Jonathan Pollard's Yom Kippur Letter to PM Sharon

J4JP Release - October 2, 2003

Dear Prime Minister Sharon:

On the eve of Yom Kippur, when Heaven reviews and judges our actions, I write to express my extreme dismay over your designation of our People as a nation of "beggars".

I was absolutely disgusted to learn that during a cabinet discussion about your recent meeting with President Bush, you explained that you hadn't asked for my release because "Beggars can't make noise"!

How could you say such a thing? Have you no shame or sense of self-respect? Don't you remember the catastrophe that befell our People when ten of the spies returned from Canaan and described themselves as "grasshoppers"? We suffered the loss of an entire generation, Mr. Sharon, precisely because of this type of debased mentality! You think we're "beggars," Mr. Prime Minister? You might just as well have called us "slaves"!

What really sickens me the most though, Mr. Sharon, is that there wasn't a Calev or a Joshua in your entire cabinet who protested your degrading characterization of our people. Apparently your ministers just sat there and accepted what you said, as if they shared your low opinion of the amcha. But believe me, Mr. Sharon, that wasn't the case. Your ministers' silence only confirmed what every clear-thinking Israeli has known about them for some time: namely, that they are just a bunch of cowards who could be intimidated by a schoolyard bully. This is why, as far as I am concerned, Mr. Prime Minister, it is you and your ministers who are "beggars," not our People!

I ask you, Prime Minister Sharon:

Are the soldiers, sailors, pilots and policemen who valiantly defend our country "beggars"?

Are the young security guards who sacrifice themselves to stop the suicide bombers "beggars"?

Are the countless people who continue to ride the buses in spite of all the risks "beggars"?

Are the ex-Russian army veterans who selflessly volunteer to atrol the Old City and the Territories "beggars"?

Are the inhabitants of Yesha who cherish the land despite their terrible losses "beggars"?

Are the patrons of our cafes, malls and cinemas who face death just by trying to live a normal life "beggars"?

No, Mr. Sharon, they are not beggars! They are the proud descendants of kings, prophets and great warriors who, with the help of HaShem, faced our enemies on their feet, not on their knees.

In light of your obvious disdain for our People, and craven fear of Washington, Mr. Sharon, I think it is time for you to step down and allow someone else, who has the requisite integrity, courage and fear of Heaven, to lead our great nation. Perhaps then we would be able to decisively defeat our enemies, gain the respect of our allies, and I at long last, would be able to return to the Land and People that I love.

Jonathan Pollard