Pollard Refuses Sharansky
August 13, 1998 - Ben Caspit - MA'ARIV - Front page banner
(Translated from Hebrew)
Jonathan Pollard yesterday informed authorities in the American prison
where he is incarcerated, that he is not willing to receive a visit from
Israeli Minister of Trade and Industry, Natan Sharansky.
Pollard was scheduled to receive a visit from Sharansky on August 24, 1998. ( The visit had been requested via the Israeli Embassy in Washington and was cleared, authorized and confirmed. )
In a parallel move, Pollard also sent a disgusted letter to Israeli Cabinet
Secretary Dani Naveh, in which he stated that he is no longer willing to
receive high-profile visits from Cabinet Ministers until the government of
Israel fulfills its commitment to take immediate intensive
behind-the-scenes action to secure his release , "..meaningful initiative,
not just empty gestures and photo-ops ."
Sharansky himself is not yet aware that his scheduled visit with Pollard
has been canceled. In his letter to Dani Naveh, Pollard points out that
while he appreciates Sharansky and "his willingness to fulfill his promise
to make a prison visit to me" he refuses to cooperate with the "cynical
game the government is playing."
According to Pollard, the government is now using ministerial prison visits
as a fig leaf to hide the naked truth that the Government has not
undertaken any serious initiative to secure his release. "High-profile
ministerial prison visits, in the absence of intensive action to secure my
release are nothing more than fraudulent attempts to deceive me and the
public. Simply La'ag LaRash!"
, Pollard wrote to Naveh.
In his letter, Pollard references a recent article in the Wall Street
Journal by Professor Angelo Codevilla, which intimates that if an immediate
serious press on the American Administration for Pollard's release were
made by Prime Minister Netanyahu, it would certainly succeed.
"I had hoped that you were sending Sharansky to bring me home, and not to
sit and tell me stories," said Pollard. " I've had it with stories and
empty promises." He concluded by telling Naveh, "...unless you are sending
Sharansky to bring me home, don't bother sending him at all."