Urgent Pollard Update and Appeal

April 23, 1996

  • President Clinton has not officially rejected Jonathan's petition for commutation. As of this date, there has been no official response from the White House, Mr. Panetta's statement notwithstanding.
  • There exists no other option but executive commutation.
  • It is critical that the Jewish community make an 11th hour, all-out effort to secure a positive response to Jonathan Pollard's commutation petition - which is still on Mr. Clinton's desk.

    Urgent Appeal to the American Jewish Community from Jonathan Pollard

    This is my appeal to all American Jewish organizations and their leaders. This is not about legal inequities, political blood libels, or even about the violation of intelligence-sharing agreements. This is about two human beings who are very much in love and who just want a chance to be together, to live a normal life among our own people in Israel.

    For eleven years I have been know as "Israel's spy" and have been treated with contempt and disdain. For eleven years all I have seen are prison walls and razor wire, all I have heard are sharp commands and humiliating insults. For eleven years my only community has been the dregs of the earth.

    I have been robbed of my youth. My beard is streaked with grey. I am worn out fighting to survive, fighting for my life. My heart is heavy and I am disappointed and saddened by years and years of longing and waiting.

    I miss my wife, Esther. I want to live with her, to raise a family together before it's too late for us. I want a chance to laugh with my wife, to whisper sweet intimacies to her without a third party monitor listening in, without a camera following my every move. I want to write her love letters without having some stranger in Washington read, and then "lose" or destroy them.

    The only thing that sustains me now is my dream of leading a quiet life as a free man among our own people. I long to be a productive member of Israeli society. To enjoy the companionship of good friends. To be a good husband and a loving father. These are my dreams and aspirations.

    I don't ask for very much. I just want to go home

    Therefore, I implore the leaders and members of all our communal organizations: please don't treat me as "expendable". Do not abandon me!

    Please make my immediate release part of your organization's agenda.

    In these dark and troubled times, every Jew counts. Every Jew matters. My place is at home with our people. Now.