A judge has ruled that Jonathan Pollard, the former U.S. government employee sentenced in 1987 to life in prison for spying for Israel, will be released on parole in November. A statement regarding his release said that it was unrelated to Israeli objections to the recent Iran nuclear agreement, though prior Wall Street Journal reporting suggested that the release might ease some tensions between the U.S. and Israel. The U.S. government had repeatedly denied Israel’s requests to release Pollard. “Releasing Pollard was a bad idea in 1998 and 2001. It is not a better idea today,” former Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld posted on Twitter. CNN reports Pollard’s lawyer will pursue clemency from President Obama, which will allow the former government contractor to leave the country.
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