A document like this is not something you see every day: six pages methodically detailing Israel’s unofficial policy toward its Palestinian citizens, as formulated by the country’s highest-ranking officials: preventing political organizing, deliberately conducting military training in Arab-populated areas, and encouraging Arab youths into vocational rather than academic educational programs.
The document posted here, entitled Policy regarding Minorities in Israel, was apparently written in the early 1970s. It is a summary of several discussions held between Deputy Prime Minister Yigal Alon and the Central Security Committee, a body made up of representatives from the Shin Bet, the police, and the military and chaired by the Prime Minister’s Office Arab Affairs Advisor. The committee made all the major decisions about Palestinian citizens of Israel at the time.
The document presents a general overview of the “security policy employed thus far with respect to Arabs in Israel” and outlines the policy to be taken up going forward on a variety of issues, including: political organizing, education, employment, state control over land, and residential mobility. It shines a light on the policy of separation and control employed against Palestinian citizens of Israel by successive Israeli governments.
The recommendations include sections devoted to keeping Palestinian citizens from developing and pursuing a national political agenda. Some of the measures proposed in this context are preventing “political organizing based on national Arab sentiment,” disallowing “national conferences by heads of local councils,” and preventing the formation of a “federation of Arab local authorities.” The regime also opposed the formation of Arab local councils.
The recommendations also touched on social and civic issues. Throughout the years of Military Rule (1948-1966), the Israeli military often trained near Arab communities as a show of force. The authors of this document recommend continuing with this practice and “maintaining IDF training grounds in Arab areas inside Israel.” In the field of education, too, the document recommends preserving policies introduced during the Military Rule, for instance, “blocking academic education and encouraging vocational education,” as well as preventing “the establishment of Arab higher education institutions.”