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Censor Refuses Offer by Golan to Re-write His Unpublished Book

May 30, 1975
See Original Daily Bulletin From This Date

The chief military censor has refused an offer by journalist Matti Golan to re-write his unpublished book, “Confrontation and Disengagement” to conform with censorship requirements. The decision is believed to have been made directly by Premier Yitzhak Rabin who originally ordered the book banned on grounds that it contained secret material of a delicate nature that could injure relations between Israel and the United States. It was learned today that Golan will appeal to the Supreme Court for a reversal of the censor’s decision.

The incident created a furor in Israel two weeks ago when the New York Times published news that the Golan book had been banned after Rabin had extracted a promise from Israeli newspaper editors not to publish that fact.

Golan’s book purports to contain verbatim transcripts of conversations between Secretary of State Henry A. Kissinger and former Premier Golda Meir during the period November, 1973-January, 1974 when cease-fire and disengagement agreements were being negotiated between Israel, Egypt and Syria after the Yom Kippur War. According to reports, the book records unflattering remarks made by Kissinger about the heads of several governments.


The censor seized Golan’s manuscript and all notes pertaining to it. Golan, the diplomatic correspondent of Haaretz, made his offer to rewrite the book on grounds that he wanted to avoid a legal battle with the State which could damage Israel’s democratic image, Golan’s lawyer, Arye Marinsky, met last week with Attorney General Meir Shamgar and the chief military censor, Gen. Walter Bar-On.

He told them Golan was prepared to re-write the book to conform with the demands of the censor’s and that he would do the re-writing in the censor’s office so that he could refer to his notes without removing them from the control of the authorities. According to Haaretz, the offer was rejected on the direct order of Rabin.

Golan and his publishers wrote to the chief censor yesterday giving him one week to explain which parts of the book were prejudicial to national security; permit Golan to re-write the book under the censor’s supervision; and permit publication of the re-written book. They said that failing a satisfactory response they would file an appeal with the Supreme Court.

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