Dub to Melchior:
Don't Call Me At Midnight to Do Barak's Dirty Work

September 9, 1999

In his letter (09/09/99) to Minister Michael Melchior (copy follows), attorney Larry Dub expresses his dismay at the minister's sudden and inappropriate interjection into the case of Jonathan Pollard.

Melchior, who has no knowledge of or involvement in the Pollard case, and who has no standing in Washington, suddenly appeared on the scene as the Government made a transparent last-minute attempt to present a better face to both the public and the court regarding its handling of the Pollard case.

Here is what happened: on the same day that the Pollard petition was filed in Israel Supreme Court (09/07/99), Pollard's attorney was wakened from his sleep at midnight by an emergency phone call from Minister Melchior's office. Allowing himself to be used as the long stick with which to touch Pollard, Melchior had met earlier in the day with Barak's right hand, Danny Yatom, (the man responsible for "managing the Pollard file").

At Yatom's bidding, Melchior set out to improve the Government's image by arranging an immediate meeting with Esther Pollard. The home telephone number of Pollard's attorney was secured and an emergency call was made to him requesting an immediate meeting with Mrs. Pollard the next morning.

Rubbing the sleep from his eyes, a shocked Dub replied that it was midnight and not a time to be discussing meetings. After all these months of the government completely ignoring Dub and the Pollards, Melchior's office now insisted that the meeting with Esther Pollard must be set at once. Dub again replied that it was inappropriate to be calling him at home at midnight and waking him from his sleep unless it were truly urgent business, such as the news that Jonathan Pollard is on his way home. Dub said goodnight without making any commitment to Melchior.

The next day (09/08/99) Minister Melchior's office issued a media release falsely stating that meetings between Melchior and the Pollards had been set to take place after the holidays. In his letter to Melchior, Dub expresses his dismay that Melchior's media release (09/08/99) falsely announced these meetings. Dub states that no such meetings were ever agreed to.

Dub stresses that since President Clinton committed to Jonathan Pollard's release at Wye as part of the accords - a fact that former Prime Minister Netanyahu recently personally reaffirmed to Mrs. Esther Pollard - the issue is now squarely between P.M. Barak and President Clinton. Dub calls on Melchior to cease his interference in the case before irreversible damage is done. He asks Melchior to put the responsibility back where it belongs - right in the hands of Ehud Barak. The English translation of Larry Dub's letter to Rabbi Melchior follows.

September 9, 1999

To: Rabbi Michael Melchior , Minister for Social and Diaspora Affairs

Re: Jonathan Pollard

Further to our telephone conversation last night, I was greatly dismayed to learn of a statement released to the media by your office on 09/08/99 which contained both substantial and factual falsehoods.

My comments are as follows:

  1. Mrs. Esther Pollard has never agreed to meet with you to discuss her husband's case. She was not even aware that you were seeking such a meeting.

  2. You have never sought nor obtained clearance with this office and / or my client, Jonathan Pollard, to make a prison visit, as is customary.

  3. You must understand that your unanticipated and inappropriate attempt to interject yourself into a case as delicate as this one - securing the release of Jonathan Pollard - is likely to do irreversible damage to my client.

    As has been explained to you, the only person who has both the authority and the standing in Washington to secure the release of my client, Jonathan Pollard, is the Prime Minister and Defense Minister, Ehud Barak - the Respondent in petition number 6029/99, filed 09/07/99, and now before the Supreme Court of Justice.

  4. Be aware that Mrs. Esther Pollard met with the former prime minister, Binyamin Netanyahu, on 09/07/99. Mr. Netanyahu assured Mrs. Pollard that President Clinton had committed to releasing Jonathan Pollard after the signing of the Wye Accords, and that his release had been secured as an integral part of the Wye Accords. Furthermore, Mr. Netanyahu stressed that Mr. Barak had been fully briefed concerning the release of Jonathan Pollard as part of the accords.

  5. In light of the fact that the release of my client had already been secured as part of the Wye Accords, the responsibility of concluding this deal with President Clinton devolves exclusively upon the prime minister, Ehud Barak. Interference by any other official, as mentioned above, is inappropriate and likely to do damage to my client and to delay his release.
In view of the above-mentioned facts, I hereby request that you desist from all activity related to my client. Furthermore, I would ask that you return the responsibility for securing my client's release to its proper place - into the hands of the prime minister - who is the only official who has both the authority and the standing in Washington necessary to deal with the matter.

Larry Dub Esq.
c.c. Prime Minister Ehud Barak

See also Jonathan Pollard's reaction to the government's sudden interjection of Minister Melchior into his case: