Israel Fails to Assist as Pollard Tries to Keep from Transfer
Middle East News Line - September 4, 2000
WASHINGTON [MENL] -- Jonathan Pollard, the former U.S. naval analyst sentenced to life for relaying military secrets to Israel, is struggling to keep from being transferred to what he says is a violent prison wing.
Pollard has appealed to U.S. and Israeli officials, including First Lady Hillary Clinton, who is running for U.S. Senate in New York. The former analyst, who was granted Israeli citizenship, said he turned to Ms. Clinton after Israel had ignored his appeals.
Last week, Ms. Clinton discussed the Pollard case with New York State Assemblyman Dov Hikind. Hikind, a critic of the First Lady, appears to have linked an endorsement of Ms. Clinton to her position on freeing Pollard and supporting Israeli control of Jerusalem.
At this point, Pollard has not been transferred.
Over the weekend, Pollard wrote to Moshe Kochanovsky, the Defense Ministry official responsible for Pollard's welfare, and accused the official of failing to act. Kochanovsky was accused of working with U.S. authorities against Pollard's interest.
"Rather than act on my behalf, you collaborated with the Americans, believed their lies, and gave me false assurances that the transfer was not life-threatening," Pollard wrote. "Since the Government of Israel would not help, my wife and I were forced to fight the prison transfer on our own."
Pollard, who has already served 15 years in jail, said Ms. Clinton and other public figures appealed to the Bureau of Prisons, to halt his transfer.
In a previous Aug. 27 letter, Pollard said Israel had failed to protest his detention in a facility for the criminally insane. Israel's failure to protest his mistreatment included being held in a cell three stories underground "in a dungeon cell in solitary confinement where the extremes of temperature were brutal, and the rats and mice feasted in the darkness."