Ale Yarok

Ale Yarok
Ale Yarok
עלה ירוק
Leader Gil Kopatch
Founded 1999
Headquarters Jerusalem
Ideology Liberalism, Environmentalism, human rights, harm reduction [1]
Most MKs 0
Current MKs 0
Election symbol
קנ
Website
www.ale-yarok.org
Politics of Israel
Political parties
Elections

Ale Yarok (Hebrew: עלה ירוק‎, lit. Green Leaf) is a small and liberal political party in Israel best known for its ideology of decriminalizing cannabis, human rights and environmental activism. To date it has had no representation in the Knesset.

Contents

History

Established in 1999 by Boaz Wachtel, Shlomi Sandak and Rafik Kimchi, the party gained 1% of the vote in the elections that year,[2] and 1.2% in the 2003 elections,[3] but both times failed to pass the 1.5% threshold for representation in the Knesset. After these elections and despite the strong results in the 2003 elections, the chairman of Ale Yarok, Boaz Wachtel announced that he was giving up the leadership of the party, but remained in the position due to party members requests.

Before the 2006 elections the party announced that it intended to run for a third time, despite the threshold for representation having been raised to 2%. The party competed for votes with the supporters of the Democratic Choice (which later stepped down from running in the election) and with Meretz-Yachad, which had also promised to act for the decriminalization of soft drugs; another competitor was the Green Party with a strong ecological platform. The party gained 1.3% of the vote, and came second among those parties failing to make the threshold.[4] After the election, Wachtel passed the chairmanship to Ohad Shem-Tov.

Before the 2009 elections, Shem-Tov was expelled from the party by Shlomi Sandak who was the temporary chairman of the Green Leaf Party. Internal disputes lead the party to split with Shem-Tov forming the Ale Yarok Alumni group.[5] The Alumni party later allied with the Holocaust Survivors party to contest the 2009 Knesset elections.

In 2010 Shlomi Sandak resigned the party: "Now that cannabis is recognised as a medicine, my political ride is over", he said. Today he is promoting the medical uses of cannabis.

Ideology

The party's platform is based on the legalization of the Cannabis plant, marijuana and hashish, ecology, expansion of human rights and institutionalization of prostitution, gambling and same-sex marriage.[6] In official publications the movement claims that "the partition between Right-wing and Left-wing is anachronistic"; it holds "dovish" political opinions and believes in the solution of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict by establishing an independent and demilitarized Palestinian state (see two-state solution). However, the party is considered by the Israeli public as the "light drugs party" since this is the main issue that gets attention in the party's platform.

According to its website, "The GLP [Green Leaf Party] is a libertarian party and it encourages individuals and societies to upgrade their way of solving disputes to a cooperative-game logic."[7] However its platform calls for government subsidies for alternative energy, increased government spending on day care, education and medical care, tougher labour laws, the regulation of "casinos and bordellos", the imposition of "strict limits on animal experiments", and the continued prohibition of drugs "more harmful" than marijuana. It "believes in redistribution of the resources in order to benefit the weaker sectors" and that "providing a high quality education to all citizens is the foremost obligation of the state to its citizens".[6]

See also

References

External links


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