After decades of refusing to do so, Jonathan Pollard applied for parole after his lawyers were encouraged by broad hints dropped by President Obama. Details of the parole hearing, which took place several months ago, only recently became public. The proceedings, writes Gil Hoffman, give further credence to the claim that Pollard is being kept by the U.S. as a bargaining chip, to be used for obtaining concessions from Israel. Hoffman writes:
[A]ll hopes that the hearing would be fair were dashed immediately. The government’s representatives spoke menacingly, treated Pollard with contempt, prevented [his attorney] from making his case, and made it clear that the Israeli agent would not see the Jewish state any time soon, if ever. Those present described the hearing as a “kangaroo court” and even “a lynching.”
The rejection letter that the parole commission sent Pollard in August, which the Jerusalem Post exclusively obtained, was also harsh in tone. . . . The commission wrote that ahead of the 30th anniversary of Pollard’s incarceration, it would conduct another review of the case in February 2015 and another parole hearing five months later. But when asked whether the government would once again oppose Pollard’s parole next July, a commission official replied, “Absolutely, vigorously”—indicating that it would be no different from the hearing that had just concluded.