Bull's Eye! - Editorial, Jewish Press

Mr. President, Why Isn't Contrition Enough For Jonathan Pollard Too?

September 23, 1998 - The Jewish Press (New York)

Whether President Clinton's mea culpa is sincere as some have it, or woefully inadequate as others contend, his thrust is clear: Let us get us get past the Lewinsky matter and on with the Nation's business. It is really a remarkable effort on the part of Mr. Clinton. The sordidness of his conduct with Ms. Lewinsky has now left us with a President publicly tainted with private scandal of unprecedented proportions. And what is being too much overlooked, he is revealed as a person who has almost certainly lied under oath in legal proceedings, obstructed justice, tampered with witnesses and abused the power of the Presidency.

Yet, Mr. Clinton submits that the American People and Congress can put all that behind them because he has apologized and expressed his remorse. It occurs to us that Mr. Clinton has had the power to pardon Jonathan Pollard for six years and though he has repeatedly represented that he would focus on that issue in his two election campaigns, he has failed to do so.

Why should an apology work for Bill Clinton but not for Jonathan Pollard who has already served 13 years in a federal penitentiary? Why is 13 years of a disproportionate prison term not enough for Jonathan Pollard, but a mere apology is enough for Bill Clinton?

The American Jewish Community has to realize once and for all that as Mr. Clinton's efforts to have no consequences visited upon him, his failure to treat others similarly, belie the genuineness of his pleas.

Mr. President, what goes around comes around. We can't help but feel that had you shown any measure of sympathy for the plight of Jonathan Pollard, that you would not find yourself in the box you are in today.