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Tue Feb 26, 2013, 05:41 PM

Israelis To Press Obama To Free Convicted Spy Jonathan Pollard

JERUSALEM (AP) ó Israelís Nobel-laureate president, backed by thousands of followers, is leading an effort to press President Barack Obama during his upcoming visit to free convicted spy Jonathan Pollard, ending one of the most painful episodes between the two allies.

Pollard was sentenced to life in prison in 1987 for passing classified material to Israel.

Pollard is said to be in poor health, and his case has become a rallying cry in Israel. Leaders routinely call for his release and say his 28 years in prison are excessive punishment. But stiff opposition from the American military and intelligence community has deterred a string of American presidents from releasing him.

Next monthís visit by Obama, coupled with a perceived softening of the American stance, is raising hopes that Pollard, 58, may finally get his freedom.

MORE...

http://talkingpointsmemo.com/news/israel-obama-jonathan-pollard.php?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+tpm-news+(TPMNews)

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Arrow 18 replies Author Time Post
Reply Israelis To Press Obama To Free Convicted Spy Jonathan Pollard (Original post)
Purveyor Feb 2013 OP
matwilson Feb 2013 #1
Cali_Democrat Feb 2013 #3
ProgressiveProfessor Feb 2013 #14
LiberalEsto Feb 2013 #2
chimpymustgo Feb 2013 #4
ProgressiveProfessor Feb 2013 #7
Blue_Tires Feb 2013 #5
hrmjustin Feb 2013 #6
ProgressiveProfessor Feb 2013 #8
hrmjustin Feb 2013 #9
BlueMTexpat Feb 2013 #10
ProgressiveProfessor Feb 2013 #11
dsc Feb 2013 #12
ProgressiveProfessor Feb 2013 #13
sendero Feb 2013 #17
BlueMTexpat Feb 2013 #15
Katashi_itto Feb 2013 #18
cali Feb 2013 #16

Response to Purveyor (Original post)


Response to matwilson (Reply #1)

Tue Feb 26, 2013, 05:49 PM

3. LOL

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Response to matwilson (Reply #1)

Tue Feb 26, 2013, 10:56 PM

14. RWS is that you?

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Response to Purveyor (Original post)

Tue Feb 26, 2013, 05:49 PM

2. Pollard is a traitor to the U.S.

He's lucky he wasn't executed.

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Response to LiberalEsto (Reply #2)

Tue Feb 26, 2013, 05:53 PM

4. Yes. Let him languish in prison. He should be grateful to be alive.

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Response to chimpymustgo (Reply #4)


Response to Purveyor (Original post)

Tue Feb 26, 2013, 05:57 PM

5. Hubris knows no limit

making this demand not even a couple of weeks after the Prisoner X story broke....

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Response to Purveyor (Original post)

Tue Feb 26, 2013, 06:12 PM

6. Traitors should rot in prison!!!

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Response to Purveyor (Original post)

Tue Feb 26, 2013, 06:22 PM

8. For those saying Pollard should rot in prison etc, do you feel the same way about Manning?

If not, please tell us why

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Response to ProgressiveProfessor (Reply #8)

Tue Feb 26, 2013, 06:45 PM

9. It is a good question.

I have mixed feelings on this. Manning is accused of a serious crime but has yet to be convicted. If convicted I assume he will go to jail for a long period of time. It will depend on what exactly they can prove in court. Pollard gave up our secrets to another country, and that is treason in my book. I can not stomach treason at all, but I am not sure if that is what Manning did. I will have to wait to see what they prove in court before i make an judgement.

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Response to ProgressiveProfessor (Reply #8)

Tue Feb 26, 2013, 06:57 PM

10. Apples and oranges ... if you will take but a few moments to inform yourself.

Pollard was a well-educated and mature career intelligence analyst who very deliberately and with full knowledge of what he was doing SOLD classified intelligence to Israel, a foreign nation. He also spied on Israel's behalf.

Pollard was actually charged, put on trial, pled guilty and is eligible for parole in 2015.

Manning was a raw recruit from a troubled family background who was bullied throughout his life and even had a tough time getting through basic training. Even with this background and at a very young age with manifest mental health problems (largely due to the stressful hypocrisy of having to live in the US military under DADT), he was trained as a classified intelligence analyst. If anyone had been paying attention, a LOT of red flags should have gone up at this situation. The "shortage of intelligence analysts" excuse can only go so far. There's lots of blame to spread around here.

So far as I can tell Manning never sold anything to anyone, although he - allegedly since nothing has yet been proven in a court of law - did release classified material to Wikileaks. Wikileaks, however, is not another sovereign nation. Israel is. Another sovereign nation is capable of striking against us or any other nation with WMD, or of producing WMD using classified technology or intelligence, compromising our national security or even of carrying out foreign/economic/commercial policy that would be against our national interests. And unlike Pollard, who was lawyered up to the gills, Manning's lawyer can barely get access to his client who has been held in what even some judges consider to be inhumane conditions.

Should he have released classified material? And I repeat that, to date, these are allegations - although they seem to have a lot of factual foundation. No, it is a felony to release classified information and I do not justify his actions.

But Manning's situation is much more comparable to the Pentagon Papers situation than it is to that of Jonathan Pollard. I frankly find his treatment appalling. Charge him; have a trial and sentence him if he's found guilty. This imprisonment without end that seems to have become l'ordre du jour since Bush II is something that we should ALL be ashamed of.

But Pollard is a crook and a traitor in every sense of those words.

The gall of the Israeli RW that repeatedly tries to cause a ruckus by re-raising the issue of Pollard is literally appalling. Pollard can finish out the final two years of his sentence and then - hopefully - be with all his RW friends, so that we never have to hear his name again.

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Response to BlueMTexpat (Reply #10)

Tue Feb 26, 2013, 10:11 PM

11. So if he is convicted of similar crimes you would support treating them similarly or not?

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Response to ProgressiveProfessor (Reply #11)

Tue Feb 26, 2013, 10:30 PM

12. as a general proposition people who have cash motivation are treated more harshly than those who

don't. Also as a general proposition people who are older and have greater responsibilities when they commit their crimes are treated more harshly. Finally those who have mental issues are generally treated less harshly.

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Response to dsc (Reply #12)

Tue Feb 26, 2013, 10:43 PM

13. Also the damage inflicted to the US and perhaps others figures in

In general, older and white collar criminals get lighter not harsher treatment. Some (the banksters) get none at all. There are not a lot of spy cases and those are almost always throw away the key kinds of sentences. I am surprised that Pollard is coming up so soon for parole. I expect he will die in prison and never be released.

Pollard's actions were both ideological as well financially motivated, which was different than most Americans committing espionage, which are predominately for money. Manning was mostly ideology and immaturity. They are both exceptional cases in that regards.

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Response to ProgressiveProfessor (Reply #13)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 06:03 AM

17. Manning..

... did the American PEOPLE a favor. He merely caused problems for its LYING GOVERNMENT.

Trying to compare this to Pollard is beyond ludicrous. Pollard should die in prison and I'm pretty sure he will.

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Response to ProgressiveProfessor (Reply #11)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 05:34 AM

15. If Manning is tried fairly and convicted of a similar felony, he should be sentenced accordingly.

Even Daniel Ellsberg, in the Pentagon Papers case, was tried. But it was declared a mistrial so he was never declared guilty, nor was he sentenced.

The BIG distinction between Pollard and Manning-Ellsberg is motive. Both Manning & Ellsberg wanted to inform the PUBLIC that their elected officials were blatantly lying to them.

Manning's case is somewhat more complex because he was a serving member of the US military and allegedly released the material to Wikileaks, not a US "entity," whereas Ellsberg actually released his information to US newspapers. But that was back "in the day" when US print media were not such corporate tools. And corporate tools they certainly were during Bush II.

On the other hand, Pollard, in addition to being a crook and a traitor, is nothing but a self-serving prick who sold classified secrets to a foreign power for money. Should it really make a difference as to whether that foreign power is - in many ways - a 51st state? Or that he was ideologically motivated? After all, that ideology was misdirected and he showed incredible DISloyalty to the US. He fully deserves to spend the rest of his days in prison, although in the circumstances I believe that the Obama Administration may consider allowing his parole application to be granted, once he is eligible in 2015.

I would do, if only to have him deported and spend the rest of his life in Israel where I never, ever have to hear his loathsome name again and where we, the taxpayers, do not have to foot the consequences.

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Response to BlueMTexpat (Reply #10)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 06:21 AM

18. +1000 I wish they'd put Pollard in front of a firing squad.

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Response to Purveyor (Original post)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 05:55 AM

16. When have they not done this? Obama will not succumb to the pressure.

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