Attorneys Demand The New Republic Retract and Apologize
Mr. Peter Beinart
Mr. David Grann
c/o The New Republic
1220 19th Street, N.W.
Washington, D.C. 20036
October 11, 2000
Re: Jonathan Pollard
Dear Mr. Beinart and Mr. Grann:
We are attorneys for Jonathan Pollard.
We take strong issue with a statement in Mr. Grann's article The Courtship
in the current issue of The New Republic, in which Mr. Grann refers to
Mr. Pollard as "a convicted traitor."
In fact, Mr. Pollard has never been charged with or convicted of being
a traitor. He was charged with, and pled guilty to, conspiracy
to commit espionage. The distinction is significant. Treason
entails aiding an enemy of the United States. Mr. Pollard was charged
with, and pled guilty to, conspiracy to deliver classified information
to the State of Israel, an ally of the United States. He has never
aided any enemy of the United States.
The indictment filed against Mr. Pollard by the United States government
does not charge him with treason, or with intending to harm the United
States. Your reference to him as a "convicted traitor" is totally
You may be interested to know that NBC's Tim Russert recently made a
similar error during the first Lazio-Clinton debate. After we wrote
to him, he made an on-the-air correction on Meet the Press. (Meet
the Press, Sept. 17, 2000)
Mr. Pollard's sentencing proceeding was infected with falsehood and
distortion, as well as with other fundamental defects, for which we have
recently sought redress in the United States District Court. Because fact
and not fiction, and truth and not distortion, are essential to correcting
the injustice to Mr. Pollard, your deviation from the truth is very troubling.
We demand that you publish prominently in your next issue (hard copy
and on-line versions) a public apology and a retraction of the accusation
that Mr. Pollard is a "traitor."
Very truly yours,
Court Case 2000 Page