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Perhaps the president, visibly moved by the film, would sympathize with the moral impulse that drove [Jonathan Pollard] to give vital defense information to Israel. Perhaps he'd likewise equate Nazi Germany with demonic Iraq. Perhaps Mr. [Clinton], currently compiling his own list of presidential pardons, would see to it that the horrendous life sentence handed Pollard in 1985 be commuted to time served.

Particularly galling, though, are the potshots from two former Justice Department prosecutors - the politically ambitious Joseph DiGenova and his former assistant David Geneson - who effectively bargained Pollard out of a trial by promising not to seek a maximum sentence. Now they've come out of the woodwork to argue that Pollard deserved exactly what he got, slinging new charges never brought before a judge or jury.

They realize that, in contrast to many other spies convicted of more serious crimes, Pollard was never accused of intending to harm the United States. Nor was he ever charged with treason - except by the former secretary of defense, Caspar Weinberger. Now even Mr. Weinberger, perhaps rendered contrite by his own recent pardon, says that he wouldn't oppose reducing Pollard's life term.




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