A recently declassified CIA document suggests that Jonathan Pollard, the imprisoned American who spied for Israel, was never asked to obtain sensitive information on the US.
The report by the CIA included polygraph-monitored statements given by Pollard shortly after he had been handed a life sentence by US prosecutors in 1987.
According to the document, Pollard had been asked by his Israeli handlers to gather information on Arab states, Pakistan and the Soviet Union — but not the US. It recorded Pollard as having responded “in good faith to de-briefers’ questions”.
Under a heading entitled: “What the Israelis Did Not Ask For,” the report said Israeli leaders “never expressed interest in US military activities, plans, capabilities, or equipment”.
The Free Pollard foundation told Ynet: “This is the first time that an official CIA paper confirms that Pollard did not spy on the US and we believe that the disclosure of the documents will help in his release.”
The CIA paper also said that Pollard was given his life sentence because of an unauthorised interview he gave to the Jerusalem Post’s Wolf Blitzer in 1986, before being sentenced.
The interview with Mr Blitzer allegedly violated an agreement with US prosecutors that Pollard would not publicise his espionage activities in exchange for a promise that he would not receive a life sentence.
The prosecutors judged that Pollard’s interview with Mr Blitzer, obtained “without obtaining advance approval of the resulting text from the Justice Department”, represented a violation of his plea bargain