Events around date of publication of this item.
Excerpts from The Koenig Report: Demographic Racism in Israel
: Excerpts from The Koenig Report: Demographic Racism in IsraelBy
: Israel Koenig Published in
: Middle East Report (MERIP)
, issue 51, pages 11 to 14Date of issue
: October 1976Timeline event(s) mentioned in this item: Commentary
Commentary (by MERIP
The following are major excerpts from the "Koenig memorandum,"
a confidential report to the lsraeli Ministry of Interior
by its district representative in the northern part of the country,
where the largest concentration of lsraeli Arabs reside. Its
author, Yisrael Koenig, has served in that post for the last
twelve years, and is well known in the region for his harsh
treatment of lsraeli Arabs. The document, written many
months ago, was released in early September by the M APAM
daily Al Hamishmar. Although the document does not represent
official government policy, it does reflect the thinking
of an important segment of the Zionist policy makers. The
sections entitled "The Arab Leadership and its implications"
and "Law En forcement," and Koenig's introduction, have not
been included, as well as substantial parts of the post-Land
Day memorandum which repeats much of the earlier document.
We have published what we feel to be the most significant
parts of the document. A complete English version
can be found in Foreign Broadcast Information Service,
September 14, 1976, pp.N 1-N 14. SWASl A is planning
a full translation in an upcoming issue. A week after the
document was published in lsrael, Koenig was appointed
to head a permanent committee in the northern district
to combat Arab construction of 'illegal buildings" on
'plots belonging to the lsraeli land administration."
A. THE DEMOGRAPHIC PROBLEM AND THE MANIFESTATIONS
OF ARAB NATIONALISM
Quotations from this item:
1. The natural increase of the Arab population in Israel is
5.9% annually against a natural increase of 1.5% annually
among the Jewish population.
This problem is particularly acute in the northern district
where there is a large Arab population. In mid-1975 the Arab
population of the northern district was 250,000 while the
Jewish population was 289,000. A regional examination
shows that in western Galilee the Arab population constitutes
67% of the total; in the region of Yizre'el the Arab population
constitutes 48% of the total population. In 1974 only 759
Jews were added to the population of the northern district
while the Arab population increased by 9,035.
According to this rate of increase, by 1978 Arabs will constitute
over 51% of the total population of that district.
The nationalists feel-as I do in regard to the Arab population-
that the Arabs' increase in the Galilee will endanger our
control of that area and will create possibilities for military
forces from the north to infiltrate into that area in proportion
to the acceleration of the nationalistic process among lsraeli
Arabs and their willingness to help.
2. The lsraeli Arab population has received a nationalistic momentum
since the 6-day war. The policy of free contact with
the West Bank and the open bridges has renewed the contact
between the Arabs of Judea and Samaria and the Palestinians
east of the Jordan River, and this has created the basis for a
show of determination and slogans for a nationalist struggle in
Israel. This process, which was inevitable, gained momentum
after the Yom Kippur war and was further strengthened after
the international political events which were manifested in
the recognition of the PLO as the standard bearer of the struggle
in regard to the Palestinian problem.
Recently there has been mention of the UN resolution
about Israel's borders in 1974 according to which significant
parts of this piece of land are not to be included in the State