Pollard Turns Down $1 Million

Spy says Israel, U.S. should honor release pledge

WorldNetDaily.com - August 31, 2001

Esther and Jonathan Pollard announced last night that they categorically reject any offer by the government of Israel to pay Mr. Pollard $1 million.

Instead, they said, Jerusalem should fulfill its responsibility by insisting that the United States honor its commitment to release Pollard. That commitment was made by President Clinton at the Wye Conference in 1998. Even though Israel honored its reciprocal commitments made at Wye, which included releasing hundreds of Palestinian terrorists, the United States has never honored its commitment to release Pollard.

Several reports in Israel yesterday said a special committee in the prime minister's office had decided to offer Mr. Pollard $1 million.

"Jonathan did not request such a payment," said Mrs. Pollard. "We will not accept it. All we ask is that Israel and the United States honor their commitments — to Jonathan and to each other."

Pollard is serving his 17th year of a life sentence in a U.S. federal penitentiary. According to his wife, he is very ill and not getting proper medical attention.

Earlier this month, U.S. District Judge Norma Holloway Johnson dismissed, on procedural grounds, a motion for re-sentencing filed in September 2000 by Pollard's new attorneys, Eliot Lauer and Jacques Semmelman. The motion claimed that Pollard had "ineffective assistance of counsel before, during and immediately after [he] was sentenced to life in prison on March 4, 1987." Lauer and Semmelman said Pollard's then-attorney "failed to object that the government was breaching its plea agreement when it demanded a life sentence after it had promised not to do so."

The court dismissed the attorneys' motion on procedural grounds. The court reportedly did not rule on "whether prior counsel had acted effectively, and did not address either the propriety of the government's conduct at sentencing or the appropriateness of the life sentence."

In a separate ruling this month, Pollard's motion for the Court's "reconsideration of its refusal in January 2001 to permit his new attorneys, both of whom have 'top secret' security clearance from the U.S. Department of Justice, to gain access to approximately 35 to 40 pages of classified documents in the court's docket, submitted by both sides prior to sentencing." These documents reportedly include portions of a declaration submitted in January 1987 by then-Secretary of Defense Caspar Weinberger. None of Pollard's attorneys have been permitted to see these documents since his sentencing in March 1987. Pollard's attorneys intend to challenge these rulings via the appeal process.