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May 28, 2015 / 10 Sivan, 5775
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My Take On Pollard

It is unthinkable that Israelis should look at Jonathan through American eyes.
Pollard may be gumming up the works for Obama and Kerry by refusing to attend a parole hearing after a deal was proposed to free him if Israel. releases terrorists.

Pollard may be gumming up the works for Obama and Kerry by refusing to attend a parole hearing after a deal was proposed to free him if Israel. releases terrorists.
Photo Credit: FreePollardNow

Here are excerpts of my Knesset speech regarding Jonathan Pollard’s incarceration:

I would like to thank Knesset member [Avishay] Braverman who openly told us that at least during a certain time period, Jonathan Pollard remained imprisoned because that was also the will of people here, in Israel.

This is a very important statement, which was said in an offhand way. But in my opinion, it is certainly possible that this problem still exists.

Jonathan Pollard is not a traitor. We have to look at Jonathan Pollard through Jewish, Israeli, Zionist eyes. Jonathan Pollard is an Israeli agent. He performed a service for us. It is unthinkable that we should look at Jonathan through American eyes.

Jonathan Pollard is a hero, a hero of Israel. He is a hero who risked his life for us. And who knows how many of us he literally saved.

I have no intention of signing the petition for Jonathan Pollard. It is just meaningless words. It is lip service. I have no intention of being dragged once again into processes that have nothing behind them. Similarly, in my evaluation, this petition will fade away when President Barack Obama arrives here if we, the MKs, do not take tangible action – and I intend to propose just such an action. With it, our loyalty to the person who we sent to risk his life for us will be put to the test.

Our brother, Jonathan, who risked his life for us as our envoy, was not the only one who ran to the Israeli embassy for protection on that bitter day 28 years ago. His direct handler, Colonel Aviem Sella, ran to the embassy with him.

The U.S. forcefully demanded that both men – the Jew and the Israeli – be handed over to them.

We betrayed the Jew, and handed him over to his captors – the FBI agents waiting outside.

As far as the Israeli, we proved that when Israel wants something, it can certainly stand firm. Aviem Sella was not handed over – and a way was even found to bring him back to Israel.

On that day I understood that the state of Israel is not really the state of the Jews. Israel is the state of the Israelis. And from this denial of its identity and its foundations, my friends, Knesset members, Israel is progressively losing the legitimacy for its very right to exist.

I have visited my brother, Jonathan, many times. When I saw him for the first time, I couldn’t stop my tears. It was awkward: he was the inmate, who, despite the terrible torture that he had endured, remained peaceful and calm while I, a free lark, was crying like a baby.

Since then, Jonathan’s picture is on the front door of my house. One cannot enter the Feiglin family home without remembering our brother, Jonathan.

The betrayal of Pollard continues until today. It is hard to believe, but the simple fact is that the prime minister then, the person who authorized the extradition and today serves as president of the state of Israel, until recently never officially requested Jonathan’s release. We often hear that Israel is doing its utmost. We heard that and we will continue to hear it. We will sign petitions. But an official request was never presented – until Prime Minster Binyamin Netanyahu did so after 20 years.

But the resolve is still missing. Our body language – and I am referring to the body language of the regime, not of the nation of Israel and not of the Knesset embers but the body language of those responsible – still says to the Americans, “Keep Pollard to yourselves, we don’t really want him here.”

The type of spying that Pollard conducted is carried out by U.S. agents in Israel as a matter of course and is public information. Israel has the ability to demand and receive our brother, Jonathan, if it wants. If we want!

The president of the U.S. will [soon] arrive in Israel and he will want to speak from this podium. Welcome to Israel, U.S. President Barack Obama – with my brother, Jonathan Pollard.

But if you continue to imprison my brother, Jonathan, you will have to speak to my empty chair. And I hope that more Knesset chairs than just mine will be empty.

About the Author: Moshe Feiglin is the Deputy Speaker of the Knesset and a member of Israel's Security and Defense Committee. He heads the Manhigut Yehudit ("Jewish Leadership") faction of Israel's governing Likud party. He is the founder of Manhigut Yehudit and Zo Artzeinu and the author of two books: "Where There Are No Men" and "War of Dreams." Feiglin served in the IDF as an officer in Combat Engineering and is a veteran of the Lebanon War. He lives in Ginot Shomron with his family.


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6 Responses to “My Take On Pollard”

  1. Penina Sarah says:

    Moshe Feiglin is right on all counts, except I do think he should sign the petition, because the more signatures on it, the better.

  2. Ltc Howard says:

    "The type of spying that Pollard conducted is carried out by U.S. agents in Israel as a matter of course and is public information. Israel has the ability to demand and receive our brother, Jonathan, if it wants. If we want!"

    This statement is 100% correct. Most US complaints about Israeli “spying” deal with Israel's counterintelligence operations. Or alleged Israeli counterintelligence operations. For example a break in at the CIA station chiefs residents in which it was claimed that Israel implanted a device to hack the device that he was sending Israeli secrets on back to the United States. Most published reports of Israeli spying on the US actually convict the US of spying on Israel, very actively.

    My biggest personal fear was that one of our agents would be seized and held for exchange for Jonathan Pollard. This is exactly the technique that would have been used by the French, the British, the Germans and certainly by the Russians.

  3. you make me feel like crying, I cant believe they detained him for 27years now, I hope all of Israel will stand up to Obama and ask for his release. He is truly is your brother and also mine.

  4. Israel Radio Anchor Arieh Golan opened the second hour of the morning news.
    magazine with a call for Israelis to boycott President Obama's address in.
    protest of President Obama's decision to leave Jonathan Pollard "rotting in.
    prison". rabbi dr. bernhard rosenberg

  5. Meir Marcusohn says:

    "President Obama is coming to Israel this Wednesday. Remember! Barack Obama’s top ten insults against Israel – http://blogs.telegraph.co.uk/news/nilegardiner/100036389/barack-obama’s-top-ten-insults-against-israel/ And now he refuses to release Pollard. What an arrogance! So how are we to respond? Here is one suggestion: https://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=7RlIuywN5WQ".

    הסרטון בעברית"

  6. Pollard was no hero. He SOLD his information to Israel. If it were WWII and Pollard was stealing information from Germany and sending it home because it was his duty. That's one thing. But for him to steal secrets from the United States, who has been an ally of Israel and then sending it for payment, is not heroics. I'm a zionist but I'm also one who see's that law and order must be maintained. As far as Obama's visit goes. He stands against Israel in that he supports a so called peace process that calls that Israel to give up land to an arab people for threats and more missile/rocket attacks. Good luck dealing on anything with that guy.

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