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."

See also:
  • "La'ag LaRash"