The United States expressed "dismay" yesterday that Israel had not given its "full and prompt cooperation" to the American investigation of Jonathan Jay Pollard, the Navy employe who allegedly sold U.S. military secrets to the Israelis.
State Department spokesman Charles E. Redman revealed that the United States requested Israel's cooperation in the Pollard matter a week ago Thursday, but that Israel waited five days to inform the United States that two Israeli officials apparently connected to Pollard had left this country the day after that cooperation was sought. Redman said yesterday that the Israelis "have not yet provided the full and prompt cooperation we requested."
"We regret this delay and are urging the Israeli government to respond promptly," he said.
Addressing the departure of the two Israeli officials on Nov. 22, one day after FBI agents arrested Pollard outside the Israeli Embassy here, Redman said: "We have no explanation for that departure. We were not informed . . . . We are dismayed that the government of Israel was not as forthcoming as we would have hoped and expected."
Later, a U.S. official said that U.S. authorities had perhaps not made it explicit to Israeli officials here that they expected no Israeli involved with Pollard would be allowed to leave this country when they first asked for Israel's cooperation in the case a week ago Thursday, the day of Pollard's arrest. By last Monday, however, "it was certainly perfectly clear to them that we thought no one should leave," he said.
Redman said that the "crucial point" now was that U.S. authorities be given "prompt access" to those Israeli officials involved so that the United States could obtain "the full facts" in the Pollard case.
While the government of Israel has indicated it may allow U.S. authorities to talk to the two Israeli officials who left the United States, State Department officials said yesterday that no arrangements had been made yet for such access.
Various U.S. officials in the past few days have privately expressed irritation over the lack of Israeli cooperation in the Pollard case. But this was the first time the State Department has issued a formal statement sharply criticizing Israel's performance and specifically its refusal so far to make its diplomats available for questioning by U.S. authorities.
In most spy cases involving a U.S. citizen and a foreign diplomat, the United States has declared the foreign diplomat involved persona non grata without expecting the diplomat to cooperate with U.S. authorities. But because of the especially close relationship between the United States and Israel, U.S. authorities appear to expect considerably more cooperation this time.
The New York Times reported from Jerusalem yesterday that Prime Minister Shimon Peres, Foreign Minister Yitzhak Shamir and Defense Minister Yitzhak Rabin, acting as a committee, had investigated the Pollard matter, and concluded that the Israelis responsible had kept it to themselves, not informing ministers "on the political level" that they had an American agent providing secret U.S. information to them.
As reported earlier, those responsible were described as members of a special antiterrorism bureau outside normal Israeli intelligence agencies.
Israeli diplomats in Washington yesterday recommended that concerned friends of Israel asking for guidance on the Pollard case read the New York Times account, noting particularly the report's suggestion that Israel had used Pollard because it learned the United States had been spying on the Israeli military.
The Times quoted a "highly placed Israeli source" as saying that the information provided by Pollard "related to Israel's national security. It appeared . . . that the United States was clearly running an intelligence operation with regards to matters of Israel's national security," the source told The Times.
Pollard's information indicated that the United States had "penetrated" the Israeli military, The Times was told, so the Israeli officials involved decided that they had to seek more information from him to try to identify and then close the leak.
Redman took issue with these and other allegations in the Israeli press that the United States itself had engaged in obtaining information "covertly and illegally" about Israeli defense capabilities.
"That's not the case," he said. "Those assessments were made in the course of our longstanding defense relationship and intelligence exchanges with the government of Israel."
The New York Times reported that preliminary findings of the Peres-Shamir-Rabin report had been given to U.S. Ambassador Thomas Pickering in Israel on Wednesday, but U.S. officials had only received preliminary information from Pickering, and nothing amounting to a full report.
One official said that the information was "nothing in the kind of detail we want" regarding the Israeli involvement in the Pollard case.
President Reagan is expected to speak about the recent rash of spy cases in the United States during his regular Saturday radio broadcast. But he will not address the Pollard case specifically, according to a White House official.
Redman said yesterday that "as difficult as this Pollard case may be, I don't think there's been any implication that the normal U.S.-Israeli relationship has been in some way fundamentally interrupted."
An Israeli Embassy spokesman, Yossi Gal, described the Pollard case as "highly sensitive" and said the embassy would have no comment until the Israeli government had completed its investigation.
"We simply see no other way than awaiting this investigation in Israel. Then and only then, we'll give our version of the whole story A to Z," he said.
On Wednesday, Israeli Ambassador Meir Rosenne told reporters that no Israeli diplomats had been sent home because of the Pollard case.
On Thursday, however, another embassy official modified that assertion, saying it meant that "ever since [last] Monday" no Israelis had left the country.
Both Gal and State Department officials refused to comment yesterday on unconfirmed reports that a third Israeli embassy employe, a secretary, had left the United States following the departure Nov. 22 of Ilan Ravid, scientific affairs attache at the Israeli Embassy here, and Yosef Yagur, an Israeli scientific consul in New York.
However, Redman was careful to avoid confirming that the United States thought either that those two specific Israelis were necessarily the ones involved or that only two Israelis were under suspicion.
Nor would the State Department spokesman say whether anyone involved had diplomatic status and was therefore immune from U.S. interrogation.
"Whether or not they had diplomatic immunity should still not interfere with the process of our having access to them to determine what we need to know concerning this case," he remarked.