Rassegna Stampa Elezioni Israeliane 2009

Monitoraggio attraverso i media internazionali delle elezioni in Israele del Febbraio 2009

Labor implores Barak not to join gov’t

Posted by Andrea Pompozzi su 7 marzo, 2009

Mar. 6, 2009

Labor ministers, MKs and top activists sent a clear message to party chairman Ehud Barak at a rally in Ramat Efal on Thursday: Stay out of Likud head Binyamin Netanyahu’s government if you want to remain the leader of the party.

Some 200 activists packed the auditorium and shouted down anyone who dared to speak in favor of joining the next coalition. Ministers Yuli Tamir and Ghaleb Majadle and MKs Eitan Cabel, Ophir Paz-Pines and Shelly Yacimovich spoke at the event.

Welfare and Social Services Minister Isaac Herzog, who is close to Barak, sent a note, saying he could not make it to the rally but that he supported heading to the opposition.

“The choice is between the coalition, which would mean certain death for Labor, and the opposition, which guarantees nothing but would give the party a chance to survive,” Cabel said. “It could take time. It could take four, maybe even eight years. Whoever doesn’t have the patience should get off the train.”

Cabel called the fight against Barak to keep Labor out of the coalition “a battle for the little self-respect we have left.”

Paz-Pines, who quit Prime Minister Ehud Olmert’s cabinet in November 2006, after Israel Beiteinu chairman Avigdor Lieberman joined it, said that if Labor joined a coalition where Netanyahu was prime minister and Lieberman was foreign minister, its cabinet members would be a “fig leaf for a right-wing extremist government.”

“Have we gone mad?” Paz-Pines asked the crowd. “Why are we arguing over something so elementary and basic? When you win an election, you go to the government. When you lose, you serve the people in the opposition. How complicated is that?”

Former MK Hagai Merom was heckled by supporters of Barak when he called him “the loser-general” and accused him of fighting for his own survival rather than the party’s.

Eitan Ben-David, the secretary-general of the party’s moshav sector, defended Barak and called for Labor to join the government-in-the-making.

He warned that staying outside the government would dry up resources for cash-strapped agricultural communities.

“We cannot go against the leader of our party,” Ben-David said. “We need to let Barak listen to Netanyahu and see if he gets a good offer that he can bring to the party’s institutions for approval. We cannot run from national responsibility during an economic crisis.”

Barak canceled a meeting with the heads of Labor sectors and branches after it became clear that the overwhelming majority of them opposed joining the next government.

He is expected to meet with Netanyahu on Friday.




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