Daily Israel Report

Esther Pollard: Release for Jonathan is 'Idle Rumor'

The wife of imprisoned former Israeli agent Jonathan Pollard says a report her husband will be granted clemency is simply an “idle rumor.”
By Chana Ya'ar
First Publish: 9/24/2012, 8:24 PM

Jonathan Pollard's wife, Esther
Jonathan Pollard's wife, Esther
Israel news photo: Flash 90

The wife of imprisoned former Israeli agent Jonathan Pollard says a report her husband will be granted clemency is simply an “idle rumor.”

Esther Pollard dismissed the report Sunday, describing it as “cynical” and pointing out that such rumors had been fielded numerous times before in the past.

Such headlines, she said, always promise release for Pollard at “some future date” which never comes. Meanwhile, she said, pressure on President Barack Obama to free the former agent is quietly diverted.

Mrs. Pollard's remarks came in response to a news report published in the Hebrew-language daily newspaper Yediot Acharanot that a “high level Israeli official” had said her husband was expected to be one of those on the list for clemency by the U.S. president after the November elections.

Pundits speculated the report might have been an attempt by politicians to influence the Jewish vote.

Jonathan Pollard has served more than 27 years behind bars after having been convicted on a single charge of passing classified information to an ally, Israel. The crime, which usually carries a maximum sentence of two to four years in prison, earned Pollard a life term after a plea bargain deal was abrogated during sentencing by the United States government.