It Doesn't Matter If You Are Rich or Pollard...As Long As You've Got Money

New Jersey Jewish News - Editorial Excerpts - February 22, 2001

The following excerpts, food for thought, are from a New Jersery Jewish News Editorial (Rich Pardon Fallout/Bill Clinton's Defense 02/22/01).

  • "Many American Jews went out on a limb for Rich because of his philanthropic generosity but an effort for the similarly Jewishly generous Michael Milken proved unsuccessful. Which leaves us with the question of Barak's role. Either Israel had a real interest in Rich... or Barak misused his office. Our guess is that the new Sharon government won't rush to examine Barak's key role in the Rich pardon...."

  • " But why was Clinton discussing the pardons with [Beth Dozoretz]a party money person? Time reports that Dozoretz raised $450,000 from Denise Rich for the Clinton library. And according to U.S. News & World Report, Michael Milken was also approached by Clinton fund raisers for a big donation to the library fund but gave nothing. In case you're keeping score, Rich was pardoned, Milken wasn't..."

  • "It is widely thought that opposition to the Rich pardon is nothing compared with the defense and intelligence opposition to letting Pollard go. But read this interchange between deputy attorney general Eric Holder and House Government Reform Committee chief counsel James Wilson during the Feb. 8 hearings:

    Holder: "I am opposed, for instance, to a pardon for Jonathan Pollard," Holder said, trying to explain why he was swayed by Barak's endorsement of the Rich pardon. "And yet ifthe granting of the pardon had somehow led to Middle East peace, something that the Israeli government had requested, that might be something to take into account."

    Wilson didn't object. "That I understand, and that's fair enough," he said.

    Makes you wonder why no one advanced that argument.

  • "Pollard could also be released on "humanitarian grounds," the basis of the pro-Rich letter to Clinton from the Anti-Defamation League's Abe Foxman. Did Foxman also write Clinton on Pollard's behalf? "No, we have a policy on Pollard," a spokesperson for the group told us this week. "We have no position because anti-Semitism wasn't involved." But there was certainly no anti-Semitism involved in the Rich-Greene indictments and that didn't stop Foxman from throwing his weight in on Rich's behalf. Moreover, Pollard is languishing in a federal prison while Rich was skiing on the Swiss slopes. We guess it all depends on what "humanitarian" means. Or to paraphrase Joe E. Lewis, it doesn't matter if you're Rich or Pollard, as long as you've got money."

See Also:
  • Conference Was Told Agencies Would Not Oppose Pollard Clemency
  • Exposé: Using Pollard to Get Rich: Yediot Achronot Exclusive Investigation
  • A Little Help From His Friends
  • Pushing Rich Pardon Hurt Jonathan Pollard and Undermines Strategic Israel-US Alliance
  • The Clemency Page