A Fund for Free Expression Report by Meron Benvenisti
In its pre-publication review of Palestinian newspapers and magazines, Israel’s military censor blocks the publication not only of supposed national security secrets or material likely to incite violence. Rather, the censor’s primary concern, as shown through a study of banned materials, is to eradicate expression that could foster Palestinian nationalist feelings; suggests Palestinians are a nation with a national heritage; denies Israel’s legitimacy; or imputes behavior to Israeli officials that suggests illegitimacy. Palestinian editors must submit for review all material meant for publication, including photos, advertisements, and crossword puzzles. The censor’s list of banned books included some 1,600 titles, at the time this report was prepared.