One GCHQ document, drafted in January 2009, makes clear the agencies were targeting an email address listed as belonging to another key American ally – the “Israeli prime minister”. Ehud Olmert was in office at the time. Three other Israeli targets appeared on GCHQ documents, including another email address understood to have been used to send messages between the then Israeli defence minister, Ehud Barak, and his chief of staff, Yoni Koren.
This revelation brings up the question since the U.S has been exposed as spying on Israel, isn’t it time for the country to release Jonathan Pollard? Whether Pollard was right or not to pass along information to Israel doesn’t really matter, just like Edward Snowden he deserved to go to prison because he illegally released classified information, BUT after 29 years in prison he has more than served his time.
Jonathan Pollard was a civilian American Naval intelligence analyst. Around1983-1984 Pollard discovered that information vital to Israel’s security was being deliberately withheld by certain elements within the U.S. national security establishment. Israel was legally entitled to this security information according to a 1983 Memorandum of Understanding between the two countries.
The information being withheld from Israel included Syrian, Iraqi, Libyan and Iranian nuclear, chemical, and biological warfare capabilities being developed for use against Israel. It also included information on ballistic missile development by these countries and information on planned terrorist attacks against Israeli civilian targets.
When Pollard discovered this suppression of information and first asked his superiors about it, he was told to “mind his own business“, and that “Jews get nervous talking about poison gas; they don’t need to know.” He also learned that the objective of not giving Israel the information was to severely curtail her ability to act independently in defense of her own interests.
Pollard took it upon himself to pass the information along to Israel and got caut. On June 4, 1986, Pollard pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to deliver national defense information to a foreign government.
Prior to sentencing, speaking on his own behalf, Pollard stated that while his motives “may have been well meaning, they cannot, under any stretch of the imagination, excuse or justify the violation of the law, particularly one that involves the trust of government … I broke trust, ruined and brought disgrace to my family.
Prior to sentencing, then-Secretary of Defense Caspar Weinberger delivered a 46-page classified memorandum to the sentencing judge. Since then, neither Pollard nor any of his cleared attorneys have ever been allowed to access the memorandum to challenge the false charges it contains-a clear violation of Pollard’s constitutional rights.
The day before sentencing, Weinberger delivered a four-page supplemental memorandum to the sentencing judge. In it, he falsely accused Pollard of treason, which by definition is passing along information to an enemy in time of war. Also in the supplemental memorandum, Weinberger advocated a life sentence in clear violation of Pollard’s plea agreement.
Pollard is eligible for parole from his life sentence in 2015, but its time to let him go now. No one else in the history of the United States has ever received a life sentence for passing classified information to an ally – only Jonathan Pollard. The median sentence for this offense is two to four years. Even agents who have committed far more serious offenses on behalf of hostile nations have not received such a harsh sentence.
Now that it’s been revealed that the United States spied on Israel’s Prime Minister and Defense Minister, isn’t it time to release Johnathan Pollard who is serving a life sentence for giving Israel information which the U.S. already committed to give her?