Young Israel Appeals to President Clinton for Pollard Clemency

January 29, 1997

The president of the Young Israel Orthodox synagogue movement has asked President Clinton to grant clemency to Jonathan Pollard, as a gesture of good will to Israel and the American Jewish Community, at the beginning of his second term of office.


Jonathan Pollard has clearly already paid dearly for his crime

," said Chaim Kaminetzky, National President of the National Council of Young Israel. "At a time when America is urging both Israel and its former Arab enemies to forgive and forget past grievances, it is only right for the United States to set the example by releasing Pollard, whose freedom is of growing concern to both Israeli and American Jews."

Kaminetzky noted that Pollard, who gave classified material to an American


, Israel, "has already been treated

far more harshly

than other Americans who spied for their country's


, such as the former Soviet Union. There is also reason to believe that Pollard's original transgressions may have been deliberately exaggerated by other spies, such as Aldridge Ames of the CIA,

to help cover their own tracks


Pollard's release at this time would serve both the causes of Middle East peace and fairness, while eliminating growing suspicions that the severity of his punishment is due to a cover anti-Semitic bias within the American security establishment.

The National Council of Young Israel is the parent organization of the Young Israel synagogue movement, with 145 member congregations across the country, and more than 50 throughout Israel.

  • Return to Jewish Unity Page