digplanet beta 1: Athena
Share digplanet:


Applied sciences






















סיעת העצמאות
Chairman Ehud Barak
Founded 17 January 2011
Split from Labor Party (2011)
Ideology Centrism
Political position Center/center-left[1][2]
Politics of Israel
Political parties

Independence (Hebrew: העצמאות‎, Ha'Atzma'ut) is a political party in Israel. It was launched by Defense Minister Ehud Barak on 17 January 2011 after he and four other Labor Party MKs announced their secession from the caucus. In the words of the announcement, the faction aims to be "centrist, Zionist, and democratic" and to establish itself as a separate political party.[3] It was built on the vestiges of the Third Way party.[4] Nine days after Barak announced his retirement from politics, it was announced that Independence would not contest the 2013 Knesset elections.


The secession was seen as a pre-emptive move, before other Labor MKs act on their ultimatum to either let Labor leave Benjamin Netanyahu's coalition due to the stalling of a peace process, or force Labour's then-chairman Barak to face the consequences within his own party. Splitting the Labour Party enabled Barak to keep a faction of Labour MKs loyal to him within Netanyahu's coalition, preventing the departure of all 13 Labour MKs from the coalition. As of 17 January 2011, the coalition has the support of 66 out of 120 MKs, as compared to 74 before that. Since Labour was often an unreliable coalition partner in Knesset voting, the reduced number of MKs does not increase the risk of a no-confidence vote. Netanyahu was singled out by analysts as the biggest winner from the split,[5][6] and was reported to have been involved in the behind-the-scenes making of the political deal.[7] Barak said that he was tired of infighting within Labour as he accused the rest of the Labour of "moving too far to the dovish end of the political spectrum." The more leftist faction was also wary of Barak's closeness to the Prime Minister Netanyahu.[8] Daniel Ben-Simon left the Labour party in protest against Barak's decision to stay with the government.[9]

MK Einat Wilf mentioned in the press conference: "Not all is our fault, some of it is the Palestinians' fault", referring to the argument leading up to the departure of Independence from the Labour Party.[10] Wilf also said that the party could not stay united because one faction was moving towards the "far left of Israeli politics," and the other side believed the current government was an effective partnership.[9] However, the remaining members of Labour condemned the move. Eitan Cabel said it would "destroy the party,”[11] whilst Shelly Yachimovich called it "a corrupt and opportunistic move, designed to save Barak's seat in the government. He has brought a catastrophe upon Labor."[12] Daniel Ben-Simon had stated prior to the split that he would become an independent MK because of Labour's continued position in the government of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. Avishai Braverman, Minister of Minorities, and Isaac Herzog, Minister of Social Affairs, also intended to resign following the split.[9]

In a move to avoid the months of bureaucracy involved in registering a new party, Barak negotiated a takeover of the Third Way with its leader Avigdor Kahalani. The Third Way had held seats in the Knesset between 1996 and 1999, and although had effectively ceased functioning after losing them in the 1999 elections, it had remained a registered party.[13] The Knesset Committee approved the request of Independence to take over the Third Way party, a decision needed for it to receive funding from the state.[14]

The founding conference of the party was held in May 2011 with eighty members in attendance. The conference approved the party's statute and the appointment of Barak as chairman. In September 2011 the faction's name was officially changed to "The Independence Party" through the national party registrar.[15] In February 2012 Minister Matan Vilnai resigned his post in the cabinet and the Knesset for the post of being the Israeli Ambassador to China, and Shachiv Shnaan was sworn in instead.

Government representation[edit]

A day after the party's formation, four of its five Knesset members were given ministerial positions; Barak remained Minister of Defence, Vilnai was given the new post of Minister for the Home Front, Noked became Minister of Agriculture and Simhon became Minister of Industry, Trade and Labour and Minister of Minorities.[16] without their party having the benefit of having participating in an election.

Knesset members[edit]

Party founder Ehud Barak

Six people represented the party in the Knesset:


  1. ^ Charles Levinson (January 18, 2011). "Barak exit divides Israel Labor party". Wall Street Journal. 
  2. ^ Scott Bobb (November 26, 2012). "Israeli Defense Minister Quits Politics". Voice of America. 
  3. ^ Hoffman, Gil; Herb Keinon (17 January 2011). "Barak: New faction to be 'centralist, Zionist, democratic'". jpost.com. Jerusalem Post. Retrieved 17 January 2012. 
  4. ^ Ophir Bar-Zohar (April 16, 2012). "Yair Lapid reveals name of his new Israeli political party: Atid". Haaretz. 
  5. ^ Barak saved Netanyahu Ynetnews, 17 January 2011
  6. ^ Netanyahu: Barak's split from Labor strengthens Israel's government Haaretz, 17 January 2011
  7. ^ Behind the split: Deal between Barak and Netanyahu Yediot Ahronot 17 January 2011 (Hebrew)
  8. ^ Edmund Sanders (November 26, 2012). "Israeli Defense Minister Ehud Barak to quit politics". Los Angeles Times. 
  9. ^ a b c http://english.aljazeera.net/news/middleeast/2011/01/201111772831319356.html
  10. ^ Coalition factions want the portfolios of the Labour Ministers that quit Maariv (video), 17 January 2011 (Hebrew)
  11. ^ Ben Gedalyahu, Tzvi (17 January 2011). "Barak Splits Labor Party, Will Remain Defense Minister". Israel National News. Arutz Sheva. Retrieved 17 January 2011. 
  12. ^ Fendel, Hillel (17 January 2011). "Barak Says Labor Pulled Leftward". Israel National News. Arutz Sheva. Retrieved 17 January 2011. 
  13. ^ Barak readies to launch Independence Party Yediot Ahronot, 9 May 2011
  14. ^ סיעת העצמאות הופכת למפלגה, Arutz Sheva, 13 April 2011 (Hebrew)
  15. ^ Barak’s Independence faction now a party The Jerusalem Post, 8 April 2011
  16. ^ Labor dissidents get 4 portfolios Ynetnews, 18 January 2011

External links[edit]

Original courtesy of Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Independence_(Israeli_political_party) — Please support Wikipedia.
This page uses Creative Commons Licensed content from Wikipedia. A portion of the proceeds from advertising on Digplanet goes to supporting Wikipedia.
95962 videos foundNext > 


Palestinian Worshippers Scuffle with Police on Israel's Independence Day

Israeli police use stun grenades to disperse Palestinian protesters as tensions erupt outside Jerusalem's al-Aqsa compound. Full Story: Israeli riot police scuffled with Palestinians outside...


American policy of providing assistance to Israel has had the effect, if not the express intent, of weakening Israel's political resolve, Golda Meir refused to launch a preemptive strike...

Statement by Liberal Party of Canada Leader Justin Trudeau on Israel Independence Day

OTTAWA – The Leader of the Liberal Party of Canada, Justin Trudeau, today issued the following statement on Israel's national day of independence, Yom Ha'atzmaut: “On behalf of the...

Israel Celebrates Independence Day, Arrests Activists

While hundreds of thousands celebrated, the police arrested three activists for trying to question the history of this day. More at http://therealnews.com.

The Monarchy: BBC pro-Israel bias/Scottish Independence

PressTV's Channel: https://www.youtube.com/user/videosptv Polls have revealed that support for Scottish independence is gaining momentum among voters months before the September referendum...

ISRAEL: Defence Minister Barak quits Labour to create new 'Independence' party

ISRAEL: Defence Minister Barak quits Labour to create new 'Independence' party Israeli Defence Minister Ehud Barak broke with the Labour party and announced the formation of a new party called...

Abbas M. Milani and Janine Zacharia: Israel, Iran and the US: A Complex Triangle

Chapters: ------------- Introduction: 0:00 What is the Likelihood that the Proxy War Between Israel and Iran Could Become a Full-Scale War?: 1:56 What Tensions Underlie a Potential US Nuclear...

The Rabbi and the Professor- A Story for Israel Independence Day

In 2013, on Tuesday, April 16, we mark Yom Ha'Atzmaut, Israel's Independence Day. Prior to Yom Ha'Atzmaut, Israel observes Yom Ha'zikaron (Israel's Memorial Day) when the fallen soldiers are...

Palestinian worshippers scuffle with police on Israel's Independence day

Subscribe: http://smarturl.it/reuterssubscribe May 6 - Israeli police use stun grenades to disperse Palestinian protesters as tensions erupt outside Jerusalem's al-Aqsa compound. Rough Cut...

95962 videos foundNext > 

2 news items

Columbus Business First
Thu, 15 Sep 2011 11:50:19 -0700

New Albany is the second-richest community in Ohio, according to a new ranking, with Powell and Dublin just outside the top 10. According to data compiled by On Numbers, a unit of Columbus Business First parent American City Business Journals, just ...
Fri, 30 Aug 2013 09:31:46 -0700

La sélection locale des Léopards de la RD Congo et les Lions Indomptables du Cameroun se sont séparés sur un score de parité (1-1) en match retour des barrages pour le CHAN 2014 (championnat d'Afrique des nations). Un score qui, s'il est confirmé par ...

Oops, we seem to be having trouble contacting Twitter

Support Wikipedia

A portion of the proceeds from advertising on Digplanet goes to supporting Wikipedia. Please add your support for Wikipedia!

Searchlight Group

Digplanet also receives support from Searchlight Group. Visit Searchlight