Daily Israel Report

Lesson in the Bible: MK Katz Chides Bibi for Term ‘West Bank’

MK Yaakov “Ketzaleh” Katz gave a Bible lesson to Prime Minister Netanyahu for using the term “West Bank” when referring to Judea and Samaria.
By Tzvi Ben Gedalyahu
First Publish: 9/23/2009, 3:07 PM

Israel news photo

National Union Knesset Member Yaakov “Ketzaleh” Katz chided Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu Wednesday for using the term “West Bank” when referring to Judea and Samaria in an interview with Wolf Blitzer of CNN.

The Prime Minister stated, “I said to Mr. Abbas today, listen, we're old hands. We have had many meetings in the past when I was prime minister during my first tenure, and I met him. And I respect him. And I think there is a lot we can do together. Look, you know, we have lifted all these roadblocks in the West Bank, checkpoints. I've opened the Allenby Bridge on the Jordan River to allow the inflow of goods into the West Bank. So life is getting better. The IMF [International Monetary Fund] is talking about a seven percent growth rate in the West Bank.”

MK Katz stated, “I have looked throughout the Bible and I have never seen the term ‘West Bank’ written there even once, whether in direct reference or through interpretation.” The freshman legislator added that the words do not even appear through the use of Gematria, which employs the use of numerical values for Hebrew letters.

The term “West Bank” refers to land that is west of the banks of the Jordan River. Supporters of a Jewish presence in all of Israel have pointed out that according to that description, the term “West Bank” includes Haifa, metropolitan Tel Aviv, other cities along the Mediterranean Coast and all areas between the coast and the Jordan River.

The Hebrew words for Judea and Samaria appear frequently throughout the Bible, from the period of Joshua through the era of prophets and kings of Israel.