Free Jonathan Pollard - AZM Calls for Justice

Editorial - The Zionist Advocate - July/August, 1994

On March 23, President Clinton denied Jonathan Pollard's request for commutation of his sentence. His decision was based on a negative recommendation by the US Department of Justice. Pollard, an American naval intelligence researcher, received a life sentence in 1987 for passing classified information to Israel, including the development in Syria, Iraq, Libya, and Iran of military capabilities and nuclear, chemical, and biological weapons for use against Israel.

The American Zionist Movement has been among those in the forefront in speaking out on Pollard's behalf. It has lobbied President Clinton and US Attorney General Janet Reno, arguing against Pollard's harsh sentence for his crime compared to other more lenient sentences of those convicted of spying for the USSR and Soviet -bloc countries.

AZM's call for justice has been heard throughout the United States. In a recent statement, Seymour D. Reich, national president of AZM, and Karen Rubinstein, executive director, deplored "an overly hasty presidential decision." They stated that "Pollard was guilty not of treason but of a single count of passing classified information to a US friend and ally, Israel; that an agreement to plead guilty in exchange for less than a life sentence was broken by the government; that Mr. Pollard has already served eight years, most of it in solitary confinement; and that Mr. Pollard had cooperated fully with the government in the investigation of his spying activities."

Although Clinton's decision crushed the hopes for Pollard's immediate release, AZM strongly encourages organizations and individuals to continue writing to President Clinton asking him to reconsider his decision and commute Pollard's sentence to time served. Write to: President Clinton, The White House, Washington, DC 20500, or call the White House Comment Line: 202/456-1111.