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Government Issues New Guidelines for Information Officers Overseas

September 30, 1977
See Original Daily Bulletin From This Date

The government has issued new guidelines for information officers overseas, stressing Israel’s “historic” rights on the West Bank and taking issue with the “myth of an independent Palestinian people.”

The new guidelines, the first of their kind since the Likud won the May elections, were prepared by Shmuel Katz, the Premier’s advisor on overseas information. The guidelines will be disseminated by the Foreign Ministry to information officers in Israeli diplomatic missions and to information emissaries going abroad.

They include such directives as: “Terms such as the West Bank and the administered territories should no longer be used, but rather–Judaea and Samaria….One should not hesitate to challenge the myth of a Palestinian people that is supposedly deprived of a homeland, and is supposedly separated from the Arabs of Eretz Israel.”


The guidelines begin with the claim that “Judaea, Samaria and Gaza are part of the historical heritage of the people of Israel.” They claim that Israel is entitled to those territories even by rules of international law. Thus, the guidelines contend, the original readiness of the Jewish Agency in 1947 to give up territories in Palestine became void when the Arabs rejected the 1947 partition plan.

Another remark is that one should no longer use the term “annexation” in reference to the territories, because “one can annex only territories which belong to others.” The guidelines permit use of the terms “inclusion of the territories within Israel’s boundaries and application of Israeli law in the territories, but under no means should one use the term annexation.” They note that “journalists cannot be told what terms to use, but one can tell them where they are wrong.”

The guidelines contend further that it is completely erroneous to assume that Israeli settlements in the territories are an obstacle to peace. Such an argument, they say, is based on the assumption that the source to the Mideast conflict is the Israeli “occupation” of 1967, and therefore peace can be reached by giving back the territories.

“Israel’s readiness in the past to return territories in return for peace in effect admitted that holding those territories was preventing peace. The real source of the conflict is Arab determination to annihilate Israel,” the document says.

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