|Cocaine's a helluva drug.|
Pollard grew up with what he called a "racial obligation" to Israel, and made his first trip to Israel in 1970, as part of a science program visiting the Weizmann Institute of Science in Rehovot. While there, he was hospitalized after a fight with another student. One Weizmann scientist remembered Pollard as leaving behind "a reputation of being an unstable troublemaker, the worst case of this kind in the history of the summer camp".
... After completing high school, Pollard attended Stanford University, where he completed a degree in political science in 1976. While there, he is remembered by several of his acquaintances as boasting that he was a dual citizen of the United States and Israel and claiming to work for the Mossad and to have attained the rank of colonel in the Israel Defense Forces. None of these claims were true.
Pollard was turned down for the CIA job after taking a polygraph test in which he admitted to prolific illegal drug usage between 1974 and 1978. ...The Navy asked for but was denied information from the CIA regarding Pollard, including the results of their pre-employment polygraph test showing Pollard's excessive drug use. ...
Two months after Pollard was hired, the technical director of NOSIC, Richard Haver, requested that he be terminated. This came after a conversation with the new hire in which Pollard offered to start a back-channel operation with the South African intelligence service and lied about his father's involvement with the CIA. Instead of terminating Pollard, Haver's boss reassigned him to a Navy human intelligence (HUMINT) operation, ... In the vetting process for this position, Pollard, it was later discovered, lied repeatedly: he denied illegal drug use, claimed his father had been a CIA operative, misrepresented his language abilities and his educational achievements, and claimed to have applied for a commission as officer in the Naval Reserve. ...
While transferring to his new job at TF-168, Pollard again initiated a meeting with someone far up the chain of command, this time with Admiral Sumner Shapiro, Commander, Naval Intelligence Command (CNIC) about an idea he had for TF-168 and South Africa. (The TF-168 group had passed on his ideas.) After the meeting, Shapiro immediately ordered that Pollard's security clearances be revoked and that he be reassigned to a non-sensitive position. According to The Washington Post, Shapiro dismissed Pollard as a "kook", saying later, "I wish the hell I'd fired him."
Because of the job transfer, Shapiro's order to remove Pollard's security clearances slipped through the cracks. However, Shapiro's office followed up with a request to TF-168 that Pollard's trustworthiness be investigated by the CIA. The CIA found Pollard to be a risk and recommended that he not be used in any intelligence collection operation. A subsequent polygraph test was inconclusive, although it did prompt Pollard to admit to making false statements to his superiors, prior drug use, and having unauthorized contacts with representatives of foreign governments. The special agent administering the test felt that Pollard, who at times "began shouting and shaking and making gagging sounds as if he were going to vomit", was feigning illness to invalidate the test, and recommended that he not be granted access to highly classified information. Pollard was also required to be evaluated by a psychiatrist.
Pollard's clearance was reduced to Secret. Pollard subsequently filed a grievance and threatened lawsuits to recover his SCI clearance, and subsequently began receiving excellent performance reviews. In 1982, after the psychiatrist concluded Pollard had no mental illness, Pollard's clearance was upgraded to SCI once again. In October 1984, after some reorganization of the Navy's intelligence departments, Pollard applied for and was accepted into a position as an analyst for the Naval Intelligence Command.
Shortly after Pollard began working at NIC/TF-168, he met Aviem Sella, a combat veteran of the Israeli Air Force, at the time on leave from his position as a colonel to gain a master's degree in computer science as a graduate student at New York University. Pollard told Sella that he worked for U.S. naval intelligence, detailed to him specific incidents where U.S. intelligence was withholding information from Israel, and offered himself as a spy. Though Sella had wondered whether Pollard was part of an FBI sting operation to recruit an Israeli, he ended up believing him. ... Within a few days, in June 1984, Pollard started passing classified information to Sella and received, in exchange, $10,000 cash and a very expensive diamond and sapphire ring, which Pollard later used to propose marriage to his girlfriend Anne. He also agreed to receive $1,500 per month for further espionage.
Naval Criminal Investigative Service (NCIS) investigator Ronald Olive has alleged that Pollard passed classified information to South Africa, and attempted, through a third party, to sell classified information to Pakistan on multiple occasions. Pollard also stole classified documents related to China on behalf of his wife, who used the information to advance her personal business-interests and kept them around the house, where investigating authorities discovered them when Pollard's espionage activity came to light.
During Pollard's trial, the US government's memorandum in aid of sentencing challenged "defendant's claim that he was motivated by altruism rather than greed", asserting that Pollard had "disclosed classified information in anticipation of financial gain" in other instances:
The government's investigation has revealed that defendant provided to certain of his acquaintances U.S. classified documents which defendant obtained through U.S. Navy sources. The classified documents which defendant disclosed to two such acquaintances, both of whom are professional investment advisers, contained classified economic and political analyses which defendant believed would help his acquaintances render investment advice to their clients... Defendant acknowledged that, although he was not paid for his unauthorized disclosures of classified information to the above-mentioned acquaintances, he hoped to be rewarded ultimately through business opportunities that these individuals could arrange for defendant when he eventually left his position with the U.S. Navy. In fact, defendant was involved in an ongoing business venture with two of these acquaintances at the time he provided the classified information to them...
During the course of the Pollard trial, Australian authorities reported the disclosure of classified American documents by Pollard to one of their own agents, a Royal Australian Navy officer who had been engaged in a personnel-exchange naval-liaison program between the U.S. and Australia. The Australian officer, alarmed by Pollard's repeated disclosure to him of data caveated No Foreign Access Allowed, reported the indiscretions to his chain of command, which in turn recalled him from his position in the U.S., fearing that the disclosures might be part of a "CIA ruse".
Seymour Hersh reported in The New Yorker in 1999:
Had Pollard's case gone to trial, one of the government's major witnesses would have been a journalist named Kurt Lohbeck, who had a checkered past. He had served seven months in prison after being convicted of passing a bad check in New Mexico in 1977, but by 1985 he was under contract to the CBS Evening News. Lohbeck, who now lives in Albuquerque -- (he received a full pardon from the governor of New Mexico two years ago), acknowledged in a telephone interview that he was prepared to testify, if necessary, about his involvement in Pollard's unsuccessful efforts in 1985 to broker arms sales for the rebels in the Afghan war. At one meeting with a foreign diplomat, Lohbeck said, Pollard posed as a high-level C.I.A. operative. Lohbeck, who was then CBS's main battlefield correspondent in the Afghan war, told me that Pollard had provided him, and thus CBS, with a large number of classified American documents concerning the war. He also told me that Pollard had never discussed Israel with him or indicated any special feelings for the state. "I never heard anything political from Jay," Lohbeck added, "other than that he tried to portray himself as a Reaganite. Not a word about Israel. Jay's sole interest was in making a lot of money."
Lohbeck went on to say that he had also been prepared to testify, if asked, about Pollard's drug use. "Jay used cocaine heavily, and had no compunction about doing it in public. He'd just lay it in lines on the table." In 1985, Lohbeck made similar statements, government officials said, to the F.B.I.
Pollard, told by me of Lohbeck's assertions, sent a response from a jail cell in North Carolina: "My relationship with Lohbeck is extremely complicated. I was never indicted for anything I did with him. Remember that." '
Pollard reminds me vaguely of lobbyist-felon Jack Abramoff, except Pollard was out of control on cocaine instead of steroids.
In a sane world, Israel and many of its American supporters would cite Pollard's all-around awfulness as evidence that he's an anomaly, he's totally unrepresentative. They would downplay the arguments that he did it for Israel and play up the evidence that he was a cokehound with delusions of being an international man of mystery.
Instead, the opposite happens.