July 4, 2002
Why Jonathan Pollard is Still in Prison
Jonathan Pollard's provocative conduct while in federal custody sealed his own fate.
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"Upon my release," Pollard continues, "this whole case and everything associated with it is consigned, as far as I'm concerned, to the dustbin of history. ... My life has been utterly destroyed. People I love and care for have been destroyed ... [To me] this is Kryptonite."
Finally, Pollard was asked point blank, "Do you really want to get out of here--or would you rather stay in prison as an international Jewish celebrity?"
With a voice riveted to determination, he replied, "I would rather eat the dust of Israel as a beggar and be with my wife than to continue this horrific existence that I'm currently suffering. ... I'm a very small person in the course of Jewish history, in the course of our people's existence; I'm a blip on the radar screen. I'm a footnote; a small footnote at that. ... I really screwed up and I can't -- if I get another chance, by the grace of God -- I can't screw up again. You only get one reprieve, and I'm not going to muck it up."
Edwin Black is the author of the international best-seller "IBM and the Holocaust" (Crown Books 2001 and Three Rivers Press 2002). This article was made possible by a grant from the Jewish Investigative Journalism Fund.
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