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Monday, June 04, 2007

Did Slimy Shimon fink on Pollard?

Convicted American spy Jonathan Pollard, who has been held in American prisons for more than twenty years, is claiming this evening that Deputy Prime Minister and Presidential candidate Shimon Peres is largely responsible for Pollard's being where he is today.

(Hat Tip: NY Nana)
"Twenty-two years ago, Peres chose self-interest and personal power over his legal and moral obligation to rescue an Israel agent in peril. He deliberately, knowingly sold out an Israeli agent who had faithfully served the security needs of the state. That agent was me," said Pollard from his prison cell in Butner, N.C.

Peres was prime minister when Pollard, an Israeli agent who worked as a civilian intelligence analyst for the U.S. Navy, was arrested in 1985 on suspicion of passing classified information to an ally, Israel.

Pollard says on the night of his arrest, Peres denied any knowledge of the Israeli spy operation in a phone call to then-U.S. Secretary of State George Shultz, claiming to Shultz that Pollard was a "freelancer."

Peres then proceeded to hand over hordes of incriminating documents Pollard had secured at the direction of top Israeli government officials – including Peres himself, Pollard said. The documents reportedly formed the basis of the U.S. case against Pollard.

The Eban Commission, a committee appointed in 1987 by the Knesset to investigate the Pollard affair, slammed Peres for handing to the U.S. documents it said "constituted the basis for the conviction and life sentence Pollard received."

Assistant U.S. Attorney John R. Fisher wrote in court filings it was "only after government attorneys and investigators returned from Israel with additional evidence of [Pollard's] guilt" that Pollard began to cooperate with the prosecution and opted to enter into a plea agreement.

...

Testifying before the Eban Commission, Peres claimed he supplied to the U.S. the incriminating documents only after securing a commitment from the U.S. not to use those documents to prosecute Pollard.

"As soon as the documents were returned to America, the U.S. immediately used them against me, and there was no protest from Peres or from Israel," said Pollard.

"If such a commitment not to prosecute with the documents did exist, why is it that Peres did not inform me at the time so that I could protect myself legally? I did not learn of this supposed commitment until the year 2000 when I finally obtained a copy of the Eban Report," Pollard said.

...

In 2005, Pollard filed a petition with the Israeli Supreme Court to compel the Jewish state's government to press for his release on the basis of the commitment which Peres claimed he received that America would not use the incriminating documents. But the Israeli government replied to the court there was no evidence of any such agreement with the U.S.

"In other words, the state of Israel had no shame in telling the court Peres had lied under oath in order to justify his having returned the documents to the U.S. without first negotiating the safe return of Israel's agent. This is criminal negligence for which Peres has yet to answer," charged Pollard.

"In the years since my arrest, Peres has had no pangs of conscience for callously incriminating me and then abandoning me. His sole motive for selling me out was to protect his own personal reputation and his career," Pollard charged.

Pollard said Peres "deliberately transferred all of the blame [for my operation which was run by Peres' government] to me by returning the documents and having the Israeli team submit false affidavits against me ... . These were nothing but frantic efforts by Peres to distance himself from the operation so that his career ambitions and personal fund-raising abilities in the U.S. would be protected.
If even half of this is true, Peres is despicable slime.

You can find more details of the Eban Commission here. Here's the part of an independent commission report that relates to Peres:
23. The prime minister (S. Peres), the vice prime minister and minister of foreign affairs (Y. Shamir) and the minister of defense (Y. Rabin) acted in this manner as a united team which decided jointly on all lines of action. [I have said many times that Peres has never won a national election. In 1984, there was a tie between the right bloc led by the Likud and the left bloc led by Labor. At the time, Peres was Labor's candidate for Prime Minister and he and Yitzchak Shamir of the Likud rotated being Prime Minister, serving two years each between 1984 and 1988. In 1988, the Likud won and formed a national unity government that included Labor. CiJ]

24. The political level did not make a sufficient report to determine the necessary facts, in order that they might serve as a basis for decisions taken which were pertinent to the matter.

25. However, the decision in itself, which was taken at that time, to cooperate with U.S. authorities in investigating the case, appears to us as reasonable.

26. The professional team which was entrusted with dealing with the issue, questioned a part of those involved but did not consider that it was charged with the task of carrying out a complete debrief of the affair.

27. It is for this reason that, within the framework of the agreement reached on this matter, the team passed incomplete facts (for lack of sufficient information) to the U.S. authorities and thus damaged our credibility. [Does this mean that the Eban Commission said that they government should have admitted that Pollard was working for Israel? Possibly. But not clear why the failure to do that would have resulted in Pollard's conviction. CiJ]

28. The criticism we have concerning the three ministers lies in the fact that they did not take sufficient care to determine the facts before they were passed on to the U.S. authorities.

29. However, it should be emphasized that this was the result of pressure of time, the shock of the affair and the utter surprise with which it caught the political level, coupled with the sincere desire to cooperate with U.S. authorities within understandable security constraints [That's a nonsense excuse. No one was threatening to start bombing Israel if it didn't cooperate immediately. CiJ].
But this December 2000 Middle East Quarterly interview with Charles Schumer substantiates Pollard's charges at least somewhat:
MEQ: I would like to read you a section of the Eban Commission Report on the Pollard Affair4 titled "The Decision to Cooperate with the U.S." which tells how the Israeli authorities turned over the documents they had received from Pollard on two conditions, one of which was "the consent of the Americans to the fact that the documents returned would not be used to convict Pollard." Those documents were then used against Pollard. According to Assistant U.S. Attorney John R. Fisher, the "defendant agreed to enter a guilty plea and cooperate only after government attorneys and investigators returned from Israel with additional evidence of defendant’s guilt."5 What do you think about this?

Schumer: I conclude from it that the animus against Pollard is very deep. At first, I thought it was just [former defense secretary] Caspar Weinberger, who was known as anti-Israel; many observers had doubts about his motivation in this episode. Now I know that the matter goes much deeper. [The document cited by Middle East Quarterly is not the 'independent' commission report I cited above, but the report of a separate Knesset subcommittee that also looked into the affair. Eban was a member of the Knesset committee and it is known as the Eban Commission. CiJ]
There's more evidence to substantiate Pollard's claim in this 2005 blog post:
Pollard, himself, insists that he started his spying in July, 1984. Loftus and Aarons have him identifying an arms shipment in April of 1984. That would make the Hersch/Ben Menashe claim that Pollard began his clandestine work in 1981, more plausible. But once one excuses the inconsistencies, a very consistent story emerges. Pollard thought he was helping Israel protect itself and that his material would fall into honest, trusted hands. Sadly for him, it fell into the grimy paws of Shimon Peres and he used it to create a crime empire, broadly called Iran Contra. It is the fear of exposing Peres and his cronies, that is the real reason why the Israeli government has made no sincere effort to free Jonathan Jay Pollard.

It's a fairly complicated story and I will lead you through it by way of other people's research. When I comment you will see three stars *** at the beginning and end of the commentary. For instance:

*** In 1987, a government commission of inquiry headed by Abba Eban issued its report on the Pollard Affair. It concluded that the man most responsible for the fiasco was Shimon Peres, who became Prime Minister in late May, 1984. He was not only apprised of Pollard's intelligence, he read it daily. Receiving smaller portions of blame were Defence Minister Yitzhak Rabin and Foreign Minister Yitzhak Shamir. This long buried report is, naturally, long forgotten because Peres spent a good week denying every word in it and arranging the end of Eban's political carrer. But let us not forget, the official investigation conducted by the Israel government concluded that Peres was the chief culprit.***

LEADING THE COVERUP

Amir Oren, Haaretz, 1998: "Shimon Peres was almost as concerned about domestic policies as he was about the American reaction. He was proud of the fact that he, Rabin and Shamir refrained from mutual recriminations and how that prevented the media from turning it into an Israeli Watergate. Peres worked hard to prevent public discussion..."

Zeev Segal, Haaretz 24/10/95: "One body that studied the subject was a committee headed by then MK, Abba Eban. In a report published in May, 1987, the committee... totally rejected the claim of the government of Israel, which stated that the Pollard affair was a 'rogue' operation."

Washington Report On Middle East, Jan/Feb 2003: "Eban disappeared from political life after 1987 (for) a report criticizing Labor Party leaders Shimon Peres and Yitzhak Rabin for using American Joanthan Jay Pollard to spy on the United States. Both rebuked him and the next year his name was left off the candidates for parliament."

Seymour Hersh, The Samson Option, Random House, 1991: "The Israeli Officials most tarnished by the scandal were Rafi Eitan and Aviem Sella, but Eitan did not suffer financially. He was subsequently named to a high administrative position with Israel Chemicals, the largest state-owned enterprise in Israel. His surprising appointment was authorized by none other than Ariel Sharon, who had been named Minister of Trade and Industry in 1984." [By the way, Eitan is an MK and a member of the government right now. CiJ]

*** And Sharon is not the only high present official involved in the coverup. Attorney General Elyakim Rubinstein was the legal attache to the Washington Embassy Pollard was ejected from, and later tried out a coverup tactic that Washington attorney Leonard Garment found odious. Such details must be presented in a wider-ranging future report. For now let us get to the heart of the matter at hand...Iran Contra. ***

IRAN CONTRA

Federal Government Watch Discussion List: "The back channel came alive under Vice-President Bush from 1984-91. The channel was used to direct the laundering of American money to the PLO. Although Pollard didn't know it, when he warned the Israelis that a PLO arms shipment was going through Greece in 1984, he inadvertantly blew the whistle of the White House's first transaction of arms to Iran... In the summer of 1984, Pollard noticed a pattern of vessels going back and forth from Greece to Yemen, where the PLO had a major base. Pollard passed the tip to the Israelis. In the summer of 1984, the Israelis tipped off the Greek authorities who seized an entire shipload of arms believed destined for the PLO. Neither Pollard nor the government of Israel was aware that they had smashed George Bush's first shipment of arms to Iran. Pollard never realized that he had busted the most secret White House operation of modern times. The summer of 1984 Greek shipment was a dagger over George Bush's head."

Loftus, Aarons, The Secret War Against The Jews: "Pollard notified the Israelis, who passed word to the Greeks, who raided the arms ship. None of the players knew that this shipment was directly connected to an event two months previous, in which US hostages had been kidnapped in Lebanon. The ship had not been commissioned by Arafat but by US Vice-President Bush [That's not the current President - it's his father. CiJ] and was ultimately destined for the patron the of Lebanese kidnappers, Iran. The shipment marks he true beginning of the infamous Iran Contra scandal.

Winston Mideast Analysis And Commentary 8/13/99: "Pollard inadvertantly exposed the first shipment of arms-for-hostages in what became the Iran Contra scandal. As he was in the Naval Intelligence Anti-Terrorism Unit, he saw this shipment, one year earlier than is generally known, and believing it to be arms for the PLO or Iraq, revealed it to the Israelis. This alone would make it imperative for the Iran/Contra planners to keep him locked up forever."

*** Enter Peres. Pollard provided the data that exposed Bush's arms for hostages operation. Of course, a moral Prime Minister would have demanded that Bush put an end to this arming of Israel's worst enemies. But Peres is not remotely moral, so he saw the bigger potential of this nascent crime. He wanted in and the crime expanded into what we know as Irangate. How do we know this? Because when Pollard discovered the arms ship, Israel had no role in paying America's enemies off with arms for releasing hostages in Lebanon. But by September, Peres had sent a team to Washington consisting of Yaacov Nimrodi, the former Ambassador to Iran, Al Schwimmer, former head of Israel Aircraft Industries, and David Kimche, chairman of the Israeli branch of the Council On Foreign Relations.

After that, Israel was right in the middle of the operation. This is basic indisputable logic. Israel joined the operation only after Pollard's intelligence exposed the existence of it. That means Peres wanted a piece of the pie and must have used Pollard's data to get his cut of the action. The easiest way in would have been threatening to expose the arms for hostages operation and bring down Bush and his team. We call such a threat, blackmail. And that's how Pollard's good intentions were used. And not for the last time. Shortly after Pollard's capture on Non.22/85, the Peres team of Kimche, Schwimmer and Nimrodi all quit the operation.

In laymen's terms, they hauled ass out of there. But Peres didn't want to give up all the goodies that came with Iran Contra. So in January 1986, he replaced the team with his anti-terrorism advisor Amiram Nir. He was murdered in 1989 in Mexico shortly before he was to testify to the Senate Committee investigating Irangate. Lest one think Iran Contra wasn't worth the trouble, look how much just one member of Peres' team brought in for his effort and then consider what Nir knew. Finally, note who else quit his post in the wake of Pollard; the American National Security Advisor, Bud McFarlane, who resigned in Dec. 85. ***

Joel Bainerman, Crimes Of A President, SPI Books, NY, 1992, raw notes and final text: "In June l991 an Israel police investigation was opened to determine if Nimrodi withheld profits from the sales from the Defence Ministry. A month later Nimrodi made a public declaration in a Tel Aviv court stating that he had acted on his own behalf in his arms dealings with the Iranians and thus all the profits from the deals were his. He claimed he earned $37 million from the Iranians, but after paying for the missiles and other expenses, he says he took a loss on the deal of nearly $750,000. (Inside Israel, August, l993)

Those same bank records in Switzerland could have become a nightmare for some Israeli government officials, namely Prime Minister Peres, even shedding light on why the Israeli government never allowed Nir (or Schwimmer and Nimrodi) to testify before Congressional investigations. Was Peres perhaps worried that Nir would disclose that it was his role in the diversion of money from the Iranian arms sales to the Contras or that he personally authorized the establishment of the fund to initiate covert anti-terrorist operations? Indeed Nir knew a great deal about U.S. and Israeli arms sales to Iran because he was the roundabout via everyone's activities passed through. He must have known who set up the Swiss accounts, who controlled them, and how much went to the Contras and how much to middlemen like Ghorbanifar and Secord's pockets? He sat in on crucial meetings in Teheran, Frankfurt, Washington, Tel Aviv and London. He knew of all covert operations and where the money originated from to fund them. In an interview with YEDIOT ACHRONOT after leaving office in March l987 Nir said that Shamir went out of his way to protect his name and reputation, in Israel and in the U.S., while Peres simply "left him to the dogs" adding that "the moment you need support from him (Peres), he vanishes."'
For those who have managed to read this far, there's lots more. Read the whole thing.

2 Comments:

At 9:26 PM, Blogger RyanCrierie said...

Can I be brutally honest?

Pollard can stay where he is until hell freezes over. Same with the Walker family, and Aldrich Ames.

How's Mordechai Vanunu doing, by the way?

 
At 9:45 PM, Blogger NY Nana said...

Carl,

Thanks for the hat tip. Peres *spit* is the enemy within for Israel. As you say, he has never been elected to office, yet after all the damage he has caused, he is still trying to be elected as President by Knesset? One enormous crook replaces another crook?

Jonathan Pollard was railroaded. That article really got to me, and all the additional info you have provided just compounds the fact that Pollard should never have faced charges in the first place.

Justice for Jonathan Pollard? I do not expect it. I cannot even remember all the phone calls I made and letters I have sent to Washington on his befalf, as so many I know have, to no avail.

 

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