Justice Department has so far declined to discuss details of his parole; but, his lawyers said Pollard will be required to wear an electronic bracelet so his movements can be monitored and that his personal computers and work computer at the New York investment firm that has hired him will be subject to monitoring.

'Onerous and Oppressive'

Pollard's lawyers called the restrictions "onerous and oppressive" and immediately contested them in a federal court.

Netanyahu has asked the U.S. to allow Pollard to move immediately to Israel, the pro-government Israeli newspaper Israel Hayom reported Thursday.

Two New York congressmen, Eliot Engel and Jerrold Nadler, have also written U.S. Attorney General Loretta Lynch, saying Pollard should be allowed to renounce his American citizenship and emigrate to Israel.

The White House, however, has said it has no intention of altering the terms of Pollard's parole.


The side bar issue involving Pollard's parole is that Israel is supposed to be an ally of the U.S. under whose umbrella and no-strings attached monetary aid the Jewish state has existed.

Granted, Pollard wasn't planted by Israel nor was he originally recruited by them. I also understand that allies do spy on each other for varying reasons as well.

However, my view is that true allies don't then turn around and use such information/intelligence to give an allied nation's enemy . . . In this case there is speculation Israel used Pollard supplied material to barter with Russia for Jewish detainees.

If this is correct, our own methods for acquiring this information were likely compromised. Which could mean that our own recruited agents in Russia were uncovered . . . I doubt those (hypothetical?) agents were handed a prison term, but, were taken out and shot.

Outlaw 09

Sat, 11/21/2015 - 5:45am

In reply to by SWJED

Side comment...Pollard should have remained forever in jail BUT he was the "partial price' Obama had to pay Israel for their remaining a tad quieter concerning the Iran Deal. The other "partial price" was a massive military aid package for Israel.

Notice Obama only gave in partially--Pollard going to Israel was the deal Net wanted-- by holding him in the US Obama now has an edge on Net as he can claim if the Israeli's do not toe the line "Pollard violated his parole terms".

Remember Obama is all about "his legacy" and a "legacy" cannot be--"he let a major spy out of jail"......because he was pressured to.

Have too many stories of Mossad ops in Berlin when Russian Jewish refugees were being smuggled from Austria to Berlin for 3K USD per head via Rome using forged Russian exit/employment documents and getting hundreds of thousands of DMs of German unemployment financial assistance due to those forged documents.

Or who exactly fully financed the Iron Dome AD system.....but then would not share the technical data with the US?

Israel was not the only country Pollard offered up his inside talents to. That alone lends serious doubt concerning his loyalties and so called convictions. Moreover, some reports state that Israel passed on Pollard's intel to third-party countries. Israel took a chance with Pollard and we should hold Israel accountable.

Dave D.

Outlaw 09

Sat, 11/21/2015 - 12:53am

Fully concur---the attack was deliberate as the Liberty had recorded the Israeli launch of their war and Israel wanted no record of that--as simple as that.

And you are correct Israel has never fully explained itself on that attack.

In some ways the attack was similar to the attack on the relief aid ship going to Gaza that resulted in deaths as well and has soured Israeli Turkish relations.

As an add on, I really would like the bottom line truth concerning the Israeli attack on the USS Liberty. Don't get me wrong, I am a supporter of the state of Israel, but at times feel very uncomfortable with certain aspects of the two country's relationship. The opinions here are mine, not SWJ's. Long time readers know that - what I say, rarely at that, is not what the collective SWJ says.