IDF Radio reporter (file)
IDF Radio reporter (file)Israel news photo: Flash 90

IDF Radio's commander has instructed the station's reporters to prefer the term "Judea and Samaria" (Yehuda veShomron) to "the West Bank." The latter phrase dates from the 19-year interval between 1948 and 1967 during which the Biblical heartland was under Jordanian control.

The decision was reported in the military radio station's response to a complaint by Israel Media Watch that referred to a report on the arrest of girls from Judea and Samaria for alleged "Price Tag" vandalism in early December. The reporter used the term "West Bank" to identify their places of residence.

"Since 'the West Bank' is a hostile term while the proper term is Judea and Samaria," wrote IMW's David Ish Shalom to IDF Radio, "the insinuation of this term inserts into the listener's mind the idea that this territory is not ours."

IDF Radio's ombudsman replied that the matter had been checked and that "our broadcasters usually use the term 'Judea and Samaria,' although the use of the term West Bank is not a blatant error and political motivation should not be immediately ascribed."