Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Why I don't care about Jonathan Pollard …

There has been a lot of rumbling in the Israeli press and in the pro-Israel blogosphere that the U.S and Israel may agree to a three-month extension of the settlement freeze in exchange for the release of convicted spy Jonathon Pollard. It may sound insensitive, considering Pollard has been in jail since 1987, but I don't really care about what happens to him.

Pollard is a U.S citizen and passed on secret U.S. information to Israel. Now, it may be true that the U.S. and Israel are allies and that the information probably pertained to Arab countries and other enemies of Israel. But that doesn't make it ok.

Pollard broke the law. He is an American and his loyalty should lie with the U.S. More than that, I learned long ago a rule to live by: don't frak with Uncle Sam.

Now many may question how I can say this with such confidence considering I left the U.S. and now live in Israel. "Don't you have dual loyalties?" they might ask.

Yes, I do have dual loyalties. I have dual citizenship. I have to respect the laws of both countries and support the wellbeing of both countries. And you know what, it's not hard. The U.S. and Israel ARE allies and their interests tend to coincide.

Yes the countries have differences of opinion about policy. But those differences are no greater than what can be found among the elected representatives of both countries. I don't agree with a lot of Obama's policies, but that doesn't make me disloyal to the U.S. I disagree with a lot of Netanyahu's policies, and I absolutely loathe Avigdor Lieberman, but that doesn't make me disloyal to Israel.

But Pollard was an employee of the U.S. government and he had an obligation to uphold the law. He failed, and he was tried and sentenced fairly. He deserves his fate.

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