Obama’s ‘Freedom’ Award to Peres May be Pollard’s Last Chance (INN) ISRAEL NATIONAL NEWS) By Tzvi Ben Gedalyahu 06/11/12)
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Jonathan Pollard and millions of Jews are hoping President Barack
Obama will free him from jail when he awards visiting President
Shimon Peres the U.S Presidential Freedom Medal Wednesday.
In the cold world of politics, the “Jewish vote” may be the only
factor that determines the fate of Pollard, who has been languishing
in prison for more than 26 years.
With all polls showing that President Obama has 60-64 percent of the
Jewish vote, as opposed to 78 percent four years ago, his political
calculations of how many votes he can gain for Pollard’s freedom
probably will outweigh humanitarian considerations.
However, the act of working on behalf of a foreign country, even if
an ally, claws deeply into the skin of American patriotism, and
American Jews are far from united on whether the U.S. president
should exercise his authority and pardon Pollard, despite his
Pollard was sentenced to life for a crime that usually carries a
punishment of 2-4 years in jail – passing on classified information
on behalf of a foreign country.
He was not convicted of spying, but mainstream media continue to call
him a “spy for Israel.” The information Pollard handed over while
working at the Pentagon is believed to have involved the Iraqi
nuclear reactor, which Israel subsequently destroyed in a bombing
raid. The information was not damaging to U.S. security, and an
increasing number of American officials have said that Pollard did
not get a fair trial and was punished unfairly.
The award of the Freedom Medal to President Peres will give him a
prime time opportunity to free Pollard. Pres is arriving with a
petition from 70,000 Israelis, backed by media support from the
entire political spectrum, for freeing Pollard.
"We urge you to use your exceptional diplomatic position to work for
the immediate release of Jonathan before you receive your medal,
which would otherwise make a mockery of Israel," the petition states.
Signatories include notable left-wing authors Amos Oz and A.B.
President Peres said he “will do everything possible” but made no
Rumors, sometimes unreliable and sometimes based on off-the-record
official courses, have been flying for months that President Obama
will wait for a politically opportune moment to free Pollard.
If he wants to do so, he might prefer to wait until he gets closer to
the November elections, but doing so could boomerang because of the
obvious Machiavellian political ploy. In this sense, it may be
preferable for him to take advantage of a more logical moment this
week to give Pollard his freedom when Peres receives the Freedom
One political risk in freeing Obama could be a backlash from “Mom,
apple pie and American flag” citizens who consider Pollard a traitor.
(IsraelNationalNews © 2012 06/11/12)
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