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Posts Tagged ‘Pollard’

Kerry Tells Senate Hearing Israel Busted the Peace Talks

Tuesday, April 8th, 2014

Israel’s announcement last week of new homes for a southern Jerusalem neighborhood in an area claimed by the Palestinian Authority was the trigger that caused the blow-up in the American-led effort to extend peace talks, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry told a Senate committee Tuesday.

He told the Senate Foreign Relations Committee that after Israel refused to release a fourth batch of terrorists, and then followed that decision with the housing tender in the Gilo neighborhood of Jerusalem, “poof, that was sort of the moment,” Kerry said. “We find ourselves where we are.”

Poof?

Just like that, with a snap of the fingers, after eight months of charades in which the Palestinian Authority and Israel made no headway, in which Israel demanded that Mahmoud Abbas declare that Israel is a Jewish State, in which Abbas continued to negotiate not to negotiate, it went “poof”?

Kerry is the same man who a few days said it’s time for a “reality check.”

After his “poof” puff, Republican Sen John McCain of Arizona told Kerry that concerning the peace process, “It is stopped. Recognize reality!”

But Kerry can’t. When Defense Minister Moshe Ya’alon said a couple of months that Kerry is “obsessive” with the peace process and is “messianic,” he was 100 percent on the money.

Only a few days ago, after the “poof,” Kerry said he wanted to focus on rescuing his pet nightmare rather than try to blame one side or the other.

“Look, to be clear, over the last 24 hours, there have been unhelpful actions taken on both sides here, and we didn’t think it was a productive time for the secretary to return to the region,” U.S. State Dept. spokeswoman Marie Harf said. “But we’re not playing the blame game.”

That was five days ago.

Since then, Abbas has insisted there is no turning back the clock. He will go through with his requests to join 15 U.N.-related agencies. He justified the action, a violation of the rules of the game Kerry laid down eight months ago, by charging that Israel reneged on a promise to release the fourth batch of terrorists.

The real cause of the ”poof” that blew up Kerry’s Peace Talks Follies was his dangling the release of Jonathan Pollard as bait to get Israel to agree to Abbas’ terms for releasing more terrorists That is what “poofed” the Arabs, who were enraged at the idea of Pollard going free while arch-terrorist Marwan Barghouti remains in jail..

The media parrots have forgotten all about that because it is more convenient to blame someone else, and guess who?

It no longer makes any difference what the facts are.

What matters is what they are perceived to be. So you can leave aside the fact that Israel and the Palestinian Authority were unable to agree on which terrorists to release.

And you can leave aside the fact that Israel made it clear, before “poof,” that any limited and unofficial building freeze, as part of a deal to extend peace talks, would not include Jerusalem.

Housing Minister Uri Ariel’s announcement of the new homes was the official stamp of that policy.

Kerry is desperate, and Abbas knows it.

That is why five days after he said he does not want to blame either side, he told the Senate hearing that, yes, the Palestinian Authority took an “unhelpful” action by its latest  ploy for attention in the United Nations, but it was Israel that “poofed” his peace talks.

Spokeswoman Harf tried to cover up her boss’s diplomatic faux pas at the Senate hearing.

“Both sides took ineffective steps. Kerry is not playing the blame game,” she told reporters at the daily media question and answer session.

NY Times Comes Out against Freeing Pollard for Peace Talks

Wednesday, April 2nd, 2014

The New York Times’ editorial on Wednesday called the idea of using Jonathan Pollard as a bargaining chip for peace talks “a lamentable sign of America’s desperation to keep both sides talking.”

The newspaper does not dictate to Obama, but it more often than not reflects his thinking, or the other way around.

In this case, it is questionable if Obama was thinking, and the Times was unusually harsh in its criticism of him and his administration.

It stated that the proposal came from Washington, although it is not known whether the White House or Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu initiated the idea. It may be a moot issue because the general reaction in the United States has been negative, and the Palestinian Authority apparently shot it down.

Mahmoud Abbas and his aides reportedly were furious after hearing about the idea because there is no way they will let Israel get Pollard while arch-terrorist Marwan Barghouti remains in an Israeli prison cell.

The emergence of the convicted spy Jonathan Pollard as a bargaining chip in Israeli-Palestinian peace negotiations is a lamentable sign of America’s desperation to keep both sides talking. Peace between Israelis and Palestinians can be achieved only if they want it for themselves, something that is very much in doubt right now.

The editorial called the proposals a “bad idea [that] would do nothing to advance progress on the core issues of a peace deal.”

Pollard Refused to Attend Parole Hearing

Tuesday, April 1st, 2014

Jonathan Pollard may have ditched the deal in the making by which the Obama administration would free him from his life sentence in a U.S. federal prison cell if Israel agrees to release terrorists “with blood on their hands” along with several other security prisoners

Patricia Smoot, a member of the U.S. Parole Commission, said on Tuesday that Pollard has waived a planned parole hearing for the same day, the Associated Press reported.

The hearing was to be held at the federal prison in Butner, N.C., where Pollard is imprisoned.

No reason was stated for Pollard’s refusal, but it is possible that he is protesting the proposal that he be exchanged for terrorists. Israel also has promised to limit construction for Jews in Judea and Samaria so U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry can prolong his peace process saga for another year.

Others claim that Pollard did not show up for the hearing because his lawyers postponed it for procedural reasons.

Israel’s Housing Minister Uri Ariel commented on Tuesday, “I was personally told he is against being released in such a shameful deal.”

Pollard previously has objected to his being used as a bargaining chip in a mass release of Palestinian Authority terrorists by Israel.

It won’t be known until Wednesday, when Kerry arrives in Ramallah, if the deal will go through, but Pollard’s refusal to attend a parole hearing could cause problems for the Obama administration. Many U.S. intelligence and defense officials, as well as a large number of dyed-in-the-wool Americans, would prefer that Pollard die in jail, especially if his release is for no other reason than extending the failed peace process for another year.

Obama’s Bribery and Emotional Blackmail to Sell Pollard and Buy Time

Tuesday, April 1st, 2014

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry is scheduled to return to Israel Wednesday and meet Palestinian Authority chairman Mahmoud Abbas in Ramallah to conclude another black chapter of Israel’s winding itself around President Barack Obama’s little finger.

Everything is apparently is place for the proposed deal of “Pollard in exchange for terrorists and another year of talks,” in reality a stretched version of Palestinian Authority ultimatums.

Palestinian Authority officials are to meet tonight in Ramallah in preparation for Kerry’s visit. Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu has called for a special Cabinet session Wednesday to approve the deal, if Ramallah does not throw a monkey wrench into the ring.

The American and Israeli governments have been spoon-feeding the Israeli public the past 24 hours with the idea of Obama’s granting Jonathan Pollard freedom from his life sentence in jail, even though he is eligible for pardon in November 2015.

That might be the reason Obama is playing the “Pollard card” now because next year, time would have expired to the point that offering Pollard would be useless for solving the next crisis, which can be expected if Kerry then comes up with a creative device to divide Jerusalem while calling it something else.

Morally, the idea of freeing Pollard for terrorists, and for extending the talks that have brought Israel nothing except a pat on the head from the Obama administration, is reprehensible. For good measure, there will be an “unofficial” building freeze in Judea and Samaria, which means no one really knows what it means.

It also defies logic from the side of the American government, which now has to explain to its citizens that the position that Pollard “committed a serious crime and must pay for it” suddenly subservient to need to continue the mediation of Obama’s point men who keep Israel and the Palestinian Authority from abandoning Kerry and Obama.

Yair Shamir, a Cabinet minister from the Yisrael Beitenu party, told Israeli radio Monday that the proposed deal is “bribery and emotional blackmail.” He said will oppose the deal if it comes to a vote.

Likud Minister Yuval Steinitz, loyal to Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu, said that the deal defies logic but that Israel has a moral commitment to do whatever has to be done to free Pollard.

Labor Knesset Member Nachman Shai expressed the most accurate estimate of reality. “The Palestinians feel that Israel is in a severe crisis and they can demand more and more,” he said.

Israeli governments, especially those of Rabin-Peres, Sharon, Olmert and now Netanyahu – have consistently turned themselves on their heads to perform stunts that are incomprehensible.

Each one is more unbelievable than the prior act, which is a cause for worry, because what’s next?

ADL Calls Pollard Case Vendetta against American Jews

Monday, January 27th, 2014

Abraham Foxman, director of the Anti-Defamation League, has charged that the continued refusal of American governments to free Jonathan Pollard for prison is a “vendetta’ against the entire American Jewish community.

HaModia reported that in response to a poll by Tablet magazine of leaders of Jewish organizations, Foxman stated, “The fact that Pollard shared information with an ally — Israel — was no reason for him not to be punished. But after this long imprisonment, the fact that it was such a close ally who received his information should have influenced a positive response when the subject of parole arose.

“I am not one to equate what Pollard did, to betray his country, to the recent revelations that the United States has been spying on top Israeli leaders. Here too, however, these revelations add further context to the absurdity of the ongoing vendetta against this one man.

“Yes, I use that word because that’s what it seems like at this point. If it were only a vendetta against one individual it would be bad enough. But it has now become one against the American Jewish community.

“In effect, the continuing imprisonment of this person long after he should have been pardoned on humanitarian grounds can only be read as an effort to intimidate American Jews. And, it is an intimidation that can only be based on an anti-Semitic stereotype about the Jewish community, one that we have seen confirmed in our public opinion polls over the years, the belief that American Jews are more loyal to Israel than to their own country, the United States….

“Pollard stays in prison as a message to American Jews: don’t even think about doing what he did.”

Tablet wrote in an editorial that “Jonathan Pollard’s continued imprisonment sends a chilling message to American Jews that they are all potential traitors to their country, evincing a distinct odor of political anti-Semitism.”

Former US Envoy Favors ‘Trading Pollard for PA State’

Wednesday, January 8th, 2014

Former U.S. Ambassador to Israel Thomas Pickering has stated that Jonathan Pollard is a “traitor” but should be released from prison if it would convince Israel to agree to sign an agreement with the Palestinian Authority.

It is incomprehensible that a patriotic American like Pickering can state that a man, an alleged traitor to the United States and who should remain in jail for life, can be freed for the sake of a diplomatic plum for President Barack Obama.

Pollard is far from a traitor by any definition and never was convicted of spying. Calling him a traitor is plain libel. He was caught handing over classified information for Israel, an offense that never has been punished for more than four years in jail until the Pollard trial, such as it was.

Pollard himself has argued against being used as barter for Israel’s freeing Palestinian Authority murderers, which Israel has done time and time again anyway while  Pollard remains in jail.

Pickering is not the only former U.S. ambassador to Israel who says Pollard should be released. Samuel W. Lewis, who was the envoy from 1977 to 1985, also has come out for his being released, but Lewis rejected the linkage with the so-called peace process. “He betrayed us, and I am glad he sat in prison, but 28 years is time enough,” he said.

Pickering stated, “I think that achieving an Israeli-Palestinian framework agreement is far more important than the continuation of Pollard’s incarceration.”

It is astounding that a distinguished 40-year veteran of the Foreign Service could even suggest that a country, in this case Israel, would give up its sense of security and gamble on its future in order to win the release of Pollard.

But if we understand that Pickering, by default of  having been an employee of the State Dept., has the same clone mentality of everyone else in Foggy Bottom, it all makes sense.

Who else but a State Dept. veteran would say, as Pickering did in a speech in 2010 to the Florida Atlantic University, “Peace can be made between Syria and Israel”?

Actually three was one non-State Dept. man who said that. Meet John Kerry, who as chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee in his pre-State Dept. days commuted to Damascus, chummed with Syrian President Bassar al-Assad and knew he was on the way to a peace agreement.

Well, you can’t win them all. But Kerry can’t win anything.

Kerry undoubtedly would suggest to  Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu that Pollard be freed if he were to think that the Prime Minister would make “painful concessions.”

Pollard has suffered for too many years in prison, but no one can imagine the suffering he would go through if President Obama were to free him in return for Israel’s surrendering the Jordan Valley, surrendering Israeli sovereignty over all of Jerusalem or even only over the Old City, expelling tens of thousands of Jews and accepting another armed Arab country as a neighbor.

Such a scenario  is unlikely not because Kerry is not capable of offering Pollard for a Piece of Peace paper – Kerry is capable of selling his grandmother for that – but because it won’t happen.

It is so immoral that it cannot comprehended by anyone except a State Dept. veteran like Pickering.

Gilad Shalit Calling for Jonathan Pollard’s Release

Wednesday, December 25th, 2013

Former captive Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit wrote in an open letter that all Israelis should demand that the United States free jailed spy-for-Israel Jonathan Pollard.

Israeli officials have said that the revelation over the weekend that the United States spied on at least two sitting Israeli prime ministers opens the door for Israel to demand the release of Pollard, who has served 29 years of a life sentence in a U.S. prison.

“After Israel has released terrorists with blood on their hands as a gesture to the Palestinians, a return gesture is all that is being requested,” Shalit said in his open letter. “I believe, and I think that like myself all of the People of Israel believe that the Prime Minister’s request for such a simple gesture, the release of Jonathan Pollard, is owed to us by right, and is not a favor,” he wrote.

“Please, everyone, join me, in a clear demand to our friends, the Americans: we have already freed scores of murderous terrorists with blood on their hands at your request – now it is your turn to make a gesture to us! It may even save Pollard’s life,” he wrote.

Shalit appeared to be reacting to reports, including one by Israel’s Channel 2, that Israel is linking a Pollard release to the current Israeli-Palestinian peace talks, and will ask that Pollard’s release be linked to Israel’s release of Palestinian prisoners. The third group of prisoners is scheduled to take place at the end of the week. Channel 10 quoted White House officials as saying that freeing Pollard is not on up for discussion

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/gilad-shalit-calls-for-jonathan-pollards-release/2013/12/25/

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