Two days after United States President Barack Obama was reelected to office, former minister Rafi Eitan has called again for Obama to release Jonathan Pollard, Arutz Sheva reports.
Eitan, who recruited Pollard and served as his handler, apologized to the United States for his role in the affair. Pollard gave Israel classified American documents relating to Middle East security.
“I’m responsible in the matter,” Eitan told Israel national radio Reshet Bet. “I apologized, and I apologize again and say, ‘Please, send Pollard home.’”
“The time has come for him to think about a man like Pollard,” Eitan added in reference to Obama.
Eitan also revealed for the first time that a secret deal was made with the U.S. at the time of Pollard’s arrest and conviction that he would serve no more than 10 years.
“It was not an easy moment,” Eitan told Yedioth Achronot. “There was a government decision and I cooperated with the Americans – they knew who I was and they knew my name…at the time the evidence was like a great emotional storm inside me. I had a deep feeling that I should not talk to them about the case, that they certainly do not have Pollard’s best interests at heart. But on the other hand I am a disciplined soldier and I never acted against the government’s guidelines, even if I thought I should act otherwise. “
Eitan stated that the United States broke a solemn commitment and instead is keeping Pollard in prison forever to serve another unrelated agenda.
Meanwhile, Israel’s Ashkenazi Chief Rabbi Yona Metzger expressed hope that a newly reelected President Obama will grant Pollard clemency during the president’s second term in office.
Speaking to “Radio Kol Chai”, Metzger stated: “I have hope that after the election he [Obama] will have more courage to release Jonathan Pollard. I have even more hope that he will in fact be released in this term.”
“It’s not a singular meaning of whether Obama was good for the Jews or not. Don’t forget that when the Palestinians wanted to declare a Palestinian state, Obama went wild and cast a veto against the proposal in order to prevent it,” Rabbi Metzger added, according to quotes from the Jerusalem Post.