Barak Manipulating Pollard Issue for Own Interests

The Jerusalem Post December 23, 1999 - Janine Zacharia


- Esther Pollard, wife of convicted American Jewish spy for Israel Jonathan Pollard, said yesterday she did not believe her husband would be released soon. She accused Prime Minister Ehud Barak and President Clinton of manipulating the issue for their own interests.

"What they are doing is making a lot of noise in the media to serve other purposes," Pollard told the Jerusalem Post in a telephone interview from Canada.

Pollard said that reports this week that Barak's emissary Moshe Kochanovsky, met with White House counsel Beth Nolan and a statement by a White House spokesman that officials had completed their review of a clemency request were meant to give the false impression that progress was being made.

Next week, the High Court of Justice will hold a hearing on the Pollard case. Esther Pollard has petitioned the court to order the government to release classified documents relating to her husband's arrest, and is accusing Barak of not doing enough to help secure his release.

*[For more a more accurate understanding of Jonathan Pollard's case, see the Text of Petition.]

Pollard a former US Navy intelligence analyst pleaded guilty in 1985 to passing US military secrets to Israel and is serving a life sentence for espionage.

Israel last year admitted that Pollard had worked on its behalf.

"All this publicity that is going on now between Barak and Clinton really shows that it is a total farce. If they can convince the Jewish community that are doing something then the heat may be off of Al Gore or of Hillary Clinton, and it may persuade the High Court of Israel," Pollard said.

Hillary Clinton has been eagerly trying to court the Jewish vote for her New York Senate Bid.

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