Include Pollard in Any Prisoner Swap

Rabbi Dov Fischer - Jerusalem Post [Letters] - September 23, 2003

If Israel plans to release 400 Arab murderers, cutthroats and Jew-haters in return for one living Jew and three deceased Jews, it seems clear that such an imbalanced exchange cannot be stopped. Otherwise, the lop-sided discussions would have collapsed on Israel's side long ago. Given this inevitability, Israel should demand that Jonathan Pollard, too, be released and sent to Israel.

America would not refuse that demand if that one requirement threatened to torpedo the entire prisoner swap. Israel should demand Pollard's release as part of the deal. It would allow America to get rid of Pollard, a political albatross, in a way that seems magnanimous. The demand would see Israel fulfill a promise it has broken so often. And it would soften some outrage that this lop-sided swap engenders among those Jews who resent once again being snookered as patsies.

Justice4JP Adds

: Why won't Prime Minister Sharon ask President Bush to release Jonathan Pollard? J4JP has learned that in a cabinet session immediately following his return from the U.S., Sharon was asked by a cabinet minister why he failed to take up the issue of Jonathan Pollard with President Bush. The Prime Minister responded saying,

"Beggars cannot make noise."


The head of a sovereign nation describes his country as


What is even worse than the Prime Minister's remark, J4JP learned, not a single cabinet minister at the meeting uttered a word of protest!!

The bottom line: Jonathan Pollard's release was promised to Israel by the U.S. as an integral part of the Wye Accords. It is up to Israel to collect on Jonathan's release, for which she has already paid the price. It is time for the U.S. to live up to its end of the deal. For further information see The Wye Double-Cross Page.

Rabbi Dov Fischer is Rav of the Young Israel of Calabasas and doubles as a civil litigation attorney in Los Angeles, where he currently is general counsel to Donald T. Sterling, the real estate magnate and owner of the Los Angeles Clippers NBA basketball team. He is a member of the Board of Directors of the Jewish Community Relations Committee of Los Angeles Federation Council, and formerly Los Angeles Director of the Institutefor Public Affairs for the Union of Orthodox Congregations. He practices complex civil litigation at the law firm Akin, Gump, Strauss, Hauer and Feld. He is also on the National Executive Board of the Zionist Organization of America.