(WMR)—Israel’s domestic and foreign propaganda apparatus is spinning the yarn that convicted U.S. spy for Israel Jonathan Pollard has served longer in prison than any other spy for an American “ally.” The meme from Israel considers that Israel, which is considered a “hostile intelligence” nation by the FBI, Directorate of National Intelligence, each of the military service’s counter-intelligence branches, the CIA, and the National Security Agency, is an American ally. American counter-intelligence places Israel in the category of a nation with a hostile intelligence agency.
Secretary of State John Kerry is reportedly negotiating the release of Pollard for the continued release of Palestinian prisoners by Israel and a pledge by Israel to freeze construction of settlements in the Occupied West Bank. Israel’s history shows that it has always reneged on such promises. The release of Israeli whistleblowing nuclear scientist Mordechai Vanunu to the West is also not part of the negotiations between Washington and the Jerusalem authorities on Pollard’s release.
The release of Pollard, which has been demanded by successive Israeli prime ministers since he was jailed during the Reagan administration, is contentious within the U.S. intelligence community. CIA director George Tenet threatened to resign during the Clinton administration when there was a proposal by the White House to release Pollard.
Pollard is serving a life sentence for transmitting to the Israelis a virtual garage-full of classified documents. Some of the classified documents were traded with the Soviet Union by Israel in exchange for the release of Soviet Jews to the self-proclaimed Jewish state. Pollard’s compromise of sensitive intelligence sources and methods resulted in the collapse of American espionage networks throughout the Middle East.
Pollard always maintained that he turned over the classified documents to Israel because he was a committed Zionist who was out to help Israel and not harm the United States. However, court records show that Pollard received more than $45,000 in cash from the Israelis for transmitting thousands of documents to Israeli intelligence agents between July 1984 and November 1985. It was on November 18, 1985, that Pollard was arrested by the FBI while trying to sneak into the Israeli embassy in Washington, DC. Israel promised Pollard an additional $300,000 in a Swiss bank account.
One of Pollard’s Israeli handlers, General Aviem Sella, was indicted in absentia for espionage. Sella had fled the U.S. for Israel. Sella is now a partner of the Alexander Beer Company, located in the Emek Hefer Industrial Park north of Netanya. Israel has refused to extradite Sella to the United States.
In 1982, CIA Director William Casey authorized a major espionage operation against Israel after its 1982 invasion of Lebanon. Pollard’s espionage compromised the identities of a number of CIA agents and informants in both Lebanon and Israel. Pollard also compromised the role of the CIA in the protection of Kuwaiti tankers negotiating the Persian Gulf during the Iran-Iraq war.
After Pollard’s arrest, FBI agents began raiding U.S. factories suspected of supplying Israel with military equipment. This included Milco Inc., of Huntington Beach, California, which was caught selling krytron nuclear triggers and other sensitive technology to Heli Corporation, an Israeli intelligence front owned by Arnon Milchan, a Hollywood producer.
Casey reportedly ordered the CIA to treat the Israelis “as enemies” after the Pollard and Milco incidents. That order also went out to the other U.S. intelligence agencies, which made up the U.S. Intelligence Community and over which Casey exercised authority as the director of Central Intelligence.
In a December 23, 1985, article in the New York Daily News, Lally Weymouth quoted a U.S. official who had harsh words for disloyal American Jews like Pollard: “Plenty of people say that no Jews or Arabs should be involved in Middle East policy. This will reinforce the argument and reinforce those who have suspicions about Zionists working in the government. It will strengthen the argument that we’ve treated them with kid gloves and that’s how they treat us.” Weymouth now serves as senior associate editor of The Washington Post.
Israel claimed that Pollard was part of a “rogue operation.” However, Pollard claimed that his espionage activities were known to the highest echelons of the Israeli government, including Prime Ministers Yitzhak Shamir and Shimon Peres. A number of Israeli government leaders have, themselves, engaged in espionage in the United States. In 1953, Israeli Colonel Chaim Herzog, who would later become president of Israel, was a Mossad operative stationed at the Israeli embassy in Washington. Herzog’s espionage was discovered by State Department desk officer Fred Waller. Waller, a former U.S. consul in Haifa, requested that Herzog be declared persona non grata. However, Secretary of State John Foster Dulles protected Herzog, who finished his tour of duty in Washington. Dulles also moved to haul Waller before a State Department review board for “poor performance.” Waller appealed Dulles’s actions to dismiss him and he resigned from the Foreign Service. Waller was one of the first victims of a thoroughly ruthless Jewish lobby in Washington that put the interests of Israel ahead of those of the United States and U.S. government employees.
Today, John Kerry fills the shoes of his predecessor Dulles in negotiating the release of Pollard for Israel’s cessation of international law violations. Kerry fails to recall the damage Pollard did to U.S. intelligence sources and methods after he was sworn into the Senate in January 1985 and began investigating Israeli intelligence activities in the United States, particularly with regard to the Iran-contra scandal.
Previously published in the Wayne Madsen Report.
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Wayne Madsen is a Washington, DC-based investigative journalist and nationally-distributed columnist. He is the editor and publisher of the Wayne Madsen Report (subscription required).