Bush Did Not Receive or Reject Sharon Appeal

Justice4JP Release - June 17, 2002

"President George Bush did not reject a request by PM Sharon for the release of Jonathan Pollard." So said Pollard attorney, Larry Dub, responding to a report in the NEW YORK POST yesterday alleging that President Bush had rejected a Sharon appeal for Pollard.

Dub stated that Washington sources confirm that Bush never received any such request from Sharon when the two met in Washington last week.

The NY POST item that Dub referred to was written by an Israeli reporter known for his close ties to Ariel Sharon. "It appears to be calculated disinformation intended to counteract today's front page headlines in YEDIOT ACHRONOT (Israel's leading daily paper) which indicate that if Sharon doesn't follow marching orders from Washington, he will be replaced," said Dub."The Pollard issue is just a device which the writer exploited in order to promote the notion of mutuality and harmony between Sharon and Bush 'on all matters that really count' - of course, Pollard is not one of them."

According to the POST:

"The only 'no' that Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon heard from President Bush last week in their White House meeting came when he asked the president to look into the case of Jonathan Pollard... Otherwise, the sixth Bush-Sharon summit was conducted "in complete harmony"..." [NY POST June 16, 2002]

Dub further charged that the article misstates facts and inaccurately reports history so that "the mishmash which results lionizes Sharon while disparaging former Israeli prime ministers." He said that a knowledgeable source in Washington called the article "transparent in its motive" and stated that, "in fact it has nothing to do with Pollard. After all, Sharon's failure to secure Pollard's release is not news. It is status quo. So the only reason to write about it, would be to make some other point."

In a related item: prior to the Bush-Sharon meeting in Washington, Jonathan Pollard requested that Sharon include his wife, Esther, who is currently in Jerusalem, in his entourage. A call from the Prime Minister's office to attorney Dub brought the response: "The Prime Minister will not be taking Mrs. Pollard with him on his trip to Washington because there is no room on his plane."

Asked for his reaction to this incredibly lame excuse, Dub stated, "If our Prime Minister feared Heaven even 10% as much as he fears the American President, our country would not be in deep mourning today, and Jonathan Pollard would have been home long ago."

Esther Pollard responded to the allegations in the NY POST: "Our nation continues to bury its dead while making outrageous concessions to its sworn enemies - even releasing the murderers of an Israeli Cabinet Minister and freeing blood-thirsty terrorists, all at the behest of the United States. We are deeply disappointed that our Prime Minister has chosen not to ask the US for any consideration for an Israeli agent in peril. Rather than acting with honor and integrity as behooves the leader of a sovereign state, Mr. Sharon's posturing and dissembling on the issue merely prolongs Jonathan's suffering and damages our national integrity."