Solidarity with IsraelMay 16, 2001
Rabbi Hershel BilletMay 30, 2001
Rabbinical Council of America Resolution on Jonathan Pollard
May 17, 2001 — In the noblest spirit of Biblical teachings, religious virtue and benevolent aspirations,we, the Rabbinical Council of America, representing the Orthodox rabbinate ask that mercy be granted on humanitarian grounds to Jonathan Pollard and his prison sentence be commuted.
While we do not condone the violation of the laws of the United States, nor do we contend that Mr. Jonathan Pollard is innocent of the crime with which he was charged, we do,however, contend that a hallmark of American justice is its consistent effort to “make the punishment fit the crime.” Mr. Pollard’s sentence is grossly disproportionate to his crime, and this can readily be seen in comparison with sentences given to others who have committed similar crimes. A life sentence for espionage has been meted out only to those unrepentant offenders who aided and abetted America’s enemies with intent to damage or destroy our nation. Mr. Pollard wrongly disclosed secret information to one of the United States’ most trusted allies. He has already served more than the sentences imposed upon such offenders. He has also publicly expressed his regret for his actions and demonstrated profound remorse.
We ask that on humanitarian grounds his sentence be commuted.