Jonathan Pollard

Jonathan Pollard

Jonathan Jay Pollard (born August 7, 1954 in Galveston, Texas) is a convicted Israeli spy and a former United States Naval civilian intelligence analyst. Pollard waived the right to trial in return for restrictions on sentencing, plead guilty and was convicted on one count of spying for Israel. He received a life sentence in 1987 with a recommendation against parole. He was incarcerated at the federal penitentiary in Marion, Illinois in solitary confinement for seven years, then transferred to Butner Federal Correctional Institution in North Carolina. Israel granted Pollard citizenship in 1995 but publicly denied that he was an Israeli spy until 1998.cite web|url=|title=Israel admits it spied on US|date=12 May, 1998||accessdate=2008-09-06] Israel now actively lobbies for his release.

Early life

Jonathan Pollard is the youngest of three siblings. In 1964 the family moved from Galveston, Texas to South Bend, Indiana, where his father, a microbiologist, became director of Notre Dame's Lobund Institute. Pollard earned a degree in political science from Stanford University and then attended graduate school at Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University for two years without finishing.

Early career

In 1979, after leaving graduate school, Pollard began applying for intelligence service jobs, first at the CIA and then the Navy. Pollard was turned down for the CIA job after taking a polygraph test. He fared better with the Navy and was hired by the Naval Fields Operational Intelligence Office (NFOIO) as an intelligence specialists working on Soviet issues. A background check was required for the job as well as security clearances, but no polygraph test. In addition to a 'Top Secret' clearance, a more stringent 'Sensitive Compartmented Information' (SCI) clearance was required. The Navy asked for but was denied information by CIA regarding Pollard, including the results of their pre-employment polygraph test showing Pollard's excessive drug use. Pollard was given temporary security clearances pending completion of his background check, which was normal for new hires at the time. [Olive 2006, p.10.]

Within two months of being hired, the technical director of the NFOIO, Richard Haver, requested that Pollard be terminated. This came after a reckless and inappropriate conversation with the new hire in which Pollard offered to start a back-channel operation with the South African intelligence service and lied about his own father's involvement with the CIA. At the time, most western democracies, with the exception of Israel, withheld intelligence from South Africa due to its policy of Apartheid. Instead of terminating Pollard, Haver's boss decided to use Pollard in an even more sensitive position, Task Force 168, which was a human-gathered intelligence operation. This was apparently because Pollard had a friend from graduate school in the South African intelligence service. The position was alongside his standard duties. A month later Pollard applied for and received a transfer to the Naval Criminal Investigative Service (NISC) surface ships division while keeping his TF-168 position.

While transferring to his new job at the NICS, Pollard again initiated a meeting with someone far up the chain of command, this time with Admiral Sumner Shapiro. After the meeting, Shapiro immediately ordered that Pollard's security clearances be revoked and that he be reassigned to a non-sensitive position. According to the Washington Post, Shapiro dismissed Pollard as a "kook." "I wish the hell I'd fired him,".cite web|url=|title=Sumner Shapiro, Long-Serving Director of Naval Intelligence|last=Bernstein|first=Adam|date=November 16, 2006||accessdate=2008-09-06]

Because of the job transfer, Shaperio's order to remove Pollard's security clearances slipped through the cracks. However, Shaperio's office followed up with a request to the TF-168 that Pollard's trustworthiness be investigated by the CIA. The CIA found Pollard to be a risk and recommended that he not be used in any intelligence collection operation. This was followed by an elaborate ruse to get Pollard to agree to a polygraph test. The results of the test were deemed inconclusive due to Pollards apparent illness during the test. However, Pollard admitted during the test to making false statements to his superiors, prior drug use, and making unauthorized contacts with representatives of foreign governments. The special agent administering the test felt that Pollard was feigning illness to invalidate the test, and recommended that he not be granted access to highly classified information. Pollard was also required to be evaluated by a Psychiatrist.

At this point, Pollard was still on probation, having been employed by the Navy for less than a year. By the end of that probationary period he was reassigned to less sensitive duties but maintained his TS security clearance. Pollard then filed a grievance and threaten lawsuits to recover his SCI clearance. He subsequently began receiving excellent performance reviews, and by the fall of 1982 had his SCI clearance restored.

In October 1984, after some reorganization of the Navy's intelligence departments, Pollard applied for and received a position as an analyst for the Naval Investigative Service (NIS, later renamed NICS).


Shortly after Pollard began working at the NIS he met Aviem Sella, an Israeli spy posing as a graduate student at New York University. Within a few days, in June 1984, Pollard sold classified information to Sella in exchange for a diamond and sapphire ring and $10,000 cash. He also agreed to $1,500 per month for further espionage. [cite web|url=|title=Secerets, Lies and Atomic Spies, Jonathan Jay Pollard|date=January 2002|publisher=NOVA|accessdate=2008-09-18]

In addition to Israel, Pollard also passed classified information to South Africa. He also attempted, through a third party, to sell classified information to Pakistan on multiple occasions.

The full extent of the information he gave to Israel has still not been officially revealed. According to Pollard, he gave only information regarding Iraq's missile threats to Israel. [ [ Appeasement of Iraq made me spy] Jonathan Pollard (February 15, 1991). The Wall Street Journal. Retrieved February 25, 2007] Press reports cited a secret 46-page memorandum, which Pollard and his attorneys were allowed to view. [Blitzer 1989, p.224.] They were provided to the judge by Secretary of Defense Caspar Weinberger, who described Pollard's spying as including, among other things, obtaining and copying the latest version of "Radio-Signal Notations", a 10-volume manual detailing America's global electronic surveillance network. cite web
last = Black
first = Edwin
authorlink = Edwin Black
coauthors =
title = Why Jonathan Pollard is Still in Prison?
work = Forward
publisher =
date = 29 June 2002
url =
format = HTML (archived)
doi =
accessdate = 2007-02-24
] ["Why Pollard Should Never Be Released", Seymour Hersh, (January 18, 1999) “The Case Against Johnathon Pollard” The New Yorker Magazine (pp. 26-33)] One theory of the damage Pollard caused is that he compromised US worldwide signals intelligence efforts by revealing US penetration of cryptographic modules sold around the world for official use. [cite web|url=|title=The demise of global communications security|coauthors=Wayne Madsen|date=2005-09-12|publisher=Online Journal|accessdate=2008-08-18]

Pollard's routine was to gather documents during the week. He had several large identical brief cases given to him by the Israelis that he would use to remove material from work. Then he would transfer the documents to suitcases, sometimes while in his car. At the end of the week he would drop the documents off with the Israelis for copying. At the end of the weekend Pollard retrieved whatever documents needed to be returned, along with orders for what types of information to get over the next week. On occasion, the Israeli handlers would ask for specific documents by number, suggesting that Pollard wasn't the only agent illegally feeding them information.

Ron Olive, the agent in charge of counterintelligence for the NIS at the time of Pollard's arrest, published a book about the case in 2006. Olive told the BBC that the incident was "one of the most devastating cases of espionage in US history" during which Pollard stole over "one million classified documents". [cite web|url=|title=Spy case still makes waves in Israel |last=Patience|first=Martin|date=15 January 2008||accessdate=2008-09-06]


Pollard's espionage was discovered when a co-worker anonymously reported his removal of classified material from the NIS. The co-worker noted that he didn't seem to be taking the material to any know appropriate destination, such as other intelligence agencies in the area.

Supervisors began investigating, and upon finding the enormous amount of material checked out by Pollard, and that it was outside of his area of responsibility, asked the FBI to begin an investigation.

Pollard was stopped and questioned about a week later while removing classified material from his work premises. He explained that he was taking it to another analysis at a different agency for a consultation. During the voluntary interview, which went on into the late evening, his story was checked and found to be false. Pollard called his wife during a break and used the code word 'cactus', meaning that he was in trouble and that she should remove all classified material from their home, which she did, enlisting the help of a neighbor. After a period of time, Pollard agreed to a search of his home which turned up a handful of classified documents. At this point, the FBI decided to drop the case and leave it as an administrative action for Pollards supervisors, since there only seemed to be some mishandling of documents.

The Case broke wide open a few days later when Pollard was asked to take a polygraph. Instead, he admitted to illegally passing on documents but didn't mention Israel. The FBI again became involved. A short time later Pollard's neighbor began calling around the military intelligence community (he was a naval officer) asking what to do with the 70 lb suitcase full of highly classified material that Pollard's wife, Anne, gave him. He had no idea that he was aiding spies, and after being unable to contact Anne or Jonathan became concerned about safeguarding the documents. He cooperated fully with the investigation and was not charged with any crime.

After his partial confession, Pollard was survieled but not taken into custody. He and his wife then attempted to gain asylum at the Israeli embassy, only to be rebuffed by the Israelis and taken into custody by FBI agents who swarmed the perimeter of the compound. Until this point, investigators were unaware that it was Israel Pollard was spying for.


Pollard eventually cooperated with investigators in exchange for a plea agreement that a life sentence not be recommended by prosecutors, and that his wife be allowed a plea agreement.

At the time, Israel claimed that Pollard worked for an unauthorized rogue operation, a position they maintained for more than ten years. Nevertheless Israel agreed to cooperated with the investigation in exchange for immunity for their people. They needed the agreement since many of the Israelis involved lacked diplomatic immunity. However, according to Ronald Olive, the NCIS investigator responsible for capturing Pollard and a member of the delegation that traveled to Israel for debriefing, the Israelis failed to live up to their agreement.

Some of the examples he cites are; when asked to return the stolen material, the Israelis handed over a few dozen lowly classified documents. At the time, the Americans knew that pollard had passed tens of thousands of documents, possible over a million. Also, the Israelis created a schedule designed to wear down the Americans, requiring many hours per day of commuting in blacked out buses and frequent switching of buses. This left the Americans with little time for sleep. The Israelis even refused an American request to move to a closer hotel until they threatened to leave. The identity of Pollard's original handler, Sella, was withheld. All questions had to be translated into Hebrew and answered in Hebrew, and then translated back in to English, even though all the parties spoke perfect English. Olive also notes that the Americans were treated with hostility from the minute they arrived in Israel to the moment they left, and that his own luggage was ransacked and items stolen while in the custody of officials. The abuse came not only from the guards and officials, but also the Israeli media.

Aviem Sella, Pollard's initial Israeli contact, was eventually indicted on three counts of espionage by an American court. [ [ "U.S. Jurors Indict An Israeli Officer On Spying Counts".] Werner, Leslie Maitland (March 4, 1987) "New York Times"] Israel refused to allow him to be interviewed unless he was granted immunity, America refused because of Israel's previous failure to cooperate as promised. Israel then refused to extradite Sella and instead promoted him to Brigadier General, giving him command of a prestigious air force base. The U.S. Congress responded by threatening to cut aid to Israel, at which point Sella stepped down. [Olive 2006, p.212.]

Plea agreement and trial

Pollard's plea discussions with the Government sought both to minimize his chances of receiving a life sentence and to enable Anne Pollard to plead as well, which the Government was otherwise unwilling to let her do. The government, however, was prepared to offer Pollard a plea agreement only after Pollard consented to assist the government in its damage assessment and submitted to polygraph examinations and interviews with FBI agents and Department of Justice attorneys. Accordingly, over a period of several months, Pollard cooperated with the Government's investigation, and in late May 1986, the Government offered him a plea agreement, which he accepted.

By the terms of that agreement, Pollard was bound to plead guilty to one count of conspiracy to deliver national defense information to a foreign government, [ [ § 794. Gathering or delivering defense information to aid foreign government, United States Code|18|794(c))] Cornell Law School, Legal Information Institute, U.S. Code Collection] which carried a maximum prison term of life, and to cooperate fully with the Government's ongoing investigation. He promised not to disseminate any information concerning his crimes without submitting to pre-clearance by the Director of Naval Intelligence. His agreement further provided that failure by Anne Pollard to adhere to the terms of her agreement entitled the Government to void his agreement, and her agreement contained a mirror-image provision.

In return for Pollard's plea, the Government promised not to charge him with additional crimes, entered into a plea agreement with Anne Pollard, and made several specific representations that are very much at issue in this case. The critical provisions are paragraphs 4(a) and 4(b) of the agreement, in which the Government "agreed as follows":

:(a) When [Pollard] appears before the Court for sentencing for the offense to which he has agreed to plead guilty, the Government will bring to the Court's attention the nature, extent and value of his cooperation and testimony. Because of the classified nature of the information Mr. Pollard has provided to the Government, it is understood that particular representations concerning his cooperation may have to be made to the Court in camera. In general, however, the Government has agreed to represent that the information Mr. Pollard has provided is of considerable value to the Government's damage assessment analysis, its investigation of this criminal case, and the enforcement of the espionage laws.

:(b) Notwithstanding Mr. Pollard's cooperation, at the time of sentencing the Government will recommend that the Court impose a sentence of a substantial period of incarceration and a monetary fine. The Government retains full right of allocution at all times concerning the facts and circumstances of the offenses committed by Mr. Pollard, and will be free to correct any misstatements of fact at the time of sentencing, including representations of the defendant and his counsel in regard to the nature and extent of Mr. Pollard's cooperation. Moreover, Mr. Pollard understands that, while the Court may take his cooperation into account in determining whether or not to impose a sentence of life imprisonment, this agreement cannot and does not limit the court's discretion to impose the maximum sentence.Fact|date=March 2007

On June 4, 1986 Jonathan Pollard pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to deliver national defense information to a foreign government. Before sentencing, and in violation of the plea agreement, Pollard and his wife Anne gave defiant media interviews in which they defended their spying, and attempted to rally American Jews to their cause. In a "60 Minutes" interview, Anne said, "I feel my husband and I did what we were expected to do, and what our moral obligation was as Jews, what our moral obligation was as human beings, and I have no regrets about that". Three weeks before Pollard's sentencing, Wolf Blitzer, at the time a "Jerusalem Post" correspondent, conducted a jail-cell interview with Pollard and penned an article which also ran in "The Washington Post" headlined, "Pollard: Not A Bumbler, but Israel's Master Spy." published on February 15, 1987. [ [ Pollard: Not A Bumbler, But Israel's Master Spy ] ] Pollard told Blitzer about some of the information he provided the Israelis: reconnaissance satellite photography of Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) headquarters in Tunisia, specific capabilities of Libya's air defenses, and "the pick of U.S. intelligence about Arab and Islamic conventional and unconventional military activity, from Morocco to Pakistan and every country in between. This included both 'friendly' and 'unfriendly' Arab countries."

According to an opinion piece by Joseph C. Goulden, the breaking of the plea agreement (in which Pollard swore not to disclose classified material he obtained while working for the Navy and swore not to "provide information for purposes of publication or dissemination," unless it was reviewed by the Director of Naval Intelligence) remains one possible reason for Pollard's remaining in prison despite a change in U.S. parole laws. [cite web|url=|title=How a spy was caught and why he still stands to profit|last=Goulden|first=Joseph C.|date=December 24, 2006|accessdate=2008-09-06]

Before sentencing, as noted above, Secretary Weinberger delivered a 46-page classified memorandum to the sentencing judge. According to a pro-Pollard ACLU amicus brief, [ [ ACLU Amicus Brief ] ] Wolf Blitzer, [ [ Jonathan Pollard ] ] former U.S. District Court Judge George N. Leighton (see below) and even Pollard's own website [ [ National Security? ] ] the contents of the memo were shown to Pollard's attorneys at the time. On the day before sentencing, Weinberger delivered a supplemental four-page memorandum to the judge. Pollard and his attorneys were shown the supplemental memorandum only briefly before sentencing. Pollard alleges that, in the memorandum, Weinberger accused him of treason and suggested a lifetime prison sentence.

Pollard never faced treason charges and was convicted within the boundaries of the charge he pleaded guilty to, although many speculate that the Weinberger memorandum outlined (and the classified memorandum to the judge detailed) treasonous activities by Pollard, due to the overwhelming assertion by U.S. defense and intelligence officials that Pollard should stay imprisoned for life.

The primary investigator in the Pollard case, Ron Olive, stated in his 2006 book "Capturing Jonathan Pollard", that Pollard offered classified material to four other countries besides Israel, including Pakistan. Seven former U.S. secretaries of Defense have written petitions to keep Pollard imprisoned for life, and CIA chief George Tenet threatened to resign when the issue of releasing Pollard was put forward by the Clinton administration. [Tenet, George "" Harper Collins NY 2007]


Pollard was sentenced to life in prison on one count of espionage on March 4, 1987. The prosecutor complied with the plea agreement and asked for "only a substantial number of years in prison"; Judge Aubrey Robinson, Jr. imposed the life sentence after hearing the statements of the Secretary of Defense, the Director of Central Intelligence, and other U.S. government officials (plea agreements are not binding upon judges).cite web
last = Best, Jr.
first = Richard A.
authorlink = Richard A. Best, Jr.
coauthors = Clyde Mark
title = Jonathan Pollard: Background and Considerations for Presidential Clemency
work = Congressional Research Service Report for Congress
publisher = The Library of Congress
date = 31 January 2001
url =
format = PDF (archived)
doi =
accessdate = 2007-03-07
] In 1987, Pollard began his life sentence, which he is still serving. Pollard's wife, Anne, was sentenced to five years in prison but was released after three and a half years because of health problems.

At the time of Pollard's sentencing there was a rule that mandated parole at thirty years for prisoners like him if they had maintained a clean record in prison. That parole date would be November 21, 2015. Also, Pollard was eligible to apply for parole after eight years and six months, though he has never done so. [Olive 2006, p. 259.]

Israel and Pollard

Pollard applied for Israel citizenship 1995, his petition was granted the same year on November 22. In 1997, he initiated legal action with the High Court of Israel to force the government to admit he was its agent.

For thirteen years Israel publicly denied that Pollard was an Israeli spy. Their official line was that Pollard worked for an unauthorized rogue operation. It wasn't until May 11, 1998 that Benjamin Netanyahu admitted Pollard was a known and sanctioned agent, handled by high ranking officials of the Israeli Bureau for Scientific Relations (LAKAM). This meant that four Israeli prime ministers and two defense ministers (Peres, Shamir, Rabin, Netanyahu) had lied to three successive U.S. Presidents (Reagan, Bush and Clinton), while asking that Pollard be released. "One of the first things we said (at the 1998 Wye River conference)", recalled Netanyahu in an interview, "was that if we signed an agreement with Arafat, I expected a pardon for Pollard". President Clinton declined to release Pollard.

The Israeli government has paid for at least two of Pollard's trial attorneys—Richard A. Hibey and Hamilton Philip Fox III—and continues to ask for his release.

The Israeli request for Pollard's release made in New York on September 14, 2005 was again declined by President Bush. A request on Pollard's behalf that he be designated a Prisoner of Zion was rejected by the High Court of Justice of Israel on January 16, 2006. Another appeal for intervention on Pollard's behalf was rejected by the High Court on June 8, 2006.

On January 10, 2008, the subject of Pollard's pardon was again brought up, this time by Prime Minister Ehud Olmert, at President Bush's first visit to Israel as president. This request was turned down by President Bush. The next day, at a dinner attended by several ministers in the Israeli government (in addition to U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice), the subject of Pollard's release was again brought up. This time however, Prime Minister Olmert stated that it was not the appropriate occasion to discuss the fate of the convicted Israeli spy. The Jerusalem City Council, in support of Pollard, changed the name of a square near the official prime minister's residence from Paris Square to Freedom for Jonathan Pollard Square. [cite web|url=|title=Olmert forbids talk of Pollard as Pollard's handlers wine and dine with Bush|date=January 10, 2008|publisher=Israelinsider|accessdate=2008-09-06] [cite web|url=|title=Messaging Bush, Jerusalem renames city square for Pollard|last=Goodenough|first=Stan|date=January 8, 2008|publisher=Jerusalem Newswire|accessdate=2008-09-06]

Public campaign

There has been a long running public campaign to free Pollard, in addition to the requests by the Israeli government. The organizers of this campaign include the Pollard family, his ex-wife Anne and Jewish groups in the US and Israel. The campaign's main points claim that Pollard spied for an ally instead of an enemy, that his sentence was out of proportion when compared to similar crimes and that the US failed to live up to its plea bargain. [ [ Why Jonathan Pollard got life.] David Zwiebel (June 1997) "Middle East Quarterly" 4:2] Some media in Israel even refer to Pollard as a 'hero'. ["Israel And Freedom For Jonathan Pollard", Caroline Glick (April 28, 2005) "Jerusalem Post"]

Pro Pollard efforts

Pollard's supporters argue that his sentence was excessive: "The median sentence for the offense Pollard committed - one count of passing non-injurious classified information to an ally - is two to four years". Although Pollard pleaded guilty as part of a plea bargain, he was shown no leniency and was given the maximum sentence. Pollard was never charged, indicted, or convicted of treason.

Pollard maintains that he provided only information that, at the time, he believed was vital to Israeli security and that was being withheld by the Pentagon, in violation of a 1983 Memorandum of Understanding between the two countries regarding the sharing of vital security intelligence. According to Pollard, this included data on Soviet arms shipments to Syria, Iraqi and Syrian chemical weapons, the Pakistani atomic bomb project, and Libyan air defense systems. [Blitzer 1989, p.166-171.]

Since then, however, he has publicly expressed remorse for operating outside the law:and

In recent years, others have argued that Pollard's punishment is too harsh while some, including Moshe Feiglin have called him a "hero" [ [ Gedolim in Israel and the US Ask President Bush to Free Pollard before Pesach: And, after 22 Years, They Think He’ll Do It] ] who "saved the Israelis from American treachery." [cite web|url=|title=Hug for a Betrayed Brother|last=Feiglin|first=Moshe|date=April 15, 2008|publisher=israelinsider|accessdate=2008-09-06] Caspar Weinberger, who was the driving force behind Pollard's life sentence, has stated that the case was a minor problem made much larger than it really was. In an interview in 2002, ["Caspar's Ghost", Edwin Black, The Jewish Week [NY] ,June 14, 2002] Weinberger was asked why he had omitted all mention of Pollard in his memoirs. Weinberger replied, "Because it was, in a sense, a very minor matter but made very important." Asked to elaborate, Weinberger repeated, "As I say, the Pollard matter was comparatively minor. It was made far bigger than its actual importance." [ [ The Defense Failure] Edwin Black (June 28, 2002). Why Jonathan Pollard is Still in Prison? Forward Retrieved February 25, 2007]


At the 1998 Wye River Conference, Clinton initially agreed with Israel's request for Pollard's release, said Netanyahu; "...if we signed an agreement with Arafat, I expected a pardon for Pollard". Clinton had to withdraw his offer when George Tenet threatened to resign if Pollard was released. This kicked off a reaction in the American intelligence community, which was stunned that Israel would use Pollard as a bargaining chip in such important and sensitive negotiations. [Olive 2006, p.248.]

Four past directors of Naval intelligence wrote a response to the Washington Post (William Studeman, Sumner Shapiro, John Butts and Thomas Brooks). In it they address "Pollard and his apologists" and explain the harm caused by his actions.

Eric Margolis alleges that Pollard's spying may have led to the capture and execution of CIA spies in the Eastern Bloc after Israel sold or bartered Pollard's information to the Soviet Union. [cite web|url=|title=Jonathan Pollard Was No Jewish Patriot|last=Margolis|first=Eric|date=January 14, 1999|publisher=The Toronto Sun|accessdate=2008-09-06] Former Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld was an opponent of the release or sentence commutation of convicted spy Jonathan Pollard. In late 1998, in response to media reports that President Clinton was considering issuing a pardon to Pollard, Rumsfeld sent a letter to President Clinton, urging him not to grant clemency. Seven former U.S. Secretaries of Defense, (namely Rumsfeld, Melvin R. Laird, Frank C. Carlucci, Richard B. Cheney, Caspar W. Weinberger, James R. Schlesinger and Elliot L. Richardson) signed the letter urging Clinton not to pardon Pollard or commute his sentence.


In "United States of America v. Jonathan Jay Pollard" [747 F. Supp. 797] 1990 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 11844, Pollard's attorney filed a motion to withdraw the plea, among other things. The motion was denied. Several parts of the plea agreement are mentioned in the appeal, United States of America v. Jonathan Jay Pollard 295 U.S. App. D.C. 7; 959 F.2d 1011; 1992 U.S. App. LEXIS 4695. The appeal was also denied. Several years later, with a different attorney, Pollard filed a "Habeas Corpus" petition. A panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit ruled two-to-one to deny Pollard's petition, primarily due to the failure of Pollard's original attorneys to file his appeal in a timely manner. The dissenting judge, Judge Stephen Williams, stated that "because the government's breach of the plea agreement was a fundamental miscarriage of justice requiring relief under 28 U.S.C. § 2255, I dissent." [United States of America v. Jonathan Jay Pollard, appellant No. 90-3276]

In July 2005, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit rejected Pollard's latest appeal. Pollard had sought a new trial on the grounds of ineffective assistance of counsel, and he sought to receive classified documents pertinent to his new lawyers' efforts in preparing a clemency petition. The Court of Appeals rejected both arguments, however, and Pollard remains imprisoned. On February 10, 2006, lawyers for Pollard filed an appeal with the United States Supreme Court to attempt to gain access to the classified documents. The brief was based on the notion that the separation of powers doctrine is a flexible doctrine that does not dictate the complete separation of the three branches of Government from one another. The Court of Appeals violated this principle in asserting sua sponte that the judiciary has no jurisdiction over the classified documents due to the fact that access was for the ultimate purpose of clemency, an executive function. In fact, the President's clemency power would be wholly unaffected by successor counsel's access to the classified documents, and the classified documents were sealed under protective order, a judicial tool. The Supreme Court denied this appeal on March 20, 2006.

The courts have been criticized for denying Pollard's current attorneys' access to the sentencing memorandum. In a 2002 letter to IMRA, former U.S. District Court Judge George N. Leighton wrote:

Ron Olive book

Ron Olive, retired NIS, led the Pollard investigation and in 2006 published the book "Capturing Jonathan Pollard - How One of the Most Notorious Spies in American History Was Brought to Justice". In his book, Olive claims that Pollard was not necessarily loyal to Israel and that Pollard confessed to passing secrets to South Africa and to his financial advisers, shopping his access to Pakistan and recruiting others for money. [cite web|url=|title=I busted Pollard|last=Olive|first=Ron|date=November 20, 2006||accessdate=2008-09-06]


Pollard's pro bono attorneys, Eliot Lauer and Jacques Semmelman, in an article published in the "Jerusalem Post", assert that "The book and op-ed piece contain numerous accusations that are nowhere to be found in the public sentencing docket, and that could not be disclosed if they were in the classified sentencing docket. They are therefore in neither place, and cannot be considered even remotely reliable." [cite web|url=|title=Don't be fooled by Ronald Olive|last=Eliot|first=Lauer|coauthors=Jacques Semmelman|date=November 28, 2006||accessdate=2008-09-06]


Pollard divorced his first wife, Anne, after her release from prison. Anne moved to Israel for a time in the late 1990s and then settled in California, where she then took up employment working in fashion design. Following his divorce, Jonathan fell in love with Elaine "Esther" Zeitz, a Canadian Orthodox Jew who he had met as a teenager and had then been involved in the effort to free him. Jonathan is now married to Esther.cite web|url=|title=Bush Trip Revives Israeli Push for Pardon of Spy|last=Finer|first=Jonathan|date=January 15, 2008||accessdate=2008-09-06] Although Anne Pollard, in an interview, says she has not spoken to her ex-husband since the divorce, she has continued her involvement to free him.

His story inspired the movie "Les Patriotes" ("The Patriots") by French director Éric Rochant in which US actor Richard Masur portrayed a character resembling Pollard.

Works cited

*cite book | last=Olive| first=Ronald J. | year=2006 |title=Capturing Jonathan Pollard: How One of the Most Notorious Spies in American History Was Brought to Justice | publisher=Naval Institute Press | location=Annapolis, Maryland | isbn=9781591146520 | ref=refOlive2006
*cite book | last=Blitzer| first=Wolf | year=1989 |title=Territory of Lies | publisher=Harper & Row | location=New York | isbn=0-06-015972-3 | ref=refBlitzer1989

Notes and references

External links

* [ Jonathan Pollard's Website]
* [ Israel acknowledges spying on US] . BBC News, 12 May 1998
* [ All about Jonathan Pollard]
* [ Why Jonathan Pollard is Still in Prison] by Edwin Black, published in "The Forward" and archived in the Internet Archive. A shorter version of this article was published [ here] in the "The Jewish Journal of Greater Los Angeles".
* [ CRS Report for Congress RS20001 Jonathan Pollard: Background and Considerations for Presidential Clemency] - Federation of American Scientists

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  • Pollard — bezeichnet die Pollard Rho Methode nach John M. Pollard die Pollard p 1 Methode nach John M. Pollard eine Stadt in Alabama, siehe Pollard (Alabama) eine Stadt in Arkansas, siehe Pollard (Arkansas) Pollard Schrift, Abugida Pollard ist der… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Pollard (surname) — Pollard is a family name. It may refer to: * A. J. Pollard, British historian * Carl Pollard, American linguist * Dick Pollard, England Test cricketer * Ernest C. Pollard, atomic physicist and biophysicist, son of Sam Pollard * George Pollard,… …   Wikipedia

  • Pollard — may refer to:*Pollard (surname) *Pollard, Alabama, a town in the United States *Jonathan Pollard, a spy *Pollard, a tree or animal which has been polled (had its branches, horns or antlers removed): **Pollard, a tree affected by pollarding, a… …   Wikipedia

  • Pollard — Cette page d’homonymie répertorie les différents sujets et articles partageant un même nom. Pollard est un patronyme pouvant désigner : Alfred William Pollard (1859 1944), bibliographe et bibliothécaire britannique. Pollard Berrier, chanteur …   Wikipédia en Français

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