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Shultz Distressed by Pollard Case but Warns It Must Not Detract from Strong Support for Israel

Secretary of State George Shultz said Wednesday that he was distressed by the Jonathan Pollard spy case and “made it clear to Israel” but warned that this must not detract from strong support for Israel.

“I do think it is important to keep in mind the fundamentals and that to manage the problem (the Pollard case) doesn’t mean we wind up shooting ourselves in the foot,” Shultz said while testifying on the Reagan Administration’s foreign aid proposals for 1988 before the House Appropriations Committee.

“There is a possibility of peace in the Middle East and we need to keep working at it and not allow our deep distress to prevent us from seeing the fundamentals,” he said.

Shultz made his remarks in response to Rep. Matthew McHugh (D. NY) who said that the two Israelis implicated with Pollard “seem to have been rewarded.” He was referring to Israel Air Force Col. Aviem Sella, who was given command of Israel’s second largest air base last week, and Rafael Eitan, who was earlier appointed chairman of Israel Chemicals, the largest government-owned corporation.

Shultz said the State Department would have no dealings with either individual. “I made it clear to Israel my distress and the Prime Minister said he was ashamed (of the Pollard affair). Of course, it’s up to Israel to decide what to do internally,” Shultz said.